Sunday, August 24, 2014

Late August Float

It's still been a great summer. Fishing remains some of the best in most area rivers. That's mostly because we are experiencing a really cool summer (eventually cold.........follow below).

Since the first two weeks of "iffy & muddy" conditions, Yellowstone River seems to have changed its mood. My first choice is still dry-flies but when the situation calls for I go deep. Whities are getting aggressive!!
River crossing..... They were smart enough to know the power of the River.

Found dead at the boat ramp......
Inspiration for every streamer enthusiast on Yellowstone River!!
Another deep water result!!

He's going to grow wide & heavy as the fall approaches.......
Oh, Here's an RIP.......
My vest watch that I bought at "Wally Mally" seven years ago finally ended its life. It was something like $14.95, give or take. I replaced the vest twice (= 3 vests and now I'm on the third one) but this watch had been serving for me.

Dry-fly Double!!

As I keep mentioning through this summer, it's been a cool and nice summer. But even though another week of August left, weather went a bit too far........ Some rainy fronts have been sitting around here and, believe or not, air temperature has dropped to 50s!! As of this typing in my house, I'm wearing a pair of fleece top & bottom...... Apparently we need waders on the River!!

As weather and water got cold, these guys seem being aggressive!!
Of course this foul weather is affecting river condition and fishing. I thought we have some more Hopper actions left........ But also it's affecting aquatic insect activities. If you are observant and a learning student of Yellowstone River, you can spot Fall Baetis and couple of different Drakes are hatching and fish are rising at certain spots/sections of Yellowstone River!!
After a long fruitless fishing, I spotted a series of insect hatch and a pod of rising fish!!
I was finally able to get my client into a serious action with a pair of dry-flies!! Fish seemed large and taking his line into the heavy current. I advised him to follow along........
 Gotcha!!
It was a fine 'Stone 'Bow!!
On a tiny dry-fly. What was all of our effort of stripping and chucking heavy artillery for.....?
BTW, this was the clarity......... At least warm enough to stick our hands into......
Weather forecast is calling a return of summer next week.......I hope so........
Then we gotta learn the summer fishing again!!

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Mid Summer Spring Creek Report

I've been off and on........fishing or guiding or totally off or tying flies, rivers or spring creeks or Yellowstone Park waters............. Plus we are seeing mud-plugs on Yellowstone River every now and then. Those brown waters are caused by the (thunder) storms hitting the headwaters of tributaries. Some times (or cases) they are predictable and others totally unexpected!

Livingston's spring creeks have been very popular this summer for right reasons. And they don't get affected by sudden mud-plugs. I can't guarantee that you are able to book rods in a last minute but you'd better keep in mind that creeks are great options.
So here's a brief and crisp fishing report/condition at spring creeks. This would be one of a few, perhaps the first time?, for me to post "fly-shop-like" report.

Two major matters:
Weather has been great through this summer (that applies to all the area waters and towns).
There are still lots of trout, particularly Yellowstone Cutthroat, hanging in creeks!!

When it's not windy in the morning, look for midge hatches. Trout are actively feeding at selected spots of creeks. If not, spot trout under gin-clear water, observe their behavior and actions, and approach them with sight-nymphing = very technical by the way. My choice of under-water patterns are: mayfly nymphs, midge larva, caddis larva, scud, sowbug, and so on.

Also depending on the previous day/night conditions, you may find PMD or Baetis spinners in the morning.

PMD hatch is still viable and strong and trout love them!! Hatches are observed from 10:30am to 1:30pm with emphasis on from 11:00am to 1pm. So plan your lunch break accordingly.
Both size 16 (ephemerella infrequence) and 18 (ephemerella inermis) are equally observed.

In the afternoon, terrestrial fishing at creeks can be as exciting as at big rivers!! Unlike hatch-fishing, you gotta cover one sport or one section thoroughly. Cast & take steps. It's the flock-shooting with purpose!! Look for grassy banks and moving waters. For hoppers and crickets, same fly patterns used for big rivers work but in smaller sizes (say 12 & 14). Beetle and ants are very important and enticing. You need to keep them from size 12 down to 20!!

Caddis also hatch and cause rises of trout but most anglers are not aware of..........

Sulpher mayfly is observed at selected spots in the early evening (around 6pm). What's meant by "selected spots" is these tiny yet beautiful mayflies are spotted here one evening and over there the next evening. You gotta look for them and feeding trout.

Depending on what happens in the morning, PMD spinner falls can be expected in the evening. Also Duns may hatch too!! So keep your eyes wide & open then OBSERVE!!

