• Visit: Moldy Chum
  • Visit: The Horse's Mouth
  • Visit: Chi Wulff
  • Visit: Parks' Fly Shop
  • Saturday, December 30, 2006

    Home From The Sea

    The Tying Bench Looms
    maggots are missing
    blogs are blogging
    it's good to be home
    .. Precipitation in its whiter forms is far more salubrious than in its drenching forms. We enjoyed the fishing, the old friends and some new friends but the wet was as wet as anyone can remembered.
    .. The old adage about rain and steelhead seems true, and there were some fine fish caught. But it's good to be home.
    .. Thanks to all for the continued visits to the intermittent posts. The site statistics showed a constant dribble of visitors; and the votes for rivers show that we will fish some less glorified waters - come Spring. Just our Cup 'O Tea.
    .. The sledhead season is in full swing in Yellowstone Country. Snarling snowmachines are buzzing around town like angry hornets, and running over each other and pedestrians. On a sadder note a couple of deaths have been noted in avalanches on the back side of Lionshead Mountain - and it's not yet January.
    .. Fishing is good outside Yellowstone National Park. The Madison River between the lakes is producing some large fish for those willing to wade through belly deep snow.
    ..Ice fishing is just getting started on Hebgen Lake and the town is already suffering a maggot shortage. Meal worms are always in short supply given the large number of pet lizards in town so the folks with their ice augers are using bits of night crawler and red worms for the excitement of string-in-hole fishing.
    .. Winter at the bench will include about 200 dozen flies of the mundane variety and a few orders for some classics. Materials are again available after the bird flu scare, and the kind folks in Reddich have sent us a couple gross of hooks.

    .. The ankle deep snow of the El Nino Winter, in and around the environs of Mt. Shasta, has prompted THE TROUT UNDERGROUND to provide us with a telling picture of some frost and a fly rod - NICE!
    .. Here's one in a similar vein from the photographer's blog of Jim Levison.
    .. There are also some very well done winter fly fishing photos at the Global FlyFisher about Danish Winter. The "Gallery" section presents us with an excellent picture-story about fishing in winter and its many rewards.
    .. The "INNY OF THE YEAR AWARD" goes to Moldy Chum for their Flesh-O-Rama photo of "SKINNY WATER."
    .. The Invasive Species Weblog reminds us that we should keep our minds on our soles. They posted a note about felt soles on waders being impossible to disinfect - thus posing a means of transport for invasive organisms.
    .. The bay-area blog Get Outdoors has rediscovered fishing in the form of the "Rocket Fishing Rod." Just the thing for urban commandos and the wily gutter trout.
    .. Protect Your Waters has been keeping us current with the latest in signage efforts by concerned citizens and government in Plum Lake, Wisconsin.

    Saturday, December 16, 2006


    We Blog When We Don't Fish
    we fish when we don't blog
    and work if we have to
    ..This could have been a more productive journey into the maw of steelheading. It has however, produced more computer time than usual. And, truth be told, the fishing realm of the blogsphere is of a far higher quality than most of the rest of it.
    .. The posts, from frivolous to fantastic, display a level of humor, erudition, curiosity, and diversity not shown in the majority of the mundane blogs in existence. We should be proud.
    .. From the personal through the professional to the crass commercial there is a ring of authenticity in our bloogging that reveals an honest and sincere interest in our chosen pastimes - Blogging & Fishing.
    .. Even the most cranky of the bulletin boards shows a surprising continuity of subject matter and insight into our souls. They are an interesting form of combat as well as information sharing.
    .. The generally unselfish nature of the tone and presentation in fishing blogs is refreshing. Compared to "MY (ego) SPACE" or other first person deliveries, the fish blogs - (even if written in the first person) - are more frequently information based and delivered as a service.
    .. Happily, our bloggers are also surprisingly talented and deliver entertainment as well as information. Waxing poetic is not to be left aside, and it is notable that the authentic voice that our community speaks with seldom engenders meaningless rants or diatribes.
    .. Feel free to copy the Time Cover above and place your own blog in it - YOU DESERVE IT! {Special thanks to Karmasoup.org for the "Typewriter Full Of Fishies" image.}
    .. Before we return to the easy chair and some warm Brie & Brandy a bit of fish reporting is in order.
    .. The wonderfully wet coastal weather has provided challenging situations for the stalwart steelheader. The sage fisher folks have retreated to the shorter coastal streams that clear more quickly - no names, you know them well, some even have sea-run cutts. Most of the bars have been blown out, and the breaks in the deluges provide excellent fishing. Even the chromies know enough not to brave the silt and seals. We'll be heading to the Smith, Gualala, and maybe even further south next week. Just look for the fishmobile.
    .. The amazing volume of water that has been dumped in the last two weeks raised the Deschutes, Snake, Clearwater & Grand Ronde variously to as much as 3' overnight. The combined bed load and suspended load of these rivers guarantee that next year's anglers will find significantly different rivers next spring and summer.
    As a parting thought, (borrowed from Gary Gao,) EMBRACE THE BLUR

    Saturday, December 09, 2006

    Too Many Rivers - Too Few Fish

    snow here too
    ... Babine, Skeena, Bulkley, etc. & etc. Pretty places, a few fish and pure exhaustion. It's time to hit the Klamath, then the Chetco, then the Smith; and if the seals back off, the Gualala should be in fine form for Superbowl Sunday - - sorta traditional.
    ... Thank Poseidon for good rain gear. There was a time when waxed cotton and rubber took second place to a fine piece of tightly woven wool. No more, and it's a blessing.

