Let’s see, the best thing that happened to me in 2015 regarding fishing, was getting the itch to fish again.  This only happened the last few months, and was triggered by my boy, Cameron Smith winning at Lake Hartwell.  I have been looking at various models of boats that can be stored at my house, but also serve as fresh and salt crossover fishing vessels.

2015 was mostly about my career, and getting myself back in the big leagues of software sales.   I started with a new company in March, and it’s been a busy year of travel, new Cities, new Partnerships and new relationships.   I have literally been everywhere in the West, including Alaska and Western Canada.  It’s not horrible, its just hard to travel a lot and be on top of fishing at home.

Besides software, I spend a lot of time working on surfing. I’ve gone from 9-10′ boards down to 6.5 and 7 foot boards.  It’s a quantum leap in effort required to paddle and catch waves.  It takes superior strength and agility to get on your feet, make quick pumps and fly thru sections on a shortboard.  I love it. It’s been a worthy challenge and I continue each swell to learn and progress.

Here goes:

Corbina happen and most people don't realize they are there. I'm trying to figure out how to catch these buggers on fly rods.
Corbina happen and most people don’t realize they are there. I’m trying to figure out how to catch these buggers on fly rods.
They weigh 2-3 pounds and eat sand crabs at the surf line
They weigh 2-3 pounds and eat sand crabs at the surf line
My saltwater fly fishing tackle box. Crab eaters and little baitfish clowsers
My saltwater fly fishing tackle box. Crab eaters/sand crab patterns and little baitfish clowser patterns.


I have a 'trout eater' scene in my living room. It keeps my mind in the game
I have a ‘trout eater’ scene in my living room. It keeps my mind in the game


Xmas 2015 in Cotter, AR.  Staying at my parents’ place:  The Rainbow Bridge Lodge in Downtown Cotter, Arkansas.  That is my little boat parked under my second story bedroom window.  The White River is <1 min drive from here, and Cotter is home to many big brown trout.




Dry Run Creek underwater shot. My nieces and nephews wacked 'em.
Dry Run Creek underwater shot. My nieces and nephews wacked ’em.
My boy Cameron Smith breaking the 'ice' so to speak. We have both banged our heads against the wall with tournament fishing. Cameron has stuck with it, and won the ABA Nationals for the West on Lake Hartwell. The best news is he earned an invitation to the Lake Hartwell in late April 2016. Cameron is going to win again on Lake Hartwell.
My boy Cameron Smith breaking the ‘ice’ so to speak. We have both banged our heads against the wall with tournament fishing. Cameron has stuck with it, and won the ABA Nationals for the West on Lake Hartwell. The best news is he earned an invitation to the Lake Hartwell in late April 2016. Cameron is going to win again on Lake Hartwell.



Mick Fanning and Kelly Slater, after a killer heat at Lower Trestles. I consider Trestles sacred water.
Mick Fanning and Kelly Slater, after a killer heat at Lower Trestles. I consider Trestles sacred water.  When the World Surf League makes a regular tour stop in your backyard, you know you are blessed with good surf.


The 11" Triple Trout in 3 Dot Olive w Pink sides. Whitmer made me this a few years ago now. Wow, what a killer bait.
The 11″ Triple Trout in 3 Dot Olive w Pink sides. Whitmer made me this a few years ago now. Wow, what a killer bait.


I love watching seams, billowing water, vortexes, eddies, etc.
I love watching seams, billowing water, vortexes, eddies, etc.


The very corporate Matt Peters. I had a friend shoot some posed photos for my LinkedIn profile. Find me at www.linkedin.com/in/southernswimbait
The very corporate Matt Peters. I had a friend shoot some posed photos for my LinkedIn profile.

You care to get a flavor of what I do in the corporate world?  Follow me on LinkedIn:  www.linkedin.com/in/southernswimbait

I’m oddly content and pleased about where I am in life. I am not married, I have no kids, which makes me a unicorn in some respects.  I continue to enjoy living a normal life that doesn’t revolve around boats and fishing gear.  I got into yoga over a year ago, and cannot say how much yoga has helped me.   Yoga has opened my body and mind up to all sorts of new and healthy activities, practices, people, and disciplines.  I have made many new awesome friends thru yoga.  Let me be clear, I suck at yoga, but nobody benefits from it more than a guy like me.    I highly encourage those of you who need something physical, spiritual and awesome to do during the week to check out yoga.   Vinyasa Power Flow is my favorite.  I love energy and positive energy and how contagious it is.

I plan to fish more in 2016 and keep perpetuating this blog.  I have Southern Trout Eaters #2 on my plate, and let me just say….it’s complicated.   I just don’t have time to do it all.  However, as the Jay Z song goes, 40 is the new 20. I have high hopes for a productive, fun and positive 2016.  I am only 19 according to Jay Z.   There is plenty of time to fish still.

