Aug 30, 2010

Felix

I make it down to one of my favorite little neighborhoods this morning to see who was home, who had moved out, and to meet some of the new residents, Come to find out it was just like visiting the neighbor hood that I grew up in as a youngster, The trees are bigger, the place is cleaner, all the little ones are grown up and now have some little ones of their own.

22 pt dangling true.
Needs a twinkie.
I communicated with a lot of fish today landed a fair amount. I also managed to encounter, the one that got away. He wasn't on there long enough so got his address and took a rain check. That fish is real big and I plan to stalk it until I get it! I had to give this fish a temporary name, to sike me up and drive me back, and that name is, "Felix"... Fe licks my fly again, its not coming out. See ya on the flip-side Felix.

Aug 29, 2010

Fishing The Rockies

I made a run to the home water of a fellow blogger named Ron, aka- Colorado Angler, He runs the blog Fishing The Rockies located at http://coloradoangler.blogspot.com/ Ron is the one who actually turned me on to blogger.com. My first and most loyal follower. He and I clicked right off the Internet bat. After a year and half of email and blog comments, We both agreed that we needed to take this to the place where It all really began... The river.

I arrived the day before and acquired a beautiful camp site right on the river.
I fished near camp from 3:30 to 9:00 hooked up with three fish and landed none, It crossed my mind that the place could be "no landing" cursed. or perhaps my 4wt attitude was biting me in the keester. A near restless night of sleeping in the hooptie, and noisy neighbors. to awake with the excitement of fishing somewhere I had only witnessed on Colorado Anglers blog. An early morning run up the road to an unknown location. A handshake in the dark, a supply of BDSP's and Black Mambas, tied by him, made a home in my pack before we even hit the trail, followed by a fully packed lunch. A mile long steep hike, to the river bank by dark:30.

Ron had the homes for the big trout on his mental GPS, it's still dark and and we can't even see each others faces but yet Ron is spotting trout in the dark, and not just one. He begins to holler out numbers there's an 18, there's 2 22's, oh shit Josh, come over here and take this 25. 25?.. Inches? I ponder. Yep its true fish in the 20 inch range just laying all over the place in gin clear water with a backdrop that keeps them on there toes (fins).

He gave me, first up! Rigged up on 6 and 7x, with the GM2 t-tied and the BDSP 18 inches below, small shot between the two. With that set up I Better be ready to set the damn hook. Trying to get the feel of the river in the dark I am focused on my shot, thinking that I need to get a handle on that right away. First 5 drifts, and two of them had a little moss from the bottom. Things are feeling pretty much perfect, on that 6Th drift, slam, splash, pop, Damn!!! It's been a while since I was broken off on the take.

My little tag was still there but the bug was long gone. I surgically replaced it and made a few more casts, Ron then moves down stream about 25 feet and begins to play his instrument. Sploosh!!!! followed by a series of familiar bad words, the same just happened to him. Snapping the line on the take.. What the heck? Do these fish have razor sharp, bird beaks or somthin? Less than 10 drifts later it happens to Me again! Broken line... usually a terrible thing to happen to a fishermen, but we are having the time of our lives here and honestly I don't care if this happens all day. Other than I don't like leaving flies in the mouth of a fish. If they would eat something tied to 5x, we would fix all that but, they wont cooperate so it's their own damn fault.
"Ka-pop!"

Well it did, happen all day that is.

Fish to net-0.

Fish to take a fly- near 12 or 15,

Flies lost- that same 12 or 15.

The river belongs to the fish, they are the Kings, we are in their castle and we had to play by the rules.

At this point you could be a bit confused at why two fairly seasoned anglers aren't catching fish. Well.... Just getting them to take the fly is the biggest battle to face and that is the task at hand. 5x tippet would solve a lot of these problems but your just not going to get anything to eat a hot dog dangling from an extension cord. 6x and you might. 7x and you will, (that's 2lb test) maybe a size 24 hot dog. And the fish in that canyon, don't take no for an answer when it comes to what they want, if they want that bug they're damn sure going to get their way. And Plus, when the hook is in there good and the fish is on.... your at the mercy of the river its self anyway, for every drift is a hell mary on a difficult drift with unforgiving obstacles known as rocks.

