First understand the surf, then catch more fish
Over 35-hours of in-depth surf fishing instruction, interviews, stories, and content!
Detailed descriptions at end of page
Topic 1, The Surfcaster's Menu:
The Best Approach for Common Bait Species
Topic 2, Sand Beaches:
Top Tips and Advanced Tactics
Topic 3, Patterns and Bite Windows:
The Key to Success in the Surf
Topic 4, Boulder fields + New Spots:
Boulders Beyond Basics,
How to get started with a new spot
Topic 5, Trophy Fish:
Philosophy, Tactics, and Techniques
for catching more 30-pound-and-up fish
Special Topic 6, Wetsuiting:
An in-person session on effectively using the wetsuit
at The Saltwater Edge, Newport, RI
(will be recorded for those who cannot attend)
Detailed descriptions at end of page
January 31st: Dave Anderson
February 14th: Rich Troxler
March 6th: Brendan Richards
March 27th: "Crazy" Alberto Knie
Stories with hall-of-famer Al Gags
January 18th, Special Thursday session
All this is presented live: but also recorded!
Come for the live presentation over Zoom (see below),
or catch the recording when it's best for you!
3: Foundational Session
A pre-recorded 6+ hour session available December 20th. This will be targeted at beginner and intermediate anglers to ensure you are on good footing to get the most out of the weekly seminars and interviews. However, it will have lots of vital information for all levels of fishermen and women.
refund at any time for unused sessions,
no questions asked.
Email me with questions firstname.lastname@example.org
$99 before December 25th
(increases to $119 on December 26th)
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Everything you want to know
Live sessions are Wednesdays starting at 6:45
except special Thursday sessions
(Don't forget everything is recorded! No need to attend live if it doesn't work)
1: Instructional Seminars: Typically 2 to 3.5 hours each. Seminars are designed to have elements that appeal to everyone- from beginner to advanced- but in general are "higher level" seminars. These sessions go far beyond typical fishing-show seminars, and we really dig deep into the topic areas. There is no time limit, and I build the topics as we go to get deeper and deeper. Expect slides with lots of photos, annotation, and graphics- not just boring text. Seminars will also include Q&A (see below), a short discussion each week on striped bass conservation, and other recurring bonus content. Detailed topic descriptions are at the bottom of the page. These are professional, top-tier presentations.
2: Interviews: There will be four, 2- to 4-hour-long, in-depth interviews, plus a 1.5-2 hour long story-based discussion. I will get you inside the mind, heart, and soul of a few of the best surfcasters from up and down the striper coast. Many advanced anglers find this the most rewarding part of the series. The best part is, since they’re live, YOU get to help dictate the discussion! These are a mixture of instruction, stories, philosophy, and humor- these sessions are some of the most rewarding fishing conversations you'll ever hear. These are much, much more in-depth than a podcast.
3: Foundational Session: The foundational session is pre-recorded (length TBD, last year it was 10 hours). It's designed to primarily do three things. 1) help beginners get caught up, and on the same footing as more advanced anglers. I will discuss "101" topics, and basics of gear, and help jump-start your fishing journey, 2) address common questions that I receive repeatedly, 3) revisit past topics and critical components for all levels. This means those that are new to the series (but not beginners) don't miss out completely on past topics, and are prepared for the upcoming talks, but also those that have been with me for 2-to 4-years don't have to sit through the same information every year.
4: Re-watch every sessions through April 24th as many times as you want: You will be able to watch each recorded session as many times as you want but ONLY for the duration of the series, until April 24th. Every year people miss this- so let me say again: as many times as you want, but only for the duration of the series (not forever). You do not need to attend live! Want to listen 80 times? Go for it! All on your own schedule.
5: Email me all your questions. Think of a question from last session? Were you not able to catch the session live, and want to follow-up with me? Do you just want to pick my brain about something random? I answer EVERY question I receive. This has been a big hit- last year I answered so many questions I had 63-pages of single spaced text!
New for 2024!
New start time! Open forum from 6:45 to 7:10. Bring your thoughts on anything fishing. Formal questions will be answered from 7:10 to 7:30. Not interested in any of this? Just show up at 7:30 for the presentation! There will be formal breaks this year so you can get another drink, a snack, or hit the restroom.
There will be an IN PERSON session at The Saltwater Edge on wetsuiting (February 8th). This will be recorded and available to all subscribers, you do not need to be there.
Recordings will also be available for review during a special 10 day period in August. This is intended to let you review topics you need refreshers on before the Fall Run begins- longer window to review this year.