Happy New Year.



Click the Above Image to hear the Podcast. Fast Forward to 1:05:20 to hear a recent radio interview I gave about Southern Trout Eaters, what we did, and some insights into where we are going.

I was recently interviewed by John Cassidy, Stan Vanderburg and Stacy Tochihara from Rod and Reel Radio.  I want to thank John Cassidy for his years of support and just general good nature/aloha all the time vibration. I always appreciate dealing with good guys in fishing,  and John is one of them.  He owns Anglers Arsenal and has been a fundamental player and supporter of all thing San Diego bass fishing.  He is a fisherman, a tournament director,  he runs Angler’s Arsenal (killer bait and tackle shop with an online presence for localized/specialty San Diego style bass fishing baits), and he’s always involved in the El Cajon Ford Open, which is the funnest 2 day tournament I’ve ever fished.

You need to browse thru the Archives of Rod&Reel Radio sometime.   You will find interviews with guys like Dean Rojas (former San Diego guy), Kevin Van Dam, Ken Huddleston, and others.  There are regular fishing reports and updates, but interesting content freely available out there, with good information and entertainment value. I was interviewed by the Rod&Reel Radio Crew the summer of 201 that we released Southern Trout Eaters in the summer of 2011 after the release of the DVD.

To listen to the podcast, click HERE  (fast forward to 1:05:20).  Approx half way thru.


It’s getting really hot, really muggy, and the grass is getting way thick. I always look for the cleanest/blackest water I can find with the most beautiful hydrilla, and usually the fish are there.  I found a few instances where I could fish the XL Nezumaa around isolated clumps of reeds and buggy whips.  The bottom is just carpeted with wonderful hydrilla, that really good green hard and crisp hydrilla, and the water is by far the deepest and clearest water   I’m fishing the XL Nezumaa along walls of reeds too, and just trying to get a big bite where I can.  As the heat sets in, I highly suggest rats and big wakebaits, like MS Slammers or 3:16 Hardbaits.   Big topwater baits basically, the can catch a big one at high noon, blaring heat in the right conditions.  And rat baits are super fun to fish-my favorite.  Just super fun fishing and helps endure brutal conditions and heat.



I do like fishing certain bigbaits on snaps. I really find the Owner Hyper Cross Locks fit this bait, and my application beautifully.   I like to walk and stall my rats.  I do like to slow reel and wake them too, but man, I just can’t help but make that bait look alive and struggling out there.   I only have small pockets of fishable water, I don’t usually have long runs of clean swim lanes to bring a top water bait thru, a bait like the XL Nezumaa, I can throw it right on the ‘point’ of a good isolated clump of reeds and usually there will be a hole in the hydrilla around the reeds enough to fish it out a few feet or more.  You just don’t get 15-30 feet of swim most times, you only get 2-6 feet at times to work with, so you need a stallable bait, and a topwater is the bait, the ultimate stall bait.   So around grass, or isolated layown trees, or around shade pockets, you want a bait that hangs in the little ‘pool’ you have to work with, and where too, you can get maximum action out of your bait when you do decide to walk it and really jerk it.  The XL Nezumaa is violent and raucous, and you get a lot of action and noise and the bait only moved 4-6″ toward you.  And with the right wind or bow in your line, you can float a bait like the XL Nezumaa rat in place.  I am fishing 80# straight braid on my XL Nezumaa and recommend a Low Down Custom Rods 8′ XH  if you haven’t ever tried one of those rods for lobbing a BIG bait like the XL Nezumaa or Slide Swimmer 250.




I’m using the official launch date of Southern Trout Eaters as July 3rd, 2011 as per this post announcing the film on the Trophy Fishing Forum of calfishing.com.

I wanted to thank  the angling community at large, and certainly the swimbait fishing community for the support and genuine aloha around the release of Southern Trout Eaters.   We announced a 6″ Triple Trout Giveaway on our Facebook Page that ends tomorrow at 5pm Central Time.  We just posted a ‘success stories wanted’ contest on our Facebook Page and will be giving away six of our pre-rigged with Owner Hardware,  8″ Huddleston Deluxe Rainbow Trouts.   That contest ends this Friday at 5pm Central Time.   Keep an eye on our Facebook page for more.

At some point, if you are passionate about something and work at it long and hard enough, you want to have an advanced conversation that gets into the weeds, that explores things with photos and video, that tests things out, that documents trials and errors, you want to hear opinions and inputs of others who share the same passion, you want to hear the good, the bad, and some controversy.    At least, that is where we are at.  That is what professionals do.      And to have so many people watch and comment on Southern Trout Eaters on online forums and on the Tackle Warehouse product page, so overwhelming favorably, just speaks volumes to me about the risks we should take, the directions to head, and who we engage to get there.

