Hawkeye Firefly 7S: New Action Camera Review

The Hawkeye Firefly 7S is a brand-new action camera, with gyro stabilization, 2K resolution, and GoPro mountain compatibility. In addition, it's priced insanely low, just $80 at the time of this review. I tested the Firefly 7S courtesy of Gearbest on multiple fishing and outdoor trips, keen on determine how this camera compares to other popular action cameras, like the GitUp 2 or the M20+. Curious? Read on!

Lobster season + Backpack review

Hasn't been a lot of fishing videos lately as I've been focusing on the recently opened Spiny Lobster season here in California. These critters are a exciting challenge to go after, especially as the water temperatures cool off. Take a look at them in my latest video!

ELECAM 360: A Budget 360 Camera

I've watched several impressive 360 degree action camera videos, mostly from GoPro, and was stoked when Gearbest asked me to review the ELECAM 360 camera. It's an affordable 360 camera, made by the same folks behind the nice ELE Explorer and ELE Explorer Pro cameras.
Click below to read my full review of this new 360 camera:

Silverwood Lake Fishing Trip: First of the Year

Just got out to Silverwood Reservoir and did a little topwater fishing for striped bass. Managed to land a skinny 18" fish on a fantastic topwater strike. Check out the video here!

Hiking Gear Reviews: Fishing Monocular, Compact Hammock, and Solar Lantern

Gearbest hooked me up with several new outdoor gear items to review, and I wanted to share them with you all here. I'm a huge fan of the monocular (http://goo.gl/A5wIby), it will come in handy when I'm hiking and exploring distant fishing spots. Enjoy!

Eken H8R Action Camera Review: 4K and More?

Remember the popular Eken H9 action camera I reviewed and subsequently used on many fishing videos? Eken has released another action camera, this time the upgraded Eken H8R. GearBest hooked me up with this camera and I wanted to share my thoughts on it with you all. Feeling like just watching a video instead? Check out the below sample footage and video reviews!

Yolo Bite Alarm & Yoshikawa 7Ft Pack Rod Reviews

Spent a lot of time this last weekend at the beach, not only trying out my new M20 action camera,but also a couple of fishing products. One was the YOLO Fishing Bite Alarm, and the other a Yoshikawa 7ft collapsible pack rod. The bite alarm reminded me of the old carp bite alarms I used to use, but unfortunately it didn't work as well. The Yoshikawa rod is fantastic, definitely one I'll be using in the future! These are both courtesy of Gearbest, and you can find them here:

Yoshikawa travel fishing rod:http://goo.gl/bNivhs
Yolo Bite Alarm: http://goo.gl/oHLIm4
Other Gearbest fishing products:

SJCam M20 Action Camera Review

Ready for another action camera review? Here we go! Today the SJCam M20 (http://goo.gl/MWEixA) is in the spotlight. You may recall the SJ4000 action camera I reviewed several years back (Still a very capable,but outdated camera). SJCam has been plaqued by many copy-cat cameras, but has continued to make quality action cameras, including their well-received SJ5000. The M20 is an upgraded version of the M10 model, and utilizes a totally different body design than the prior SJ4000-style models. 

Video Review

Click below to keep reading!

ZT1000 Yoshikawa Spinning Reel Review: 10 Ball Bearings, Folding Handle, for only $11

Had fun with this little ZT1000 spinning reel, courtesy of Gearbest, in the Eastern Sierra backcountry this last week. Threw spoons and dry flies/bobber combo with it to catch wild brook, brown, and rainbow trout. Such a blast! It's a smooth review with a nice folding handle for easy transportation when hiking. A little big for my backpack collapsible fishing rod, but still worked well. Check out the video review of it above. You can purchase it online here.

Lazy Bag Review: Lamzac Clone

Got to try out one of the "Lazy Bags", basically a Lamzac style camping or hiking chill out inflatable chair, courtesy of GearBest. Unroll it, toss it in the air to catch some wind, and boom, you have a ridiculous looking but super comfortable bed to chill out on. Check out this quick video of it if you are interested. It's pretty much a novelty item but perfect for the beach, light camping, etc:

Riverside Bass Fishing

It's become something of a tradition - an annual pilgrimage of sorts to a favorite fishing hole in Riverside County, Southern California, for largemouth bass each year, with float tubes. A good friend and I finally got out onto the water a little while back. The conditions were much tougher this year than other years, but we still managed to land several chunky largemouth, including one pushing 18-20". I'll let the pictures and video do the talking. 

