Thursday, October 29, 2009

Welcome To Thunderdome...........

This morning I hit a Lake O. trib known as the the Dirty. It has a special place in my heart as it brings me back to my late teens fishing this trib with Big Ed with flies back when others were throwing the infamous Michigan Cricket.

Things can still be chaotic there do to its overpopulation of fisherman this time of year but nothing like it used to be in my humble opinion. I like to take the trip at least once or twice a year for old time sake.

Today I caught a mix of steel and browns. For the most part everyone behaved and respected each other. A nice teenager even volunteered to take a picture for me of a fine male brown.

All fish came on natural color presentations.

Who know where I will be tomorrow.............

Wednesday, October 28, 2009


I got in about an hour or so today before the early morning rains and runoff raised water levels and mucked up the water. I called it a day after two hours to dry out and take care of some business.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Tuesday 10/27/09

I got out for a few hours in the morning. I pulled up to the starting spot in the dark to find 15 cars and people sporadically on the banks waiting for sun up. I did a little walking and found some free water. I did pretty good today in comparison to yesterday but nothing too exciting to report.

The competition must have been alot of out of towners because they were standing in a lot of places where fish don't hold or in the middle of where fish sit thus spooking them.

The benefits of home field advantage I guess.

Rain in the forecast tomorrow...........

Monday, October 26, 2009


East/ South East winds and very tea stained water with limited success today.
I shared the stream today with Bill and he got a few fish.
I pondered if the tannin stain affects the taste and smell of the fish as we went on our route.
I also had a wonderful snag and hadto re-shot and put a new float on the line just as some competition was walking our way.
I told Bill to continue with out me and hit the good spots and I would catch up once the re-shotting process was completed.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Charlie and Jerry..................

The last few days I have been busy. Tuesday I got into a few nice fish on a couple of tribs. On Wednesday I met up with the Connecticut duo of Charlie and Jerry. I met them on the water last year and we shared a few holes and I promised them when they came down this year I would show them an infamous trib that can become brown when you least want it to.

Though we covered some 12 miles of water all I could muster up for them was one hook up. The word on the water was the trib fished poorly for most that day. The boys felt a little better that it was not their skills failing them and that everyone was in the same boat.

We gave one more kick at the can for a few hours this morning with no luck for them before they moved on to a few more tribs and their return home tomorrow morning.

Great guys and good people and I am most definitely sorry I failed them in their first attempt.

After I left the boys, It was off for a hot chocolate and a little scouting before a long needed nap.

On my route I ran into Bill and the Frank(The Premier). I decided after a second wind that I would join them for awhile and we all caught a few fish before going on our separate ways.

Charlie and Jerry great to see you.....

Bill and Frank as always a pleasure.....

Until tomorrow....I hear possibly up to one inch of rain to muddy things up for awhile.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Crisp, cool, and sunshine.........

Made it out for a few hours with the Bill and Frank show. We hit a few tribs but our options were limited as most of the streams were low to very low and clear so you had to get lucky and find some coloration.

We started in the morning optimistic with each of us taking fish quick and a number of floats down but misses on the hook up. It was as if they were just bumping the bait with their nose. Bill and I noted it was similar to spring time behavior as the water temps were a chilly 42 degrees by our readings.

After the swings and misses stopped we moved to another trib to find her clearer than we expected but we found a few light green runs and pools. Action was not that great with a few fish on with the hook spit and one in.

Then were were off to a different trib to do some scouting and walking. she was very clear and it gave an opportunity to make mental notes of all the bottom contours in the stream bed for future outings.

We then packed it in for the day noting the brilliant sunshine , the changing leaves, and the crispness of the air.

Until later....................

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Trib hopping with Commander Tom........

Well I guess this is where I tell you the Commander was in command and how the morning sunshine sparkled off the water like stars in the sky but that would be too sappy for me.

I woke this morning to review the graphs and some tribs were brown and some were low to clear. I told Tom we could just about end up anywhere depending on the water conditions and the countless armies of fishermen out to enjoy the nice day.

