• Visit: Moldy Chum
  • Visit: The Horse's Mouth
  • Visit: Chi Wulff
  • Visit: Parks' Fly Shop
  • 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.

    Sunday, October 29, 2006

    Yellowstone Halloween Fun

    With Apologies To Dave
    Creative Scarecrows
    ..The Halloween Leech is well known among the neighbors in West Yellowstone. We use it to fool the giant spawners running up the Madison River from Hebgen Lake. The recipe is simple and the fly is effective.
    Recipe - Tail: plucked throat fibers from midnight black emu, (the short ones right next to the beak,) - Body: dubbed orange and black scrotum fuzz from the hindermost parts of a wild Yellowstone Wolverine, (since this animal is about to be listed as endangered you must shave it alive,) - Body Hackle: Orange & Black barred neck feather from a Little Black & Orange Indian Hawk, (reverse palmered forward,) - Head: A little on the long side for the attachment of a riffling hitch. Fish it deep.
    .. With fly fishing blogs all a titter about the Bikini Wars, it seems only appropriate to introduce some seasonal spice into the brew. Below you will find some Halloween Witches - suitably attired for our discriminating audience.
    Here are the top 10 Halloween things that sound dirty - but aren't.
    10. If you show me your JuJuBees I'll let you see my Zagnuts.
    9. She's got a couple of nice pumpkins on her front porch.
    8. I'd like to get a little something in the sack.
    7. He's got candy spread out on the living room floor!
    6. You scared me stiff!
    5. Let me see your bag, - OH! - you're having a great night!
    4. Have your mom check it before you put it in your mouth.
    3. Just get on your hands and knees and bob your head.
    2. If you just lick it, it'll last longer.
    1. She's a goblin.

    The Halloween ball made me cranky
    because being surrounded by skanky

    little devils and kittens

    had me fully committin'

    to take myself home for some spanky

    As a parting shot we submit the following scarecrows. No wise cracking!

    Friday, October 27, 2006

    Winter Water Warmer Than Air

    Halloween Fish
    (Link 1, Link 2, Link 3)

    Updated Goddess
    report tomorrow
    the secret is out
    .. It's the time of year When the water is warmer than the air. Right now it's twenty degrees on a balmy Friday morning and time to dash to Yellowstone for a big fish or two.
    .. The Madison River and The Firehole River have both been deserted by the hoards of visitors and the dedicated have replaced them. The influx of fish has slowed and it's grind it out time. This is the time that you need to be able to find the right deep hole. We'll let you know tomorrow.

    .. We're going to see our favorite guide in about three weeks. You can read why our anticipation is quickened by the prospect HERE. She's always worth a grin.
    .. Mark Powell over at BlogFish has been grinding out the state of our oceans and reminds us that fishing, as well as warming causes changes.
    .. There is a summary of some of the scientific research on related topics by Kevin Vranes over at No Se Nada, as well as an interesting political note and some insight into the way politics - science - and baseball hang together.

    .. In the campaign to Protect Your Waters there is a note about the increased growth of Eurasian Watermilfoil in the Upper Sac. The sad state of affairs has gone unnoticed and largely unreported. A note in the Central Valley Business Times gives some details.
    .. Some welcomed positive action is coming out of the recent conference in Jackson. Simms & Patagonia are joining with the concerned fishers of the world to help keep the public information campaign going and growing - READ IT HERE.
    Those of you wishing to join the Bikini Battles can travel to Sword Fishing Central for the ultimate source of beautiful babes who catch fish. Or go to The Girls Of Gaff for pretty girls that pose with fish.
    The secret is out.

