Sunday, April 29, 2012

Runoff Report

Who wants to know about runoff? It's unfishable anyway. Well, we are expecting that water may subside and get some visibility for the next few days and we might be able to fish for one more time  before the real one starts.

I think this is really a funny scene. This is the clearest spot of Yellowstone as of now. "Mountain Dew" from DePuy's and "Chocolate Mocha" of Yellowstone are not mixing well.......

Today, I took a bike ride to check water clarity and temperature. Both were not exciting to report, however I saw lots of bugs along the river. This must be a March Brown.

A classic mayfly species.

Then I still saw Mother's Day Caddis. Lots of them were still hovering along the bank.

These were really huge caddis.

So if water temp would go up without causing runoff, we may be fishing for caddis?? How would it be possible? At least we are hoping to toss streamers one more time.......

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Lakes in Spring

First to report, Yellowstone River has officially blown. There might be a chance to float one more time this coming weekend, at least we expect so, but who knows. 
However, luckiest thing to live in Paradise Valley is that we always have some other places to fish all year around. Today, I could join Parks Fly Shops' "Spring Check Run" to a local private lake in Paradise Valley. What a gorgeous and secluded scenery!! 

With Ben
 and Walter from PFS,

We caught lots of these truly ROD-BENDERS!!

I had some fun too!

Ben landed a huge HOG!!!

We were talking that we need to catch her "boyfriend" who would be somewhere nearby. Then I caught probably her "sister"!! This is the biggest rainbow I ever caught in Montana!!

These lake fish are very strong!!
I just enjoyed three important things today; fish, place, and good anglers. Day can't be better than that!!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Mother's Day Caddis Report - 1 (Maybe the Last?)

Sunny, almost 80F, with big blue sky but no winds here in Paradise Valley.
With my outfitter Dean, his companion YUKI, and my guide friend Jordan on the board, we hit the 'Stone expecting Mother's Day Caddis.

We did see lots of bugs in the air. Peacock olive & beefy body, this was the one.........

However while at the oars, I felt water was getting strong bit by bit (maybe). But surely we all noticed that we were losing water clarity as afternoon went by. Runoff seems on. Hatch is over? Water level may subside again? Who knows? At least streamer-fishing seems doable.
To be continued.......

Guide Event 2012

I attended Simms Ice Out Guide Event again. It was quite a fun again. Simms and other sponsors of event hosted guides from all over North America.

This GORE-TEX demonstration was fun to watch though I wasn't brave enough to jump into (artificial) storm.

Fly Contest was held again at Montana Fly Company's booth. Well......I didn't win this year. But I will talk about this new pattern of mine (and a few others) later on.

We had some seminars for miscellaneous topics. With those education, we sneaked out quickly to "G" River and practiced.

SUPER-SALE was very popular (and crowded) again as that was every guide was waiting for!

My roots for this year.........

It was quite an honor to meet "living legend" Dave Whitlock and his wife Emily.

There were more programs that kept us entertained all 3 days. Mighty Thanks for free beer and foods and SUPER-SALE! I will hang in there and will visit next year. Great to meet all the guides from all over the country. See you along the river!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Quickly to 'Stone with My Boat

Well, today I got a call from my guide friend "let's go". So here we were on the Yellowstone River at HWY89 Bridge.
Cloudy overcast day with not much wind. Fishing was in a slower side. Streamer bites were not as good as expected. We found a "LONESOME DUCK". Usually we see eagles or hawks are sitting like this but never seen a duck like this.

We started to see "pods" of rising trout in the afternoon. March Brown, Baetis, and midges were on the water. They seemed to prefer large bugs. Purple Haze was a great choice.

Nice size rainbow on a dry-fly!!

We expect Mother's Day Caddis this weekend!! To be continued.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Quickly to 'Stone

Right after I hit "Publish" for my last post, I drove to a wading section of Yellowstone River. Now is the most emotional time of the year for anglers around here. Runoffs, streamers for big browns, and Mother's Day Caddis hatch. It's totally up to Mother Nature and River God of Mighty Yellowstone.

Baetis were already on the water and kept popping. However no rises were observed.

Believe or not, I found Skwala Stoneflies on 'Stone!! (please correct me if I'm wrong.)

Look at this huge egg-sack!!

Baetis kept popping in the air and almost 4pm, I finally started to see rising trout and I stood below the "pod". Why that late?? Let me tell you it's all about water temperature. This is the same scenario as I observed at DePuy's!! I was sure trout were after baetis. Well, "You know my name" (Beatles' song).

I felt it was relatively nice trout. I netted him in just as my Cripple got broken from my tippet. Nice Yellowstone Cutty with a radio tag for research purpose by Montana FWP (ask them for details if you are interested)!! This is very rare!!??
Nice!! Beauty!!

So next I tied on "Parachute".

AHAHA!! Bigger Cutty hit me!!

This pic is not perfect but it's mostly in my memory anyway. Nice & Big Cutty on my original tiny flies!! Can't be better than that!!

I haven't seen caddis yet. But with steady weather pattern with less winds are predicted, we are hoping caddis will pop as we wish!!

More Original Flies Online

A bit being late to post this, as I was busy posting the fishing report. OK, my original patterns have been featured at Fly Anglers OnLine again. Go to, and click FOTW (Fly Of The Week) on the left side of screen.
On March 26th, "Pheasant Tail Mayfly Parachute" was added. This is the sister version of "Cripple" 9featured on January 2nd).

