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  • Thursday, March 30, 2017

    American Heroes

    RELIVING HISTORY
    From Santayana
    To Vonnegut
    the doom of dumb
    George Santayana
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    .. The short memory of the American Voter combined with the scanty factual political education provided to them has combined to lead our nation into a familiar morass.
    Fish Or Die
    .. American citizens need to confront the proposition that: "The FBI does not know Russia - the CIA does know Russia."
    .. Talk about a smokescreen! A bit of misdirection and slight of hand.
    -----
    .. The fly fisher of today is not exempt from this memory loss.
    .. The demographic segment of our population that the fly fishing industry worships and targets is your standard affluent, preoccupied with wealth,  middle aged, white guy. Get on with it!!
    The Target Market
    .. Who buys Orvis products? Who can afford Able reels? Who rents river guides at $500 per day? Maybe for three days?
    .. What ads appear on commercial websites disguised as blogs?
    .. What ever happened to Chico Fernandez? Why is it that fly fishing in exotic places is so attractive? Because a week on the flats can cost $4,500 - or more?
    Dick Cheney
    .. Buy big! Spend big! No wonder Donald Trump is an American "White Guy" hero! So too Rex Tillerson? Hurrah big oil.
    .. Time for a self examination? Horse feathers! Fly fishers love to be disengaged about all political matters except for small bits of local waters. Just ask Dick Cheney.
    -----
     SIGH
    .. Familiar to most, indeed, is this quote by George Santayana. “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it."
    Archibald Cox
    .. Few, however,  are familiar with the counter quote from Kurt Vonnegut: "I've got news for Mr. Santayana: we're doomed to repeat the past no matter what. That's what it is to be alive.”
     -----
    .. Have we forgotten about Archibald Cox? He was fired by Richard Nixon for heading up an investigation into the Watergate fiasco.
    Sally Yates
    .. Certainly memory can not fail with the name of Sally Yates. She was fired by Donald Trump For investigating unspecified activities in the White House.
    .. She also directed her staff attorneys to not defend the first unconstitutional travel ban enunciated in an executive order by Donald Trump.
    Preet Bharara
    .. Is the name Preet Bharara lost in your gray matter? Perhaps his full name will jog your neurons: Preetinder Singh Bharara.
    .. He was born in Punjab, India and precipitated the firing of all of the U.S. Attorneys by Donald Trump. This after Donald Trump had asked him to stay in his job. 
    .. His portfolio included investigations into money laundering in Cyprus as well as Russian and Ukrainian real estate deals with interesting people. He brought to trial and convicted a Russian KGB, GRU spy, affiliated with those interesting people.
    Summer Zervos
    .. Have you forgotten Summer Zervos? She is the most recent of several dozen accusers of Donald Trump for sexual molestation and defamation.
    .. She has such a solid case that she has filed a suit against Donald Trump.
    .. Of course Donald Trump, like Richard Nixon, has claimed immunity and executive privilege.
    .. "You can't prosecute me because I'm president." Hell's bells, " . . . just grab 'em by the pussy!"
    Sally Jones
    .. Of course you've forgotten Sally Jones who sued Bill Clinton. Her case finally went to trial. The results and aftermath of that trial led the court to rule that the president could be sued.
    .. The Clinton v Jones trial included a Ms. Monica Lewinsky as witness. She testified that she had not had a sexual relationship with Bill Clinton.
    Ken Starr
    .. Of course Linda Tripp had some tape recordings contrary to that testimony. Tripp gave the tapes to Ken Starr. And certainly the rest is history.
    .. Through several following court cases Clinton was suspended from the bar and fined $25,000.
    .. His buddies in Arkansas avoided calling for a perjury trial even after concluding that he had lied in court.
    -----
    Kurt Vonnegut
    .. American heroes come in all sizes and sexes. They are as easily forgotten as is the historic milieu that they were mired in.
    .. The current stink in Washington D.C. is most familiar only to those with any sort of historic memory.
    .. For most of the American populous the current aroma seems new.  Really?
    .. Most have forgotten the past and are proving Kurt Vonnegut correct. This is life and our nation is doomed to relive it.
    .. It must be that the primacy of trout fishing or, bass fishing or, 4-wheelin' or,  skiing or,  kite flying or, whatever is far more important than the rising stench in Washington D.C.
    -----
    Goofus Bug
    .. So then, now, it's time to have some breakfast and try to beat the storm to Notellum Slough.
    .. We're not going to use the microwave until it's been scanned for bugs.
    .. We really do believe that we are being spied upon by microwaves. It's probably the Russians or, the town council!
    Bead Head Awesome
    .. We're glad that global warming is a hoax. We're dancing with ecstasy to learn that toxic effluent in upland waters is no threat to fish or the environment.
    .. Praise the lord, we're relieved that coal fired generating plants no longer pollute the atmosphere or, cause acid rain.
    .. We are most happy that Donald Trump is draining the swamp and getting rid of American heroes. Now then, we can quickly forget them and get back to squeezing our fish for hero shots. It is all local, don'tchaknow?
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    WALLPAPER:  GONE BUT NOT FORGOTTEN