Lots of updates this year. I will be re-recording a lot of the foundational session, and all seminars will be fresh and include new thoughts, examples, gear, photos, and illustrations. If you think you've seen it all before, you're wrong! Plus, critical components from previous years will be integrated into the new topics & the foundational seminars.
Q&A and Discussion Time: I take time to answer ALL live questions. No question is too simple, complicated, strange, or personal- bring it on! I want you to feel like this is a conversation, and be comfortable enough to ask anything. NEW this year, we’ll be doing a more formal Q&A session before and after each topic, to help with the presentation flow.
Tons of Gear Show and Tell. Get in-depth and exclusive looks at my gear and how I use it. See how I work lures with live rod and reel demonstrations.
Exclusive Plug Talk and Rigging. Exclusive details about some of my plugs I don't talk about publicly, and lots of details about how I rig my plugs for different depths, actions, and approaches. Heads-up on hot plugs that I will review down the road for publications- get the jump on others.
Tons of Stories: I use real-world, up-to-date examples from my own fishing in all of my seminars. However, I also have lots of past tales that are intense, funny, and motivating that I will sprinkle in. These stories remain one of the most popular parts of the series.
First look at new photography. Subscribers get an exclusive preview of my newest work, long before it is published.
Conservation talk. There will be a special section about how to be a better steward of the fishery, and my top-tips as to how we can all decrease release mortality. Brought to you by The Saltwater Edge.
Exclusive conversations about my season, and my goals for 2024. 2023 was a one of the most "roller-coaster" seasons I've ever had, with the best spring ever (despite significant challenges), and the worst fall ever. Lots of surprises and some new techniques and lots of new experiences. What does that mean, and what exactly happened? What am I going to do next year? Get details no one else will hear from a professional who's devoted his life to the surf.
Foundational Seminar: This video will be available approximately a month prior to the live sessions starting. I will break it up into chapters. The purpose of this video is to address the request from beginner/intermediate anglers who felt the live sessions were a bit overwhelming and over their heads. However, many advanced anglers will appreciate the tips and tricks included in this video, particularly when it comes to my gear choices. Essentially, this video is intended to set you up to get the most out of the live sessions, and make sure we're as close as possible to all being on the same page. Expect to find chapters on fishing at night, the easiest and most effective ways to simply catch more fish, the basics of fishing current, the foundations of predator behavior, a full cheat-sheet of my favorite gear (and tips on how to use it), a new section on ethics, and much more. Last year the foundational session was about 10-hours, this year it will be in the same ballpark.
The Surfcasters Menu: Tide and structure is everything- but without food, stripers are simply not going to be in your spot. Stripers are optimistic and cunning, and they are very adept at keying in on whatever the most available and best "pay off" is. Understanding the common types of bait (and the uncommon ones) and how stripers behave around them can be critical in your success each and every night. I'll go through a thorough list of common bait species- from bunker and mullet to squid and crabs- and detail a bit about how I approach each one, and what plug and presentation I think is best. I'll also talk about how current and wind impacts each one, the concept of bait development (life stage), and my other thoughts about matching the hatch and patterning striper food.
Patterns and Bite Windows: This talk has been a long time coming. In fact, I've been debating this one since year one. My hesitation? It's a lot to tackle in a single session, it's advanced, and it's almost too much to give away! These two concepts are my biggest weapon in catching fish- period. I also think that understanding patterning and bite windows is the most misunderstood and overlooked aspect of any kind of fishing that involves tide, weather, and bait development (not just stripers). If you want to catch more giants, than you MUST understand this idea. We'll talk about everything from current windows, to casting windows, to bait development patterns, and, one of the most important, we'll talk about moon patterns. This topic will be heavy, and I'm more excited for this one than any topic in the last couple years.
Sand Beaches: In this session, I'll be tackling one of the most common, but also the most difficult, types of striped bass structure- the open sand beach. I'll break down how I attack a sandy stretch, in terms of where and how to fish, and also go deep into structure analysis (using satellite imagery and custom drawings) and what I think is the most effective approach for most sand beaches. We'll also make sure to cover gear specifics and other nuances that'll make you more efficient. In 2023, I spent A LOT of time again on sand beaches (I'm having a bit of a sand-beach renaissance the last few years)- even more than 2022, and had some of my very best nights in the surf EVER on the sand! I'll have some interesting new tips and tactics to share from what turned out to be a very unique and productive year. Additions to previous years talk will an update on the "micro-plastics" concept, super skinny water, tons of white water discussion, fussy bites, and how to deal with seals, fly fishing, and much more.