    ... There's a new pop-up widget for links, no surprises! Try it out:

    There's a new site format in the works that will place all posts and notes about any given river, or fly, or whatever together. No more clicking about the site to find posts about your favorite stream, river, fly, hatch, etc. Hope it's done in about 140 days.

    ... Some pictures before dinner.

    bulkley time to goegg eatin' hen lovin dolly

    Saturday, December 02, 2006



    is there no justice

    .. We have caught some fish, braved some elements, and changed our priorities for accommodations: fireplace in the common room, attached saloon, high-speed, and a mud room. There was no need to leave West Yellowstone to find weather like this.
    .. Fishing the Web is akin to surfing the Web, in that, both take time and require some quiet corner with a bit of glow from the fire and some warmth from a nice single malt.
    .. Surfing, we're led to believe is energetic. Fishing, on the other hand, is far more salubrious and relaxing. We prefer the latter. Here are some results from the glow of the fire while fishing the web.
    .. Deer On The Net, (via The Outdoor Pressroom,) Bet the girls really like that decoration.
    . . With the rain and snow and poor catching there was time for web fishing for slabs in honor of the apparent glories of the large fish.

    ..Found a couple of slabs for the folks at Moldy Chum - Check out the kid's slab at Dave Jacobs web site.

    .. And just look at what the folks in B.C. think of fishing and architectural slabs.
    .. Jenny's "ifish,net" has grown since we were last by this way. Check it out for good news, good deals and good vibes. She's got a slab of her own.

    .. We fished the deep waters of C.E. Chaffin's Blog and found a poem about Fishing On The Lost Coast that sucked our soul right into the laptop.

    .. Voting on the side bar poll lets us know that our readers are sophisticated and prefer the more intimate streams to the big name glory waters. That means we get to fish where we usually do next year. Avoiding the crowd is always a good thing.

    .. After a rest tomorrow we're going to flip a coin and decide whether to go north or south. The Gualala and the Smith are calling, so too the Cal-Salmon. The weather maps and fish maps up here are too coincident for our taste.

    .. Well, its back to the warm glow and then some dinner. There's also this nice little girl fishing guide that is 40 years our junior and humors us with feigned interest in fly boxes - thank god for 50-year-old Wheatley's and 18-year-old scotch.

    Thursday, November 23, 2006

    A Fly Fishing Thanksgiving

    the bikini bird wishes you a
    from the fisherfolks in downtown Hoopa

    This is where the mind wanders to when the weather forces indoor fishing.

    Sunday, November 12, 2006

    Happy Birthday Baghdad School

    Here's Looking At You Babe.
    One Good Thing!
    .. Back in September we posted three notes, ( #1, #2, #3,) about The Baghdad School OF Fly Fishing.
    .. Montana Fly Fisherman, Navy Lieutenant Joel Stewart, started the school and it is celebrating it's one year birthday. The site is still up and attracting visitors, and the school is still going strong.
    .. A birthday update has been posted, and you're invited to the party.
    .. There are some spectacular realistic flies being tied by contributors to this effort and it's worth the site visit to see them.
    .. Ronald Aston sent spiders so realistic that they scared the troops. and 90 year-old Willard McCroskey has added several dozen flies to the effort. Thanks to them the fishers have time to concentrate on fishing rather than tying - though that is also part of the school.
    .. The majority of the fish being caught are Asp & Carp. These are large, powerful and handsome fish that will test the mettle of anyone. Good show!
    .. And, as a reminder; should you want to join some of the interested helpers, please do! There is a list of flies and material types that are most needed posted on the site. If you have flies that you would like tested give it a shot. You can see who is helping out the effort (here.)
    .. Thanks again to Joel and to Bill Jones for introducing this sport to our troops. Down time during war is precious, and next to home and family this is a great way to salvage some sanity and serenity.

