This episode takes you on an adventure with Jeff Wagner as he reminisces about his early fishing experiences, exploring the diverse fishing opportunities Nebraska offers, from trout streams to warm water fishing. As we journey through his early life, we also follow his career path through some of the most iconic brands in the outdoor industry, from his time with Cabela’s, Winston Flyrods, and VF corp, to his current role as the President and CEO of Mayfly Outdoors, encompassing major players in the fly fishing industry.

Show Notes with Jeff Wagner on Mayfly Outdoors. Hit play below! 👇🏻

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(Read the Full Transcript at the bottom of this Blog Post)


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Our conversation doesn’t stop at the surface level; we dive deep into the heart of the outdoor industry itself. We discuss the ever-important topic of sustainability in the fly fishing industry, the concept of B Corp, and the triple bottom line of people, profit, and planet. Jeff shares about Ross Reels’ investment in a new anodizing facility in Montrose, Colorado, a move designed to reduce environmental impact while still maintaining a profitable organization. The conversation widens as we dissect the future of the industry, with a focus on upcoming collaborations from Ross Reels and Abel, all with an emphasis on conservation.

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Finally, we touch on practical fly fishing tips, such as the nuances of casting in the wind and the importance of practice. We celebrate the invaluable advice of casting instructors like Tim Ragef, Steve, Bruce Richards, Tom White, and Dusty Sprague. We conclude with an examination of the adaptability of the team at Ross Reels to stay ahead of industry innovations. Join us as we journey through the world of fly fishing, revealing its past, present, and future. Whether you’re an avid angler or have never cast a line, this episode has something for everyone.

Episode Chapters with Jeff Wagner on Mayfly Outdoors

(0:00:05) – Fly Fishing and Mayfly Outdoors
Growing up in Sydney, Nebraska, Jeff learned to fly fish in cold streams for trout, bass, bluegill, carp, and pike.

(0:08:38) – Iconic Outdoor Brands Jeff worked with
Ross Reels’ 50th anniversary, from its 1973 California inception to its current Colorado form.

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(0:21:18) – B Corp and Long-Term Success
Ross Reels’ success is discussed, exploring B Corp certification, triple bottom line, sustainability, ethics, and new anodizing facility.

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(0:25:27) – Ross Reels and Mayfly Outdoors
Ross Reels’ sustainability, longevity, innovations, other fly fishing companies, Mayfly Outdoors’ acquisition of Airflo Fly Lines, investments in people, place, and technology, and the triple bottom line of people, profit, and planet are discussed.

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(0:38:25) – Branding and Growth of Outdoor Industry
Prana, North Face, Patagonia, Sims, Dynaking, and carp fishing discussed to maintain brand identity and explore fishing market opportunities.


(0:44:10) – Carp Fishing in Warm Water Resources
Carp fishing’s potential benefits, fly fishing’s responsibility, multi-species angling history, and Ross Reels’ investment are discussed.

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(0:50:34) – Fly Fishing Tips and Conversations
Casting nuances, instructor advice, and carp fishing’s benefits to cold water fisheries are discussed.

(1:00:00) – Fall Fly Fishing Launches and Collaborations
Ross Reels and Abel collaborate to promote conservation, sustainability, and longevity while staying true to their identity.

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WFS 458 – Mystic Outdoors with Jeff Brady – Fly Rods, M Series, Roosterfish

Read the Full Podcast Transcript Below



  1. What insights and stories does Jeff Wagner share regarding his formative fishing experiences, delving into the diverse fishing landscapes across Nebraska, ranging from trout streams to warm water fishing? How does the narrative of his early life intertwine with his professional trajectory, spanning through significant tenures in renowned outdoor industry brands like Cabela’s, Winston Flyrods, and VF Corp, leading to his present position as President and CEO of Mayfly Outdoors, overseeing influential entities in the fly fishing sector?
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