Wednesday, January 26, 2022

Just some early morning thoughts.....

Very early Tuesday morning, 2am to be exact. I am sitting at my kitchen counter having just finished the book River Flowers. Looking out the window the snow is falling pretty heavy, a clipper they call it. My second cup of coffee is brewing, a McCafe K-cup and my thoughts are all over the place. River Flowers takes place mostly in western Maine. It's well written and covers it all as far as I'm concerned. Although Bob Romano does not list the actual places the descriptions he gives put me there again.

Reading reflections of others always brings me back to where many of mine originated. Those little things that may have happened and were not really block buster stuff seem to come back so vividly. I'm certain most of you can relate to what I'm saying.
 

 

A late spring day. A free flowing stream. Lush surroundings. A 5' bamboo rod with a soft hackle fly attached starts a drift through the stream. As it bounces willy nilly over rock and boulder like some something totally out of control it's progress stops. Suddenly there is resistance ans a quick movement upstream. I pull back and the fish does not like the sting. A valiant effort is made by the brookie in an effort to rid itself from the fly now in it's lip. What is only seconds the brookie is at hand and does one last maneuver to free itself....and mission accomplished. It swims off like a lightning bolt and a memory is created and not to be forgotten.
 

Soft hackles, will they work?
 

 

Sunday, January 23, 2022

Wonderful, you are....

Many who visit Small Stream Reflection's will comment on how wonderful a site it is. My reply to those comments are it is because of you that make the site a pleasure to visit. Many of you take the time to e-mail me your thoughts and some even take the time to hand write me their thoughts. I appreciate every one of them.

Now here is a thought or two from me....I cannot tell you how much your participation has made a stable presence  in my life, especially over the last year. You give so much support to me that I can't tell you in words. I can't imagine my life without Small Stream Reflections....you guys are the absolute best.

Thank you....
 

 

This Sakasa Kebari was chosen for a reason....the bright colors, the uplifting hackle and the promise....
 

 

Thursday, January 20, 2022

"The" Brookie.....

Over the years I have fished for and have caught some pretty impressive brook trout. Impressive in the fact of their absolute beauty and their size. While I'm not bragging and please don't take it that way but it is a truth.  Looking back over the photos of years past and trying to find what maybe the most beautiful brook trout ever to grace my hand and eyes was quite an undertaking. As I have said many times that their is more to small stream fishing than just bringing a fish to hand. It is with that though that I was able to bring to you what I consider the most beautiful brook trout I have ever taken.

Last year I found a bunch of feathers. They were on the ground and so I picked them up and tucked them away. These feathers were lovey, and nicely marked. They were also quite soft and would make for a nice fly.
 

 

The fly that was created was a simple one. It incorporated an orange silk body, the hackle  and a  bit of sparkle dubbing for the head.
 

The little stream that the fly was first cast upon. A lovey bottom of medium cobble. Shade in places,green grass and some yellow wild flowers. The fly was cast downstream and worked back. This was repeated several times until it was taken.
 

The brookie that took the fly was a strong tough fellow. He was in excellent condition. As my hand slid under his body and lifted it out of the water I could not believe the beauty that was before me. A moment later it swam off and I had a hard time putting the camera away. I just kept on looking at that picture of the brookie.

I have since framed a collage photo of the feathers, fly, stream and brookie.
 

 

Monday, January 17, 2022

A Maine Pond

When I first started fishing the waters of western Maine way back in the late 70's, I was like a sponge that was so thirsty. I probably questioned more people about the ponds streams and woods almost to the point of making myself a pain in the ass. I was given a great deal of information and it was not brush off stuff if you know what I mean. These folks were serious and very descriptive in what they told me. Now I know there are those who say that getting valuable information from a Mainer just does not exist. The old saying "you can't get there from here" comes to mind. Here is one adventure I'd like to share with you. Over at Haine's Landing on the shores of Mooselookmeguntic Lake in the town of Oqussocc Maine. We stated at a cabin and one of the good people we met was a grounds keeper named Howie Lewis. Howie was also the fire chief of  the Oqussocc fire dept. He was a native Mainer and full of info. Durring one of many conversations I had with Howie he told me of a little pond in the woods. This pond was known to few and kept sort of secret to those who knew. It's access was not an easy ride and Howie was gracious enough to highlight the route to take in my Maine atlas, which I still have. The pond lies 23 miles through the woods and is right on the US- Canada border. 

The land is wild and with exception of an occaisional logging truck there was no sign of humans. The main road had lots of side cuts and his warning to me was don't take any of them. Stay on the the road he marked. Also in his instructions were if you get into trouble up there help is a long time coming. So with my Toyota 4x4 CB radio and a couple of fly rods I set off to find this pond.  

The road in the first picture is what it looked like all the way there. Areas of logged out forest and areas so dense with spruce that you could not see 2 feet into them. I encountered many moose along the way, even one that starred at me from the road I was on.
 

 

The pond...the moose was feeding in the shallows as were the brook trout, the rise forms are clearly visible. Trying to find a spot to cast I glanced down into the water to see what looked like the bottom was moving, and it was. The pond was full of leeches. No dry flies needed only black wooly buggers. Well when you don't have a black wooly bugger you choose a streamer.
 

The streamer was the Warden's Worry..a Maine classic. First tied by Warden Joseph Stickney of Saco Maine back in 1930. A simple pattern of wool, brown bucktail some gold tinsel and a red tail and yellow throat. That streamer kept me into brook trout the whole time I was fishing. The brookies were small and a large one was 7", I kept a couple and fried them up along the pond.