    Wet Weather

    it's joy and hope

    .....(12,Nov. 2006) from the wet side of Gig Harbor.
    .. Well the weather won't cooperate. A report here would only be redundant - check the notes and reports from Moldy Chum Link #1, Link #2.
    .. Just noticed a post by the Mad Fishicist about Grayling. It set us to dreams and remembrances. Every year, in the spring, we set out to capture one of these iridescent beauties. It allows us to find the clearest and most pristine waters in the park.
    .. The fish, Thymallus arcticus, is a tough and scrappy fish that found itself stranded in Montana, and Yellowstone by the caprice of moving continents - glacial recession - upthrust - and happenstance. Truly a gift - an artifact of Edens past.
    .. There may be distinct speciation between the lacustriane and fluvial forms. The debate hinges on evidence that is not clear, or missing. (Read the current report from the American Fisheries Society.) The report is a frightening reminder that what we don't know leads to what we don't have!
    .. It would be a tragedy to lose these little gems. They require only the most pure of waters, and serve as the aquatic "canary" for many environments.
    .. Early in the spring of this year we caught our annual grayling. It was a large fish - as grayling go - and it renewed our energy for the year.
    .. The clean & pure water that the fish thrives on is disappearing. The places to find it are few. The fly fishing culture has ignored this fish, as it has disparaged the Mountain Whitefish. Without friends they will probably disappear, and it's our loss.
    .. We appreciate the sentiments expressed in the post by the Mad Fishicist. Hearts of more fly fishers should ". . . skip like an old 45."

    Monday, November 06, 2006


    Baetis On Firehole
    big fish at barns
    ..We decided to visit the Firehole River and the Barns Holes on the Madison River one last time as the park closes and gets ready for the onslaught of winter tourism. From now until next Memorial Day, (May 28, 2007,) the fish get a bit of a rest - survival necessities aside!
    .. There was not a track on the trail at the Barns Hole #1. We fixed that and were rewarded with a nice 18" Brown Trout. It eagerly took the poorly casted Dark Spruce Fly, (size 6, 2xl,) just about five feet into what should have been a 20 foot drift. We watched as the shimmer took the fly. Surprise is a wonderful anesthetic - we stood anchored to the spot as the fish hooked itself; ran twice, jumped thrice and came to hand like a tired puppy.
    .. Not wanting to test our karma; we retraced our steps and headed to the Firehole River for some bright-overcast-foggy-Baetis. There were quite a few folks on the river and all seemed to be dancing with something in the water. We had a dance or two, (size 18, Quick And Easy,) and then went to visit friends in the Government Slum at Madison Junction.


    Thursday, November 02, 2006

    And So It Goes

    Sun Today - Rainy Snow Tomorrow
    our winter look
    .. For some unknown reason the weather gods have smiled on West Yellowstone and the western portion of Yellowstone. Clear days with plenty of sun and temperatures in the 40's have continued to bless us, (some minor flurries and drizzle punctuate the blessing.) Clear nights and -10's are also here, (the bears in town are fewer this year.)
    .. The guides freeze, the reel grease is it's own drag, and the fish are ravenous. The Gallatin River has slowed to a picture, the Madison River is still fishing very well, The Firehole River is blessed with Caddis in the sun & Baetis in the rain, and there are good fish near the road on the Gibbon River. This weekend may be the best fall fishing of the year - it's going to warm up and rain.
    .. We'll be posting less, (weekly or a bit more,) and from afar. There is fishing outside of Yellowstone National Park and we intend to explore it while we can. The winter in Yellowstone often provides news of planning, regulations changes, fish counts, and management decisions. We'll keep you updated.

    Monday, October 30, 2006

    Yellowstone Die Hards

    fishing good as park closes

    .. Wading where you should be fishing is the pastime of many visitors to the Madison River this time of year. Of course it's necessary if you don't know how to cross the river in the shallows. Many a fish has been lost before it even gets a chance to refuse a fly.
    .. The days have been far too nice for a week. Now, for the official closing of Yellowstone, the snow is blowing in. Those visitors who took a chance that the weather would hold off, had some good fishing for lake run spawners. The fish are now settling in for amorous activities and wading will smash many eggs - so be it.
    .. The lines at the glory holes have been shorter this year than in the last few years, and there has been more fishing than waiting at 9-mile, Barns, Bakers, Locals, and Rosie's, holes.
    .. The less fished areas have produced well and if you're here this week; try the Gibbon, Tuff Cliffs Slick, Grayling Meadows, Falls Pool, No Name Bend.
    .. Your fly box can show just a bit of variety: Muddlers, Leeches, Soft Hackles, Stiff Hackles, Woolly Buggers, Woolly Worms, Rubber Legs, Dark Spruce, and assorted nymphs, (big is better because the Mountain Whitefish are on the prowl.)

    .. Click on over to Flytimes for a recent report on the Madison River and fishing during the last chance in Yellowstone . . . . it's good.
    .. Get to The Trout Underground for a report on the heavenly grass and a report on Wally. It's too soon to send flowers, but a word of condolences may be in order.
    .. Opportunity awaits at Ass Hooked Whitey for writers and bloggers and others willing to associate themselves with a new effort.
    .. As always, a trip to Flyfishmagazine will enlighten you about small flies, and recent reports in the fishing world - bless their hearts.

    .. The hard working staff at Protect Your Waters reminds us about the Asian Milfoil problem in California and Idaho. This water weed has now combined with a native plant to produce a choking invader of significant magnitude, and poses control problems. Read it here. They also remind us of the impending threat to the Great Lakes fishery by the Asian Carp; it seems only a matter of time.