And most recently on April 9th, "Royal Ray Charles" was added. This should be counted among one of the best scud patterns in the world.

For more stories and tying instruction, please drop by FAOL. I gotta update "PAGE" on the right later. But also I gotta go fishing right now!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

What A Guide Can Do

Yesterday, I joined this volunteer event.

I offered a boat rider so other people can hop in, float the river, and pick up trashes. I heard there were 27 boats offered this year from outfitters and guides from Livingston and Bozeman.

Weather turned out to be another beautiful day here in Paradise Valley!! Best day to float the Mighty 'Stone!! But we looked for "trashes", not "bugs" and "rises"!! This one almost all sank my boat........just kidding, this century old gas tank was beyond human muscle and should belong to the land/ranch.

We actually didn't pick up many trashes, which is a good thing. River users may be aware of conservation.

However, with all the effort from over 100 people combined, we picked up a lot!!

I am really feeling that I did something good and meaningful for river and society. Yesterday 14th was actually the very last day of DePuy's Winter Pass. But I sacrificed my fishing for this volunteer. Fishing must have been good and enjoyable at DePuy's but I'm still happy and proud of my decision. Last year this time, I was applying for the guide license for the first time and wasn't really sure what to do; degree & amount of involvement. (But also I recall and other people remember that it was snowy & cold on this event last year.....) Now I know I belong to here in Livingston as a fisherman, a guide, and as a resident. Especially as a guide who utilizes this great river of ours, I paid my due and show my respect to The River God. So I pray  that it will be a great fishing and busy guiding season for me along Yellowstone River!!

Friday, April 13, 2012

The Last.......Thanks

Today is the last day for me to visit DePuy's Spring Creek with Winter Pass. So total 51 days from October 15th 2011. I spent almost 2 months at the creek out of last 6 months. Before I become emotional, let me look back today's fishing.
The perfect weather to be outside!! Sunny, blue sky, and NO WINDS!! When I was ready to fish at 10:30am, midges were hatching and trout were rising already.They were all feeding at really tight and techy spot. Fly selection, presentation, vision, everything had to be perfect. I just ended up catching a little one. The one who sipped my Foam Emerger (below) was quite large as it broke off my tippet in a nano-second.

These are two of hit-flies for today.

I found this CDC OIL from Montana Fly Company very useful for any CDC patterns and to rub tippets.

In the afternoon, midge rise still went on but trout changed their feeding behavior. Now I call it "technical". How did I do? Well, I was out of 6X spool so I wasn't aggressive to change flies or to cast into tight spots (excuse & excuse.......).

You all readers know that I've been fishing the creek for "learning & observation" to be a better guide. So what did I learn and observe? That's way too beyond to summarize in a single blog post, nor I want to do a series of "educational" posts as that's not my intention for this blog. (although I had left hints and comments for what I saw and thought every now and then.) At least I can give myself credit that I committed my objectives and determination and finished my homework. Then I ruminated what my Guide Mentor Tom Travis taught me at first "learning & observation will never end" as it happened this afternoon at the very end of Winter Pass.

I'd really thank Smith Family; Betty for welcoming me every time I knocked on the door and Daryl & Theresa for answering my compulsive phone calls. Next time when I do that, that will be when I'm guiding my clients at the creek (bigger the wish, more likelier to happen?).

Cheers & see you along the creek!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Grand 50!!

Well, I finally made it. Today marks the 50th day to visit DePuy Spring Creek with winter pass. Tomorrow is the last day so I would write some emotional lines tomorrow night, maybe. (Pass lasts till 14th Saturday but I have another important plan.)

It turned out to be my favorite weather pattern but fishing wasn't dramatic. It was calm, cloudy with occasional showers and breezes. Not to mention, I had a huge expectation for baetis and midge hatches. However, this weather is also suitable for meat department = streamers!! Maybe the 10th cast in the morning, I felt an attack!! Nice brown. This tactics would have worked all day if I had wanted.

In the late morning, I experienced another "techy" midge hatches and rising trout!! I thought I fooled three but nothing on the line!?

Afternoon turned out to be rather patient time. I moved around and observed if there would be hatches and rises. At a certain spot, I got this little 'bow and thought it would be a good start but that was all on the surface.........I just didn't see enough bugs to cause rising trout.

Goose was nesting. I took this pic quickly when mama was out for hunting.

Tomorrow will really be the very last of my self-training and experiments!! To be continued.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

50 Eve - 49th Day

Today marks the 49th day visiting DePuy's Spring Creek ( I booked tomorrow and Friday too so this is the very last tag for Winter Pass.

First thing first, I DIDN'T rig up nymphs and streamers at all today!!
Right after I got there, lots of insects were flying in the air!! Midges (no picture), caddis, and baetis. All these were in a few different sizes.

I thought I may not see any rises yet but at least I should be able to start with soft-hackle swings. Then just after 11am, I observed "dimple rises"!! Trout were looking up on midges. It's been a while to experience this "techy" situation. This simple midge fooled two nice trout but both were gone before net & pics. Rises lasted 30 minutes or so.

Numbers of insect in the air decreased in the afternoon but they were still around. As water temp got high, trout finally looking up somewhat consistently. For baetis, well, my own Pheasant Tail Mayfly Cripple always does wonderful jobs.

Then this is my new pattern on trial.


X2 Caddis worked too.

Weather seems to cooperate for next two days. I'm really happy that I am finally experiencing spring hatches at the very end of Winter Pass!! To be continued!!