Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Year in Review & Season's Greeting - Part 2

Wish all of you had a great Christmas weekend. Here's the review of latter half of 2010 as I'd like to say "Happy New Year!!" to every one. Again, there are too many memories & trout to pick one or a few for making a card. This year would better be like this.
July: I resumed serious camping and fishing in eastern WA again since 2007.
My objective and enjoyment were to catch 12 to 16-inch Westslope Cutthroat in my secret mountain stream.

August: There are more times for camping and fishing in August also. I prepared hearty meals for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. I hope there will be more opportunities like this in the next year right here in Montana.

After the lunch above, I caught a nice Brookie. I really enjoyed their colorings.

September: It ended up the highlight of this year that made me feel I was done in WA State and leave to Montana. September 2nd, I landed a huge Chinook Salmon while I was hunting for 16 to18-inch Westslope Cutthroat with my 6-wt rig.
It was so heavy and satisfying that I still feel back on my arms.

Two weeks later, I caught the best Westslope so far at the same spot where I landed the Chinook above. I really felt I fished enough and accumulated enough experience to go back to Montana.

October: While I was looking for a place to live in Livingston, I could manage some fishing during the short trip. I caught the tie record of rainbow at Madison, 19-inch. And that became the last trout caught as "non-resident angler" in Montana.
Right after I moved into Livingston, I enjoyed to fish around Yellowstone River around Livingston. Also I could make out to Madison River within Yellowstone Park on the second last weekend from closing (Oct 31st).

November: As the cold weather was coming in, I went to O'Hair Ranch to fish Armstrong Spring Creek on November 3rd. This huge brown was caught at the end of the day and became the 2nd last trout for 2010.

On November 6th, I made another day-trip to Yellowstone Park as my Park entrance from Oct 31st allowed me. It was a very slow day with bright weather and too many people all along Madison in the Park. But finally at the very end of my day, I swung my Coyote and caught a respectable rainbow as the last catch of 2010...............

Next year, I will do my best for breeding beef cows all around in Montana and then becoming a fly-fishing guide around Livingston. I'm working on to "import" Japanese anglers into Livingston or at least guide in general around here.

Thank you for dropping by my blog and wish all of you will have great New Year Eve & Day and then after. All of your reviews and comments have been what keep me going and keen to fish & write at this blog. Please keep them coming and we will fish together whenever we meet up at the river!! Thank you again!!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Year in Review & Season's Greeting - Part 1

I decided not to make a greeting card this year like I had been doing for the past three years. One is because of nothing but the big change in my life: bagged the job in WA State and moved to Livingston. And this year, though 10 more days still left, I fished the most in my life. I counted with my fishing log and picture-folders by days in my computer. It was "55-days" plus several more days for driving between WA and Montana. I also counted what I did in 2009 and it was "only 29 days". It was inevitable that I moved to Montana. Hence too many pictures and stories to pick one or a few to make into a greeting card.

For this week, as I'd like to say "Merry Christmas!!" to everyone, I'd like to review from January to June. Then next week, I will review the rest of the year for "Happy New Year!!".

January: This little one was the first trout for this year at Rocky Ford. This was the second day of fishing, I recall, and the first day for this year was "skunk". So it was a slow start for this big fishing year but it was lucky enough to go out fishing from January.

February: Debut at Yakima River was welcome by a handsome Westslope Cutty. From this day, I fished Yakima once a week till the end of March.

March: Northern pike minnow (aka squaw fish) at Yakima. One of the native fish in the area. These guys are known as predators but it's so funny that they don't fight at all once hooked.
April: I made a big trip to Livingston in early April. I caught a potential state record breaking whitefish caught on fly at Yellowstone River.

Also, from April trip, I caught a nice brown at Nelson's.

May: Rocky Ford turned out to be in a good shape this year.

June: Another big trip to Yellowstone National Park. Dry fly fishing turned out to be one of the best experience ever. First here's grayling on midge,

brown on PMD,

and nice brown during the complicated caddis hatch at Firehole.

There were some tough periods on the job but fishing never let me down during the first half of this year. In other words, fishing was becoming my life............

Wish Merry Xmas to everyone!!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Fat Albert

My tying list is growing and shrinking back and force. I was working on a terrestrial pattern which utilizes lots of foam. Fortunately, the art & craft shop Michaels' is in Bozeman. I'd like to say if you need foam in various colors, DO NOT go to fly-shops but to Michaels', period. I bought 3 huge foam as you can see which are 99-cent each!! while the little bag on the top is the one typically sold at fly-shops with $2. I've purchased a life-time supply for each color.

The pattern I was working on was called Fat Albert. I just like the name. Because it's really fat!! and then fun to tie. I heard that this is originally developed for Argentina or Patagonia trout. Fat trout down there must eat fat meals, I guess. Using tri-color of foam along with an indicator and realistic legs, Fat Albert must be a great imitation for hopper, ant, and beetle. Legs are supposed to be barred by a marker but my marker came off during tying process. I should get a better one yet I still like what I came up with.

This is the top view. Making a knot with a single string of round rubber legs is difficult if not impossible as it doesn't stay. That's why rear pairs consist two strings and a touch of cement on knots.

For gloss appearance on the belly, cement can be applied as much as one wants to!!

Here are color variations I could think of. Top one is meant to be a cricket and bottom one is meant to be a relatively large beetle or ant with touch of black foam.

Trout can't count number of legs as their IQ is 6 (Dr. Gary Borger) so they don't care whether my flies have 8 legs while ants, beetles, and hoppers actually have only 6 legs.

Well, this pattern will be counted on my favorite list but then again, I'm short of fly-boxes......

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Too Many Flies & Short of Boxes

Great news first!! Everyone is enjoying mild weather with no winds here in Livingston, especially after the hazardous & brutal snow storm around Thanksgiving. Furthermore, today I really felt I became a Montanan again (I was a student at Montana State in Bozeman and worked at a ranch in Sidney) because I felt hot when it was only above 40F outside!!!! I opened up windows and door for fresh air instead of smoking & ash like smell inside caused by wood stove. Also it almost all made me go fishing........but calm down and analyze first. I thought about Yellowstone around town and Lower Madison but snow piles haven't melted yet and I doubted if those public accesses had been cleared. I would get stuck and possibly further worse accidents could happen. Maybe I would go either one of spring creeks right here then.
At least, this weather break motivated me to post one. Assuming and hoping I will be guiding next year, I'm tying lots of lots of flies. Most of them are generic patterns for Paradise Valley Spring Creeks. I'm confident of my tying so I'd like to sell them to clients rather than just give them.

Counter-clockwise from the top, shown are Sparkle Dun, Foam Nymph, Improved Sparkle Dun, Soft-hackle (all these are meant for Sulphur mayfly or smaller PMD), and small olive-black X Caddis.

I'm working on how to organize and store all of these flies and I'm getting short of boxes. But there should be a smart way or two to organize, so just buying more boxes doesn't solve my dilemma.

I could think of one solution off the top of my head...............some of you readers out there may be interested in purchasing my flies?? That will reduce my inventory and give more spaces among my current boxes. And then I will have a bit of funding to buy boxes if needed......
I'm just being funny and "fishy" about money-making idea but there's NO JOKE about my fly tying and products so if some of you happen to be interested in my flies, just let me know!