    Wednesday, March 29, 2017

    The Return

    NITROGEN FROM SKY
    NOAA Note
    we're pleased
    WALLPAPER:  BIT OF NITROGEN
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    .. Seldom mentioned is that snow brings more captive nitrogen to the ground than does rain or any other form of precipitation.
    .. The last couple of warm weeks have removed snow from the dark masses in town: house roofs, streets, exposed car roofs, and south facing raised bed gardens.
    GREEN WONDER
    .. We're anticipating the planting of the early spring crops.
    .. The forecast late snow storm for the next couple of days will give us the shot of nitrogen that early crops enjoy.
    .. Fishing will be good - catching should be great.

    NOTE FROM NOAA
    Event:

    Winter Storm Watch
    Alert:
    ...WINTER WEATHER RETURNS TO HIGHER ELEVATIONS OF SOUTHWEST 
    MONTANA THURSDAY AND FRIDAY... 
     
    .Travelers through higher elevations of Southwest Montana should 
    prepare for the potential for periods of moderate to heavy 
    precipitation late tonight through Friday morning. For higher 
    elevations of southwest Montana, this will rain changing to snow 
    as snow levels gradually drop from 7500 feet tonight to 5500 feet 
    Thursday night into Friday morning. Areas most impacted will be 
    above 6500-feet elevation, where moderate to heavy snow may fall 
    at times. Between 5500-feet and 6500-feet, minor snow 
    accumulations will be possible especially Thursday night through 
    Friday morning. 
     
    ...WINTER STORM WATCH IN EFFECT FROM LATE TONIGHT THROUGH FRIDAY 
    MORNING FOR ELEVATIONS ABOVE 6500 FEET... 
    The National Weather Service in Great Falls has issued a Winter 
    Storm Watch For elevations above 6500 feet, which is in effect 
    from late tonight through Friday morning. 
     
    * Locations: Big Hole Pass, Chief Joseph Pass, Monida Pass, 
    Raynolds Pass, Targhee Pass, and West Yellowstone. 
     
    * Timing: Beginning late tonight toward Big Hole and Chief Joseph 
    Pass, and then spreading east Thursday evening through Friday 
    morning. 
     
    * Accumulations: Snow accumulation of 3 to 5 inches possible, with 
    6 to 12 inches possible toward Big Hole and Chief Joseph Passes 
    in western Beaverhead County. 
     
    * Winds: North 10 to 20 mph with gusts up to 30 mph. 
     
    * Visibilities: Possibly reduced to one-quarter mile at times in 
    heavier snow. 
     
    * Hazard Elevation: For elevations above 6500 feet. 
     
    * Snow Level: 7500 feet Wednesday overnight lowering to 5500 feet 
    Friday morning. 
     
    * Impacts: Periods of moderate to heavy snow may significantly 
    impact travel.
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    WALLPAPER:  MAYOCOBA BEANS: (Phaseolus vulgaris)

    Friday, March 24, 2017

    Old, Fat, And White

    ART OF THE STEAL
    America Wakes Up
    the second shoe ?

    -------

    Bring It On

    RIVERS WAY UP
    New Records Daily
    oh my, what to do?
    HOUSE ROCK: GALLATIN RIVER - 2011
    -------
    .. So! Do we declare it a record runoff year? Not yet but we're watching.
    .. Both the Madison River and the Gallatin River have set daily records during this rapid Spring warm up.
    .. The obvious question is called to mind. "What is happening to our nifty snow pack?"
    .. The Gallatin River is now running at about 700 cfs. That is a daily record for this date. The previous daily record was 541 cfs.
    .. The Madison River in Yellowstone National Park is at record daily flows. Currently it is at about 670 cfs. The previous daily record for this date was 595 cfs.
    .. The mitigating influence of Hebgen Reservoir is only slowing the flows in the upper river segments. Right now the dam is allowing about 1300 cfs discharge.
    .. Down stream the velocity picks up again with the dirty discharge of the West Fork of the Madison River. At Kirby Ranch the flow is still at about 1300 cfs.
    courtesy   FINETOOTH
    .. The flows at Cameron, Montana are just about 1600 cfs. Still manageable for the drifters.
    .. The dam at Ennis, Montana is allowing a discharge rate of about1500 cfs. This will change over the next week or so as the reservoir fills up.

