Saturday, September 14, 2013

I Love Goooooooooold

Fall is creeping in which means a few things:

1.  Changing up the rig.  I don't mind it but I don't love it either because I've grown accustomed to, emotionally attached to, confident in the one that has been productive this summer.

2.  Wet-wading is almost done.  This is a bummer.  My waders are pretty beat up, and new ones are...shall we say...spendy?  I'm thinking my frugal streak on fly-fishing purchases is about to snap.

3.  Browns are coloring up for the fall spawn, as evident below.  This 23" bruiser chased my favorite midge pattern down.  The teeth and color on this thing were ridiculous.  

This cutt-bow lost some mouth parts at some point. Size 10 midge, corner pocket.

All in all, I'm getting action on crays, stones, and caddis like everyone else.  Midges have been reliable as well.  In keeping up my amateur status, I got the top section of my Hydros rod stuck in a tree.  After devising a plan, I got my rod section down along with a dead branch bigger than my Subaru.  If someone filmed the whole thing I wouldn't want to watch it.  It was ugly, but I drove home with 4 pieces of a 4-piece rod so I call it a win.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

An Anniversary Present from the Truckee

I started fly fishing the Truckee River two years ago this week.  I didn't get her anything, but she got me this:

25" and change on the tape.  Took Doug O's StoneDaddy for a ride.  My saving grace on this fight was that she would explode downstream 25 yards and then bury herself in a pocket, giving me enough time to get downstream of her to keep the game going.  This happened 4 times I can remember.  She never came out of the water completely but in an effort to hustle she passed through some water only a couple inches deep exposing her back so I knew from that point on what I was dealing with.

I've learned not to horse in a fish like this, but I almost erred on the other end of the spectrum.  We were both wiped.  I know it's not cool to say this, but my heart was flying and I could feel the adrenaline in my legs.  This may be just another fish for many, but for me it was pretty special.

I received another 24" gift two days later.  She was in super shallow white water.  I was pinned in the crotch of the river coming back together and unable to cross either direction so if she took off downstream, game over.  Somehow I was able to keep her buttoned up in the slow stuff for over 10 short runs, rather than the usual one long sprint that leads to a break-up talk.  Killer blue spot on the head and hands down the craziest red spots on the body I have ever seen on a Brown, big or small.  Released in time for the fall spawn.

Grateful for an epic week on the river.  One of many reminders recently about God's goodness in my life, the quality of my bride, and the great place I call home.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Season Change

Since the fires in CA aren't showing any signs of slowing, I finally decided to throw the buff on and get outside anyway.  This 21" bow made some great runs.  It seems with the dropping temps, the oxygen is up and so is the piss and vinegar in the Truckee.  They are fighting harder and getting airborne.

I found this 23" brown with a mouse streamer hanging out the side of his mouth, dead in 4 inches of water.  I'm guessing someone put the night-stalk on the previous evening and something went wrong.  Not sure what would have killed him.  Funny thing is, my buddy at Orvis sold the exact streamer two days before I found this, and they are the only local distributors. 

This brown pounded a tiny black nymph and gave me a run for my money.  Nice shoulders.  First time I can remember having the river to myself in weeks.

The ugliest crawdad pattern you'll see.  At some point I inherited this dastardly looking thing.  I am a firm believer in the "ug" factor.  Fooled the healthy bow below, whom had me fooled that she was a much bigger brown.

Dave Hamel is a good dude of Pyramid Cutthroat fame.  We met up to hit the Truckee and had a productive morning.  After resting a run below us that was pounded for quite a while by a guy on the opposite bank, Dave found this gorgeous brown.  Congrats on the recent engagement Dave.

My favorite midge pattern these days and a few other shots for my kids to Google in a decade.