Saturday, August 26, 2017

Mid Summer Report

As August proceeds, another heat waves have picked up. Yet, majority of Montana and Yellowstone Park are running cold with median or slightly above average flows. Just know where to go and what to do. In mid summer, massive hatch of one particular insect subsides (say, PMD on Livingston's spring creeks) instead so many other insects hatch all together in modest amount, along with terrestrials join as "seasonal special" for trout. In a way, enjoyable or challenging, it's the "dry-fly month".

One of my favorite streams in YNP is particularly good for my clients and I. It's been producing large trout constantly this season. That being said, they don't come easy😏

Then Bighorn dry-fly paradise in ON👍😎 
In this river, any time of the year can be a prime time for fly-fishers. After huge flows of abnormal cycles earlier this season, river flow has become the shape we know of. That being said, river is not gin-clear due to turnovers up in reservoirs. Water temp is higher for this river, 60s not 50s. And aquatic weeds have grown tall while water level was high, now those are left protruding over the surface...............Sounds disastrous? NOT AT ALL😬❗❗
Trout over there actually don't mind at all, rather seem enjoying new surroundings. Think: the water temp is lower 60s in the middle of summer and broom of aquatic weeds means broom of food sources. Again, it comes to the point: know where to go and what to do. 

We went to a scouting trip and our focus were hatch & rise. 
Insect activities are tremendous😲❗❗ 
Starting off with Trico spinner fall early in the morning, Pseudocloeon (tiny Blue Wing Olive) follows right after. Trout sip on these tiny mayflies voraciously yet very picky. 

Black caddis hatches in the afternoon and trout go one more round of all-you-can-eat-buffet.

I caught a stranger; Goldeye on the dry-fly😅
Trico spinner shuck.
From the boat, terrestrial is the way to go!
Morning lights
 And their breakfast
 Afternoon snack
Once in a while, I may be lucky😏
 This was feisty and strong,
And the best one for the trip👍❗
Cows were cooling down in the river with the snack of aquatic weeds😂

If you haven't fished Bighorn River, better think about it and plan for it. It is such a unique fishery. I put the same amount of fondness and fishing interests & intensities to this river as I do to Yellowstone River, YNP waters, and Livingston's spring creeks.

I will head back to Bighorn River for official guide trips as the next month arrives. Hope to come back with so many memories and pictures. Till then👋

Monday, August 14, 2017

Another Fly-Fishing Saga Somewhere in Montana

Montana is arguably one of the best trout fly-fishing destinations in the world, filled with Native Cutthroat, elusive & enormous Brown, and acrobatic & athletic Rainbow. If we consider Brook, Lake, Bull, stocked Golden, and even Whitefish, our list of destinations will be a life-long pursuit. 
However, have you - either resident or visitor - considered other species could be caught on flies in Montana? It could be somewhat what locals would be involved. Or perhaps, just like anglers from areas that don't have many trout fisheries would love to come to Montana, some Montanans may seek some other species other than trout while still in Montana. That does not mean those Montanans get tired of trout fishing. I, for one, have so many trout waters that I haven't fished but I want to someday and I always look for next memorable trout from waters I fish in regular basis. In my case, it's to push the envelope and open my own horizon and experience.

My lovely companion and I hit one such destination. It was also a debut day of my brandnew Echo Dry 6wt, Redington Rise reel, and RIO Grand line, while being protected by Patagonia Rio Gallegos wader
We had one objective though we had no idea what to expect. I rigged up a likely fly and kept fishing. I got the first unexpected hook-up that got off before showing itself but I felt the take was different from trout. Next time, I was a bit more careful. This is the memorable first fish on my brandnew 6wt rig😁🎉

 Then the second one to be landed. These are Walleye😮.
What a toothy creature 😨
This second one was larger than the first one and put some bends on my 6wt rod.
Then we started to see what we wanted to see. This was the objective that we were there. These beasts are as elusive and tricky as trout. Fly-fishing for them is as technical as for trout.
After some trials and errors, I adjusted myself. I finally made a hook-up. Yes👍❗❗however the moment after I was slightly scared as, though I have known already, these beasts are much heavier and hard-fighters than trout😨😲. I barely brought it to the shallow😥 and with the help of Renee we captured the beast😲

 Yes, CARP in Montana😂😎🎊🎊
This is my second largest fish caught in freshwater (top being the King/Chinook).
Certainly it exceeds any other trout species I've ever caught.
We both made a few more hook-ups but these beasts won't be landed all the time...........

I have a special spot for carp. Indeed that's the first species I fished regularly as I started fly-fishing (that itself is the long story). In Montana, this is quite a change from "trout game". I don't say "different" as it's indeed as technical as trout fishing and requires "fish savvy" even just to get close. Never underestimate...................... one will definitely feel the same frustration as facing the selectively feeding trout on spring creeks.
If you - resident or visitor - want to do something new, "carping" may be the one😏

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Creek Trips in August

Hot days in July seemed to have subsided as we stepped into August.
Fishing condition has been changing; stream flows are now in average/summer levels and trout have changed their feeding habits and overall behavior. I tangibly felt those changes as I had a multi-day trip with a great client. We left middle-days open regarding where we would go & fish then decided as the trip went by. We hit creeks around here and had great fun.

Soda Butte Creek withing YNP was a good starter.

But then we encountered a conundrum hatch + selectively feeding cuththroat 😮. This was actually the prologue for the rest of trip.

Slough Creek fished just about the same. Here's how a guide hide behind clients during the wildlife crossing😅
Morning nymphing was slow 😕 but we picked up some hatch-rise actions toward noon😬
 A nice Cutt on a Green Drake pattern😁🎉❗❗

Next day, we decided to fish Armstrong's Spring Creek right here in Livingston.
This is one of the most challenging periods on the creeks of a year. Some insects hatches are tapering down, while other hatches are hanging in there and/or starting (guess what those insects would be). Toward noon, we picked up some actions but we caught only small specimens (which are very rare to catch in this creek!!). After hearty lunch, it was the Terrestrial Time🐛🐜🐝🐞
At certain stretch of the creek, we had good actions😎👍

Then on next day, we fished DePuy's Spring Creek.
Another challenging day.........😟😵😥 Pretty much the same condition as the previous day, we worked hard..... rising trout, sight-nymphing, terrestrials............ Each method offered us challenges, which continued toward the end of the day........... Then we encountered a very active pod of rising trout. I knew they were after midges. My client hooked a couple but they got off😧. Then I instructed him my the-last-but-not-the-least-supremacy midge technique😬
This time he set the hook well, handled the line and trout, and successfully netted all by himself😁😎🎊
Congratulations to conquer all the legendary trout streams for his first trial👏👏👏
These were the culprits of the day that we were against😲

Also for my personal note, I welcomed my birthday that takes me to a new decade while on DePuy's. This little rainbow is my birthday trout😆😂I hope to keep learning and growing, just like this little guy will.

August has just begun and season goes on some more month, come and fish Yellowstone Country and see you along the streams😉