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The Top Ten, yours, or mine?

By Skip Clement

Yesterday was an unplanned fix it now dental emergency, a torture session that lives in infamy. Waiting, I found there is no shortage of hunting, fishing, beauty, home furnishing, travel, architectural, self-help magazines, and more. The magazine choices are in the hundreds – it’s a big office.

I saw the same well worn, page stripped Outdoor, Field & Stream, trout and saltwater fishing and fly fishing magazines that I’d seen before. Almost all publications had references to “Ten Best” this and that.

We seem obsessed with the number “10”

Ten yards for a first down, 10 Downing Street, ten commandments, ten best movies – pick any year, top ten trout towns in the U. S., ten best saltwater flies of all time, and of course, she’s a “10.” And on and on.

So, here are my Ten Best… and you’re right, who cares?

1. Best game fish: Largemouth bass, dolphin, sailfish, stripers (saltwater, landlocked, hybrid), tarpon, redfish, all trouts, all salmons

2. Best destinations: Alaska, New Zealand, Argentina, Yucatan, Ponoi River (Russia), Appalachia, Everglades National Park, Seychelles, Panama, Guatemala, Montauk, Maritime Provinces

3. Best Fly Rods: Orvis’ Helios 3D eight, Echo 3 four, Rise Level X nine, Winston Micro Spey four, R.B. Meiser 909 9/10 Switch Rod

4. Best waders and wade boots: Simms, Orvis, Korkers, Redington

5. Best artists: Thom Glace, Adrian E. Gray, James Prosek, Don Ray, Stanley Meltzoff, Diane Rome Peebles

6. Best outdoor travel companies; Deneki, Yellow Dog, Orvis, Frontiers

7. Best flats skiff: Dragonfly

8. Best writers: Ernest Hemingway, Jim Harrison, Thomas McGuane, Aldo Leopold, John Gierach, Howell Raines, Kirk Deeter, Robert Traver, Steve Kantner, Ted Leeson

9. Most impact on U. S. conservation: Silent Spring by Rachel Carson 1962, Teddy Roosevelt, Exxon, BP Horizon, Current Tea Party Administration, Trout Unlimited, IGFA

10. Best how-to instructions: Tim Flagler, Jay Nichols, Intheriffle, RIO Products, Orvis, Lefty Kreh, Joan Wulff

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