Mick Thill: Fishing Legacy of Lasting Import

Life and times of float-fishing innovator Mick Thill

What’s more effective than the good old red-and-white bobber sitting above a hook and bait?

We know the answer: a modern float, weighted (‘shotted’) so that it’s ‘almost under’ at all times, so sensitive that a fish can inhale your bait with little effort and the result is a caught fish more often than not.

It seems so obvious now, but would it be if we had never met Mick Thill? What if he had not been born in America and raised in England? What if he had not been gifted with intelligence, vision, and the heart of a tackle maker? What if he had not fallen in love with the ultra-competitive match-fishing scene in Europe and become a young champion in his adopted land? What if he had not chosen to return to America as an adult, bent on crafting a series of floats designed for our waters and our fish?

And what if he didn’t work tirelessly to show us why our big round bobbers were so silly?

Thank goodness we don’t have to wonder. He did come back and he did all those things and these days when we suspend a bait under a float, our fishing experience is so much better than it otherwise would be.

The winds of change blew a harsh note in November of 2018 when fishing pioneer Mick Thill passed away at home in London, England. He was a friend to so many of us at MidWest Outdoors and he shared his passion for catching fish with literally anyone that wanted to learn. Today we share memories of his life, through the voices of those who learned from him, fished with him, and simply spent time with him.

Take a listen. As bittersweet as the message is (or maybe because of that) it’s time well spent.

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