This brings me to a real highlight of the day. We were standing near a pool and can see a good sized rainbow struggling with a huge meal, taking a closer look, what ever was in its mouth is big, and black or brown, it then spits it out, probably to rethink the situation of eating something the size of your head. Then we realize it is indeed a Bat. That's right the creature that flies at night. The fish moves back over and sucks it up, shaking it violently and swimming around our feet with this thing in its mouth. like a puppy with its bone, It appears that It is in some kind of trance looking for a place to bury it. Amazed by what we just seen, we move on. Finding later the thing following us a bit, (like a puppy) watching a bit more, we began to build a little relationship with the situation and started calling the fish Bat Man. This made for an ongoing joke that we could use against any fish that was being a pain in the butt. At this point I'm wondering if might be a chance that these things would be streamer friendly. Apparently there not too scared of big things but I don't carry any Bat streamers, so I gave them my reverse snakebite pattern. I did that for about 8 cast then gently screwed my head back on and and reverted back to the 24s some simple and others not so simple midges and micros. The hottest bugs for me were Gm's 1,2, and b's followed by the 22 tungsten hatching zebra midge. For Ron, He will share that with you later but for now two words Best Dam.

Some other weird things to happen in this order... We saw a brief humming bird hatch taking place just before sun up.

A yellow lady bug with the traditional spotting visited us at lunch.. that was a first one of for both of us.

The disappearing fish trick. A fish that we were both watching mysteriously disappeared from its holding Poisson then would reappear with out kicking up a pebble, In a place where one of the four eyes would have seen it unless it was a trick. They are a little tricky no doubt about that.

To sum it up... I met one hell of a Man with a unique fly fishing style. A style so unique that I don't believe anyone could teach. Those skills must be developed over years. Years spent, not just on the water and fishing but years spent with you head down and not looking up. That guy stares into the water and in turn makes things happen. We stuck quite a few fish over 20 inches and left feeling absolutely satisfied.

The day ended just a quick as it began, a final hand shake and A thank you. A day that I will always remember. A plan to Head for Ft. Collins the following day will have to wait, but like any unfinished business, I will, meet MidgeMan one day for sure!

Here are a few more pictures that I took while hauling tail down the road. I found out that my new camera has a setting for this and they actually came out not too bat for 45 mile an hour dirt road snapshots out the window of my fishin rig. (plenty safe if you keep your eyes on the road)

A little rapid section of the river.
The burn area.
Beetle Killed trees.
A full basket ball court in the national forest. Wut duh heao?

Aug 25, 2010

Hand to Trout and Peace Out

Here are some pics of fish that didn't make it to the blog...









Im off! like a dirty shirt, headed for somewhere new! Catch up with you all on Sunday.

Aug 24, 2010

DeJong Collection

I thought I would show my collection of Paintings from AYearOnTheFly. When Joel came on Blogger and said in his opening statement, he would paint a fly a day for a year, I thought, I want to be around to see it. Some will not see a different real fly everyday for a year, I have made it a point to view each one of his paintings, and they really grow on you.. Joel isn't the only artist out there but he is the only one who relates a painting to fishing and posts it every day.

I encourage you all to get with Joel and purchase a painting, to add to your fishing memorabilia and possess a blogger.com souvenir.

Keep it up Joel!

Aug 21, 2010

Cutt-Dacious

To follow up the Bow-dacious post.
The family and I went for a bit of a backpacking slash picnic trip today to enjoy the last bit of summer and breath some fresh air.
This turned in to a fish of epic proportions for our son. He landed his first fish to pass the 20 inch mark.
Right now I would like to thank that tiny piece of 5x for holding strong and not ruining the moment, because the moment was absolutely unreal. The kid was just about to cry from fatigue, and I can vouch, his veins were bulging big time, I asked him twice if he wanted me to step in and finish the job and he gave the greatest answer ever "Move" I moved, and let him wrestle the thing in, got some quick pics and had to get her tired butt back to the agua.
Wild Colorado Cutthroat Trout On The Fly. On just a little bug from the front range.

