Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Some Flies,

I tied up a few Griffith's Gnats with a little twist. A reader of this blog, Brad Basehore suggested I put a yellow post on the fly to aid in its visibility on the water. I used several different colors as well as different materials. The flies came out OK, but I have not tested them, hopefully soon.

Flies you will probably not see in your local fly shops tied like these. Most shops will carry a few but they are usually over-hackled and some even have wire bodies. These are old familiar patterns and those wise old anglers know of them very well. Top row are "Partridge and Yellow"....middle row, "Partridge and Orange"....and the bottom row, "Partridge and Green". I love tying these simple, elegant, and effective patterns.

A "Light Cahill" soft-hackle. These will be on the streams and the trout love them.

A couple of dry flies I was fooling with. They have no name...you can "name them" if you like. They to have not been tested.

Sunday, May 29, 2016

A New Stream 5-27-16

I fished a blue line last week Friday. It was a new venture, although I have driven over this stream countless times going to other destinations. On the map this stream is shown to drain from a big swamp and flows through some tough areas, you know the ones that are full of those little nasties such as thorns, soft silty banks and more thorns. Further down it turns into a nice flowing freestone stream. It winds its way along a heavy canopy of hardwoods. It is in this area that I would fish.

One big issue I encountered was the relentless amount of old fencing. Rusted barbed wire was entwined almost everywhere and some you could not see until it was to late.

The stream also flows through many areas of private land. This land is not posted but it's always good to find the owners and ask for permission...this day no one was home. Seeing this field of flowers how can you have a bad day?

The stream proved to be tough. Both is access and getting a fish to strike. I know there are fish in here. Just be a little less noisy.

In a little pocket of foamy water as the stream broke to the bank a fish rose to the fly. A few moments later and the first brook trout was at hand.

Further downstream I came upon this. A log half underwater and running the length of the pool. The water was deep and somewhat shaded. The fly was set adrift and at the mid way point a fish came out from under the log and hit. Hooked it knew what to do and used all of its knowledge to try to gain freedom. We, the rod and I were finally able to gain control and the highlight of the day was at hand.

This handsome wild brown obliged me in a photo and was returned to his home. I will return here and try to gain permission to further explore this stream.

Thursday, May 26, 2016

The Hi-Viz Foam Body Ant

The hi-viz foam body ant. Ant patterns are really trout takers, and on small streams they are a top pattern from April through October. This is about as simple a pattern as can be...few materials and easy to tie. I'll take you through it. Material, Hook, black thread, black foam bodies, and black hackle.

Start thread behind hook eye and wrap to about the hook point.

Wrap thread back to the mid-way point

Here you take the foam body and place it on top of hook. Take about 10 wraps of thread to secure.

Next take your hackle and tie it in. You now take four turns of hackle and tie it off. Cut the hackle, and whip finish.

Your completed foam body ant.

I tie these in a variety of sizes and colors. They also are a great beetle pattern. These flies float very well and are highly visible.

Here's one that the brookies have been chewing on.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Take A Walk With Me...an invite to fish a small stream.

Well folks finish up that last cup of morning coffee and take a few hours with me for a walk along a small stream. I enjoy having you along but there are a few requirements I ask of you, only a few. Leave your devices back at the car. Bring some water, a camera if you like. Insect repellent would be nice. Leave that old fishing vest home, a simple assortment of flies is all that's needed. No waders required,a nice pair of hiking boots will do nicely, and let's not forget a 5' 9" GCR 3wt. On this day we find the sun shinning brightly, the wind is almost non existent and air temps are comfortable. As we walk through the laurel thickets we see how the Spring woods are alive with that beautiful green color. Birds seem to chirp as if to welcome us, they know we mean no harm and we are here to enjoy and not to destroy.

In short time we come upon the water, it is flowing nicely and it says it's going to be a good day. It is here that we encounter are first mishap...a slip on the moss covered rocks send a foot deep into the streams cold waters. Oh well on we move.

We come upon a beautiful pool...a little water fall drops lots of of water causing a perfect hold for the brook trout. It is hear where we cast our first fly of the day. As the little ant pattern swirls just beyond the white water a rise is spotted, and hookup and our first brookie is at hand.

A handsome fellow with a lot of fight. He is put back into his watery home and as always a "Thank You" is given.

Moving through the woods we encounter what looks like a mess of downed trees and storm debris. But there is a nice pool above and below this jam. Placing the fly won't be easy but this is small stream angling. I'll let you guess what pool I fished..upper or lower.

After several casts and one hang-up that I was lucky to retrieve I coaxed this nice dark colored brookie to take the fly. He did not come to hand easily. He knew just where to go when in trouble.

As we move along the stream we encounter several areas where we need the aid of objects to help us along...be careful where you put you hands. They're pretty, but better left alone.

