I will never forget the weekend I drove with a friend from Stamford, Connecticut, to Cape Cod, Massachusetts, during the annual striped bass fall migration. It was sometime during the early ’90s, and we had high hopes that the fishing would be spectacular. It was my third weekend trip of the fall to find the huge schools of striped bass that were fattening up before heading south. The word was out that the fishing was red-hot on the outer beaches at High Head and Head of the Meadow. When we arrived at the beach at first light, I noticed that a pretty strong east wind was blowing and the water was filthy, with weeds in the wash. The fish were there in big numbers, and we did all we could to keep the weeds from fouling our flies. It was right then that I knew I had screwed up. I did not have one striper fly with a weed guard in my box. What could have been an epic day of fishing turned into a long and frustrating road trip.