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Saltwater Fly Fishing: Bill Curtis

Posted on August 21 2007

When Bill Curtis began guiding in south Florida in the middle of the last century, there wasn’t anyone around for him to follow, or to imitate, or to dislike. He made a lot of stuff up as he went, stuff that later became doctrine for flats guides. He got tired of standing on his engine, so he came up with the first poling platform. He introduced the Bimini Twist to south Florida. He probably did dozens of other things that he never got credit for, and as with so many pioneering saltwater guides he wore a take-me-as-I-am countenance with him wherever he went.
This week we’re happy to publish an excerpt from Tideline, an easily overlooked but beautiful book that came out of Willow Creek Press in 2004. The first chapter is a profile of Bill, and it contains extraordinary photographs of Captain Curtis in his last years of guiding. The writing, by Andrew Steketee and Kirk Deeter, is awfully good too.

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