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  • Thursday, June 21, 2018

    The Mythic Firehole River, (part two)

    AEROBIC FISHING
    The Magic 7300
    path to good catching
    WALLPAPER:  DESTINATION BISCUIT
    ------- 
    .. Biscuit Basin in Yellowstone National Park is world famous for it's geothermal features. It is also an attractive destination for fisher folk from around the world.
    GEARING UP !!
    .. The typical behavior of visiting fishers is to park in the parking lot and fish along the stream well within sight of their vehicle. Seldom are wader-clad fishers seen on the boardwalks or trails around the thermal features, (galumphing through fish infested waters is the norm.)
    CAN YOU STILL SEE THE CAR ?
    .. Granted: the elevation is  ≃7300' asl, many lowland fishers initially need more oxygen than is readily available, many visiting fishers are of the 'mature' persuasion, city folk are protective of their stylish vehicles, Biscuit Basin can seem to be a wilderness to fly fishers, most fishers don't carry bear spray and feel the need to be in the vicinity of other members of their species.
    NEED ONE OF THESE ?
    .. A short walk to the confluence meadow is well worth the effort for those seeking substantial fish in surprising numbers.
    .. If trout need highly oxygenated water, (we think so,) and, if they inhabit cooler rather than warmer water, (we think so,) and if fertile stretches of the stream attract actively feeding trout, (we think so,) then it might be worth a gentle stroll through a lush meadow to catch a few - view of the car be damned.
    MINGLING WATERS
    .. The confluence meadow in Biscuit Basin combines the waters from three creeks: Iron Spring Creek, Little Firehole River, and Firehole River. These waters originate in three different landforms and contain three different chemistries from the chemo-geology of the diverse landforms. This fluvial diversity is mirrored in many places in Yellowstone National Park.
    .. Bugs, beasts, flowers, shrubs, trees, water weeds, and fish profit from this kind of diversity. It is well worth a walk to these areas if you should be seeking fish to dance with.
    RIVER CHEMISTRY
    .. It is also worth exploring each stream through the year to ascertain the seasonal variation of the water and the fish population. The most popular 'fish experts' pontificate about these things based on sporadic visitations and spurious catching experiences.
    .. Counter help at the local feather merchants parrot the wisdom that they pick up from scuttlebutt through the day. Such is the palaver that informs fishing behavior in Yellowstone National Park.
    WHY NO FISHER FOLKS ?
    .. Extensive and exhaustive firsthand knowledge is wonderfully missing in the erudition spouted by fishers when discussing the Firehole River and Biscuit Basin in particular. This condition is feasted upon by politicians, and fly fishers alike.
    .. We are constantly asking embarrassing questions: how do you know?, who says so?, when where you last there?, how many times?, etc.
    ARE BIG FISH HERE ?
    .. Time transgressive events, (both small and large,) bring changes. Rivers change daily, weekly, seasonally, annually, etc. Today's truth is tomorrow's fiction.
    .. Explore, observe, fish, move on. Do this and you become the expert; no matter who said what - especially any blog post or sacred tomb by famous names - even those who were here last year.
    .. The fly fishing literature is rife with outdated information, mythic truth, and attractive prose. The lure of 'a good read' seduces us into believing the specificity of examples - shame on us. A good read is a visceral experience and very satisfying, indeed. It is not a substitute for either technical literature nor firsthand experience.
    .. The satisfaction of a good read is of a different sort from that of catching a fish that you discovered by exploration. Try it  --  you'll like it. Vicarious experiences are far different than existential experiences!
    .. There are big fish in the Firehole River. You can dance with them right now. The rain and drizzle has abated for the moment.
    CLOSED TO FISHING  --  SHAME !
    .. Explore the river and make your own history. Write your own script. Direct your own movie.  Become your own expert - it's better than following in the footsteps of famous dead, (or living,) gurus. After all, the river is different today than it was yesterday.
    -----  
    .. Dawn comes early on this solstice! We're off to direct a bit of romantic drama: or tragicomedy as the case may be!
    .. After the coffee . . . . . . 
    -------  
    THE VIEW FROM TEXAS

