Meet Brad Bohen: Howler Ambassador

Posted on September 6, 2012

Howler Brand Ambassador Brad Bohen of Musky Country Outfitters in Hayward, Wisconsin is an addict.  Not a meth addict or coke head, but an addict just the same.   His trailblazing and now-famous pursuit of musky has contributed greatly to making the species one of the fish “du jour” in the world of fly fishing.  While we at Howler Bros. spend much of our time around saltwater and palm trees, five minutes with Brad makes us want to start planning our trip to see the rivers, abundant lakes, yellow birch and sugar maples of Wisconsin’s Northwoods.  Here’s what Brad had to say when we spoke to him last week.

You and the boys of Musky Country Outfitters were the “stars”, so to speak, of the acclaimed film Zero 2 Hero.  What has that film done for your business and people’s perception of musky fishing?
Z2H was a great introduction for the Musky Tribe in many ways.  The film really gave legitimacy to an esoteric facet of the fly fishing world...which is already pretty esoteric.  So ya, you can say it put both musky fly fishing and our Tribe on the map.  I think the film provided a light bulb to some...I hope folks can see the inspiration in it as well as the blueprint for how to approach the task of taking a musky on a fly.

In the movie, you make reference to musky fishing being “better than any sex you’ll ever have”.  Has any significant other in your life taken issue with that comment?
Ha..  as a matter of fact yes.  It has been sort of a challenge it seems for some women folk to prove my words wrong.  That was a planned move btw... I'm pretty sneaky;)

When you are not twisting up massive flies or hunting the lakes and rivers, what are you doing up there in the Northwoods?  
Porn.  If Mom's reading then I go with lots of Marketing and R&D work on the next batch of Primo Tail...

Hypothetically, if 100 people fly fished your waters for a week with a competent guide, how many would land one?   How many would quit?
How about this... statistics and luck can be debated to many ends.  Musky fly fishing is tough to break down.  Statistics tell you that you got to spend time on the water.  Figure at least a three day window if you want to hedge yer bet.  Most quit before the gun fight goes down.  You make a great deal of your own luck.  Being physically and mentally prepared is the best luck.  You can fish for two and a half days with a cap full of dust to show for your efforts.  Then you have three or four hours of the most intense and crazy fly fishing you could ever imagine.  Trying to predict when things go down is like pushing rope uphill.  Folks that enjoy long silent spells in back country watering holes interspersed with holy shit come to Dog moments of fight or flight adrenaline are most likely to join up.

If you can come to Musky Country with an open mind and the ability to cast a Ten Weight for four hour periods several days in a row without getting beat up physically or emotionally if you get rejected time and again the chances are you can go home with your musky ticket punched.  Of course there are those suck wads that get one in the first half an hour...

The grill is on.  Bratwurst or walleye?
Actually we love to grill Northern Pike.  Wrap em in foil whole (skin on, scales off), slather em in olive oil, salt, pepper inside and out, stuff with onion, garlic and lemon...cook until the tail comes off and have some drawn butter.  Walleye are fine but Pike rule;)

Now Bratwurst on the other hand...

Lienenkugel’s or New Glarus Spotted Cow?
Boil those Brat's (Louies Finer Meats for Fancy...Usingers for off the rack) in the Lienies of course.  Then grill em! The Cow is pretty dang fine too - drinks well.  Wisco. has some good brewing all round from the micros to the big can factories.  Locally we have The Angry Minnow and that is pretty fine brew.

Will Brett Favre ever be forgiven?
What a fuck-up!  No one will ever be as cool forcing it through triple coverage though.  The Jets thingy was sort of a shame...then the Queens?  That just showed you what a Ronnie he is.

Insert your shameless plug for Howler Bros. here.
Heed the Call!  Howlers has proven to me that Surfing and FishBummin' are pretty much on the same wavelength...I'm no Laird Hamilton but with my HB dud's I sure can pretend!

Seriously cool and functional togs that get it done on the water AND in town.  Can't go wrong with the two-birds with one-stone, eh?

You can learn more about Brad and his tribe at