The sun is getting higher and the trout very wary. Now is the time to use any shade to our advantage. A shady spot alongside of a rock will bring a rise.

This is the result of using the shade to your advantage.

We stop here for a drink of water. Looking at the surface of the stream for a rise.

Another companion stops by as we rest and drink. In the dry leaves this guy has perfect camo.

I hope you are enjoying the scenery. We move further up the stream.

Another brookie who was found in the shadows.

What a peaceful place. Some would say that's to small of a pool to hold a trout.

But we try anyway....and look what we have found.

Again we stop for a water break..hydration is so important. As we scope this rather large pool we can see a few light colored mayflies about. Further observation shows that the trout have no interest. The pool must be tried anyway.

In several casts the pool gave up not a hint of what was in it, but we knew better. A swirl came and a dark image went down...the fly with it. The fish was on and I could not believe the weight of it. You must be careful in small places for it is easy to loose such a fish. After what seemed like a long time I was able to slide my hand under the brook trout. This was a large fish for this stream. I was lucky to get the photo for after it he was gone.

We now decide it's time to hike back and to reflect on our few hours on a wild brook trout stream. We walk out slowly taking in more of the sights and sounds of the natural world.

Back at the cars we enjoy a light lunch. Time is taken to say thank you. I hope you enjoyed coming along with me.

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Little Creek

After several Saturday morning duties I had and hour or three available to do some fishing. The stream was Little Creek and it was close by so that if the skies opened up as they were supposed to according to the most accurate forecast in the state...oh well, still waiting for that first drop. Back on track now. the stream was low and clear. A stream temp told me that the water was cold. Visual observations showed me nothing so fly choice would be a dry. A 'bomber' was first up and the fly was not treated with respect. In pool and riffle the trout were not interested. Several other well knowns were called on and met with the same  disrespect. I changed to a soft hackle, the thought was that maybe they would take it being under the surface and this way they would feel safer and not exposed. The fly was a gray hackle peacock and a good choice it was.

On the second cast this beautiful wild brookie hit the fly. A strong fish for this stream.

All along Little Creek the gray hackle peacock did it's magic.

I saw this bird rock hopping. I don't know what it is but it's colors rival the brook trout.

The Gray Hackle Peacock after it had been chewed on for two hours.

This native char had a tail that was so red. I had hoped it's color showed in the photo but it was not to be....still strikingly beautiful. Did I ever mention that I love these fish?

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Fishing Cape Cod....Wild Brook Trout..

Jeanette and I enjoyed a couple of wonderful days on Cape Cod. Wandering here and there in search of forest critters and native salter brook trout. The day started at Leo's in Buzzards Bay for breakfast. Chatter in the booths were of striped bass and such but no matter how close you listened the term brook trout was not mentioned. This area is a very big salt-water fishing destination, and for good reason.

After breakfast we headed for our first stream. As I sat gearing up this bus pulled in. I had a feeling and it was not good. They do an extensive amount of research on this stream and it's for the good of the sea-run brook trout who call it home. The instructor as well as several students got off the bus. The instructor came over and we talked for awhile. They were going to do some studies at the stream, and with waders on I knew it was going to be in the water. Soon another group pulled in, they were a different school, but with the same goal. I thanked them for their work and we got in the car and headed for stream two.

We arrived at stream two and found the parking area empty. I don't fish this stream with waders for the reason I don't enjoy hiking in them. Just some hiking boots, my pack and rod. We started up the trail and we soon stopped to enjoy a symphony of nature...birds singing, breezes blowing through the trees and flowers seemingly opening as we walked....this place is beautiful.

Stopping at the first access I quickly tied on a bucktail and cast into the current. As the fly briskly passed some weeds I saw the flash of a trout.

Three casts later he came back and slammed the fly. These trout are beautiful and they have incredible power.

You probably say how can a fish be so beautiful, coming from a stream with ties to the ocean. When at hand my time is limited for a quick return to the water is a must. But it's the quick photo that is taken that lets me admire the brook trout for as long as I want.

There were several ospreys flying about. A few of them had fish in their talons. I hope the fish were herring.....

As wild as they come......come enjoy our walk with us in the next few photos.

The sun, the reflection, and the grace of the brook trout.....

We went back to the first stream later in the day. The thought was that what ever research took place would all be a memory now to the residents. It was here where I cast a fly. It landed between the two log deflectors. The time the fly was in the water was measured in the blink of an eye. The fish went for the bottom and then leaped over the logs and went back under. In the back of my mind I said I will never bring this fish to hand. Several hard runs and I and the 3wt finally managed to bring the trout under control.

"Salter" brook trout
I did not lift this fish up, the fight was hard and I let him rest in the water. I believe this fish had spent some time recently in the salt-water. Those that fish this stream will recognize the area, and know how close to the salt it is. Many fish were caught and released theese few days but not one more memorable then this one. A truly remarkable brook trout.