Lower Owens Volunteer Opportunity

Lower Owens Volunteer Opportunity

The Owens River is one of California's most beloved trout fisheries, and has slowly experieinced a comeback with recent changes to water releases. The lower portion is currently choked with thick reeds and tules, making access very difficult, for anglers, birdwatchers, hikers and just about everyone else.
Fortunately, the Inyo County Water Department has just received a $500,000 grant to clean up the river and improve access. If you would like to help out, read on:

"Inyo County is a grant finalist for a $500,000 CA Natural Resources Agency grant to develop the first designated water trail for kayaks, canoes, and paddleboards, in the Western U.S.! The 6.3 mile trail near Lone Pine winds through one of the most scenic sections of the rewatered Lower Owens River--with numerous green meadows, willow trees, and spectacular views of the Alabama Hills, Mt. Whitney and the Inyo Mountains.
Resources’ grant staff will be out to appraise the project on June 21st. We want to get the Resources staff on the water to experience this amazing stretch of river, and to demonstrate that volunteer stewardship can help build and maintain the Owens River Water Trail. To accomplish these objectives, there are two work weekends to open up a sample section of trail. Trail building weekends are June 11-12 and June 18-19.
Building water trail is almost as fun as using it. It's a full-immersion, unforgettable experience. Participants can say that they were instrumental at helping to establish the first river paddle trail in California and the west. Water trail work is done in teams working in and near the water and includes scouting channel course, cutting and removing bulrush, cattails, and logs from the river channel. Come out and join us for this truly unique experience."

Contact information for project: Larry Freilich from the Inyo County Water Dept  (email at lfreilich@inyocounty.us or info@ovcweb.org)

Special thanks to Owens Valley Committee for the news.

ELE Explorer PRO Action Camera Review

Remember the ELE Explorer action camera I reviewed a few months back (review here)? It was one of my favorites of this year so far, but had a few issues with image colors in high-contrast scenes. ELE has since released a new camera, the ELE Explorer Pro, and I just got my hands on it courtesy of GearBest. Take a look at the full video with sample footage and read the review below for this hot camera:

New Look

Hunting the River King as been updated! The format will still be adjusted a bit, but I think this look will be the new one for now. Thanks for reading

I have also launched a separate website, Gadgets & Gear Guru. You will find a host of affordable items, from smart lamps to minimalist running shoes and more at this new site. Check it out here: http://gadgetgearguru.blogspot.com
Eastern Sierra Fishing Trip for Opening Weekend

Eastern Sierra Fishing Trip for Opening Weekend

Fished the beautiful Eastern Sierras over opener weekend at the end of April. I landed a few nice brown and rainbow trout on ultralite gear, and safety released them all. 
Hiked to several creeks, and explored a few others but had quite a few trails blocked by snow. With temperatures down to the 20s at night, it was important to dress warmly! Enjoy the photos:
And yes, I spotted the locked-up Haiwee Reservoir(s) from the 395. Sad Haiwee is still closed to fishing. 

New Fishing Reel Review Videos

Picked up a couple of new fishing reels recently and finally compiled my thoughts on 'em. First is the SeaKnight CM3000 reel (http://goo.gl/DXs7db), which I'm using for bass and carp fishing. I have it spooled with 8lb monofilament line for now, but I'll be putting heavier line on it soon.  It comes with two spools, so I can swap lines easily. I initially bought it for $17, it's now closer to $20 but still a steal.

The second is a interesting JS3000 Ming Bu reel (http://goo.gl/uojjh0). It has a useful folding reel handle and I've been using it for light fishing, both saltwater and freshwater. Works great for me so far. This one was an absolute bargain at $7, but it's since gone up in price as well, closer to $15-$17.

Found a Antique Fishing Lure at Puddingstone!

After a helpful discussion on the FishingNetwork forums, I have determined exactly what the classic lure I found at Puddingstone Reservoir is! It is a Spinno Minno Lure, produced in the 1950s and 1960s by Pecos River Tackle Co./Uniline Bait Co. The design is unique and close inspection reveals that it was most likely one of their earlier generations of the Spinno (based on the spinner hinge design). Check out this great collectable lure website for more information on the Spinno Minno Lure:

The GoPro Killer: GitUp2 Action Camera

Remember the GitUp1 action camera I reviewed several months back? I recently got to try out the latest upgrade to the GitUp series, with the GitUp2 courtesy of GearBest. Wow! I am happy to report that it blew away my expectations and has taken the premium features seen in many more expensive action cameras, and packaged it all into a very affordable package. 

First, let's start with the specification. The GitUp2 the high-quality Sony Ezmor IMX206 16MP image sensory + Novatek NTK96660 chipset, a significant upgrade from the GitUp 1. This allows it to take not only high quality video (with resolution up to 2K video resolution) but also photopgraphs in up to true 16MP quality. One of the weak points of the original GitUp was the very low-quality photographs (unless you extracted individual frames from each video); the GitUp2 has rectified that problem nicely.

(Continued below the jump!)

Why is Haiwee Reservoir Still Closed to Fishing?

Haiwee Reservoir

Have you ever spotted an awesome body of water from the road and wondered if you could fish it? On a recent road trip to Bishop, I encountered Haiwee Reservoir and could not help but think about just that. After considerable research, emails, and phone interviews, I have a tale for you!

North and South Haiwee Reservoirs may be seen just to the east of 395, before Olancha and after Fossil Falls. Two picturesque bodies of water, they represent a tantalizing target for anglers and a symbol of the historic conflict over water that has haunted this region for years. 

Do they have fish? Absolutely, according to the LA Times, the lakes hold rainbow trout, largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, brown trout, Sacramento perch, bluegill, carp, and more. The lakes were even stocked by DFG for several years (Daily News Outdoor). Sadly, while once open to anglers, these lakes remain closed for the last 10 years. Fortunately, concerned locals are pressing for the right to once-again be allowed to enjoy these public lands (under BLM and Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) regulations). 

Click below to keep reading