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  • Thursday, March 06, 2008

    Need Water?

    Getting Spring Fever ?
    Check These

    .. As optimism rises among fishers eying this year's snow pack and the 'promise' of super fishing; we offer the following sites for your perusal:
    - Montana NRIS Water Information,
    - Wyoming Water Resources Data
    - Google Your Water
    - NOAA National Snow Analysis
    .. And, as a reminder that the translation of snow pack into good fishing requires several steps along the way, we note that Spring is not yet here. Further, for the grumpy pessimists, there is an equal chance that the next three months temperatures will be -> Above, At, or Below normal. NOAA also provides us with a pretty pessimistic view of temperatures through May, 2009.
    .. In Yellowstone, as everywhere, the fishing is as good as you make it - and as good as the fisher. Recruitment of degraded fish populations takes more time than is provided by one good year of snow pack.
    .. Sustained population health is dependent on more than just Winter conditions. The variables are enormous and the single factor of snow pack is small compared to things like: rapidity and duration of warming, discharge volume and duration, invasive species infiltration, stream bank erosion, etc.
    .. Even in the most pessimistic of scenarios, (i.e. very rapid warming and sustained warm weather, continued low flows, and poor recruitment,) fishing in Yellowstone National Park is well worth the effort.
    .. For years we've eschewed the glory waters of Yellowstone. We prowl around small creeks and streams. We explore destinations seldom if ever mentioned by the feather merchants. And, we've been rewarded with consistently good fishing, uncrowded waters, phenomenal scenery, willing fish, and a myriad other joys that the road warriors miss in their hunt for the perfect hole, ideal water, and peak of the hatch. Besides all of that, and our own special weirdness for thinking that fish are fish & fishing is fishing -- it's easier to find the beer in a cold clear little stream.
    .. Fish are interesting creatures: trout particularly! These opportunistic predators are always hungry, always alert, always ready for a meal. Provide it for them and they will dance with you. Ignore their nature, explore only one aspect of their disposition, and you've already limited your enjoyment of the fish and it's environment.
    .. If you'd like to fish some small streams, get bit, walk a little, avoid the crowds, and enjoy those parts of Yellowstone that very few people do -- check out the eight-year-old article by GORP. As well known as these places are - they are still secret spots.
    .. There seems to be some sort of necessity, when fishing in Yellowstone, to follow the crowds and retell the same stories about catching the same fish on the same rivers. To each his own.

    .. Right now it's time for biscuits and gravy. Fresh squeezed orange juice is on the menu and there's been a recent call for some Montana scrambled eggs, greasy home fires, a bit of sourdough toast and real butter. We'll see.