Show Notes: wetflyswing.com/474
Presented By: Daiichi, Waters West, Anglers Coffee, Trxstle
Monte Burke, author of Lords of the Fly, shares his journey of becoming a renowned writer and author. Discover the pivotal moment that transformed his life as he recounts how his first fly fishing story caught the attention of the editor at Sporting Classics, propelling him to become a full-time writer.
Discover the dedicated tarpon fishing enthusiasts of the Homosassa club and the current challenges faced by Florida’s waters. Explore the stories of fly fishing legends like Tom Evans and Andy Mill, who pushed the sport’s boundaries. Monte also recounts his encounter with Nick Saban, one of college football’s greatest coaches, resulting in a historic feature in Forbes Magazine. Learn about Monte’s other books, including Leaper, Sowbelly, and 4th & Goal, and get a preview of his upcoming book on the Southwest’s water crisis.
We talk a lot about writing and noted some renowned authors such as John Gierach and Thomas McGuane, and the fascinating intersection of passion, storytelling, and fly fishing. This episode is a must-listen for both avid anglers and literature enthusiasts.
Show Notes with Monte Burke on Lords of the Fly
03:00 – We noted his book, Lords of the Fly: Madness, Obsession, and the Hunt for the World Record Tarpon, which is a pretty popular fly fishing book.
03:45 – We had John Gierach on the podcast in episode 047 who’s arguably the best fly fishing writer of all time.
04:00 – Most of the males in Monte’s family fly-fished – his grandfather, his uncle, and his dad. Monte caught his first Atlantic salmon with his uncle on Margaree River in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia.
08:30 – Monte tells the story of when he wrote his first fly fishing story about Ed Shenk from LeTort Spring Run that he sent to different magazine companies. He then got a letter from the Editor of Sporting Classics, Chuck Wexler offering to buy his story for $200. That was his turning point from going to business school to being a fly fishing writer.
10:25 – Topher Browne mentioned Monte on a recent episode at WFS 464.
12:00 – Monte also did a story about Andy Mill who’s like a Tigerwoods of Tarpon fly fishing tournament. Andy was on the podcast in episode 330. Andy gave him Tom Evan’s number so he could write a story about him. He also noted names of the world’s best fly anglers in the 70s and 80s.
19:20 – We talk about how Florida is being ruined nowadays and gets worst each year.
21:10 – We noted Bonefish & Tarpon Trust are doing a great job in researching about the problems in the waters of Florida. Captains For Clean Waters are also fighting hard for Florida waters conservation. And also VoteWater Florida.
24:30 – Monte talks about the rockstars of the Homosassa club who were obsessed with tarpon fishing and made it possible for future generations to catch tarpon.
30:23 – The biggest tarpon ever caught was over 200 pounds on a 20-pound test which was caught by a non-regular guy who was just fishing with his dad. Tom Evans holds the record for the 16-pound test which was 190-pound tarpon. He also holds the record for the 12-pound which was 194-pound tarpon.
44:30 – We talk about Nick Saban who’s arguably the best college football of all time.
46:30 – Monte tells the story of when he got a phone call from Nick Saban agreeing to write a story about him. The story was then published in Forbes Magazine (2008) which also became the highest single issue of the magazine ever. Read that story here.
49:20 – Monte talks about his process of writing.
54:25 – We dig into his book, The Making of a Coach which was a story about Nick Saban’s life and incredible coaching career.
54:45 – Monte talks about his book, Leaper: The Wonderful World of Atlantic Salmon Fishing, which was a collection of Atlantic salmon stories.
55:15 – Monte did another fishing book called, Sowbelly: The Obsessive Quest for the World-Record Largemouth Bass.
55:50 – We also noted his book, 4th & Goal: One Man’s Quest to Recapture His Dream which was about Joe Moglia’s legendary career transition from head football coach at Coastal Carolina University to the CEO of TD Ameritrade
56:55 – Monte is writing a new book about the water crisis in South West looking through the lens of Lake Mead.
58:30 – We talk about what makes John Gierach a great writer. Monte says “he’s a great lyricist” and explains why.
59:45 – We also noted Thomas McGuane. Monte tells us what makes McGuane’s writing special.
1:03:30 – Monte tells the story of when he went to Labrador with Yvon Chouinard and other anglers.
1:07:30 – I asked Monte the question “Are you a writer or a fly fisherman first?”.
Show Notes: wetflyswing.com/474