Logbooks....how many of you use them? I do but I am guessing not a lot of you out there do. Nowadays with the technology we have, I am sure there is an app to log your fishing adventures. For me personally though I still enjoy using a book and a pen to capture on to paper how my outing was.
I started fly fishing in 1993 but it wasn't until 1997 that I discovered logbooks. For me, these books have been a wealth of information over the years. I love going back and seeing what fish were caught (or not caught) and what flies worked during a particular period of the year. Admittedly, some years contain more information than others. Apparently, I totally forgot to log all of 2012 and the little fishing I did in 2013. Good thing I have it all written down on a notepad and in my Notes app on my iPhone.
The particular logbook I use is called Fly-Fishing Logbook by F-stop Fitzgerald. It has a copyright of 1995 and retailed for $14.95. I bought my first two at Hudson Trail Outfitters. They, however, have done away with their fly fishing selection. A shame really. Anyways, since then I have bought them on Amazon, Half.com and eBay. I now own five of them. Three of them are full. I need to buy a few more of them to store. They are getting harder to find.
The book has sections for Expeditions, Launch Sites, and Fly Fishing Partners. In the Expeditions section there is room enough for 78 trips to be logged. The Expeditions section contains the following fields which can be filled out: Location, conditions (date, time, weather, temp), water (temp, clarity, depth, tide), flies (presentation, color, size, pattern), fish (species, number caught, length/girth, weight), and tackle (rod, line, leader, weight). Unfortunately, half of the Expeditions section is taken up with photos of various flies. It makes the book look sexy but it does take up valuable space that could be used to log more trips. In fact the amount of trips could be almost doubled if the book didn't have these photos.
A total of 18 Launch Sites can be recorded and things such as the location name, marina, distance, telephone etc. can be captured. Regarding the Fly Fishing Partners section, 33 fly fishing friends can be added. Maybe I am a loner or I don't have a lot of friends but that seems like a lot of people. I only fish with maybe 7 or 8 different people. However, for you more popular folks there is room enough for a lot of people to be included.
78 trips recorded
easy to do
inexpensive (from .75 cents up)
launch sites documented
friends and their info can be added
allows you to go back and see what worked in years past
becoming hard to find
might be outdated (several apps on the market)
needs to be filled out after each trip (not years later)
bulky for storage (need a book shelf as opposed to the great storage area of the internet)
only half the section of expeditions can be used given photos on pages
Regardless of whether you capture your fishing data via iPhone, iPad, iPod or other similar device or within the pages of an actual book, I can't stress enough just how important this information can be for future fishing trips. This isn't a book geared towards you bragging about what you caught, how big it was or how many of them there were. Please don't get me wrong as there are places for that within the book and it is somewhat important. The valuable information though is where the fish were, the time of day, temp, etc. That's what allows us years later to look back and see what was hatching, when and where the fish were thus allowing us to continue catching them. If you aren't already using one, I would highly encourage you to start. As a side note, while writing this post, I bought two more of them to store.
Where to Purchase