The Commander was in command and the sun did sparkle off the water like stars in the sky on top of liquid green.

Yeah whatever and enjoy the gratuitous fish pics. I know too many pics is poor form but the Commander was in command the the sun......ummmm.... never mind.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Mike was smiling.............

Yesterday Mike took a mental health day from the office and joined me for a day on the water. With the weatherman's predictions we were expecting snow/rain and wind similar to the day before. There were a few sprinkles and no wind which made it more comfortable. Friday brought more people on the water and I don't blame them. A lot of people have been waiting for green water.

To keep it short, Mike got a few fish today and lost a few and had a ball doing it. I got a couple too and lost some but the fishing wasn't on fire like the day before. We were on the move as often is the case this time of year as spots you hoped to fish were occupied.

A little exercise and a little fun is never a bad thing.......

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Couldn't ask for more..................

Main Entry: sat·is·fac·tion
Pronunciation: \ˌsa-təs-ˈfak-shən\
Function: noun
Etymology: Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Late Latin satisfaction-, satisfactio, from Latin, reparation, amends, from satisfacere to satisfy
Date: 14th century
1 a : the payment through penance of the temporal punishment incurred by a sin b : reparation for sin that meets the demands of divine justice2 a : fulfillment of a need or want b : the quality or state of being satisfied : contentment c : a source or means of enjoyment : gratification3 a : compensation for a loss or injury : atonement, restitution b : the discharge of a legal obligation or claim c : vindication4 : convinced assurance or certainty

Today Bill and Frank met me in the morning for an outing. We were all pretty fired up about getting out today. We were optimistic to say the least.
We headed into the river armed with the proper ammunition to do battle with the silver bullets.
The water was a chalky green but cleared up nicely as the day went on .

While I started slow with a couple; Bill and Frank hit the right hole at the right time and were on fire.

I found my own rhythm on the water and started slowly catching up. The fish were mixed in sized today from little silver skippers to big mamma's and bucks that fought hard.

By the end of the day there were smiles by everyone and we left happy,elated, and most of all satisfied with a job well done.
Honestly after a day like today one could die and be happy that it was his time.
The weather held despite the drizzle and bitter winds from time to time.
Just couldn't ask for more.
A good day with good people.........

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Frank is the new Premier................

I begrudgingly got out yesterday morning with Bill and Frank. My body has been sore and aching lately.
I do not know if it is the hikes on the water or the latest bubonic plague to be passed around but the body is sore.
After fighting all night in my head, I decided to not cancel.
Bill and Frank stumbled up my dark driveway with flashlight in hand and enter my little steelhead hovel.
The other day I lost the ceramic insert on my Fuji guide tip. Bill was gracious enough to take the time to stop at to pick up a couple of guides.
I had dozed off and didn't clean up too much so they entered a house with fishing tackle strewn every where, waders hanging over a chair, wading boots drying up side down on an old radiator, and empty boxes from Orvis and FISHUSA spread across the dining room table. To say I need a maid would be an understatement.
We hit the water and things were surprisingly slow at first. The temps were in the low 40's with a periodic slight drizzle upon the green and dropping water. Bill and Frank after a while decided to walk down stream and I decided to be stationary due to my aching bones.
After they went on their way I stumbled into a skipper on a jig. The boys on the other hand did better. Well shall I say Bill did all right but Frank was on fire.
On fire like habanero pineapple sauce.(INSIDE JOKE)
Frank evidently skillfully hit the right honey hole at the right time and had his way with a pod of fish. When they made their way back to me and gave me the report my jaw dropped. But good on him. If you put in your time you deserve the fruits of your labor.
We then decided to try another spot on the river. The boys went north and I walked south.
As walked up to my appointed spot it was inhabited by to fisherman so I decided to turn around and work chutes and pockets. The little nondescript type of spots that the majority of fisherman walk by but often hold fish in transition making their way up river. I had a few head shakes but my dull hooks or slow reflexes did not sting them enough for a solid hook set. I'm betting on the slow reflexes.
Bill and Frank at the end of our outing met back up with me to inform me Bill got a few more and Premier Frank got a few more also. Congrats to his Premiership.
Until later........