Aug 20, 2010

Bow-Dacious

Made an afternoon run to the canyon yesterday. For what? I don't know fish I guess.
The boy and I both hooked multiple trout and had a hell of day just fishing. Backhanded roll casts and stack mending made each fish more rewarding.
Today We didn't walk the river, we fished it. Just parked our selves in the shade, passed a rod back and forth, hooked trout and took a pictures. When the hookin up slows down, the attitude gets better. Tie a few knots, change a few bug's, move a little led, maybe add an indicator, maybe take one off, use two? hmmm... It's like we just got here now. Soak it up. We were trying to get a pic of a decent brown but Dylan said "it was a slippery one" pushed the button anyway. I got a kick out of that.
Blind fishing 10 feet deep with micro nymphs... Now that's a party!

Aug 19, 2010

Summer On The Fly

A variation of Rick Takahashi's Go2 Prince.

Made popular in the blogging circut by means of hooking large numbers of trout, My none other than Midgeman himself. He has shared countless fishing stories with us and He posts more effective trout flies and patterns than almost any one has the time to even learn. (understatement)..

With this, Joel and I have teamed up again for a joint post on the fly that has brought the most trout to Midgemans net in the last month...

Tying a fly that I learned about from reading Midgemans Fly box.... I feel like, a 5 foot tall guy sitting in for Micheal Jordan.. (big shoes to fill) posting it on the web?.... (balls'ie)...

All in all the Fly is "bad news bears" just ask the T.C.L.P.

I have had the chance to fish both the one from the pictures on Midgemans blog and my own variation, to be honest they fished about the same for me the few days I spent experimenting them, approving them for this post.

I am honestly not sure of the exact materials that Takahashi has in his pattern, I dug up a couple different tail possibilities and so on, so I just tied it the best I could from looking at the picture from one of Midgemans post's.

Hook- Mustad- S80-3906 3x heavy (it's going down)
Head- 12/0 Pearl Glass bead
Collar- Three Turns of Grizz Hackle
thorax- Grey Sowbug Dubbing
Wing- Mcflylon
Abdomen- Peacock Pearl
Ribbing- blue/green Mirage Tinsel
Tail- Tan/gold Antron
added weight- If you got the wraps and the room.
For Joels painting of the Go2, click Here


It Might be a while yet before you can visit http://www.cheapa$$flies/. com to buy these bad boys.

Here is another variation, closer to the original.

Thank's to both, Takahashi and Midgeman for making this one possible.

Aug 18, 2010

Deep Breath of Bass

Sometimes the local pond and large mouth bass fishing is to easy to pass up, The boy and I took the ol flat bottom out to the lake to poke at the mouths of some BASS, big letters on the bass because The stupidest fish on the planet, the bluegill wont stay away from the fly long enough for a BASS to slam it! My solution for this problem... fool them too.
I tie on a big popper, too big for a bluegill to get hooked by but just right for one to chew on the tail end and drag it around, resist the instinct to set the hook, and wait for the big mouth to steel the show.
If That doesn't work out, here is another method, I drop a size 20 red midge about 18 inches from the popper rigged on 7 or 8x, then when the popper slaps the water, either the bass slams it right then and there, a bluegill nibbles on the tail and gets the attention of the bass or the bluegill comes over to investigate the popper, gets a little panic going and takes the midge and splits, I do give a little pop to it to set the midge but then let the bluegill run with it. (caveman voice) "Big bass get mad mad at tiny pan fish" Ya ever watched a backward spiraling popper? Most of the time, before the little champ of a bluegill has fought its self to exhaustion, a bass will come out of no where and hit the popper, hard enough that it breaks the 8x. Setting our little live lure bait buddy free. With your fishing mind in a wild place, its Time to do a 3x dance, Bill Dance that is, no mercy on bass, use and abuse the fight with one, don't even get em on the reel, strip em in hard, you can't play them, you have to get it over with. try to enjoy the fight like a trout and that's all you get is a fight.
The rules may get bent a little, The fish may go home tired, but they do, Go Home.

