New Ambassador Willy Le

 

 

Please join us in welcoming Willy Le to the family!  Willy is one of our newest Ambassadors and we are thrilled to have him.  In an effort to get to know him better, we had a sit down with Willy to ask him a few questions.  He was such a good sport and stayed up late with us even though he had an early client the following day.  You can read the interview in its entirety below.  If you are out and about and happen to see Willy, make sure to say ‘Hello!’. For information about booking a charter with Willy, call him at 321-303-7905.  You can visit his site at www.nativeflycharters.com.

HR: Where do you live now?
WL: I live in Cocoa Beach, FL.

HR: Where are you originally from?
WL: I was born on a little Island in the South Pacific called Guam, but my family is originally from Vietnam.

HR: Wow. That is awesome. Did your dad fish and if so did he teach you how to fish? Where did you learn?
WL: Actually, it’s my mom that fishes and she taught me everything from catching to cleaning to cooking seafood. She lived off the land and sea growing up in back in Vietnam, and passed on the ways of living a simple life to me and my siblings. Once we moved to Orlando, Florida when I was 1 back in 1980, we would camp out every weekend on the side of the road in Cape Canaveral/Cocoa Beach along the Indian River Lagoon and Banana River. We would fish all day and cook our catch that consisted in fish, clams, and blue crabs. She taught us that you don’t need any money to have a great time, that’s exactly what we did out there, and that’s exactly how I live my life now.

HR: What made you want to become a guide? And How long have your been professionally guiding anglers?
WL: Going on my 4th year now. I’ve always been fascinated with the ocean and fishing since I was a little grom reading Jacques Cousteau books, it was my dream to fish for a living when I grew up. Once the right opportunity was thrown my way and some words of encouragement from Fly Fishing Legend Flip Pallot, I knew it was my destiny to sign up to get my Captains license.

HR: What is your favorite thing about Guiding?
WL: Favorite thing about guiding would be watching someone catch their first sight casted redfish whether it be on fly or spin tackle using artificials. Not many people have the opportunity to sight fish tailing reds, so when they first see one tailing, they are pretty fascinated by it. The all around excitement, once that tailing fish eats the fly or lure and comes tight….wow, it’s unexplainable! I’m getting excited just talking about it.

HR: What is the funniest thing that ever happened to you while guiding?
WL: Funniest thing that ever happened to me while guiding….hmmm. Probably the time when we were idling out to the channel first thing in the morning and a 2lb mullet jumps across the boat and smacks this girl from Ohio in the face then bounces back into the water. Haha. She had never seen a mullet in her life and did not know what had just happened. That woke her up real quick….I was cracking up.

HR: What is the worst thing that has ever happened to you while guiding?
WL: Worst thing while on a trip is getting stuck in a nasty Thunderstorm that popped up in us in minutes. The tip of the fly rod started buzzing from all the electricity in the air when the client would make a cast so I said “Dude…we gotta go! So we made the run back towards the ramp which was into the storm thinking I can beat it but I was too slow. The storm got stronger and grew bigger! Once we hit the edge of the storm just a mile from the ramp in the middle of the river, our glasses and hats got blown off and the boat did a 180. The chop in the water was a good 2ft+ and I was taking waves over the bow and sides. There was nothing I could do but ride with the waves which was the opposite way of the ramp. Rain was blinding and lighting started crashing every 20-30 seconds all around us. I had my clients put on the life vest and try to keep cool, which they did. In my head I was thinking that we were going to get struck by lightning at any minute. The boat was filled with water and we got blown on the other side of the Indian River. This went on for what felt like hours but really it was maybe 30 minutes until it blew over and we made it back to the ramp safely. When I got home and turned on the news, winds in the area that were we at gusted up to 70mph. I really thought that was going to be the end of my life that day by getting struck by lightning. Someone was definitely watching out for my anglers and me that day.

HR: Is there a fish that you caught or put a client on that is most memorable to you?
WL: Yes, watching my 5 year old niece Hanna catch her first Largemouth Bass, she was so happy!

HR: Did she catch it on live bait or an artificial?
WL: Well, first we were catching small bream using bread balls on her Barbie rod, then I look under the dock and see a nice 4-5lb Bass sitting under there. Hanna just caught a small bream and I told her to leave it on the hook and drop it over by the bass. Next thing you know, the bass nails it and we both were screaming with excitement. She reels it in and I grabbed it for her. It was awesome! I have the pictures somewhere.

