Sunday, April 9, 2017

Trip Report: Yesterday and Today!

With great temperatures and no obligations I decided to fish yesterday and today! I hoped to find streams with a light, chalky green stain and that's what I found. Perfect dry fly water. I fished the Griffiths Gnat and Stripped Quill Mayfly Emerger most of the time. Fish primarily took the Gnat yesterday but the Mayfly performed quite well today.
I found no really consistent hatch throughout both days. With temperatures around 70 I expected faster action on top but that will come with time I suppose.
Yesterday I fished with my buddy Tim who can be seen launching a cast to rising fish right along the log pointed toward him. Tim landed a decent number of fish by most measures but a sub par showing by his standards.
This fish was one of the better trout of the day. He took the Mayfly. I could see him swim to the top, grab the fly, and turn back toward the bottom before the hook was set. We tried streamers at one point but I had better luck on the dry. The San Juan Worm also produced.
 This stream was absolutely beautiful! The area reminds me of a few spots I fished often while living in Montana. It's rugged country to access which keeps most people away.
I was completely exhausted by the time we made it back to the car and I was feeling it this morning. After doing some chores around the house I was ready to fish. With Mayflies on the mind I set out to a stream that has potential for producing decent brookies.
This was the big fish of the day, probably around 13 inches. I landed at least a dozen browns and three brookies in three hours of fishing.
 The big brookie of the day. Conditions are pretty good and I expect midges and a few mayflies to come of sporadically throughout the week.

Friday, April 7, 2017

Trip Report: Dry Fly Times

Dry fly times are upon us! I fished a solid midge hatch on Tuesday night at around 530-8pm. With cloudy skies I was able to catch almost every fish I spotted rising for around at 20 minute period when I first arrived. The Griffiths Gnat was the most effective pattern, although a size 14 Quill Bodied Mayfly emerger tricked a few.
Today I went out after work with a buddy and landed around 20 trout between the two of us. I noticed sporadic hatches of midges and three different mayflies. I landed a decent one on a San Juan Worm and a bunch of others on a Griffiths Gnat.
 I decided to bring the the pup today since we fished an area where it is permissable. I've been working with her over the last couple months to be off the leash yet still in control and she's doing really well.
She gets pretty excited to see fish coming in. Stay tuned: I'm going out all day tomorrow to a really neat local spot with another buddy.

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Trip Report: Fishin' With Tim in the Woods

Today my friend Tim and I got up early and hit a local trout stream in the rain. Temps never got above the mid 40's but we both made it through the day comfortable, for the most part. I got a pretty significant hole in my waders so my feet got a little wet. I can't wait for wet wading weather!
Right off the bat I picked up this little tiger trout! A tiger trout is the sterile offspring of a brook trout and a brown trout. This was only my second tiger. As we continued upstream flat waters gave way to fairly constant rippling. We noticed a ton of midges and a few spare Mayflies. We both changed flies a lot.
This decent trout sipped a quill bodied mayfly emerger from the surface.
This guy took down a size 20 Griffiths Gnat. He put up a solid fight before swimming into the net. The trout pictured above looks like he got hit by and eagle, otter, or heron.
 As the afternoon proceeded we continued to nail 'em on various emergers and dries. Between the two of us we tried WD40's, Comparadun BWO's, Parachute BWO's, Zebra Midges, midge emergers, Matt's Midge, and Quill Bodied Mayflies. We also landed a few on Scuds early in the day.
 Tim landed this beauty on a dry! At one nice run that was flush with fish Tim pointed out a fish surfacing no more than 10 feet in front of us. He told me to catch it and on my first cast the fish came and sipped it off the surface, maybe my favorite fish of the day. I hope to get out again soon but we'll see what work, family obligations, and the weather have to say about it!

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Trip Report: Eagles and Trout

Today I headed northward to fish in Wisconsin with my friend Sean today. I was excited to take the river road in hopes of finding eagles. The river road did not disappoint and by the time I pulled in next to Sean I spotted 130 eagles! Of course I had to stop for a few pics.
 I struck first blood on a few small ones before Sean pulled in this foot long brown. This stream was small and crystal clear making long and accurate casts a must.
 I landed this well figured brownie on a pink scud. Often I'll barely hook 'em with the pink scud but these guys took the fly like the meant it. Sean fished with a number of pink squirrel variations and other small nymphs.
 This stream had a ton of woody debris and a rocky substrate with intermittent areas of sandy muck. It was also prone to flooding. Wisconsin has a generous stream access law which only required us to remain below the high water mark when wading through private property. This made getting around pretty easy.
 All the fish we landed had really nice, light coloration. With Sean feeling under the weather and me itching to get back to the eagles we parted ways around 130pm.We hoped to find fish rising to small mayflies today but we had no such luck.
I took a little different way home and I found a great little brook trout stream by accident! I landed four browns and 7 brookies in a little over a half hour. Most fish came from one, long, deep pool.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Not The Only Ones Fishing!

 I've been seeing tons of bald eagles around the river lately. Lots of spots are opening up and the eagles are congregating in certain areas. The camera rides with me from now on!

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Trip Report: Back To The Future

While visiting friends in the Central Sands region of Wisconsin I got out for some fishing on the Sand County trout stream where I cut my teeth in the fly fishing game. The Central Sands region features cold, spring/marsh fed with slightly tannin stained water and mostly sandy/somewhat rocky substrate. I expected to find high and stained water but even with temps in the high fifties the stream stayed clear.
Brown and Brook Trout call these waters home and feed heavily on mayflies, midges, and minnows. I brought the Pink Squirrel of Prey up from the driftless to use on this day but in college I fished parachute adams and pheasant tails with fair success. In college a friend used to drop me off to fish on his way to work at a really good access point but that section is currently closed. Apparently many of the Sand County streams are closed or have only sections that are open.
 This area was much different than the Driftless streams I've become accustom to. This stream in particular was a mix of pocket water boulder fishin' and wide sandy runs. I landed a few smaller browns from pocket water before hooking into a few more respectable ones.
 After I landed this guy I launched a cast to the head of a wide run and turned a solid 16" trout but missed the hook set.
This guy earned the distinction of being the biggest fish of the day. He put up a great fight on the three weight. If I would have though a little harder when packing gear I would have brought a 9ft 4wt for better distance on my casts. The sun shined bright and it took longer casts to avoid spooking 'em.
After landing around 6-7 browns I decided to head to another Central Sands gem to chase brookies. This picture makes it look pretty open but in slower areas the stream was frozen over. I walked around for a bit before going to visit some friends.
 I hope I find the chance to fish up here again soon. It was challenging to fish this type of stream, especially on a sunny day!