Summer is almost over, so I hear. Let's all together now, pout about it, and start putting things away. Na, I think I'll go ahead and fish for the rest of the year.

I'm looking forward to some cool nights and some fish feeding all day. I'm ready to see a little yellow and orange in the back of some Pics. I'm ready to get my arms yanked on by a fall Brown trout. I'm ready to take the trail to see the front range before another year goes flyin by.
Watch for a joint post tomorrow with AyearOnTheFly

Aug 14, 2010

Battery Depleted

I'm usually pretty good about keeping good batteries in the camera and in fact, they were new, I replaced them just before I downloaded some bass pictures to the PC, however I'm always leaving it plugged in to the U-S-B which drains it but good...
Headed out for a solo trip to the canyon on Friday, usually its not too crowded on a Friday and Friday beats Saturday hands down.

I made my usual start with a walk, high above the water, scouting for fish. I quickly realized that it was going to be quite crowded today. My first hint was a spin fisher casting a fly and bubble rig over my fly line. I wanted to tell the guy that this is a freakin tail water full of tail water trout, who are much to smart to give chase.

Mornings when I'm the first one on the trail, there are big trout laying right on the edge, three inches off the near bank. First fisherman focused on anything but that... Puts those fish down..
As I walk, I find that there have been three maybe four folks before me. High sticking below my feet is out. Let me add that the river flowing from right to left, and my back is against a wall, what ya really need is one of those rocket fishing rods you see on TV.. or you can spend countless days on the water in this situation and learn how to roll cast over you other shoulder, wait wait, you cant really call it a roll cast, I'll call it a mind cast, just think where you want the bugs and "whaaa pow" they come a shootin out of the gate. At any rate there is no back casting to be done anywhere, at all!

As I continue my blind fishing for deep fish, the breeze begins to blow in my favor, making it possible for me to use the wind to my advantage. Fish began to come to hand in numbers and size. In this particular spot of the river, I am after the big rainbows if I have my choice, overall I am a brown fan but here the rainbows fight so good, make leaps of faith, and kinda know a little about shaking a hook. Give me a shot at one of those babys and Im content for the day.

A 22 pt flash back takes its place on the line, this spot is permanent for the day and any changes will be made to the top fly variations of the GM...

The river gets more and more crowded as the day goes on. To the point where I cant do what I want, can barly do anything at all. I can see 4 or five guys upstream and at least 7 down, there are two boats where someone had ferried there selves to the other side to avoid people, so I just stay put in a decent little hole and play the switch every few casts game. I spent about 3 hours here and landed 5 fish two others used there hook spitting skills against me...
I cant stand It anymore. I have to go find another drift even if it means catching fish in front of someone to piss them off so they leave. So I did just that, Parked myself a respectable distance from another angler and proceeded to hang the fish up. I landed four browns in front of this guy from Oklahoma.. He walks out of the water and stands there watching me in amazement... This is when you need to hook another.. and I did, a decent brownie, the guy comes over to me with that southern accent and says "I figured out what I'm doing wrong" I reply, "whats that", he says, "fishing below you, when all the fish are up there". That made me laugh and made us temporary friends, I exit the river to chat with the guy and give him that bonding session that seems alot of folks need. He was at the frustrated state by now and takes a crybaby spot on a rock to change bugs,, I gladly showed him what I had on and gave him a B-GM2 told him where a big beautiful fish that I fished to for an hour was parked and watched him run after it with a confident set of bugs.
Down stream I found some crazy kids who had swam the river and were fishing on the other side of one of my favorite little runs. I got pretty exited when I saw them standing butt deep in the holding area over there trying to run their rig in the swift water. I pondered the possibilities that they could have pushed some fish through the swift and to the other seam where I am. I pulled my hat down tight to my shades and climbed up on a rock to get a look at this run... I see a big big bow laying in there and feeding heavily on midges... It spent the better part of 5 minutes wading out 8 feet from the bank to possession my self for a good, sneaky, drift.. on the third drift through there that big bow took the PT right to the center of the snout, and came to net in a timely manner,, This pig was worth a photo weather there is an audience or not.. so I turned my back to the guys and got out the camera to find the screen reading battery depleted.. I release the fish and get out of the river and walk on, the light conditions are improving throughout the day and I can now see fish feeding a little higher in the column and plan on ditching the indicator and sighting out some biggies... Basically used this as my walk to the truck, picking up a few more fish along the way.

