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Unforked, At Last




Let it be known. The curse has been lifted.

I finally got a "real" fish out of the Henry's Fork.

One fish is no big deal for the fly fishing luminaries out there who stack twenty inch rainbows like cord wood.  My light doesn't glow so bright.

With clouds forecast for the day I made a run for Last Chance.  Overcast summer days are a rarity out here.  I hoped the fish and the bugs that they dine on would like the forecast as well.

A cloudy day invariably feels a hell of a lot more comfortable than a sunny one with similar temperatures.  The only issue is that the glare on cloudy days gives me fits. Sunglasses don't help.  There's no best angle to look at the surface of the water either. There's a uniform funky brightness caused by light reflecting from clouds to water surface that makes it virtually impossible to see and track a fly.  So, I squint a lot, guess where my fly is based on water speed and basically fish by braille.  I make a point of lifting gently when a fish rises near my fly.




As for bugs, it was Tricos in the morning, then PMD spinners.  There was enough of a PMD hatch throughout the day to maintain angler morale.  Also, a smattering of Callibaetis.  And, I added Flavs to my life list of trout bugs sighted.




Considering the amount of bugs, I expected the fish to be more active.  I had a couple of shots.  Got close to one, but the rascal wouldn't stay put.  After a couple of dozen casts I got my fly over him and he ate. He made a big jump right off the bat.  Then, took some line and jumped twice more just for show.  I got below him and was able bring him to net easily.  A few photos and he swam out of the net.  A pretty fish.




I plopped my butt onto a streamside tussock.  It was time for a drink, of water.  Fittingly, the sun appeared and lit up Bonefish.

I pretty much called it good at that point.  I wanted to remember this as the day that I finally got a fish on the Henry's Fork.   

July 25, 2020.   I've got it penciled in.  I may have to crawl down to Bonefish on hands and knees.  But, I should catch another one then.

Why 2020?  Well it took three years to catch the first one.



Comments

  1. Les: Congrats on the Fork...or "being Unforked". Well deserved. Great trout. Persistence! Neat photos. One yr hope to get to spend several weeks on that river. only fished it once. beautiful piece of water. You keep going back because it is challenging. That's what it is all about.
    bob

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    1. Bob, as Einstein said, insanity is repeating a task while expecting a different outcome. I demonstrated three years of insanity. I don't know why, but I'd rather go to the Fork and get skunked than catch a bunch on the MO. Yup, I'm certifiably nuts.

      I'm sure that you'll do well if you put in the time. Let me know. Maybe we can get that fish hound Jim on the water with us to let us in on his "secrets".

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    2. Les: I think Jim is a fish whisperer. His flies are simple...some don't even have tails!!!He tosses these simple flies and with a bit of voodoo magic the trout, in some sort of trance like state, eat like a hungry puppy! And on the most difficult rivers on the continent... he dupes them, all big ones...
      bob

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    3. Bob, I just happened to hear from Jim. He was having a hard time trying to comment here too.

      I agree about the simplicity of some of his ties. Have you stumbled onto any of his YouTube tying videos? Good stuff. Instead of a plastic Jesus I think that I'll get a small magnetic figurine of Jim, in waders, and have him looking over my dashboard, while mystically pointing to some faraway fishing hole where all the trout are as long as ones leg and eat as your say "like hungry puppies"!

      In all fairness, he adds credence to the saying "It's not what you've got, it's how you use it". And, he uses his stuff well.

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  2. Lester
    I've always thought that persistence is the number one element when fishing weather its for warm water or cold water species. Those fishermen and women who possess this element are in the elite class when it comes to fishing; you are among the best! I've also realized long ago that fishing is not about the numbers especially if you are trout fishing, but about the beauty of the outdoors, the water you are fishing and the fish species you are pursuing. Beautiful trout in fact worth framing---thanks for sharing

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    1. Bill, it's definitely not about numbers when I go fishing. I don't catch very many! My attention is too easily diverted to photography and just poking around streamside, looking at birds, bugs, flowers, etc. Gosh, no one has ever accused me of being a good fisherman. But thanks for the kind words.

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    2. Les: Didn't know Jim has fly tying videos on you tube...don't know his last name ...how do you locate him on Ytube?
      bob

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    3. Bob, here's a link to one of his PMD patterns...... Jim's PMD hackle spinner

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    4. Les: Thanks for link...great video, nice simple pattern/tie...I tie a similar one...like his explanations/ comments...I will check out his other ones. Thanks for the info...tight lines!
      bob

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  3. Les, the day you posted this and reported your success, I was actually en route from the Green River to Yellowstone when the allure of the Henry's Fork pulled me over. I couldn't resist a stop. It was my wife's birthday and she didn't mind waiting for me in the Trout Hunter Lodge while I, too, finally got "unforked" and actually caught two rainbows in a lovely couple of hours of casting there. We almost got Unforked together! Amazing.

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    1. Good for you Walt, congratulations and what a coincidence! It's quite a piece of water isn't it? Too bad our paths didn't cross. I hope you had a good trip.

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