Boulder fields + New Spots: Ah! My favorite place to catch striped bass- the boulder fields. Found throughout the striper coast, I think boulder fields are one of the most consistent places to catch both large-numbers and trophy-sized stripers. We'll go through my approach to boulder fields, specifically keying in on the details you need to focus on to make the most of them. This will include an overview of why boulder fields are so good and how to located your own, how to find micro-spots and micro-currents, the differences between boulder fields and rocky flats or jetties, niche plugs for the boulders, and much more. This is also a great overview of how to approach hard structure in general. Part two of the seminar will be a discussion of how I deal with a new spot (we'll add in a bit of travel to this, too). I won't be discussing how to find new spots- this is too much to give away and will be too much for a single session. However, I will be talking about how I start from day 1 with planning and approach, and how I choose what to bring (plugs, gear) and what I expect, and how I develop a new spot- we'll also tackle common mistakes.
Big Fish Always my most popular talk, by far. In this seminar, you are going to hear me be the most frank, the most honest- and at times the most brutal. While others tend to focus on plugs and spots for big fish talks, I think it's far more important to focus on mentality, philosophy, dedication, and lots of important nuance (like fighting and landing fish, gear maintenance, physical stamina, and so much more). Sure, the answer you'll get from most well-known casters is "fish live eels at night," and they're not wrong. But if you've been fishing for anytime at all, you know it's much, much more complicated than that- especially for plug and fly fisherman. Let's dig into how I land my 42- to 52-inch fish (30 and 40-plus-pounders), and how you can add more solid fish over 40-inches to your tally next season, too.
Dave Anderson Dave is returning for year 4! He was our very first interview in year 1, and one of my most requested to return. Dave is a Rhode Island resident that has fished all over New England, but now mostly focuses on his home waters in RI and MA. Last time Dave was on, we talked for four hours! Dave is a top-level surfcaster, a long, long time writer, former editor of Surfcaster's Journal and current editor of The Fisherman New England. He is the very definition of a fishing intellectual. Dave is thoughtful, obsessed, and committed to fishing the surf the "right" way. He's also a long-time friend of mine, and though we've been out of touch more lately, we connect on a deep level through our shared commitment and ethics in the surf. Dave is also a talented plug builder and this has shaped his approach to the surf. Dave is an absolute pleasure to talk with, very open and honest, and one of the most knowledgeable anglers you'll ever meet.
Rich Troxler Trox himself! We've been talking about him since year 1, and finally have him on for an interview! Rich was a 30-plus-year resident of Long Island and a powerhouse in the surf fishing scene. He's written all kinds of articles for various publications, but he also has some of the most thorough and profoundly educational surf fishing videos on YouTube. This was back when YouTube was just getting popular, and I remember being totally blown out by his demonstrations and analysis- and it's influenced Surf Scenarios significantly! Rich is now in his 70's and has an incredible amount of information to share, and has said he'd like to discuss his various "phases" he's gone through- bridges, bait, sand beaches, etc. He will also talk to us about red fish and his transition to Virginia.
Brendan Richards Brendan is a dedicated and "under the radar" fisherman from Rhode Island. Brendan has been a long-time writer for Surfcaster's Journal, and one of the very best fishing writers I've ever had the pleasure of working with. Brendan is cerebral in his fishing, and this comes through in his writing. He is analytical, and engaged in a variety of fishing that is available in the surf in Rhode Island. He loves- loves- the striper, but he also enjoys chasing blues and albies, and has some interesting perspectives on "funny fish" in particular. As far as I am aware, this is an exclusive, as Brendan has done no other recorded content before. As I have tried to do every year, I am trying to introduce new and interesting fisherman to you the subscriber!
"Crazy" Alberto Knie If you don't know of Alberto, you probably have not been in the fishing world very long. Alberto is a long time resident of Long Island that now lives in South West Florida. Alberto is the very definition of a trophy hunter. While he enjoys fishing for everything and anything, including any size, he is a full-on giant "killer." He has dedicated his life to the pursuit of the largest fish, and for several decades this was entirely just the striped bass. He is world renowned as a fisherman, and has started several fishing businesses including Tactical Anglers- the well known terminal tackle and lure maker. Alberto is also a character, and a very kind and giving person. He'll share with us what it looks like to sacrifice so much for fishing- and gain so much, too.
Al Gags Al is one of the funniest and kindest characters in the fishing industry. He is a legend in the plug and lure building world, and the world has really noticed. He has been inducted into the 2024 class for the Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame. He has more amazing stories and experiences than most- or maybe any- other anglers. He's also a great example of what hard work and dedication to a life filled with fishing can look like. Al has a rich history with striped bass fishing from the surf, and has provided quality, affordable lures to beginner and advanced surf fishermen alike for decades. He is one of my favorite people to listen to, and I am so happy he's agreed to come on this year and share stories from his long and fulfilling fishing career.