Saturday, December 31, 2011

Last Day, Last Fish, & Last Light of 2011

The last day of 2011 turned out to be another nice winter day here in Paradise Valley. I couldn't help visiting DePuy Spring Creek. So I was at a right spot on a nice day to end the year.

I ate eggs for breakfast too.......

I lost a couple of really nice ones!! I kept fishing till the Sun was almost behind the western ridges. I caught a nice rainbow under the fading light. 4:23PM exact.

That's all for 2011. It's been a great fishing year. Let's wish another FISHY year for 2012!!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Fish of 2011

 I guess it's about time to reminisce and look back the year and to decide the "Fish of the Year". Well, I've been working (fishing, I mean) very hard over two month and I am planning to visit DePuy's one or two more days this month before 2011 ends, but I will settle on this one from October 16th.

It's guessed most likely a spawner running up from the Yellowstone. We all know the fact but when it really happened to me, it was more than surprise.

With my 5wt rod and 3X tippet, I followed him, almost falling in the riffle, and I could barely net him in.

Biggest Trout I ever caught in Montana.

24-inch & full 6-pounder.

One of my always "new year resolutions" is to break the record of the last year. It will be quite a challenge and I really have to work on it!!

Saturday, December 24, 2011


Yesterday made the 100th DAY fishing of this year. That counts guide trips, on my own, with friends. Well, I know busy guides/outfitters guide (= fish & work) 100 days give or take during summer months. That must be lots of work & income. Surely I want to get there in near future. This is my first year guiding so there were more learning phases than actual jobs.
It's interesting to break down where I fished those 100 days. I fished three of Livingston creeks for about 30 days. Majority of the rest is divided into Yellowstone River and Yellowstone Park waters. Then I fished nearby waters once to a few times. That's exactly how I want to guide 100 days!! This will be my new year resolution, then!!

Anyway, here's the best catch from yesterday.

I didn't post last night as I went fishing again today! = 101st day!!
The day started with very good actions, including this nice rainbow!!

Then I hit a JACKPOT!! Or I could say "Fishing Santa" gave me the best present!!
At one certain spot, started with this football-shape 16-incher, I caught several trout with only several casts!! Believe me!!

This was good enough so I was going to make this into a greeting...........

There was one more bonus left!! Merry X'mas to a nice colorful browny!!

At last minutes, I ended up catching a nice rainbow as I can't choose used both!!

Merry X'mas to everyone. Wish you great weekend, feast, and fly-fishing!!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Winter-Fishing Has Just Begun......

Today, here in Paradise Valley, we finally had snow that accumulate like snow. At least for next couple of days or till winds blow away tomorrow, I guess. Wind was like a breeze (yet from north). I felt icicles building up on my mane as snow melt on my waterproof hat and drip onto my hair.....
Anyway, I had another great (if not sadistic) day at DePuy's.
This rainbow leaped 3 or 4 times and was the only rainbow for today.

Average brown........

And today's best experience was this sight-nymphing brown!! I saw a couple of fish moving and acting funny in the shallow by the bank. Just one "shotgun" & BINGO!!
I caught 10 or a dozen within 4-hour, give or take, and kept me really busy.
I don't say "trout made the day warmer" like that. It's not really cold as long as one can get out of the door, at least in Montana standard, I think......maybe?
Also, I'm getting to like the section of DePuy that most of people avoid and degrade (I used to be the one). I have developed another fishing/guiding option. Where is it? HINT: US HWY 89 in the back.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011


Howdy Folks, my COYOTE made it to an online source this time.
Go to Fly Anglers OnLine ( and click FOTW (standing for Fly Of The Week) on the left. COYOTE & my name are featured as of December 19th!!
This is the very original writing of mine and has been waiting for the full exposure. It includes background story for development, how-to-fish, tying material list, and tying steps. Now I can't sell my tying instruction then!?
I have submitted a few more flies for consideration at FAOL and now am designing several more new patterns. I keep posting here as I hear in the future.