    Monday, June 18, 2018

    The Mythic Firehole River, (part one)

    "THE FISH PREFER"
    No Big Fish Here
    abandon your car
    WALLPAPER:   DESTINATION BISCUIT
    -------  
    .. It would be futile to debunk the myriad myths that appertain to the Firehole River. That said; there are a couple of popular myths that demand to be addressed.
    .. The first myth that needs to be explored is that ". . . the trout prefer the warm temperatures of mid summer . . ."
    .. The second myth that floats continuously is that ". . . there are no 'big' fish in the Firehole River . . ."
    FIREHOLE BLACK SNAILS
    ..Aside from the anthropomorphic attribution of 'preference' to the little scallywags, the argument that they have lived for so many generations in the warm environs of the Firehole River that they have adapted to warmer water has some merit. BUT ONLY SOME!!
    .. However, the first fish introduced to the Firehole River were Smallmouth Bass followed by Brook Trout. Neither of these species have taken to the warmth of the stream. The bass are gone and the brookies have migrated to colder waters and are very rarely taken in the river below Kepler Cascades.
    .. Introduced Brown Trout and introduced Rainbow Trout are the two dominate species in the lower Firehole River.
    FIREHOLE BLACK SNAILS
    .. Although water temperature is a rough indicator of both Brown Trout and Rainbow Trout distribution, aerobic capacity is more meaningful. Dissolved oxygen is the key to survival and ability to thrive for these trout.
    .. Wild trout, in their indigenous habitat, do show a wide range of temperature tolerance depending on their natural history and geographic constraints. The Rainbow Trout can be found within a range of 17.8–24.6°C [LINK-11.]
    USE FOR "GOOD FISH"
    .. Brown Trout seem to be a bit more tolerant of warmer waters and can be found in waters at 28°C. This oversimplification of thermal tolerance does not take account of other limiting factors such as: length of day, length of extreme temperature exposure, age of fish, dissolved oxygen, egg tolerance, smolt tolerance, etc.
    .. Research from regions as diverse as from the Iberian Peninsula to Idaho to  Michigan to California to Germany to Australia suggest that these two trout do best, (survive and thrive,) in cooler rather than warmer water.
    .. Given the opportunity, these fish will hang out, (prefer to be?) in more highly oxygenated cold water rather than less oxygenated warm water.
    FOR TOPSIDERS
    .. Not surprising then, the fish in the Firehole River will indeed, be mostly found in the cooler bits of the stream. We all knew that, right?
    .. The Firehole River does have submerged cold water springs. We know a few. The river also is fed by warm streams as well as cold streams. We know a few of those too.
    .. Should you be seeking to dance, a time or two, with the fish in the stream your best bet is to hire a guide. Should you want non stop catching seek the optimum fish locations: nearby shade, weeds and bugs, cooler water, dark holes and hides, etc. These are the spots that the guides keep for themselves.
    NEED BIG FISH ??
    .. As for the second myth; you must define big. A three or four pound trout is big in our book. Length varies depending on species and time of year. A spawned out buck at 22" may be big to some folks. But they look too much like a snake to us.
    .. There are four pound trout to be had in the Firehole River. They are far less rare than you have been led to believe. They are in those places where optimum conditions exist for growth and survivability.
    WANT BIG FISH?
    ..  Keep in mind that although big fish are opportunistic feeders, (as are all trout,) they eat little fish. A little fish can be defined as the "good fish" that your guide praises for your ego.
    .. You will often see a fish skimming the surface, leaping in the air, charging the shore, and diving into weeds when chased by bigger fish. Got a fly that imitates a six inch trout? Use it. Be a myth buster!