HR: Speaking of tackle preferences – Do you prefer Fly or are you one of those anglers that doesn’t care how it’s done as long as you getting it done?
WL: I am definitely NOT a fly snob. I love to catch fish any how, any way. I do love the challenge with the fly rod but I still pick up the spin rod a lot using artificials. O Shootz, one day I’m going to bring back the handline on a beer can. Shootz, maybe soon now that we are talking about it, haha!
HR: Where is your favorite place to fish in Florida?
WL: It’s gotta be the Florida Keys, world class fishing from inshore to offshore.

HR: What time of year do you like being in the Keys and what species are you usually chasing?
WL: Every year I go in August for Lobster season with family and friends. I’ve been going down there since I was about 10 or something camping out at first but now we rent a house because the females that come along can’t take the no shower, no a/c, no electricity, and bugs. Most of the time we dive for lobster, spearfish, and reef fish. That is my get away from flats fishing I guess, I just want to relax, have some drinks, and eat what we catch.

HR:Is there a species that you feel like you haven’t mastered yet and what is it?
WL: Haha I don’t think anyone can really master a species of fish, if so, I wanna meet them and buy them a beer. I don’t think I have any fish mastered at all, some days they eat well, and some days they don’t, it’s fishing!

HR: Summer fishing is here, do you have any plans to chase any certain species around the state? out of state?
WL: Tarpon with a fly rod. Anywhere in the state.
HR: Sounds like you have some specifics in mind. Keep us updated.

HR: We are super excited to have you on the Hoorag Team. Which Hoo patterns do you like the best?
WL: Thank you for the opportunity, lately I been rocking the plain Hoos and earth tones, it depends on the mood I’m in when I wake up in the morning.

HR:Is there a pattern we don’t have you would like to see?
WL: Nah, I think Hoo-Rag covers all of the styles…I like more plain natural earth tone colors.

HR: Where can people book you for a charter? What is your phone number and web site?
WL: 321-303-7905 www.nativeflycharters.com

HR: When can we get together to fish?
WL:Anytime you want brah, you tell me.

Hoo-rag in Cape Hatteras

Hoo-Rag recently had the opportunity to work up a Custom Rag for Blow Kite in Pamlico Sound. The sound is located in Cape Hatteras, North Carolina. Blow Kite offers old fashioned customer service and boasts that while their service is old school, their gear and lessons are not!

Blow Kite offers Kiteboarding lessons along with the product you need to do so! They use the RPM “Rapid Progression Method” that they developed after much travel and working with the best professionals. Lessons start at just $75 and you can check out their site at www.blowkite.com for more info!

Promont Outdoors and Hoo-rag


We are super excited about our collaborative efforts with Promont Outdoors, we wanted to take a minute to spotlight them and our latest design we are calling the Bedded Bull. Promont Outdoors in an American Apparel company that features fly fishing and hunting inspired clothing, hats and accessories. In April they approached us with a design that was based on a photo of a group of elk from doing what they do out west. Promont sent us a vector design that was based on a field photo. They took the photo, vectorized it and then laid out a camo pattern that is super unique and super effective.
Check out some of Promont Outdoors other gear at Promontoutdoors.com.

 

Want to buy the Bedded Bull? Click here.

Red Bull Landrush Hoo-rag

Red Bull Land Rush took place in April two days before the original Oklahoma Land Run took place 124 years ago. Teams of three people took up the challenge to win a suite in Chicago for Lollapalooza 2013. Hoo-rag was there in spirit, and on top of sweaty hands or wrapped around busy wrists. The lucky and hard working team of “Pup ‘n Suds” won in the end and we hope you join us in congratulating them. For more information on Red Bull or other events, visit www.redbullusa.com.

Here are some photos from the event!
 


The Oyster Race

Hoo-Rag is pleased to partner with Oyster – The Race in creating a Custom Hoo-rag! An urban adventure, Oyster – The Race dares you to combine intelligence and athleticism in a challenging race. They have some upcoming races in August and September. You can put together a team and register at www.oystertherace.com.