Southern Trout Eaters fans are all over the world, not just the United States, which is incredible.  Our blog traffic has increased 5-10X  at peak times,  year- over-year.  Our YouTube channel has gone from virtually nothing to almost 200,000 hits in a year and approx.  500 subscribers.   We were able to get a copy of the DVD to Manabu Kurita in Japan, and he sent us a kind note in return.  I have received phone calls from guys who have won BassMaster Classics and FLW Tour Events giving me huge props on the film and what we did.  Someday I hope to document some of it with film.  It would be incredible to get some of these guys talking about Southern Trout Eaters who have been tournament fishing as long or longer than I’ve been alive.  Some of my favorite feedback has come from friends and family who do not fish.  People who for the first time I think sort of understand what it is we do and the search we are on.

Those of you who are clicking thru the links in our blog, or thru the product page at southerntrouteaters.com,  or the ‘shopping link’  to purchase products from Tackle Warehouse are helping us out tremendously and that model is working.  Between the sales of the DVDs and your support of our Affiliate agreement with Tackle Warehouse, you are making our fishing possible.  You are holding us accountable and helping us show we are providing content that has value.   So I say thank you and I plan on returning the favor with some fresh new content this summer, non-trout eater, swimbait fishing that I think you will enjoy, via Youtube.    DVD just takes so much more time, effort and cost, it will be saved for special projects only, is what my gut tells me is the right way to play it.

Keep an eye on our Facebook Page, we’ll have some more contests this week.  Thank you all for your support, looking forward to the next 365 days.

Headquarters of southernswimbait.com, Cotter, Arkansas. That is the White River out the window, and my humble little desk. One of the most profound lessons of the last year has been the realization I need to get off the road. I recently moved back in with Mom&Dad and am working on my 2013 season already. Too much time on the road, not having your own place to hang your hat, and not having an office (no matter how simple), a social life, a gym, or any normal things has been hurting me.  Arkansas is all the way around a good thing for me, my wallet, and my fishing. I hope to edit like the wind from my little desk this summer and keep after it. I’ve struggled at times the last 365 days with what the heck I’m doing:  35 years old, no money, no job, no girlfriend sort of thing but between Arkansas, the continued success of Southern Trout Eaters and southernswimbait.com, and the 1.5 Terabytes of unpublished data I have of stuff people will enjoy watching, I’ve got a clear path into 2013 and beyond.  Thank you for your support and helping me find my path.


I don’t pretend to know it all, and certainly haven’t fished it all. I’ve only messed with the Triple Trout Cut Tails a little bit and never even have fished a hard tailed Triple Trout, but I like where Scott is going with a clacker and a bubbler.  I thought just understanding the why and where those styles of baits apply and why Scott even developed them was important because perhaps their is an application for them in your world.  Besides, I thought the insights into the tail from how it changes the swim and providing swim on the sink was excellent, and also the coloring of the soft tails. I absolutely agree with Scott that bubble gums, chartreuse, and orange are often great colors to get spotted bass and smallmouth bass excited and fired up into biting.    Thought you might enjoy this footage with Scott.  The Triple Trout is a fish catcher, and I’m still stuck on the old standard, and even still learning the floating, stubbie and cut-tailed versions myself.

Need replacement soft tails for you Triple Trout?   Click HERE to be re-directed to Performance Tackle, the only place I know to get replacement tails for your Triple Trouts, consistently.

There is more to the tail than you think, even on a Triple Trout. Color, material (hard vs. soft) and shape (cut vs. standard) influence the swim, noise and signature the bait puts out.
Steve Jobs Biography
When you read about Steve Jobs' life, you realize you should be taking notes because there are so many subtle business lessons woven into his life's story. Apple and Steve Jobs are to be studied, whether or not you have an Android phone or run a Windows laptop. The brand, the products and contributions to the world are second to none, and they (Steve for sure) broke all the rules to get there.

Okay, now I’m really going to annoy some people.  A book review?   A bass fisherman doing a book review?  First he does a DVD, and now we are talking about books?  The horror!!!  No this isn’t a book review, but let me put my Steve Jobs in action:  BUY THIS BOOK AND READ IT.   I give this book an A+.  Great read, very insightful and I found myself laughing out loud reading it.  You have to put yourself in my shoes and take my appreciation for this book with a grain of salt.  Steve and Apple are familiar and resonate with me because the stories and tales in the book remind me so much of my former career, the folks I went to college and high school with, my brother, his wife, and his friends who live in and around the Silicon Valley who are all Standford grads, and the life lessons I’ve become aware of at 34. I have a personal connection to much of what I read about, have been to many of the places mentioned, been part of classic hardware/software/open vs. closed source/ sales vs. techy conversations in my former career, so this book strikes a chord to my soul.

