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Showing posts from June, 2014


I'm going through a phase of Alaska withdrawal. It's been a few years since I've cast a fly in one of her waters.  I need to go back.

The above fish photo is of a pink salmon caught while on a float trip down the Talachulitna River (remember this one Larry?).  No, it's not an ad for Simms or Loop, although they do make good stuff.

Pink salmon are another underrated fish.  Where else but in Alaska could you catch a bunch of four to six pound fish and be disappointed.  Heck, guides floating the Madison would wet their pants if they could get their clients into a boatload of four to six pounders.
Pinks have the shortest life cycle of Pacific salmon, completing it in two years.  Interestingly, unlike other anadromous salmonids which may spend up to a year or two in fresh water before smolting, pink salmon fry make a run for the ocean soon after hatching.  Also, even numbered years tend to see huge runs of returning fish, while odd numbered years will show few returnees.  …

Along the Stream, A Western Scene

Horses, cows too, are an integral part of the western landscape.  So, it's pretty normal to run into them while one is out fishing.  Yesterday, I bumped into these two as they grazed on lush stream side grasses.  I've mentioned before that I'm not much of a horse person.  I do like to see them though.  Montana and horses go together like hot dogs and mustard (sorry, not ketchup).  So, when I crossed over to their side of the stream, they wandered over.  One intently nuzzled the pockets on my fishing vest.  I don't pack oats when I'm out fishing, so he had to settle for an ear scratch and a pat on the neck.

Tale Of The Big Brown

A little drive this morning.  Today would be a streamer day.  Browns like 'em.  I use a simple rig.  A short length of straight eight.  Pound test Maxima that is.  No 6X today.  Yay!  Tie on a cone head muddler.  That's it.
I like casting streamers on small streams.  A short cast to this bank or that.  Flip it under an overhanging branch.  No dummy!  Under the branch, not into it!  Oh well, all in a day of fishing.
One thing about small streams.  The fish will show themselves.  Invariably, if they show, and don't grab the fly, they won't come back.  Funny thing about fishing streamers.
Today, the fish were scarce.  Not many follows.  Few takers.  A few made it to the net.  Juicy looking pools that are usually good for a fish or two, yielded none.  
I was about halfway through the morning itinerary of pools.  And, I'd just worked through another, this one also apparently fish-less.  Then, a big splash upstream.

I turned in time to see the disappearing tail of a


Yesterday On The Creek

It's quite a change in venue, visiting the creek this time of year.  Especially when compared to the quiet starkness of winter that I'm accustomed to.  June.  Profusion. An explosion of life and color. Pastures green, trees and shrubs leaf and bloom.  Birds sing and chatter incessantly from the streamside vegetation.  A day on this, or any creek for that matter, is a spectacular experience.  And that is a woefully inadequate understatement.
In spite of verdancy, and the activity of myriad critters, one key element is lacking.  Insect life. The vaunted hatches that bring trout to the surface have yet to commence.  Other than a couple of wayward caddis, no bugs.  PMD's are allegedly still days to weeks off.  When they appear, so do the fisherman, expectant and hopeful.
So, in a day filled with hope, but lacking surface feeding trout, I nymphed.  Essentially the same gig as winter.  Dry dropper.  Beetle dropper (which I couldn't see worth a darn).  Finally, I resorted th…