    RESOURCES:
    >> Rainbow trout thermal tolerance,
    >> Brown trout thermal niche,
    >> Rainbow trout upper thermal tolerance,
    >> Brown trout consevation,
    >> Thermal Tolerance Limits for Trout,
    >> Requirements and tolerances for Brown and Rainbow trout,
    >> How hot is too hot?,
    >> Henry's Fork trout requirements,
    >>
    -----  
    LISTEN TO THE JUNGLE DRUMS
    .. The cool days and frequent rains have been a boon to fishers on the west side rivers. Not too much color, not too much discharge, not too many elbows, not too few bugs, and - - - great catching. Be here now.
    .. Just dumped the wet poncho on the oriental rug, draped the wet jeans over the silk brocade on the Victorian Chaise, kicked the muddy boots into the corner by the giant Navajo baskets, and  settled down to scrawl type this.
    .. Now for a late supper and some couch time.
    -------  
    WALLPAPER:  CHILI BURGER -- HOLD THE BUN

     

    Tuesday, June 12, 2018

    Saturday, June 09, 2018

    Wonder Weekend

    THE PRESIDENT SCORES AT G7
    A FRIEND IN NEED
    MOUNT TRUMPMORE

    https://img00.deviantart.net/76a5/i/2013/031/7/6/music_notes_stock_by_bassgeisha-d3h9mpv.jpg  NO CANADA  https://img00.deviantart.net/76a5/i/2013/031/7/6/music_notes_stock_by_bassgeisha-d3h9mpv.jpg

    Friday, June 01, 2018

    It's All Good

    SPRING'S WRATH
    Pounding Posies
    fish through it
    ..
    -------  
    .. Got off the river just in time.

    Saturday, May 26, 2018

    The Reason Why

    WE ARE FREE
    We Are Diverse
    we enjoy our freedom
    COMMEMORATE  THE  SACRIFICE
    -------  
    .. It seems a bit of an error to say "HAVE A HAPPY MEMORIAL DAY."
    .. We wish for you a thoughtful and reverent memorial day. Celebrate our freedom and the contentious diversity that our heroes have provided for us.
    .. Democracy is always messy and diversity is it's soul.
    -----   
    THE VERY BEST MEMORIES
    .. Both fishing and catching are proceeding apace in Yellowstone National Park. We pause now and would have y'all do the same. This is a time for reserved joy as we understand that what we have is a gift from others.
    .. Pray we do not squander it with the exigences of the moment.
    -------  
    WALLPAPER:  FROM  WEST  YELLOWSTONE

    Wednesday, May 23, 2018

    Y'all Come

    RAIN TODAY
    Sun Tomorrow
    weekend: sun and 70's
    WALLPAPER:   FIREHOLE  RIVER  FAVORITES
    ------- 
    .. The faithful are gathering. Even today's rain can't slow the crowds. The bison are moving both ways on the roads. Some are sleeping on the double yellow lines.
    FIREHOLE CANYON FLY
    .. The biggest bugs are already in the lower Firehole River Canyon. Clear as it is, (sort of,) the Firehole River is running at record discharge, (LINK FH.)
    .. Mid day water temperatures are in the middle 60's and there are noses in the foam lines. The faithful shall be rewarded.
    .. Not so clear but still highly fishable the Madison River is running just about 300 cfs above the seasonal norm, (LINK MAD.)
    STIMULATOR WITH A HAIRCUT
    .. The wild temperature fluctuations on the Madison River are spiking at about 60°F. The low end of the range is hanging at the low 50's. In water visibility is over four feet and there are fish noses during the bright mid day caddis hatch.
    .. Weather will bring a mixed bag for fishers over this weekend. Friday, May 25, 2018 will see mostly clear and bright skies with a near zero chance of rain  --  high 72°F
    WHAT DRY DO YOU DO ?
    .. Saturday, May 26, 2018 should have high clouds building to overcast and late afternoon drizzle followed by evening rain, (. . . late little bugs?) High temperature should peak at 69°F about one or two O'clock.
    .. Sunday, May 27, 2018 will be perfect for the little bugs. Overcast, occasional drizzle, some rain and a smidgen of cool should grace the west side rivers. High temperature may reach 60°F by 2:00 PM.
    TRY IT BIG
    .. The wee mayflies will be at their species biggest size and less prolific that later in the season. Fling your favorites. You can even float the softies that you have tied on behind your buddies back.
    .. Please remember: 
    NO FELT SOLES, 
    BUY A PARK FISHING PERMIT,
    SHARE THE WATER, 
    PARK SAFELY, 
    KEEP  'EM WET, 
    BARBLESS ONLY, 
    WORK LOTS OF WATER,
    TURN OFF YOUR CELL PHONE!
    .. This coming "mixed-bag" weekend will provide myriad style opportunities on the west side rivers. Just about any fly will work at some time - some place.
    -----  
    .. So then; this morning's rain will wash the swallow poop from our vehicles.
    SCRUFFY
    .. The gutters will run clear and, visitors will whine about the lousy weather here in the high country, feather merchants will talk up a storm and, trinket stores will praise the rain for keeping folks out of the park - so be it.
    .. It's about time for a second breakfast. The coffee is gone, (new is always available.) Maybe some spam, scrambled eggs, a waffle or two and strawberries. We'll probably follow it with a slice of the first fresh rhubarb pie of the year and a nap.
    .. Then . . . . . Notellum Creek in the rain - eager fish.
    -------  
    WALLPAPER:  SCRAMBLED EGGS, SAUSAGE, HASH BROWNS

