• PARTNER: PROTECT YOUR WATERS
  • Go To: THE FLIES OF YELLOWSTONE
  • Go To: YELLOWSTONE FISHING WEATHER
  • Go To: YELLOWSTONE FLY FISHING MAPS
  • Visit: Moldy Chum
  • Visit: The Horse's Mouth
  • Visit: Chi Wulff
  • Visit: Parks' Fly Shop
  • Visit: Montana Cowgirl
  • Saturday, March 28, 2015

    ALMOST

    ALMOST AS COLD AS JUNE
    Almost Ice Out
    almost visitor invasion
    WALLPAPER:  HEBGEN RESERVOIR - SPRING

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    .. The Föhn winds rake our village and the trees groan and squeal. Neighborhood fishers squiggle into their breezy gear and rush to the recently revealed catching water on Hebgen Reservoir.
    .. Whisky Bay and Beer Bay are both ice-free. The estuaries of the South Fork and the Madison River are bright blue and inviting.
    .. Many of the neighborhood fly fishers ignore this early opportunity. They are busy hobnobbing with the early arriving summer residents and the big talking counter help at the feather merchants. It's easier to talk about the upcoming warmer days than it is to get out and fish in the wind on a day that is warmer than some in June: but very windy.
    KASTMASTER
    .. Postcards, outdoor catalogs, and other mysterious influences have convinced many folks that fly fishing is a riverine activity. They have ignored or demeaned the lacustrine aspects of the pastime.
    .. Of course the gear and worm folks are not easily impressed by the snooty attitudes of the elite fraternity of fur flingers. Worms are enticing fish to the hook right now. Panther Martin and Mepps and Kastmaster are in the mix as well.
    .. Some of the neighbors, (unimpressed by fair weather rhetoric,) are taking fish at this very moment - with all manner of terminal tackle. In our village there are the neighborhood fishing friends and the other kinds. Friends go fishing. Gear and style are secondary to catching. Catching is secondary to "getting out." And so it goes.
    .. Worm fishers and fly fishers share the same bit of open water with each other. Gear folks and fly fishers brave the mud puddles together and quaff some liquid together as they take turns on the limited open water.
    MADISON MAULER

    .. The other kinds of fishers are still at their tying benches or, casting aspersions at their customers from behind the counter of their comfy, feather merchant, warm dens. They seem to chant in unison: "just wait."
    .. In this part of the high country waiting means missing some spectacular catching opportunities. The fisher folk amongst us chant in unison: "why wait?" Off they go. Wind, ice, mud, snow, or difficulty aside; there's fish to be caught. The others are still waiting and smirking.
    .. For the non smirkers and non waiters flies of a giant size or a miniscule size are the rule for the bits of water available at the reservoir.
    .. There is a symbiosis between the gear flingers and fluff floaters that goes unnoticed and unmentioned by "purists" of either fraternity. Fish, despite our rhetoric, are capricious, wily, and opportunistic feeders. They are curious and investigative. Their food memory is ephemeral and focused. Reject the fly - take the spoon. Shun the spinner - gobble the streamer. Just what was most recently eaten? Our neighbors know this.
    FURNACE AND RED
    .. In addition to the bays and estuaries there are some other beats and seats that are producing fish right now. Spawning is in full swing between the lakes in the Hebgen Dam Tailwater. Those that must catch fish the easy way are elbowing each other out of the way to tromp on redds and gall a hormone laden trout. We'll pass.
    .. The boat ramps and the outlet of Quake Lake present some fine opportunities for taking large and gullible trout. There are some midges amongst the trees next to the highway. Precision casting is the rule.
    .. The upcoming few days promise to provide us with excellent catching opportunities. There will be a bit of rain, a bit of snow, some sun, some wind, some clouds and other mixtures of Spring weather.
    .. We're going to call-in sick - or some such.
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    WALLPAPER:  BUTTERED CRUMPETS