This Week's View

by Deanna Lee Birkholm
August 7th, 2006

I'm Going

I know it's time to take a vacation. In fact, it's been time for a while. So to preserve my sanity, and hopefully not to drive folks away from Fly Anglers OnLine (FAOL), JC and I will leave Sunday the 6th of August for parts to the east and north. We'll spend some quality time with Chris Chin and his fish in Quebec, then fly back to Traverse City, Michigan, pick up a car and drive to Grayling for a week at the Michigan Fish-In.

Some of the time really will be a vacation, and part of it qualifies as a 'working vacation.' We'll take some photos and get to meet a lot of folks we have corresponded or only spoken to on the phone. Good stuff.

The reason I know it's time to just go is our IT guy, Ron Tidd, sent me some of the results from the poll we have on our Monthly Drawing. If you haven't entered this month, please do - we appreciate all the comments, 'tho some nearly have me tearing my hair out.

If one of these was your suggestion, you need to spend a little more time on FAOL, you've obviously missed some good stuff.

    Have a Bulletin Board: Duh, we've had one for almost 10 years and recently installed a new one.

    Upgraded search function: We have two Search features. One for just the Bulletin Board, and one which will search FAOL for you. If you type in more than one word you can request the search match both. It is a good as it gets.

    Stillwater techniques: What's not to like about the 100 articles on fishing lakes and stillwaters we already have? Did you miss it? Try: /features/lakes/. This section includes articles from many of the very best!

    Rod Building: Now I'm beating my head against the wall. We have a complete How To Build Your Own Graphite Rod with step by step photographic instructions. And How to Repair a Rod, Dr. Bill Hanneman's Common Sense System, comments on Spey Rod Building, Tips, and a Suppliers List. How could anyone who was really looking miss it? I don't have a clue.

    How about a saltwater section? I know we have to improve the way folks find things on FAOL, and we are working on that. But if you click on the word FEATURES on our left-hand menu, you will discover all sorts of information. Including a saltwater section. The first few articles have the equipment you need and flies too. Further down are actual fishing articles from a variety of saltwater places. If you are new to saltwater fishing, this is the place to start.

    More Dave Micus: As his regular readers know, Dave's articles have primarily been about saltwater fishing on the northeast coast. That is about to change. Dave has gone through a divorce, change of job, and relocation to Montana. Wow! I remember the things which are supposed to be the most stressful on ones life, and I think the only one missing from that list is the loss of a parent. Dave says he is doing just great, and he will send some articles soon. We're really looking forward to them.

    A Fly of the Week: The person suggesting that one obviously hasn't been reading FAOL, and probably is one of the folks who book marked the Bulletin Board and never sees what is on our front/main page. We have a Fly of the Week, and an Old Fly, and sometimes great Canadian flies as well. Opps.

    Bamboo section: See above, and click on the word FEATURES on our left-hand menu.

    Fishing Reports: There is a section on the Bulletin Board where folks can post a fishing report. It is not as 'used' as we would like to see, and we encourage you - and your favorite fly shop to post your conditions there. It is there, we just have to get folks to use it. But then, I suppose some don't want anyone else to know how good their fishing is. Sorry about that.

    More International: This is a tough one. We do have articles from our readers on Canada, Africa, Thailand, Singapore, Belize, Puerto Rico, Bahamas, New Zealand, Tasmania, Australia, Czech Republic, Ireland, UK, Scotland, Italy, Western Russia, India, Mexico, Costa Rica, Honduras, Panama, Brazil, Chile, and Guyana. However, we have readers in 127 countries. It would be wonderful to have articles from every country. If you are a fly-fisher outside the United States we would love to hear from you. How about it?

    Ipod and Video: Both of these are in process. Ipod actually is pretty easy, and we hope to have that up within a few months. The video requires a new camera for FAOL, and JC is researching that one. We may have the requested casting videos sooner than later. Most folks will be able to view them, the problem will be for those with slow dial-up connections. And maybe if we have something folks really want to see, it will be a good reason to upgrade your connection.

The new Bulletin Board is being very well received, it should be easier to everyone to use, but it does require taking a little time to check it out. There are new features, all in hope of continuing to make FAOL a community you want to be part of.

We are flying out tomorrow, (Sunday the 6th of August) and will not return until the 20th. Well maybe. We purchased our airline tickets a while back, and the one we are using all the way is NorthWest...and guess who is threatening a strike on the 15th of August? Ya right, you've got it.

One more note, since we are not taking the lap-top with us, I've asked our IT man, Ron Tidd to put an automatic responder on our email. If your email to us bounces, don't panic, resend it on the 21st of August. ~ DLB

If you would like to comment on this or any other article please feel free to post your views on the FAOL Bulletin Board!

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