    FOLLOW THE DAILIES
    >> Gallatin River at Gallatin Gateway,
    >> Madison River in Yellowstone National Park,
    >> Madison River Hebgen Reservoir Discharge,
    >> Madison River at Kirby Ranch,
    >> Madison River near Cameron, Montana,
    >> Madison River near McAllister, Montana.
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    CRACKLE BACK ??
    ..The weekend looms ahead. The weather is perfect and way too warm for late March.
    .. We're about to exercise some of the neighborhood flies. These are the rejects from late winter nights with just one too many adult beverages.
    .. After breakfast we might mow the lawn or, wash the car or, cut some flowers.
    .. The strawberries are here and healthy. Perhaps the bees and bluebirds and dandelions will be early too.
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    WALLPAPER:  EMERGENT STRAWBERRIES

    Thursday, March 23, 2017

    A Stab In The Back

    LOCAL WATERS CLEAR
    Austin Knudsen Betrayal
    zinke working hard
    WALLPAPER:  THE BLUE ICE OF HEBGEN RESERVOIR
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    .. All of our local tributaries to Hebgen Reservoir are clear of ice and eroding the ice of the reservoir.
    .. The Madison River and it's South Fork have pushed far enough into the ice to provide legal fishing beyond the estuaries. Cougar Creek, Duck Creek, Grayling Creek, and Notellum Creek are building open water at a rapid clip. Soon all will have pushed far enough into the reservoir to provide legal fishing.

    Helobdella stagnalis

    .. The kids with sleds have been successful beyond the South Fork estuary with midges, blond leeches, (Helobdella stagnalis,) small streamers, and a few secret patterns from the winter experimentation's.
    .. It seems that the blond leeches have experienced a population explosion, (along with midges and lowland skwalas.)
    COPPER TAIL
    .. This makes for pudgy trout and happy fishers around here.
    .. The leeches are a real surprise since they are rare and seldom seen in numbers of any kind.
    .. Water from our warm rains and drizzles is still puddling on the surface of the ice of the reservoir.
    NOTELLUM BRANCH
    .. The blue hue is sparkling and twinkling. The ice is getting very thin.
    .. We're looking forward to ice out this year. We're also noticing that the snow is disappearing at a rapid rate and we're watching the stream flows and anticipating the runoff rates. Planning for early fishing is going to be tricky.
    -----
    .. Montana House Speaker Austin Knudsen has stabbed his constituents in the back.
    THE KNUDSEN GATE
    .. After receiving 75% of the votes in his district he has blocked access to the American Legion Park in Culbertson, Montana.
    .. The 35 acre park was donated to the American Legion in 1944 and is a scenic strip of land along the Missouri River.
    .. Access was granted by the donating owners and used continually since 1944. When Knudsen bought the land he relocated the road and put up a gate.
    .. The matter is in the courts now with both a suit and counter suit. KEEP 'EM OUT? That's loyalty and representation Montana style, [LINK-1, LINK-2, LINK-3.]
    .. Our pretend Montanan Secretary Of Interior Hinky Zinke has just announced a gift to the deserving residents of the Gulf Coast.
    .. Newly proposed and enacted oil exploration and lease tracts are about to be; or have been let. The only indication of the actions was a pair of news releases. Sort of like the stealth approach to all of the current administrations ministrations to the citizens of our democracy, [LINK-A, LINK-B.]
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    FAN WING FUN
    .. We are staring at no less than two weeks of above average daytime temperatures.
    .. There will be some rain, some drizzle, some soft flurries, a bit of hail and bunches of bluster in the upcoming 18 to 20 days.
    .. Temperatures at mid day will range from 40°F to 50°F and precipitation from nil to light with plenty of clouds and overcast skies. Absolutely perfect fishing weather. The lowlands may get to be too warm to fish - HUH?
    .. We'd best hustle along before the lowlanders get up here to avoid the heat!
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    The Great Glaze = Balsamic Vinegar + Brown Sugar + Ketchup + Worcestershire Sauce