    Thursday, May 17, 2018

    The Number 400

    A MERE COINCIDENCE
    125,000 Years Ago ?
    president told us so
    CHART FROM NOAA
    ------- 
    .. According to a story in USA TODAY the earth just had its 400th straight warmer-than-average month thanks to global warming, [LINK-A.]
    .. More fake news. We're glad we have a president that understands that global warming is a hoax. It's all a Chinese conspiracy.
    "The concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive." [LINK-B.]
    .. The genuinely smart people in America are beginning to believe the president about this and other issues facing our nation, [LINK-C.] We're pleased to live here where the air is clean, beautiful, and healthy. We even got our garden in two weeks earlier than the historical average. We are surrounded by the genuinely smart people of this earth.
     "Give me clean, beautiful and healthy air - not the same old climate change (global warming) bullshit! I am tired of hearing this nonsense." [LINK-D]
    .. Our nation is obviously far better off with access to the insights provided by our president. He's so smart that he is single-handed making America Great Again. We feel better already. The tweet archive just proves it, [LINK-E.]
    -----  
    .. Just think, soon there will be fewer cold water fishes for the elbow swinging visitors to our neighborhood. Hell, there will be fewer cold waters to nurture all those fish that the NPS is moving around.
    .. The last time the earth was as warm as it has been lately was 125,000 years ago, [LINK-F.] That's probably just more fake news. Who was there to take the temperature? 
    .. The failing New York Times reports that:
    "2017 Was one of the hottest years on record. And, that was without El NiƱo, [LINK-G.]
    .. We all know what that reporting is worth from that failing paper with is phony news and poor reporting. They even get names and places and business contacts wrong. How sorry is that?
    The Failing New York Times wrote another phony story. It was political pundit Doug Schoen, not a Ukrainian businessman, who asked me to do a short speech by phone (Skype), hosted by Doug, in Ukraine. I was very positive about Ukraine-another negative to the Fake Russia C story![LINK-H]
    .. The paper also reported that in 2017 the earth set a temperature record for the third straight year, [LINK-I.]
    .. Right now in West Yellowstone we are getting a Spring mix of snow, hail, and rain. It sure doesn't look like global warming to us.
    .. We're so glad that there will be 7 more years of this president and the absolute best people in his administration. Just think of all the money we'll get from our tax break. We may be able to afford steak twice each quarter!
    -----  
    FIREHOLE CANYON ?
    .. We've planned a brief foray into the bowels of the feather merchant morass. We do this periodically as a check on the new hires and congeniality of the staff. We're seldom surprised.
    .. Dinner is ready, if the barbee hasn't cooled too much. If it has we'll just bask in the cool non-globally-warmed drizzle and fling in some more plum-wood chips.
    -------  
    WALLPAPER:  FLOATS HIGH
    >> If you made it this far, try this:
    >> https://www.usatoday.com/videos/news/2018/05/17/-weather-event-hasnt-happened-since-1984/35043151/https://www.usatoday.com/videos/news/2018/05/17/-weather-event-hasnt-happened-since-1984/35043151/