    Monday, October 23, 2006

    Yellowstone's Gift

    pick your spots with care

    .. The snow has come and gone several times in the last week. Fishing has been very good on the west side of Yellowstone National Park. The casuals have left the room, and left some room. The thin water of the upper reaches of the spawning streams are beginning to see large fish, and the lighter gravels of the Redd's are apparent from a distance.
    .. Large fish are still moving, and the neighbors know where they are. We suggest that you visit the Madison River Outfitter's Report, and Blue Ribbon Flies Report, for exceptionally accurate and up-to-date information. There is good fishing to be had, and the snow is just mildly irritating. Frosty guides will be less of a nuisance if you use a bit of WD-40.
    .. We are beginning to clean and store our light gear. When we lived on the ocean it was simple enough - just take a shower with your stuff. The cleaning of cane is easy, just a damp cloth and some carnuba. The reels need some lighter fluid and then light machine oil or a dab of c-moly grease. Wipe them on the outside with a soft rag with a bit of pledge, (just a bit!) We store ours in clean cotton sweat socks. The rods have their ferrules cleaned and then are softly joined and hung by the tip-top.
    .. We discovered another use for Tonkin Cane - A "WOODY" - what a treat.
    .. The big fish of the NW Coast call. We're listening.
    .. The gift that Yellowstone gives is one of reflection and anticipation. We can now reflect on the past year and anticipate the next. We can let the fish rest and turn our attention to other - related - activities. There's several gross of flies to tie. There is everything we put off to catch up with. There is maintenance and repair. And, there is the park in winter - a gift in itself.

    Wednesday, October 18, 2006

    Last Gasp In Yellowstone

    A Quick Post
    the fish are waiting
    .. The foul weather has kept us from the key board and on the streams. The Firehole River, and a quick trip to Slough Creek and we're about done with fishing in Yellowstone for the year. Today is blindingly bright and we're going to fish the upper meadows of the Gibbon River.
    .. Our posting will be less frequent and concerned with peripheral issues as they come along. We've moved the email box up the page so that you can receive the posts, (if you choose,) and not bother to waste some time visiting the site.
    .. Slough Creek is clear, low and alive. Check FLY TIMES for some nice photos. Off to the park.

    Sunday, October 15, 2006

    Yellowstone Invaders Battled

    What's The Problem ?
    does it really matter ?
    .. The Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem , and particularly the blue-ribbon trout streams like the Madison, the Snake and Yellowstone River are under considerable pressure from the aquatic invasive species issue with threats like Whirling Disease, New Zealand Mud Snails and now Didymo.
    .. However, as challenging and serious as these environmental stressors are, they have brought about a new response. Through the leadership of the American Fly Fishing Trade Association, the Protect Your Waters Campaign, and the ANS Task Force, intense business competitors like Patagonia and Simms have come to the table to work with leading retailers like Jack Dennis, state fish and wildlife agencies from Wyoming, Idaho and Montana and federal agencies such as the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the U.S. Forest Service and the National Park Service.
    .. This is in response to combating aquatic invasive species threats. Last weekend, a workshop was held in Jackson, WY to help all of these organizations move in the same direction to pull resources and expertise to mount a unified response.
    .. This alliance has produced a working group of concerned organizations, businesses, governmental agencies, and individuals who are willing to join the fight. A two-pronged strategy has been developed for our area.
    ..We've noted the efforts of the ANS TASK FORCE continuously, and believe that all fisher folk should be informed by the threats imposed by the invasive species. The banner at the top of the page will take you to the public awareness campaign web site. The outline proceedings of the conference can be found HERE (PDF.)
    .. We are acutely aware of the problem. We have Whirling Disease, New Zealand Mud Snails, and zebra mussels are marching up the Missouri. Rock Snot is about invade, and the Lake Trout have badly impacted our native Cutthroat.
    The need to be informed is the first step in the battle. Join the campaign and spread the word. The mistaken idea that it won't happen in your favorite stream will end up ruining your fishing.