Don't underestimate evening midge hatch/rise either!!

For fly patterns and daily updates, check with Buzz's Spring Creek Specialists (www.springcreekspecialists.com).
Also, last but not the least, my own ties & patterns are gladly taken by trout too!!
http://leftytyer.blogspot.com.

Enjoy summer everyone!!

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Dry Fly Guide (+ Something Underneath Every Now & Then)

Once August rolled, things got wild & busy. We are having just about right & comfortable summer days and water remains high & cold. What is HOT, as it has been, is FISHING!!

I have conducted several float trips for Montana Troutfitters (http://montanatroutfitters.com) with great actions!! Of course I guide with dry-flies first and foremost - Yellowstone River
 But also, when situation calls for, I don't mind "going down".......
When I do so,
result can be.......

I kinda like the contrast of fish on the shirt and in the hand.......

Happy Birthday!! (August 6th). I accidentally backed into the boat trailer hitch as I was backing toward the dawn...........
Here's the happy birthday boy!! - Madison River 
 Fish on!!
 Best birthday present!!
Big Trout and happy client!!
Young angler claimed he snagged the bottom, rock, or log...........
In a way, it might be....... Some of the finest Madison 'Bow!!
Good Hopper afternoons!!
So here's the "Fly of The Post" = Golden Chubby Chernobyl.
This simple, bright, and non-specific attractor is gladly taken this summer. We believe trout see this as Hopper and Nocturnal Stonefly.

Come and see for yourself!! Experince some of the greatest summer fly-fishing in SW Montana!!

Thursday, July 31, 2014

YNP Dawn Treader 3 - Slightly Off The Beaten Path

I may not be a "Dawn Treader" in a strict sense for this post as I was driving YNP in a slightly later hour = very early morning = than past two "Dawn Treader" trips. I was a bit soured from schedules. As you have guessed and seen, "Dawn Treader" trips are meant to hit some of the best spots within YNP for my own fishing, explorations, and expansion of my guiding options. I still have some more destinations on my list but I believe I've gladly be done with major ones!!

This time I hit a trail which is certainly not a secret but is not heavily used.
I believe he (she?) was watching me as my guardian, rather than me as a prey!!
Need a ski or slid to get down?
 In the morning till mid afternoon, dry-fly actions were practically none. Slightly disappointing but I took it as this was a good time to experiment different flies and methods.
 And then always learning............
Suddenly Rainbow!?

A couple of under-water patterns to note are:
Drowned Soft-Hackle Hopper.

And then McKnight's Home Invader - Black. YES!! Cutty DO love this one as much as they love to take dry-flies on rise!!

In the mid afternoon, I got good actions on dry-flies. Patterns are still the same as shown in the past couple posts.


Again, I've completed the top-listed destinations for "Dawn Treader" trips. So if I conduct one or two more during this summer (or next?), it would be meant for fan fishing and somewhat back-country experience/scenery.
See you "off" & "on" the beaten paths!!

YDFF (Yellowstone Dry Fly Float)

Float fishing on Yellowstone River has started well and been in its PRIME since!!
Over all water condition is just right!! 'Stone can be fished any choices of your preference. Given choices, I do fish & guide with Dry-Flies!!
The other day I self-guided. A tiny insects on the big river!!
 Reason we call fly a fly.........
Also a reason we recommend "catch & release"!?
 Hmmmmmm, learning.
After carefully observing structures and mood of the river, I got a big yet quiet rise on my black Chubby!!!
YAY!!!
At the very last riffle-corner. Happy way to end the day!!
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I had two nice gentlemen from Pennsylvania. We had good & constant surface actions all morning!!

 They each caught respectable sizes for this section. Again with dry-flies!!

"If you can learn to read the waters of Yellowstone River and consistently take trout, you can travel the world and consistently be a successful fly angler." (Don Williams, 1976)

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

More Cutt Guide

Last week, I was glad to share my beloved Yellowstone Cutthroat fishing in my favorite part of Yellowstone Park.
Soda Butte Creek in the morning.



After lunch, we moved to Lamar River. From Soda Butte to Lamar, it was a bit too crowded for my liking (weekend visitors/fishers, I guess.....) but we found a nice stretch for us, furthermore, we hit Green Drake hatch right on time & spot!!
YES!!
Running to the other side of the river.....!!
This was some of the best Cutty caught by my clients!!
My usual way of Goodbye.....
Casting to......

Flies mentioned in the recent posts are still effective.
Fish with Big Chubby and Green Drake patterns while they work!!