    Saturday, May 12, 2018

    And So It Begins

    CLARK FORK FLOODS
    100 Year High
    and more to come
    WALLPAPER:  CLARK FORK HIGH WATER
    -------  
    .. Just a note to remind our friends about traveling to the Clark Fork River up by Missoula, MT.
    .. Not only is the flood stage higher than any in recent memory - it's predicted to come in surges for the next week or so and, will stay high all summer. Even the Golf Course is in danger of losing some turf.
    READ IT:
    100 year record >> L1
    Flood Photos >> L2
    High Water Rescue >> L3
    Extent Of Flood >> L4
    Environmental Contamination? >> L5
    Evacuations Ordered >> L6
    -----  
    .. Our rain has dwindled to an intermittent light drizzle - gray and surprisingly high humidity!
    USE THE BIG 'UNS
    .. The garden is too wet to fiddle with so we're going to the clear still waters of the Notellum Backwater. It's in exceptional shape right now.
    .. Last years snags and this year's flood debris have raised the level and encouraged the cute little fishies to the calm clear water. HA! - little do they know.
    -------  
    WALLPAPER:  SHELLS AND RAGU - YUM

    Friday, May 11, 2018

    Out Of Bank

    FIREHOLE ROARS
    MADISON FOLLOWS
    some local gossip
    WALLPAPER:  FIREHOLE RIVER HIGH WATER
    ------- 
    .. Better Late Than Never? The Firehole River is now showing discharge rates far above record rates, (FIRE LINK.) It is running at over 900cfs. That is more than 250cfs above record for the date. The gauge height is more than 4.5' above datum = NWS Flood Stage.
    .. The Madison River is flirting with flood stage and just waiting for the Gibbon River to fill it up, (MAD LINK). This must be Spring.
    .. For those of you that are looking to enjoy the Lowland Madison River, please be prepared for record runoff down there too. With all the tributary water the river is about 300cfs above the daily record, (MAD KIRBY LINK.)
    .. Lash on the mud flies and have at it. This is an event that will rejuvenate the river beds. It will rearrange holding water and hides. It will cause curses and disappointments. It is like what we were familiar with not too long ago - on an annual basis.
    .. Oh, by the way, a warm and gentle rain is watering the garden. We're glad we got most of it in over the last three sunny days.
    -----  
    .. In searching for garden supplies, provisions, bills at the P.O. and a stroll through the darker environs of trinketonia we gathered up some interesting bits of local conversation.
    SPRING STORM
    .. We share them here without prejudice:
    >> The folks in Canada are planning to fund a border wall,
    >> The big corporations that own bits of this little village are looking to hire Michael Cohen,
    >> River guides are drawing straws to see who gets the privilege of escorting Ryan Zinke,
    >> Foreign investors from China have gobbled up three campgrounds and RV facilities in our village,
    >> Foreign investors from China have gobbled up two working ranches and three small motels in our village,
    BOX SHORTAGE
    >> Foreign investors from China have built two motels, (and two under construction,) in our village,
    >> Only one person now owns all five T-Shirt shops in town,
    >> One local family now owns three of the six gas stations in town,
    >> Our local fast food joints are among the most expensive in the United States,
    >> The local Post Office is understaffed and running out of boxes for the transient visitors and workers.  General delivery mail is running out of space too,
    WORKER'S QUARTERS
    >> Village merchants are moving in travel trailers and motor homes for seasonal employees - all rentals are full,
    >> The new government agency is called the Environmental Pollution Agency,
    >> AT&T is looking to hire our one lawyer for advice on a merger with the local radio station,
    >> There are openings for the local TSA agents for our single commercial flight into and, out of town,
    >> Since the United States Does Not do business with Iran; should we sanction our allies, neighbors and friends?
    >>  Two bears were bagged during the Spring Bear Hunt,
    >> Visitation to Yellowstone National Park is already showing new daily records for the early season,
    ..
    ------- 
    WALLPAPER:  CHICKEN FRIED STEAK - MASHED SPUDS