Here is the Steve Jobs Biography I’m referring to:  The Steve Jobs Biography by Walter Isaacson

Our Southern Trout Eaters DVD was filmed mostly on a Sony Handycam Camcorder in Standard Definition.  The film was edited on a MacBook Pro using iMovie.   Southern Trout Eaters, to me, is a perfect example of the genius of Steve Jobs.  Making technology usable, and keeping things simple.    A fisherman can create a DVD out of the back of his truck with Steve’s technology.   Besides usability and simplicity, the brand and what is ‘imputed’ by Apple are incredible.  Amazing marketing, amazing design, amazing products coupled with a culture and style that are so Californian.     There are a lot of subtle business lessons woven into this book that I found awesome.  There are no rules in business.  You add the Internet and social networks, and we are literally in the wild west again when it comes many things business.   Steve was willing to “Think Different”, and did, and as that campaign points out, “the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, often are the ones who do.”   Swimbait fishing, southernswimbait.com, the Southern Trout Eaters DVD, and my ongoing work are in lots of ways an attempt to think different, fish different, and not align myself with things in the sport that I clearly see as “complete shit”, to quote Steve.

Here are the quotes and points that really resonated with me,  from the book:

  • “Simplification is the ultimate sophistication”  (borrowed from Leonardo DaVinci, but what an excellent quote)
  • “He believed that great harvests came from arid sources, pleasure from restraint,” she noted.  “He knew equations that most people didn’t know:  Things led to their opposites.”
  • Jobs told Egan, as he had a few other friends, about his premonition that he would not live a long life.  That was why he was driven and impatient, he confided.  “He felt a sense of urgency about all he wanted to get done,” Egan later said.
  • Her boss, tried to get her to stay at Goldman, but instead she decided the work was unedifying.  “You could be really successful,” she said, “but you’re just contributing to capital formation.”
  • Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.
  • So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something — your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.
  • Do you want to spend the rest of your life selling sugared water or do you want a chance to change the world?
  • The axis today is not liberal and conservative, the axis is constructive-destructive, and you’ve cast your lot with the destructive people

My former career selling software with eEye Digital Security taught me some valuable business lessons, but it was the lessons where technology intersected human nature I found most profound.  For example,  eEye Digital Security lost 100s of enterprise accounts back in the early 2000s to Foundstone (which was soon after acquired by McAfee).   The number one reason we lost so many deals to the big boy enterprise clients was because Foundstone had a simple “stop light” on their dashboard where all the information, all the data from all the stuff both our respective tools did rolled up into an aggregate score.  Green = good or secure, Yellow = Caution, you have some security risks that need to be addressed, Red = Alert, major holes and security breaches happening.    We basically vomited up all this information and could tell a customer that a printer on the 3rd floor of their building was running HP-UX that had a known vulnerability, had this IP address,  and all this machine info,  but to the executive, to the enterprise level accounts, they just want to know, hey, are we good bad happy or sad at a very very high level?  Net this stuff out for me.  So what if our printer has a flaw?  What is the worse thing that happens if our HP-UX printer has this flaw exploited by the ‘bad guys’?  How likely is that to happen?  Things our engineers and executives failed to recognize—the business impact of the flaws, not just ability to find the flaws.   I had a prospective client from a very large insurance company in Cleveland ask my team, “So, what does this all mean?”  My engineers and executives couldn’t answer and I knew we were done.    eEye Digital Security has gone on to become a major player at the enterprise account level (ie DoD Wide Contract, how is that for enterprise class comeback?), but those early years were painful, because we had a shot at being a 100-500 million dollar company, going public, and all of us retiring early.   That was not our path though, our path took me and my career  to Atlanta in January 2005.  I caught my first Southern Trout Eater on an 8″ Rainbow Trout Huddleston in March 2005, and that’s where all this started.

Steve Jobs, I appreciate your life’s story and your work.  I’m not sure if I would be on your “A” List or on the list of complete shit, but I sure have been inspired reading your biography.   I want to do incredible things.  I want to do things in fishing, different than how they are being done.  I want my legacy to be what I’ve created and contributed, not what I’ve consumed.   I said it online in a Facebook post recently, I’d like to be an ‘aloha’ version of Steve, less a tyrant, less an asshole, but on the same wavelength of focus and drive to do things in a space that I know and love, and am willing to ‘break the rules’ of traditional fishing (including talking about things like books and music) to get there.