    .. California, Montana, Washington, Oregon, Wyoming, Idaho, Utah, Colorado, New Mexico, and Nevada all have rapidly spreading whirling disease in their fish populations. This insidious disease attacks the fry of the year and produces crooked fish - easily preyed upon. A European disease, it affects native species while allowing the invasive Brown Trout to escape with little or no harm. It is coming to a stream in your backyard.
    .. New Zealand Mud Snails are small insidious invaders that out compete native forms, multiply rapidly, provide minimal nutritive value to trout, and reduce trout food by devouring native vegetation and the bugs that live there.
    .. The snails can live out of the water for long periods of time, reproduce asexually, and are being carried by fly fishers along our precious trout waters. They are so small that defensive measures are tedious and must be carried out deliberately. They are coming to a stream in your front yard.
    .. Rock Snot ; didymo algae (Didymospheniageminata), is moving all around us. It coats and clings to rocks and other substantial substrate. It reduces the living areas for surface clinging forms like Caddis Flies & May Flies. If you don't think that this will impact your fishing you need some leaky waders. Rock snot is probably already in your neighborhood and harming your fishing.
    .. Zebra Mussels have persistently marched from bilge water in the Great Lakes to most of the upper Mississippi and Missouri River systems. These tenacious shellfish will grow anywhere and can clog pipes, foul chains, plug water inlets, clog sewage discharge, and multiply at a rate that makes mice & rabbits seem stodgy.
    .. Invasive fish species are one of the most damaging forms of ecological threat. The legacy of uninformed and indiscriminate 19th century aquaculture is with us today. It is a continuing and growing threat to native species. This is a thorny problem that is both cultural and ecological.
    .. The Lake Trout in Yellowstone Lake has greatly reduced the native population of Cutthroats. Invasive Brown Trout, Brook Trout, & Rainbow Trout have reduced the numbers of native species in the Madison River, Slough Creek, the Gallatin River, The Gibbon River, and other streams of the area. Both fly fishers and feather merchants see fish as a catchable resource and are loath to decry the invaders. This cultural perspective asks us to decide if we value native fish, in their native setting - or not.
    .. This condition is already in your neighborhood and requires all of us to confront a very basic question: are all fish in all waters of equal value? Fly fishers shy away from this question because it jeopardizes their sport. Feather merchants shy away from the question because it jeopardizes their business. The general non-fishing population could care less - for the moment.

    .. This question has been answered in a surprising way by Ronald Bailey in the ReasonOnlie piece - The Exotic Species War. It has also been obliquely addressed by our neighbor Skyblu at Invasive Species. If this condition is viewed as a war it may have no satisfactory outcome. This could be the Viet Nam or Iraq of fly fishing. The eventual invasion of all suitable waters by flying carp or grass carp, or killer Brown Trout. It bears thinking about both in terms of cultural values and biodiversity.
    Salmonid Parasites | What Is Whirling Disease? | Whirling Disease Movies | More Whirling Disease Movies | Invasive Species Weblog | New Zealand Department of Conservation | New Zealand Bio Security | Manitoba Water Stewardship | California Water Resources | Fishing In Yellowstone | Invasive Threats to Yellowstone Fisheries | Effects of Lake Trout on Native Cutthroat in Yellowstone Lake | Protect Your Waters | California Mud Snail Defenses | California's Noxious Algae | Effects of Invasive Fish in California | Invasive Fish Threaten Oregon Salmon | New Zealand Mud Snails on Deschutes | Eurasian Milfoil & New Zealand Mud Snails in Washington | Panther Creek Idaho Destroyed by Invasive Fish | Idaho Invasive Species Teaching Position | Brown Trout Causing Extinction of Native Arizona & Colorado Fish | Nutrient Distribution Altered by Invasive Species | Amur Gobi In Columbia River | Atlantic Salmon Threaten Alaska Fishery | More Atlantic Salmon in Alaska |

    Saturday, October 14, 2006


    Life "WILL OUT!"
    itty bitty flies
    river reports
    real bikini babes

    blogging around

    California's Secret
    ..The race is on! Trout from Hebgen Lake are finally dashing up the Madison River in the numbers that make even a novice an expert. The bright days mean that early morning and late evening fishing are exceptionally rewarding.
    .. The fish are running the gauntlet of expectant anglers, and doing it successfully. There are places where it's possible to see the mating ritual on the Madison River & the Gibbon River. It's best to lay down in the grass and be very still. The fish don't seem to mind, but some fisher folks may see where you are.
    .. Unlike the GREAT ROD RACE in Britain, this is a matter of life and death for the fish, and it's desperate and persistent. If you want to participate you should get here soon. The park is about to close and the fish will be left to their own devices. As a matter of fact, it looks like winter is scheduled for Monday and Tuesday.

