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Next up in winter fishing destinations in which to beat cabin fever is Venice, Louisiana. This hot fishing destination is home to all sorts of year-round fishing opportunities. The winter months offer a unique prize, though: the chance to get into larger-grade yellowfin tuna. I don’t know what they call them in Venice, but in Southern California we call them cows — fish in excess of 200 lbs. Does that sound like it would get your blood pumping?

If not, read this story from Coastal Angler. In it, Capt. Peace Marvel recounts when the tuna were so fired up, they were biting on baby carrots!

venice_oil rigIt’s a little known fact that February is in fact the one and only month of the year you can catch giant tuna out of Venice on baby carrots AND celebrate my birthday.

Okay, so the baby carrot thing goes like this:

I had my good friend Jack Anderson and his teenage daughters for a lump tuna slaughter about 15 years ago. The fish were just on fire and we stayed hooked up most of the morning. Both of his girls, after having caught their yellowfin, were sitting in the leaning post eating baby carrots. Jenny dropped one on the deck and said “Yuck,” then threw it overboard. Out of nowhere a big yellowfin rocketed up from the depths and devoured it. I looked at Jenny and said, “Give me one of those.” About three minutes later we were hooked up with a big yellowfin that was obviously not on the Atkins diet. He weighed 156 lbs. and gave us all quite a story to share back at the dock.

I get asked a lot what the best bait is for catching those big fish on the lump, and I’ve said it a thousand times—the bait doesn’t matter so much as the sense of competition going on between the fish. One of the reasons that the Bonita are so important when we are chumming is that if there are a bunch of Bonita in the slick, then the yellowfin are way less selective. And the more fired up the Bonita are, the less selective the yellowfin are.

Photos: Miami Sportfishing


When I was about eight years old, my family went on a camping expedition to Lake Chelan in Eastern Washington state. I remember my dad and I trying all day to catch trout from the little stream running alongside our campsite. The next morning, I got up early and hiked upstream by myself. By the time Dad was up having his first cup of coffee for the day, I had returned with some fresh trout from my expedition. Getting away from the fishing pressure immediately around the campgrounds allowed me to find some fish that weren’t as picky about biting my hook.

It’s getting ever harder to find low-pressured fishing spots, but one great way is to hike into the backcountry of Colorado. This article from the Orvis blog tells you when and how to do it.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIn part one of this series, we looked at the types of water found in Colorado’s high country wilderness areas. From small streams to beaver ponds and alpine lakes, there is a variety of waters, each with its own set of challenges and opportunities. Here we’ll discuss wilderness access, so let’s jump in.

With only a few exceptions, wilderness areas are open to the public, offering priceless opportunities to visitors. Access to most wilderness areas in Colorado is as easy as finding a trailhead. Wilderness units can border private land, so access may not be available everywhere along the boundary. But from any public access point, including state or federal lands, established trailheads, or public campgrounds, visitors are free to explore. Always carry a map and compass and/or GPS. It is your responsibility to know where private-land boundaries exist, and to avoid trespassing.

Fly-fishing opportunities can exist from wilderness boundaries to the remote interiors. As a general rule, the harder an area is to reach, the less fishing pressure it receives. In our home waters in the Flat Tops Wilderness Area, we find that the most remote lakes and streams can be the most rewarding. With very little pressure, trout tend to be less wary and eager to take a fly. In some remote locations, we also find opportunities for larger native cutthroat and brook trout.

Photos: Ryan McSparran, Orvis


By Rebecca Campbell

Camping in winter has so many rewards compared to summer camping, but when it comes to convincing people to go with you, it’s not always easy.

Solo camping in the winter can be a lonely experience with the long hours in the tent and cold nights, which is why it’s always a good idea to bring someone with you this time of year. Of course, with most people retiring their boots to the closet for the winter, how do you convince them that now is the perfect time for some winter camping in the wild?

Snow Makes Everything Better

Play up the fact that a fresh layer of snow will make even the most camping-shy person be amazed at the transformation that snow can produce. Not only that, but those popular trails frequented so much in the summer months will be completely empty during winter leaving everything pristine and fresh, ready for your footprints.


Bringing the Right Gear

For most people, the idea of camping in winter just does not appeal because it’s too cold. If faced with a determined “no” from your friends when you propose winter camping just tell them that, “there’s no such thing as bad weather just inappropriate clothing.” That means there is no excuse not to camp during the winter as long as you have the right camping gear to help you stay warm.

Ask Your Friend Who Loves a Challenge

We all have someone in our lives who is a bit crazy and loves a challenge. What better challenge to set for someone than to tell them they haven’t experienced a particular camping spot unless they’ve seen it in winter.


What Better Way to Lose Weight?

When camping and hiking during the winter there is no better time to shed the weight and get rid of your guilty overeating habits. You will simply burn every calorie that you eat and some more. Who could resist that combination?
Give Your Friends Reassurance They Need

Your friends may not have gone camping before and probably wouldn’t have even considered it, let alone in winter, which is why you need to give them the reassurance that you know what you’re doing. Remember to bring the essential items with you to ensure you have a safe time when hiking during your camping trip.