I'll update the permanent "PAGE" on the right top right after this.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Cattlemen's Convetion & Trade Show

Last night, I visited Montana Stockgrowers Association Annual Convention & Trade Show in Billings, MT. I was "kinda" one of Exhibitors at a booth. It can be somewhat political (yet humorous......!!).

This freebie stuff totally knocked everyone out with love and laugh!! Very practical too!!

It is very important for me to attend this meeting. Getting a breeding job for next year is one. Then great recollections with my old friends and ranchers that I know of. But also it really makes me feel that I live in & belong to Montana. I feel just the same when I'm fishing great waters anywhere in Montana.  Ranching & beef production are legacy & heritage of Montana and I'm really happy that I'm involved in though it may be only a tiny part of it.
Of course fly-fishing is one of Montana traditions too!! So last night the convention strongly made me re-realize where I belong and what I love = Montana.
I'll just do my best effort to hang in there.

Saturday, December 10, 2011


What a wonderful day!! Unbelievably warm & sunny day for this time of year furthermore NO WIND at all in Paradise Valley. It was my day-off from work. What a lucky angler I am!!
On the day-off, I was doing my other job called fly-fishing. I head to DePuy's and today made the 20th Visit with the Winter Pass!! I'm sure I would probably be the one who's utilizing this pass most efficiently. It's all about experiment & observation & learning. When I keep these words in my mind, trout come to my hand.

Again, I can't what a beautiful winter day it was today. Then trout biting my flies made the day even more beautiful. Nice browny for the opener!! He had lots of scars all over his body........

Rainbow in fall color is beautiful too. Somehow her mouth was very soft for its size.

Well, I guess I like a big one after all!!

I actually hooked & lost a few more like this......Happy anyway!!

Call for the day Rainbow. He was in a really beautiful coloration around belly, gills, and head over all. But he slipped away during the photo session after this........I got him in and nobody got hurt!!

With this warm winter (so far in Montana standard) there will be more winter fishing to be done. Nothing wrong with that. But I kinda worry snow accumulation = next year's flow. Nobody wants huge amount of snow like last year = big water of this year, but we don't want a drought year either!! Well, January and February, even March, can bring huge snow storm any time so I'd better enjoy while I can!!

Friday, December 2, 2011

Same Ol' Same Ol'

 It's just another day so I don't repeat where & how I fished and what flies I used. But today's trout deserve to be posted.
Just an average brown, but I noticed a little marking on its mouth. Cute, I thought.  If I ever catch him again, I hope I can identify him and he grows large!!

 And this was one of the most memorable catching experience in my life!!
 This huge brown leaped more than several times, pretty much doing what's called tail-walk, and the swam toward me as if trying to go through between my legs!!

 One of the best of the year for sure!!

 This one was one-size smaller than above, but instead he had a super vivid golden body!!

Here are two closer shots but it seems my body was casting shadow.........


Well, it seems I have to slow down from now on. Someone joked "do the job during winter that actually pays the bill".............. Winter around here can be tough & rough in many ways. Probably all of us would wish if we could hibernate like bears.....

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Every Month of the Year

Mission accomplished. For the first time in my life, I fished every month of the year. I strongly owe this to the proximity of DePuy and its Winter Pass. Plus this coming winter is warm & dry (in Montana standards \(* *)/!!) so far. Winter fishing (let's define from December to February) may not be attractive for most of folks, including former myself. Well, now fishing is my serious job and here in Livingston, it never stops!!
I still see some baetis hatch and rising trout in the afternoon. But other than that, streamer bites are getting low and low in my notes. So the consistent tactics is nymphing, period. And I can't emphasize that there are too many trout in the creek right now. They love to bite on eggs and scuds. This is one of nicest and biggest trout in my books. It was very hard to get him in. Besides his size, see how he was hooked. Nobody got hurt, just my camera lens got a splash and that's all!!

Another example.......but this was easy.

Now this was the legal catch!!

This one actually looked more like "spring-color" for my eyes. Then I still see trout are leaping to get through the fall. Really amazing scenes.

