Friday, November 23, 2018

Keeping it Interesting

The countdown was on to try and get as many trips in as possible before winter comes in and limits our options. Most of these trips would be hunting trips despite fall being my favorite time to fish, but a few trips would include wetting a line. I knew once the snow started to lay down accessing some of my favorite places would become impossible so choosing which one to visit begins to get difficult. I decided to hit a stream that I don't fish nearly often enough and set out. A quick stop at a small inlet on the way allowed for a picture of spawning kokanee salmon which I thought was pretty neat.

At an easily accessible spot I checked on my destination stream to see if water was still running and not too warm for my conscience. The stream looked like it was in great shape so I made the longer drive to fish a section I hadn't been to in a couple years. After a long drive, mostly on dirt roads, another vehicle in the "parking lot" wasn't exactly what I was hoping to find. At least it was only one. I guessed that he would work his way upstream so I went down to some water that I'd never seen before. As usual, it's hard for me to walk by any likely looking spots, so I stopped and tried a few before fully committing. The fish seemed more than willing to come to a Mod. Hare's Ear or even a Hare's Ear Parachute when I could get it close enough to them. It quickly became apparent that I haven't been fishing nearly enough! Simple things like knots and placing casts in the wind seemed to be more of a struggle than they have been for a long time. I spooked some rising fish, but still managed to fool a few. 

It felt great to be back on the water, even when it was obvious that the water was finding it's way into my waders. The mix of browns, cutthroat, and the odd chub kept things interesting as well as the dry and dropper action. Being out there makes me happy, so why haven't I been going more? 

Hope you're as lucky,

Saturday, November 3, 2018

Last Weekend of Archery Elk

Couldn't believe how quickly the season had slipped away from us, but the last weekend of the archery elk hunt was gearing up to be a fun one with our camp being a big one. Jeff's family, Weston's family, my Uncle Curt's family, Dad and Deb were all in camp with Atley and me. Saturday morning started the same way that the first weekend had gone for us, seeing some sign and hearing the odd bugle (some of which were obviously guys with calls) but not seeing elk. Dad had the idea that we spend the evening in a different area and Jeff, Atley and I all jumped in his truck. 

Atley and I jumped out at the first stop with the plan to walk across a canyon, hunting as we went, while Dad and Jeff would drive around and meet us on the other side. Elk had definitely been in the area so we sat and watched a large area waiting for anything to show. When it became apparent that nothing was moving we made the trek to our pick-up spot. Felt good about the effort when we spotted a couple of nice bucks. This knowledge might come in handy at the end of the month when Atley and Delvonie have deer tags. 

When we got back to the truck, Jeff asked Atley, "How many arrows do I have in my quiver?" Atley didn't really get the question, but I knew that he was letting us know that he had gotten a shot. Dad and Jeff had walked into some elk them with several bulls and spikes in the area. They played cat and mouse with the elk until Jeff got a shot right before dark. We waited in the truck for awhile to make sure that the elk had time to expire before heading back in, a perk of waiting was that Weston made his way over to help with two of my cousins. 

The blood trail was a short one. Things got a little tense when we couldn't find much blood in a spot. Not wanting to inadvertently step on blood I waited as Weston and Jeff scoured the trail for a speck. Our cousin Bridger said he could smell elk right before Jeff spotted where the elk had fallen. Success! With a little bit of work we had his spike quartered out and hauled back to the truck. 

The next morning Dad and I went back into the same area and saw two 5-point bull elk, but the spikes and cows were nowhere to be seen. Heading home I dropped Jeff's son off at his house (he wanted to stay one more night) and he shared the wealth of elk meat.
Hope you're as lucky,