Camping, regardless of the time of the year, should be fun, but during winter it adds something special when there is no one else around to spoil the tranquillity. So grab some friends and hit some camping spots this winter to discover the true beauty of winter camping. Before you know it, your friends will be the ones dragging you out for some more winter camping trips.

Happy camping!

Photos: Flickr


By Molly Carter

The thought of a bear attack sounds vicious, but this may be the most non-threatening bear attack ever!

When you think about a bear attack, you think blood, guts and praying to get out of it alive. But this little guy, and his non-threatening bear attack, gives you a whole different idea!

Watch as this little guy just doesn’t give up and keeps going in for the attack, even though his bite doesn’t do much.

Who knew a little bear could be so ferocious?

He may be cute and charming, but he definitely gave us the most non-threatening bear attack ever!


By Eric Nestor

We all dream about building an awesome cabin in an amazing location, but what about an invisible boulder cabin?

In the Swiss Alps, a cabin concept was built to blend in with the landscape, so much so that you would walk right by it without thinking twice.

But upon closer examination, this cabin becomes one of the coolest things we’ve ever seen.

After your first glance, it doesn’t look like much, does it?


Getting closer, do you see anything that resembles a cabin yet?


The cabin door is facing into the mountain side, concealing it from view.


The amazing work is being done by a Geneva-based art studio named “Bureau A.” The cabins themselves are really only big enough for one, but have amazing wooden interiors.

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The cabin is heated by a wood stove too.


A window on the front affords the cabin quite a view.


Here’s the guts of the cabin, while it was being constructed.


And of course, they had to get it out to the mountain some way…


We can’t help but think this is the beginning of the ultimate deer blind, one that doubles as a complete cabin and is almost completely concealed in its natural setting.

Would you stay in this thing?

Photos: Bureau A


By Alex Burton

Just getting into the outdoors? Here are some camping and hiking terms you should get acquainted with.

Hiking and camping are two of the biggest activities in the outdoor world. Every day more and more people are stepping away from their computers to reap the benefits of spending time in the woods.

Terminology is the hardest part when you learn something new. Here are 26 commonly-used camping and hiking terms from a to z to get you started.

A is for ACE (Army Core of Engineers)

They operate over 2,500 recreational areas in the U.S.

B is for Backcountry

Remote public lands, nationals parks, and wilderness areas that are uninhabited.

C is for Cat Hole

A six-inch or deeper hole for using the restroom. Dug far off trail or camp, and at least 50 yards from water sources.

D is for Dehydration

Excessive loss of water from the body. Remember you can only go about three days without water before you can die from dehydration.

E is for Early Evening

One of our favorite parts of the day. If you’re in a spot that’s convenient for watching the sun set, keep your eyes peeled for the green flash that appears for a split second as the sun fully slips below the horizon.

F is for Fire Ring

A ring made of metal or rock used to contain campfires.

hiking terms

G is for GPS

A global positioning satellite is a electronic device that triangulates your position to an exact longitude and latitude.

H is for Hypothermia

Condition where you body loses more heat than it produces.

I is for Iron Ranger

A collection box used to pay fees at campground without full time attendants.

J is for Jump-up

A section of a trail that is steep and rocky.

K is for Knots

Way of tying rope, cable, paracord, or string to hold something in place or together.

hiking terms

L is for Layering

The order of wearing clothing that can be taken off or on according to weather conditions. Layers include: base, middle, and outer.

M is for Mummy Bag

A type of sleeping bag that is contoured to the shape of the body to reduce air space and trap body heat.

N is for Netting

Usually used to help keep mosquitoes at bay while sleeping. Good netting has 200 or more holes per inch of material.

O is for One-Pot-Wonders

Meals that are made in one pot, but have multiple course options.

P is for Poncho

Hooded, water repellent garment that drapes over the body for when it rains.

Q is for Quickdraw

Used in rock climbing to allow rope to run freely through bolt anchors while leading.

R is for Rucksack

A pack filled with enough items for a short hike or trip.

hiking terms

S is for S’mores

A great treat made around campfires by roasting marshmallows before placing them on top of chocolate between two graham crackers.

T is for Tinder

No not the app, it’s the base fuel to start a fire.

U is for Ultimate Direction

Company that makes numerous kinds of hydration packs and systems.

V is for Vapor Barrier

Liner used in sleeping bags to trap heat by stopping water vapor from flowing through.

W is for Widow Maker

A tree or limb that has a high chance of falling on a hiker or camper.

X is for Xshot

Company that makes GoPro camera extenders for filming your outdoor adventures.

Y is for Yoga Hiking

A new trend that combines the cardio of hiking to lookouts to do yoga exercises outdoors.

Z is for Zippo

Company famous for their refillable, windproof lighters used to start campfires.

Don’t worry, the more you get out there the more fluent you will become with the outdoor language. It is really good to head out with someone with a lot of experience who can teach you all the various terms you will need to know in the long run.