Sunday, January 12, 2020


It can be hard to justify spending time away from home (family, projects, practicing, work...) and heading out fishing this time of year. Freezing temperatures make fishing difficult most days with iced guides, slippery access, and lathargic fish. Some spots are off the list entirely because of icy conditions or the danger involved. Ice fishing is an option, but it doesn't scratch the itch in the same way as getting out with the flyrod.

Cabin fever is a real thing around here, although I 'probably' wouldn't call in sick to work because of it...... Probably. So when we saw that daily temperatures were going to sneak above freezing for a couple days in a row Jeff and I made a plan to hit a stream.

The drive went by pretty quickly (listening to podcasts really helps) and Jeff was ready to go when I arrived. It didn't take long before we were following up on a lead for a great spot to fish. Lots of small rainbows were waiting for our wired San Juan Worms and Zebra Midges of different flavors. They helped to get the rust off and get the "first fish of the year" thing out of the way.

We decided to try another spot, although we really didn't know for sure where that was going to be. So we drove some likely access roads just to find private property and no trespassing signs. We did, however, manage to stumble on some great looking coyote hunting spots and we spotted a really nice buck. Of course, we didn't have the spotting scope so you'll just have to take my word for it. Eventually we ended up going back to the area I usually fish on this stream to end out the day.

With the sunlight disappearing and the temperatures dropping we weren't expecting much, but we still had hope of getting one more before calling it a day. We took turns casting to likely spots and managed to miss a few takes before I finally woke up and made good on the deal. A nice rainbow was more than I could've hoped for to end out my day.

A couple casts later Jeff pulled a nice cutthroat out of the same hole, but struggled to hold onto her for a picture.

As we made our way back to the truck I toyed with the idea of spending the night and hitting it again in the morning. The invite was definitely there and Jeff even tried to talk me into it a little bit, but responsibilities were weighing on me and I just couldn't do it. Time on the water is invaluable to me, especially at this time of year when the walls can start to close in, but responsibilities at home wouldn't wait and I was grateful for the day we just had.

Hope you're as lucky,