    Tuesday, March 21, 2017

    More Montana Politics

    WHO? IN CONGRESS
    Who Is Paying ?
    who's money ?
    ..
    -------
    .. Now that Zinke has weedled his way into the national wrecking ball in Washington, D.C., folks from Montana have a chance to replace him back here in our special election.
    .. Perhaps we'll do it right this time. Of course we will have to fight with our memories. Do you remember the devious plan to block fishers from the East Gallatin River? For a refresher course check out this link.
    BRIGHT AND WARM
    .. On another front we note that the carpetbaggers are back with their piles of money to meddle with our children's welfare and education. The bi-partisan pre-kindergarten bill is being opposed by Americans For Prosperity. That's the bunch funded by the Koch brothers. They want to keep our kids as poorly educated as possible. Then they will likely elect more of their buddies like Zinke and Gianforte.  Don't believe it? Try this other link.
    .. Follow the progress of HB 593, "Revise Metal Mining Laws" - with a quick click here. Looks to be O.K. for now - but you never know!
    ..Our state is contemplating providing a $10,000,000.oo / year, low interest loan to Talen Energy of Colstrip, Montana. The idea is to lessen the economic impact to the town and to the Montana State Budget during the coming shutdown of the "old plant" in 2022. This is a bizarre plan to prop up a company that is losing $30,000,000.oo / year. Go figure - click away to read more.
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    COULD IT BE ?
    .. The slicker is still wet and the drip is still dripping. We hit 55° F and had a bit of a breeze but the fishing has been tolerable. The catching has been better. Water is puddling on the top of the ice at Hebgen Reservoir.
    .. The estuary of the South Fork of the Madison River is open and the legal lake fishing there is just a few days away, Snowmobiles are still necessary. 
    .. We went and closed the winter season in Yellowstone National Park.
    YELLOW MITE
    .. Too warm for winter - could it be Spring? We'll see.
    .. Time for some breakfast and a cogitation about the day ahead. Fishing is still on the pencil list.
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    WALLPAPER:  RIB STEAK & SMASHED

    Saturday, March 18, 2017

    Skwala Sightings ??

    HOW LOW TO GO ?
    How High To Start ?
    do you want them ?
    WALLPAPER:  ENNIS:  A BUSTLING METROPOLIS
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    .. Every now and again a bewildered visitor slides into the neighborhood pub.
    .. Most are mercifully ignored. Some, on the other hand, 'squish' as they saunter around the smaller spaces and darker corners.
    from MONTANA FIELD GUIDE
    .. The 'squishers' are invited to a seat and are usually bought a beer. It's always a good thing to welcome exotic fisher folks.
    .. How are things in the outside world? How did you get here? Why here and now? Bud Light? Oh well!
    .. Our fishing prognostications are limited at this time of year to a few first hand reports from adventurous younger neighbors, fake news, and local gossip. Squishers are always most welcome.
    .. This time we found out that the lowland rivers are clearing nicely and that the mysterious skwala has been sighted in Missoula, Bozeman, and just a bit south of Ennis. (Quite a bit ?)
    .. Of course with the weekend coming up the young hearty group is gearing up for a safari into the warmth of the valley.  The Madison River valley that is.
    .. The only species of skwala recognized in Montana is Skwala americana (American Springfly.)
    from MONTANA FIELD GUIDE
    .. There are two other recognized species in the U.S.A. They are sort of the red headed stepchild of entomologists and keep getting their names and classifications switched around.
    .. They are less social than the giant salmonflies, (Pteronarcys californica,) but look similar in their adult form - just smaller.
    .. Right now the nymph is of great interest to fly fishers. These are carnivorous nymphs. They prey on other neoteneous forms: caddis, midges, mayfly, etc.
    GLITTER SHIMMER NYMPH
    .. The midges have been especially prolific for the last couple of years.
    .. The skwala population has profited from this. Get the right nymph imitation and catch a few fish.
    .. The neighbors use a couple of favorite nymphs that we have mentioned before. The Snortle Nymph, (snortel, snortal, etc.,) and the Glitter Shimmer Nymph. Both of these are easy to tie. They can be weighted or not weighted. They can float if you like.
    .. If you want to hedge your bets, tie your standard big stonefly nymph pattern in dark brown. It should do just fine.
    SNORTLE NYMPH
    .. The skwala safari is planned for tomorrow. Early enough to avoid a second pot of coffee is a good time. Late enough to fish the skwala migration is probably best.
    .. Nymphal forms, (after a year long hemimetabolism,)  begin to move when the water temperature is warmed by the sun and is in the low to mid 40's.
    .. They migrate to the shore and hang out for a spell, (dry wings and other such, don'tchaknow?)
    .. By late afternoon all shenanigans have been completed: sometimes in flights but mostly in the fringe of veggies along the shore and in crevices and shingles.
    MADAME  X
    .. The females will fly to preferred water and lay their eggs on the water. Then they die and bob along enticing trout.
    .. Should you choose to fish the females a squished flat, (darker the better,) Madame X will do wonders. Cast long and wiggly upstream and twitch a little on the way back home. Hang on.
    .. It's quite a trek to the lower Madison River from this refuge up here. But, all of the ice is mostly gone and the sightings can't be just rumors  --  can they?
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    .. We're going to have the second pot of coffee and some breakfast right after the safari departs.
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    WALLPAPER:   CHORIZO CON PAPAS Y QUESO

    Friday, March 17, 2017

    THE SUCK OF BUDGET PROPOSALS

    ATTENTION PATRIOTS
    Fish Or Cut Bait
    the link and your cajones
    THE ROOT OF INFORMATION
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    Boiled bacon, cabbage, carrots, new potatoes, Colcannon mash, and Irish griddle bread, (could be crumpets too.) The white sauce is a white wine / parsley / cinnamon / butter concoction. Real Irish!