Mike Elliott with a fine fly-caught muskie.

MOST ELUSIVE: Muskellunge…they’re in there, but where? I’ve caught (a total of) two muskies…so I’m an expert!

MOST FUN: Catching bluegills as a kid…or as an adult…or as just about anybody. Even more fun: fryin’ ’em up in a pan.

LEAST KNOWN: Brown Drake hatch on Henry’s Fork. Have done well on this hatch…but it ain’t easy. Tip: the darker it gets the better it gets!

Randy Brown photo

MOST INTRIGUING: Bonefishing. My favorite fishing with a fly rod. Tests all your skills: casting in the wind, fly placement, strip technique, hook set, fish fighting. A great game fish living in a vast, ever-changing marine environment. I have been in on over 870 hooked bonefish as angler and guide in the Florida Keys and the Bahamas and every one has been an event!

MOST MISUNDERSTOOD: Salmon fly hatch, Madison River. It’s a heavy hatch, but tricky. When it’s right, the big boys bite! When it’s wrong…well, you know…head to the bar.

Steelhead skaters tied by Randy Brown

MOST SURPRISING BITE: When a steelhead whacks your dry fly while you are skating it on top after a thousand casts. Personal best: a fifteen pounder on the Clearwater using my steelhead muddler/skater home-tie, greased line, skitter technique. Steelhead tip: the shadow lines under the highway bridges are good spots!

MOST FUN AFTER DARK: Largemouth bass on top water. Best strategy: sneak into Ohio farm ponds at night. Follow the “Keep Out” signs. Wear body armor. If caught, say “Aw Shucks”!

MOST EXOTIC: Anyone can catch a permit…all you need is lots and lots of time, money and patience…oh, and some skill…in no particular order. Throw in rejection, frustration and humiliation and you’re all set! Been in on 147 permit catches…none were easy but all were exciting!

BEST FISH POUND FOR POUND: Smallmouth bass. Born to fight and pull hard. The river fish of my youth. Love smallies!

BEST BITE: Tarpon on the fly, “the ultimate high”…nothing else like it, anywhere, ever.

“Then too you could remember when you had been below Key West to the Marquesas on a cool winter day when the horsetails were on a rising barometer sky and the radiant drop curtain of fuchsia light stood on edge from the Gulf Stream.”…

“Ninety-Two In The Shade” by Thomas McGuane