To sum it all up.... lots of fish to hand, lots of fish to shake my fly loose, lots of people, lots of fun! oh and a whole bunch of no pictures!

Aug 10, 2010

P.M. Donkey Bonk

Last minute decision making, calls for nearly a one hour drive to the river. Leaving right now it's 5:30 p.m.
To the water by 6, to find the sun is off the water and headed out of the canyon, Sight fishing is out. Without the sun and when there are 300 feet walls of Black rock reflecting off the water, no doubt the light conditions are terrible.
The fish are out and about and chowing down.

As per usual the start was slow, but with a good attitude and just plain fishing flies with confidence, rewarded persistence an shameless acts like driving for Two hours and fishing for an hour and a half, was paid off! Four takes, Three fish, all three had to be on the reel. The take I missed... I don't know, musta been a big old fish, the rod pulsed in a big way, You know, the slow "whuump... whuump... whuump" is the best way to describe it. Three pulses and spit back of tippet with a split end, I blame the teeth, of the father, of every brown in the gunny. (near by or close to that).
Feeling a little defeated I retied my rig and came up with the plan to really put it to the fish who strikes next... Luckly I didn't get hit in the face by a 6 inch Skippy, but buried the size 20 b-Gm2, the brown in the pic below, a fish with full heart and a Strong will to survive, fell to the wrath of my sword.
Nice Chompers!

Aug 8, 2010

Summer On The Fly

Joint post with AYearOnTheFly

Articulating Cannibal Stone.

Hooks-2312
Thread- Dark Brown.
Tail- Hackle fibers
legs- 12 freakin biots!
wing cast- Turkey
ribbing- silver wire
abdomens- grey and brown sow dub

Joel hit me with a challenge this time. I almost told him I didn't want to tie it,, then I though... cant wuss out on Summer on the flies paybacks are coming though..
Tied the back one first, then cut the hook point and bend off, added mono to the eye.
Two strands of 15 lb test mono left long. Tied the mono to a new hook and bead, then began to build the other stone body. I was asked to name this one. After counting and counting the legs I figured it wasn't a centipede, so I decided it had to be a stone eating a stone. Click down there..
For A Painted Version of The Articulating Cannibal Stone.

Aug 1, 2010

Random Acts


This is the my rarest catch ever. I have never seen or heard of this species of fish being caught in this stretch of the Gunnison River. I contacted the Fish and Wildlife department about this, and they got right back to be with the facts.
The Round Tail Chub is, found in the Gunnison River, it is a predatory fish. That's why it slammed the cone head like that. However the guy did say that that was the biggest one he had ever seen in a photo and the only photo of one that high up river. The bright colors Indicate that it is in spawning condition. A fun fish to fight and a bit of an accomplishment for (rare things that happen.)

Ugly Mug.

This Is How my blog got its name...

Probably Not!..


Now, This helped...

Sort of...


This is what happened five minutes after I found sidewalk chalk laying on the ground...
Here is a Video Of my boy landing a giant stocker when he was 4 years old.


video