If that’s not enough, they even offer you a chance to play fearlessly for FREE! You can enter to win free race entries, gear or just sign up for their newsletter. We encourage you to check them out. We are super pleased with the way this Hoo-rag turned out and look forward to seeing these Hoo-rags in action!

Harlem Shake Hoo-rag Video

So if you have not caught on to the Harlem Shake you can come out of your hole now and read all about it here.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harlem_shake

We decided to do our own Harlem Shake video whole celebrating our recent retail success. White’s Tackle was where we shot the video and this is our first
retail customer. That’s right, our first store and we have a bunch more lined up and ready to rock the rag!

Hope you enjoy this silliness.

Salty Shores Hoo-rag

We just finished up a really cool run of Hoo-rags for Salty Shores. (saltyshores.com) Salty Shores is a truly informative fishing blog that features fishing reports, reviews, photography tip and gear reviews, and general outdoor living/lifestyle eye candy. Salty Shores is based on the west coast of Florida and is operated by Sam Root.

Sam Started Salty Shores as a way to archive his fishing reports and photography. Back then he was known as “Apollo Beach Sam”, but today should be known as the “Man on the move”. If you follow him on facebook, instagram, or his blog you quickly realize that Sam is never idle. He follows fishing around the state of Florida and even travels the rest of the country with a camera in hand. At any given time, you can see him testing new products, reviewing great places to eat, meeting interesting people, and capturing it all with his cameras.

Hats off to Sam Root and Salty Shores as well as all of his great contributors. You can also get review great content from his army of serious anglers that get it done. Here are his contributors.

Salty Shores Contributors:
Honson Lau | Adrian Correa | Ryan Brandt | Kenny Smith | Collin Ross | Brad Leber | Jose Chavez | Leonardo Marques | Ryan Eaton | Captain Willy Le | Jay Nelson | Richard Traugott | Bill Howard | Michael Munoz | Dale Snead | Russell Kleppinger | Jay Riordan | Art Blank

The Links:
www.saltyshores.com
www.facebook.com/saltyshores

FOOTNOTE:
Sam Root is also the founder of the Salty Fly Tournament. This is the largest fly fishing tournament in Florida and the event is coming up real soon!
We bet you can get one of these new Salty Shores Hoo-rags at the event.

SALTY FLY TOURNAMENT- It’s not just a tournament, it’s an event!
February 22nd-24th
http://saltyflytournament.com

Instagram #freehooragcontest winners

If you played along on instagram and see you photo below you are a winner! How do you get your Hoo-rag?

Send the following information to swag@hoorag.com

-Your First Name, Last Name, and Shipping address
-Your instagram username
-Choose one of the following designs:

https://www.hoorag.com/products-page/all-bandanas/white-and-black-hoo/

https://www.hoorag.com/products-page/all-bandanas/bw-hoo/

https://www.hoorag.com/products-page/all-bandanas/pink-and-white-hoo/

And here are the winners and the photos they submitted:

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Want a free Hoo-rag Bandana?

We know, we know, we should have been on instagram like forever ago, but we have been busy! We have been chatting with some great instagram junkies for a few weeks now and we are ready to get it cranked up. So how do we do that?

Let’s give away some Hoo-rag bandanas!
We are going to give away 20 bandanas. Free.

Here is what you have to do. First, you must follow us on instagram and then upload a single picture from now until January 1st 2013 and make sure to add #freehooragcontest. Lastly leave a comment on your photo that tells us why you think you deserve a free Hoo-rag bandana and we will pick the lucky 20 people based on their comments. All winners will get a free Hoo-rag. It’s that simple. Are you ready to test drive the Hoo-rag in 2013. Get cranking!

Please note: All Winners will have a single choice of our black on white hoo, white on black hoo, pink hoo, or blue hoo.

USA BASSIN BANDANA SPONSORSHIP

We were the sponsor of the USA Bassin Hoo Rag Division on Patoka Lake in Southern Indiana this past summer. Johnny Morris and Jeremy Hagen unloaded the final punch with a 5 fish limit weighing in at 13.75 to seal the deal and take the win for tournament #5 of division. We supplied USABASSIN with a red white and blue fishing bandana we called Old Glory, we hope everyone is still enjoying them! Congrats to USA BASSIN and it’s successful season. In the meantime you might want to head to Florida while your lakes are frozen. 🙂