    .. The best of all worlds exists right now, and for the next week or so. When it's sunny in the afternoon there are reliable caddis hatches on the Firehole River and the Madison River and Nez Perce Creek and the Gibbon River. When the weather is blustery and gray the Baetis are going nuts, (along with the fishers and the fish!)
    .. The flies are small this time of year. Don't let it confuse you. Use the rare double fly rig with a pair of the same pattern with two different sizes. For the Baetis use a size 18 and 20. For the Caddis use a size 12 and either 14 or 16. Let your line come tight, and don't raise it too quickly. For the big submerged fish use a size 6 or 8 rubber legs and a 10 or 12 soft hackle.
    .. The Gallatin River is getting cold, but the evening is seeing excellent dry fly action to small Baetis and the not too rare sun-loving Caddis. The Baetis are in the 16 - 18 range, the caddis about size 14. Use a Feather Duster, Prince Nymph, or very small, (14 -16,) Green Thing during mid day.
    .. Slough Creek might have another week of fishing left, (weather dependant,) and the Lamar River is more frequently muddy than clear. There is still good fishing for eager cutts in Pebble Creek, and around Ice Box Canyon on Soda Butte Creek. This is a catch-as-catch-can proposition, and unless you're in the area, the weather can throw you a big curve.
    .. The most overlooked good fishing, this time of year, is the Firehole River. The section along the trail to Lone Star Geyser has good activity and lots of fish. Take your four weight and a double-handful of attractors for nearly constant action - rain or shine - shade or sun - deep or shallow.

    .. The second most overlooked area, this time of year, is the last 1/2 mile of Bacon Rind Creek. This very shallow stretch can produce 14" fish in only 8" - 10" of water. The aerobatics are stunning. Use the same flies as for the Gallatin River, and use your best sneakiness.
    .. The third most overlooked bit of water is the meadow section of Grayling Creek below Horseshoe hill. There can be giants in this section if you are willing to climb up out of the hole when you're exhausted from catching too many fish. Down stream casting to rising fish will work in the morning because of the light; upstream in the evening. Small, (6 - 10,) streamers and buggers are the ticket for the larger fish. Itty-bitty floaters, (size 22 or less!!) for the risers.
    .. Some time on Tuesday the population of the United States of America will reach 300,000,000 people. Third behind India and China. The problem will eventually be solved and earth will be devoid of humans according to an article cited by Ass Hooked Whitey.
    .. Kevin Vranes at No Se Nada is celebrating a happy occasion. This blog is just over a year old and is growing in stature among the information sharing science-blog scene.
    .. T.C. & Friday Follies at the Trout Underground has again proved to be both highly entertaining, and totally devoid of fishing information. We've discovered the big secret of his wealth of stories about fishing on the Upper Sac: JACK TROUT'S WEBLOG, a site so full of information and photographs it takes 15 minutes to load. Check out last year's page for familiar, (though not as well executed,) location photos of the Upper Sac. And he was bemoaning the fact that we had two blogs! We also notice that the Bikini Wars have heated up to the level of eye-popping! So here's a photo of a real person that will allow a more soothing perspective for the eyes.
    .. The Joseph Fly Shop reports that steelhead fishing on the Grande Ronde River is fair. The first of next week will bring some rain and weather that they hope will improve the fishing. Recruitment this year in the whole Columbia system is down. We hope it's better by the end of the month.

    Thursday, October 12, 2006


    fish now
    .. There is limited time for fishing in Yellowstone National Park.
    .. Fish Now.
    .. The Madison River is well worth the visit.
    .. We're on our way.
    .. It's surprisingly warm and sunny.
    .. Even without fish it's a pleasant visit.