Fly Life Magazine

Book Reviews: Aaron Adams, “Clark Kent” of BTT

Aaron Adams talking with his friend Lefty Kreh (1925 – 2018) at a past BTT Symposium (2013) held at the International Game Fish Association headquarters in Fort Lauderdale/Dania Beach, Florida. Clement photo.

By Skip Clement

The first impression you get when you begin reading Aaron’s book is that above all else he’s an accomplished and all-in, dedicated fly angler who has seriously fished every location he talks about in the book. And that’s a lot of coastal fisheries (West Indies, Bahamas, Florida Keys, Gulf of Mexico’s coasts all the way to subtropical  Atlantic). He shares his observations of fly fishing for coastal gamefish with the expertise of a Ph.D. trained marine biologist who can uncharacteristically write coherently to an audience of non-Ph.D anglers.

He leaves nothing out; covering everything that lives on, swims in and finds preys on the sea bottoms. From types of seagrasses, oyster bars, types of salt marshes, mangrove lagoons, open to the sea mangroves, backcountry mangroves, beaches and more.

Each chapter covers the subject matter in detail, and one cannot come away from any section saying anything less than, s$%#, I didn’t know that or at least much of it. The book is a reminder that a lot is going on in coastal fisheries, daily, seasonally and that everything is affected by the moon phases, wind direction, tides, water temperature and more.

We’ve fished all over the world with 75% of our trips covering coastal fisheries, and some of the best guides have guided us. Guides that know the heartbeat of their turf, but the takeaway from Aaron’s book is that you’re going to be on your own at some point, trying new waters, different locations and it’s great to know what to look for and that paying close attention is rewarding. Aaron even talks flies, and there are some satisfying patterns to throw in your fly box.

If you’re like us, you need another fly fishing book like a hole in the head, but this one will never get dust on it in our libraries of fishing books, or yours.

Also, Aaron has another book out that’s a keeper as well. Saltwater Prey – it’s all about the prey, flies to use an when.

We highly recommend joining the Bonefish & Tarpon Trust You’ll be rewarded with great insights into fly fishing for bones, poons and permit as well as how to help protect habitat and how to be a good steward.

Aaron’s got a blog filled with useful insider information – Fishermans Coast.


Aaron Adams info and bio:


Senior Scientist and Program Manager, Fisheries Habitat Ecology Program, Center for Fisheries Enhancement, Mote Marine Laboratory, Charlotte Harbor Field Station. 2002 – present.

Director of Operations, Bonefish & Tarpon Trust (previously Bonefish & Tarpon Unlimited): 2006 – present.

Present Appointments

Courtesy Faculty, Department of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences, University of Florida. 2008 – present.

Affiliate Member, Coastal Watershed Institute, Florida Gulf Coast University.

Adjunct Graduate Faculty, College of Arts and Sciences, Florida Gulf Coast University.

Selected Peer-reviewed Publications (30 total)

Aaron’s books are available at your local fly shop or online at the usual biggies (Amazon and B & N)

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