Thursday, March 19, 2020

Crashing Down

On Friday evening we got the announcement of schools in the State of Utah will be closed for the next two weeks and classes will be taught online during the closure. Suddenly I had a lot of work to do! Ideas came pouring in from other music teachers via Facebook and I started gathering ideas. I could've felt sorry for myself, but all I could think about is how disappointed my students were going to be with all the festivals, concerts and activities being cancelled. The future holds a lot of uncertainty, but I just hope that I'll get to work in a normal classroom with my students again this school year. 

I had to get out and do something that didn't involve staring at a computer screen, but I wasn't feeling too great and didn't want to join my Dad and brothers at a lake in Southern Utah just in case I had something contagious. Not thinking it's Covid-19, but I don't want to get anyone sick with anything. My brothers both have little kids and having a bug run its course through a family is miserable. Better to live as if you're contagious than be wrong and make other people suffer. 

So, Sunday afternoon the boys and I gathered up the often neglected spinning outfits and headed for a local reservoir. Atley wanted to bait fish while Caden decided to throw a fly behind a casting bubble. Neither was particularly successful, but Caden did hook one that came unbuttoned at his feet and Altey missed his only hit. I threw a Jakes Spin-A-Lure for a minute but only had one small bump. I couldn't help but get the fly rod out and tried a few different flies, but only had one hit on a balanced leech. We were all starting to think about heading home when a group of kids (college aged?) pulled up next to us and decided we needed company, which prompted us to hurry up and leave. Not sure why some people think it's okay to crowd when there's plenty of room for us to spread out. Besides, aren't we supposed to be practicing #socialdistancing ?

Monday and Tuesday were spent lesson planning online and by Tuesday afternoon I was going to pretty crazy being cooped up. A little water therapy was definitely needed so I headed for a local stream. Low clear water made fishing difficult, but I managed a few on Prince Nymphs and Copper Johns, both of which I need to tie more of! A much needed break that makes me feel a little better, even when it feels like the world is crashing down around us. 

Hope your as lucky,

Saturday, March 7, 2020

Short Trip

Instead of making a long drive to a tailwater and fishing from dawn till dusk I stayed close to home and tied some flies. Sleeping in and having breakfast with the family doesn't happen very often, but sometimes it's just what I need to recharge and get ready for another week. Tied a few flies, but the nice weather convinced me to hit a nearby stream for the afternoon and Atley agreed to come along!

I love it when my boys take me fishing! We worked our way up from where some seriously dirty water was coming into the stream and found some rising fish! There was a good midge hatch coming off, but the sporadic rises said that the fish might be on the few blue winged olives that were on the water. Not sure why I haven't been tying more bwos for the upcoming hatch, but our selection was pretty thin. Luckily, these fish aren't too picky and I found a fly that they might be interested in. Atley cast first and spooked a couple. After a few tangles and a couple snags he said it was my turn and I took him up on it. He might be a little rusty after a long winter. My first cast missed the mark by a foot, but the little brownie just came over and ate it anyway.

Atley got some casting in, but couldn't get it to come together where the fish were feeding. Some days are tougher than others, but he still enjoyed being the net man and spending some time together. We chased risers until the light went off the water and then managed a couple more on little Frenchies. Fish came to hand, but more importantly I got to spend a good afternoon out with my buddy. 

Hope you're as lucky,

Sunday, March 1, 2020

While the Gettin's Good

Since having such a successful day with Lane last week (read about that HERE) thoughts of going back have been weighing on my mind. The fish that got away are always a huge motivating factor, but also the impending "Buffalo Midge" hatch would be great to hit when it's in full swing. The rainbows should start moving up into the stream to spawn and then there's always the spring "Blue Wing Olive" hatch that shouldn't be too far off. Besides, the weather has been really nice lately and you might as well get out and enjoy it.

It's been awhile since Ross and I have fished together, which has to be a sign that life is getting way too busy. We headed out early and were actually the 2nd vehicle in the parking lot. The parking lot hole wasn't as productive as it had been the week before, but fish were hooked and missed while we tried to figure out what flies were going to be productive. Ross managed to catch his first fish on a fly that he tied himself! It's a really cool 'first' and I was glad to have been there for it. 

We worked our way upstream, trading off missing fish, losing flies, or actually landing one. The fish were really stacked up in the deeper pools so once we found them we tried out different patterns to try to really get onto what they'd like. Lots of midge larva and pupa were in the water, so we tried Zebra Midges in different colors matching the size as closely as we could. Ross started getting them on a white and copper, while I found some success with a copper and blue including a decent tiger trout!

Every time we thought about moving on we'd get another hook up and have to stay for a few more casts. A mix of rainbows and browns came to hand, but nothing too big until a the fish of the day took my point fly, a San Juan Worm. 

The next hole almost gave up another healthy bow, but he came unbuttoned pretty quickly. We moved up to deeper water, but we couldn't seem to find the fish. We kept working on our way up stream, trying different flies/depths/strategy when we found a pod of rising fish! Ross's back was giving him him a rough time, so he sat down to watch me drop a Bunny Midge right in front of a riser that ate it with no hesitation. Of course, he quickly came unbuttoned right after spooking every fish in the pool. 

The day was clearly over but I couldn't help but throw a streamer on and swing it during the walk back. Several hits and one more fish came to hand, and why not? Gotta get it while the gettin's good!

Hope you're as lucky,