Here's my recent favorite gear and it has become my essentials from now on when nymphing. This 4-different size dispenser from Montana Fly Company should be kept in your vests or pockets. This product is lead-free. And I can testify that it's very easy to attach to and remove from the tippet materials without making any damages. With this four different sizes, one can combine desired weights for any waters, any depth, any flies & tactics utilised, any sizes of tippets, and other miscellaneous fishing situations/conditions.
You can buy/order this great product from fly-shops who deal with MFC.

So, again, I encourage more people to try nymphing at spring creeks. It's the most consistent tactics to catch trout for sure. Especially with Shotgunning, that will change your perspective for nymphing at spring creeks. Shotgunning will keep you moving and never bore you down (just watching a bobber??). Also it will open up your fishing spots, sections, and seasons.
Anyway, I hope I will get out more this winter!!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Bright Friday

Everyone was supposed to go shopping so I wanted to go fishing. With some "turkey-ish" feeling in my gut, I somehow woke up early and didn't hear winds gusting. It wasn't at the hazardous level still dangerous enough to go outside. But "if you don't like Montana weather, wait 5 minutes". So I waited. Snow shower picked up and winds kept on. I waited just about one hour and suddenly everything calmed down.........Creek Time!!
It turned out so quiet that I though I can expect some dry-fly actions. There were still baetis hatch on right days, though not as strong as a month before and I saw only one pod of rising trout. Just one little one is enough for me.

Hatch ended about 2:30pm (at least it got quite slow down). Till darkness, more exploration and experimentation need be done!! I went through a certain section without any actions. In that case, that would be what I would learn and find today then. I really didn't care if I catch trout or not. But I marked another juicy spot on my map!! You don't believe this until you experience this situation. Again 3 in a row at one spot!! Started with a nice rainbow (they are getting well-colored too!!),

then a nice brown, which made me feel "I'm full for today".

But trout didn't let me go!! Another one in a few casts!! Scar on his mouth was not from my fly by the way.

What a nice day it was!! All trout fought very hard as if they were totally ambushed by me (which I did by Shotgunning).
Happy Thanksgiving!!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

More Shotgun Blasted

I woke up and started to regret & wonder why I had to go fishing on this kind of day........Well at least there was no hazardous wind all day......... Yet it was like this at 9am.

I also found another reason why. I must be infected....... (One can see this in Angler's Hut = Middle Hut at DePuy).

Jokes aside, I fished very hard. Now fishing is my serious job as I want to be the top guide soon, but this was beyond training or practice but a freezing torture to myself. Furthermore, I selected a less popular and hard-to-fish section though I was the only one customer. What was I thinking? I wanted to perfect what I learned & found yesterday. And I think I did.
With the "Shotgunning", my own Royal Ray Charles received more than one approvals from DePuy's trout!!!

In the middle of upper jaw!!

I was not the only one brave heart. Look at this little fella in the middle of freezing 'Stone. I hope she decides to come back to the bank.

Lunch & thawing time!!

I kept trying Shotgunning. I hooked then netted or lost lots of them. I caught a feisty rainbow on the egg!!

Right after that within a few minutes, like yesterday afternoon, pretty much the same spot, I hooked a nice & handsome brown!!

From yesterdays experience, "grip-&-grin" is actually better to keep my sleeves dry rather than trying to lay them still for entire body pictures. So I just braved my hands and I thought this would be it for today.

Wrong!! At a totally overlooked spot, I hooked the best one for the day. It was also totally impossible to get to him without Shotgunning, really!!

This happened right in front of the hut, so I rushed in and warmed up one more time for the last chance. As the Sun setting west, sort of steam was coming up from the creek!!

I could pretty much cover the section and intention that I planned for today. This was the last catch!!

I'd say today was one of the BEST fishing days. It's so satisfying. I pushed myself into the wilderness and survived without falling in, that's one. Then I decoded the myth and rumor of the section I fished. I ended up catching lots of fish and mastering & perfecting new techniques and theories. I figured out why Shotgunning is so deadly. "Because" will make me write three more posts so I can't but you can figure out by watching YouTube clip on my last post!!

Wind is going to blow for next several days. I don't know when I can go back to the creek!!