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  • Visit: Chi Wulff
  • Visit: Parks' Fly Shop
  • Visit: Montana Cowgirl
  • Tuesday, October 22, 2013


    Not The Counter Help
    nor the feather merchants
    .. In the dark and musty corners of well established watering holes there is an undercurrent of concern. It's heard between the belches and growlings of inner distress.
    .. It is a growing awareness that there is something amiss. There is speculation. There is wild ass guessing. There is reasoned argumentation. There is heated argument and occasional agreement. It's hard to discern the exact topics being discussed but there seems to be some consensus that flows from the cacophony:
    A Fine Mess O' Fish
    1.] The Whitefish are bigger than usual and they are much sweeter than recent memory would allow.
    2.] The runners in the Madison River are taking smaller flies than in the recent past and are even chasing and eating nymphs and wet flies.
    3.] The west side rivers are particularly low for this time of year. The fish are easier to catch and the use of stealth techniques is seldom needed with the eager fish.
    4.] There are fewer runners in the Madison River this year and over the last few years than in the years of the last decade - OR - other decades further away from the present.
    5.] The perfect jalapeño cheese bread recipe is near at hand and being baked right here in West Yellowstone, Montana.
    What's This ?
    6.] The best way to enjoy jalapeño cheese bread is in a hot tub with a cold beer and a warm blond woman. Girls are for wimps.
    7.] If you can't catch a fish on the Firehole River with a soft hackle you should take up golf or darts or shuffleboard or beer pong.
    8.] There are very small fish on the Firehole River being photographed as trophy catches. It's an indication of the paucity of fishing expertise or the love of cell phones.
    9.] It's becoming sinful to walk more than 100 yards to a place for catching giant fish. "Giant" is being redefined as "over 10 inches."
    10.] In their search for big tips a few itinerant guides have taken to saying "GOOD FISH" every other sentence. They apply this to the servers at newly opened bars that they frequent as well.
    .. The weather continues to be very gentle for this time of year. No break is in sight. This tends to make stories less believable than if it was nasty and little bits of hail or snow were clogging your nostrils.
    Two Of Three Perfect Companions
    .. Imagine returning home and explaining to the gathered throngs at your local feather merchant that the warm sun caused you to remove your Panagucci fleece and that the 26" Brown Trout in the picture dried out and didn't show it's true colors.
    .. It's just not near as much fun to catch a submarine in the sun as it is in a blinding snow storm. This also seems to be a consensus among the neighbors.
    .. We're headed to the hot tub. There is a fresh loaf of jalapeño cheese bread waiting. It's slices are slathered with fresh unsalted butter and it's ready to eat. It's a meal in itself.
    .. After that we're going to take our second nap of the day and decide where to go tease some fish. Since Yellowstone National Park is now open for another few days we may just slide in there.
    .. Parking will be fearsome. Elbows will be flailing. Cell phones will be waving. Jocular fishers will be extolling the virtues of knowing how to torture fish. And there may just be a submarine on the Firehole River in the canyon below the bridge - above Old Faithful and below the cascades. No one bothers to tickle those runners.
    WALLPAPER:  The Perfect Third Companion