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  • Wednesday, June 17, 2009

    Elbow Avoidance


    Don't Go To Nez Perce Creek
    what's a grebe ?
    .. Conditions for catching are perfect on the Firehole River in Yellowstone National Park. Go there now.
    .. Enjoy the comradeship of fellow fishers. Scream "FISH ON" to salute your prowess. Wave at the other visitors taking your picture. Delay the capture and release of the finny foe for the extended joy of the 'Yellowstone Experience.'
    .. Smile once more for the camera with the fish tightly grasped in your paws. It's June and you've succeeded!
    .. By no means should you go to Nez Perce Creek. After all, the bear warning sign was just removed. It could be dangerous.
    .. There will be far fewer people to witness your catching. You may have to walk for 15 minutes. Avoid this little river like the plague. After all, bear spray will occupy one of your hands, and you'll have to sing ribald songs all the way in and out.
    .. Get thee to the Firehole River and make the most of the crowds. Sing hosanna and praise the the tiny flies on the end of your gossamer tippet.
    .. Tell stories and sit on the bumper as the wetness drips from your mud snail infested waders. Ignore the gentle solitude that a brief stroll will bring. It's June and you've heard the call.
    .. The Firehole River is where it's at! Do it now and you'll have memories to last a lifetime. Send a note to all your friends back home and mention the hatches and clouds and drizzle and scenery and fish. They'll be envious. Hot, is the catching on the Firehole River.
    .. And too, on Nez Perce Creek. But there's not as many fisher folk on this little sister. And the feather merchants didn't mention it. And no one back at the office has heard of it. So avoid this cold water like it would give you leprosy.
    .. There is a gentle trail: don't take it. There are scenic vista's: don't view them. There are bison and bears: that's deterrent enough. There are acres and acres of geyserite: ignore them. Forget that there are eager and willing fish to be caught. Forget the majesty of Mary Mountain peeking at you on the skyline. Return to the familiar and fabled crowded parking lots of the Firehole River.
    .. Nez Perce Creek can wait. Maybe next week. Maybe next month. Maybe next year!
    .. The bugs are in the air. The bugs are in the water. Myth and lore are growing in the musty aisles of the feather merchants. Whispers are projected over the clothing racks and fly bins. Did you try the canyon? What fly? Near where? How big? Who told you? Get thee to the Firehole River. Everyone else is.
    .. Just what bugs? All the usual suspects: PMD's, Baetis, Caddis, Perlodidae, and Pteronarcyidae.
    .. Just what flies? Why are there so many? Why can't the experts agree? Do they all work? Which one is best? What size? Did the fish read the same book that we did? Do the fish really wait for the right pattern? Help me out - please!
    .. The perfect fly combination for catching right now is a simple rig of two flies. There is absolutely no challenge at all. There is no hatch-matching voodoo. There is no need to torture yourself with Latin names and minuscule tippets.
    .. Tie on one of Jason Neuswanger's deer hair caddis imitations. Pick a size that you like, (we like a 10 - 12,) and grease it up real good. It should float like a bobber. It's dark and presents a good silhouette. Follow it with an iris caddis, (a local invention still cataloged by the inventors.) The little nymph is light colored and has a bit of sparkle. We like size 14 or even 16.
    .. Depending on your mood, (or the fish,) the nymph can be floated or sunken. It can be 10" from the top fly or 18": you choose.
    .. Don't use this combination on the Firehole River. It will spoil the mystique. Use this only on the remote stretches of Nez Perce Creek. Don't show it to the folks on the Firehole River. It's just plain too easy.
    .. By the way, this is also a great Grayling getter at Grebe Lake. The trail to the lake is negotiable. It requires bear spray and ribald songs. There are some elbows already - but it's a good sized lake. Don't catch them all.
    .. P.S. There are no Firehole River pictures in this post.