May 20, 2013
September 17, 2007
There’s a formula I use for catching trout and it’s very simple, really. Just tie on one of these: (my own design, by the way, and far from perfect, but perfect flies don’t catch fish… convincing ones do.)
Apply it appropriately right along here: (this is one of my favorite slow riffles about a mile upstream from my house).
You should end up with one of these (16 inches, exactly 2 pounds) which, once cooked properly, makes a very nice meal. A pleasant way to spend an hour on a summer afternoon!
July 1, 2007
Yesterday afternoon was an ideal time for fishing a small stream and therefore I did just that. (Well, someone had to! )
This is a stream I have the privilege of sharing with some real fishermen who live there. Here’s one of them:
I think that’s Mrs. Osprey, either getting her nest ready (does it seem large enough?) for some newcomers or perhaps already tending her eggs. (I noticed she stayed only in the one area of the nest, and no little heads were yet visible at the edge of it.)
Thinking about it, I’m the third generation of my family to fish here. I wonder how many generations of ospreys there have been! This particular nest has been here and in use for 15 years that I can attest to and I’m sure it has been here much longer than that. The tree that supports it lost it’s top, probably to a lightning strike, but remains very much alive and healthy. The nest is about 60 feet above the ground.
The fish here are mostly small Brook trout, but plentiful, and I have a friend who always welcomes a big mess of little trout ( I brought her 16). I enjoyed a beautiful day on a stream that I’ve fished for nearly 60 years.
Oh yes, the stream and all the other things that live in the forest around it, too.
There were lots and lots of these,
and these were everywhere in a large meadow.
I’ll refer to this one by its scientific name, “some kind of flowering water plant“. It lives in a surprisingly fast current, and I like the colors of its stems, leaves and buds in the stream.
May 9, 2007
I love the opening day of trout season in Montana, when I get to re-learn everything I forgot since last year! While the season doesn’t open for two more weeks yet, I can vividly remember opening day last year because I took notes:
Yesterday I Drove out to the Little Thompson River.
The fun started with the hip boots when I got cramps in both shoulders putting them on. (The fact that the temperature was only slightly lower than at the top of Mt. Everest didn’t help much.) I finally got them on my feet, stood up and then realized I didn’t have a belt. No problem, I attached them to my belt loops (BIG mistake!)
I broke the ice away from the edge of the stream and carefully waded out. Geez, these rocks are more slippery than they used to be! It was then that I noticed that the slight splash I was making was freezing to my hat. There were some deer about 100 yards away in the meadow and I felt bad about getting them so wet, but I was pretty occupied doing the “Hamsterdance”.
As it turns out there’s a very good reason why you wear a belt with hip boots: then they don’t pull your jeans down to your knees. (That in itself isn’t too bad a problem, but it also means your boots are also down to your knees.) So I slogged back to shore and emptied out the boots.
Finally got to fish for awhile.
There were two routes back to the Jeep: the route I had come, through the high grass and thorn trees, or the direct route through a slough. I didn’t want to go back the way I came because I couldn’t bear the sight of all those little pieces of skin hanging from the thorn trees. The slough looked like a better choice. I calculated the depth of the thing to be about 38 inches and stepped in. Found out the calculation was correct. Also found out the height of my boots was 34 inches.
Slogged back to shore again. This time I sat down, took out my fishing knife and cut holes in the bottoms of the boots. It made emptying them out much quicker and easier!
Next week I’m going to take the only fish I caught to the taxidermist. If he mounts it correctly, I can wear it on my pinky finger. It ought to go well with the Bass lure that’s still embedded in the ring finger. I’ll feel a little guilty, though. I didn’t exactly catch the fish: he came out one of the times when I emptied the water out of my boots.
April 22, 2007
“two sets of rules”… “one for the rich and one for the rest of us”.
The picture painted in this story in the Kalispell Montana Daily Interlake on June 6, 2006 is an idyllic one of a man finding “balance” in his life in the wild outdoors of Montana and helping others to do the same. Problem is, most of it appears to be a lie and many of this man’s activities appear to be illegal as well. The true picture seems to be one of a rich individual’s blatant disregard for both the sanctity of Montana’s wild country and the laws that are in place to protect it.
This story in today’s Missoulian paints an entirely different picture. Read both articles and form your own opinion.
I felt compelled to post this, not to simply emphasize this particular deplorable situation but to illustrate an attitude that seems to be more and more prevalent today; a disregard for nature, a disregard for our laws, and the arrogance of wealth leading to the selfish exploitation of our wild country for personal gratification and gain.
April 21, 2007
It’s a fact of life these days, and probably soon to be enacted into law, that you must be specifically (and expensively) dressed and equipped for every recreational activity in which you intend to engage, including but not limited to, fly fishing for trout.
The Federal trout fishing dress code regulations have not yet been completed , after spending the last thirty-seven years in the Recreation Sartorial Sub-committee of the House of Representatives before being passed on to the Senate for filibuster, but in the meantime the legislatures of most of the more progressive states have enacted a large number of their own ordinances, having quickly cut through all the red tape after receiving a generous amount of funding from Cabella’s, L.L.Bean, Orvis, Nike, Reebok and eight hundred or so other guardians of our appearance and safety.
Last week when a large truck from Rocky Mountain Motor Express pulled up in my driveway to deliver all four hundred volumes of the Cabella’s Spring/Summer catalog (and I want to publicly thank them for not sending the unabridged edition this time), I was suddenly reminded that it was high time to start on my 2007 fishing budget.
After perusing volumes 237 & 238 titled Fishing Shoes for Early Spring Wet Fly Fishing on the Yaak River, it became glaringly obvious that during the off season, unbeknown to me, China had produced several thousand new and absolutely indispensable products for the properly attired fly fisherman, and if I start right away, by working three jobs between now and the middle of May, I will be just able to afford the bare minimums required by the Montana 2007 statutes and still have time to obtain the required equipment permits in time for opening day.
So far the budget has come along nicely and is almost ready to be submitted to the Chief Financial Officer (my wife‘s official title) for final approval. I’m quite sure it will pass, assuming she somehow doesn’t notice the $700 expenditure surreptitiously tucked into page 12 for a GPS radio collar that will fit a Royal Coachman dry fly, size 16!