Friday, October 9, 2009

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

V for Victory................

The day started before daylight with a little liquid crack to alert the senses for my days outing. I slowly walked into the darkness sipping the coffee as my head lamp guided me down the path.
I spent about ten to fifteen minutes waiting for the sun to rise. I took in the welcoming smell of the Timmy Ho's mixing with the damp leafs on the bank. Yes, when I finished my java jolt I washed out the cup and crushed it for safe keeping in my pocket.
What you take in, be sure you take out.

As daylight rose, the muddy plan A trib from yesterday had a good flow today. she was clear in the shallows but a light mint green in the small pools. I knew she would start dropping fast and I would have to make quick work of her.

My first spot appeared to be promising as fish were rolling at first light but there were no takers for my offerings. I moved up stream to another run and instantly on the first drift the float went down.
The fish were fresh this morning and feisty. They were eager takers.

As the day went on I marched to the lake hitting every run and pool. there were some welcome changes in the area of stream from a scouting trip a month before.

The number of fisherman picked up and I worked my way to a current break about 100 yards from the lake .

It was here I got into a few more fish that when hooked decided to make their way back to the lake screaming down stream and giving me a work out.

It was here I ran into the father son team of Mike and Mike from New Jersey. Mike junior was a very nice guy and relayed an incident just up stream. Two younger fisherman verbally accosted them with vulgarity and telling them to go back to Jersey and stay off their stream.
These gentleman were not the stereotypical bad egg out of towners that bully and crowd your holes etc.
These were guys staying to themselves and not bothering anyone.
I felt bad for Mike and Mike so I gave them a few tips and gave them the heads up on the water conditions on a few of the tribs. Early in the week they had fished Pennsylvania tribs and were working their way through New York.
Mike junior had two months off from work and he was turning himself into a steelhead nomad following the runs. He was pondering his next move which may turn out to be Michigan.
I left the gentleman and headed to another trib to check conditions as the plan A trib had dropped to clear conditions over the first part of the day.
The next trib was muddy so I kept moving on.
The third trib of the day was a nice pay off. It was dropping and slowly turning from brown to green. Timing is everything in life and this was no exception.
Hitting fish when the water is on the drop is a beautiful thing.
The fish were silver,fresh, and furious.

It turned out to be one of those reaffirming days. After yesterday's discouragement, it was heartening to have your hard work and efforts pay off in a big way.
I didn't get off the water until 6pm and made hay while the sun shined as tomorrow's weather is forecasted to bring high winds, rain, and thunderstorms.
But for today, life is good and I feel like a new man.
Until tomorrow..........

Monday, October 5, 2009

The difference between a good fisherman and a great fisherman......

The difference between a good fisherman and a great fisherman does not lie in how many fish are caught when conditions are perfect but how many fish are caught in less than perfect conditions.
I met Bill and Frank for a Monday outing. As they pulled up, I was tilted against the truck seat with the door open, half leaning and half standing with a Tim Horton's in my hand.
Bill looked at me as I drank my coffee and said "whats wrong?"
I said "look at the water. "
Bill replied "too shallow?"
I said "too muddy."
Bill and Frank made their way out of their vehicle to confirm my statement and a change of plans was agreed upon.
We hit plan B as the morning light showed her face against the boiling water and current seams painting a dark greenish brown hue .
The water was less than perfect but in comparison to our alternatives it could have been worse.
We would have to make do.
The weather was pleasant for a change and we were pleased with the changes in creek from last year. I surveyed my options and got to work.
The result for my efforts today was a big shiny goose egg.
Bill got and few and Frank got more than a few.
Hence the difference between good and great fisherman.
These men produce regardless of the adverse conditions and I........
Well lately I am mired in inconsistency.
I have a few good days mixed in with goose eggs.
I strive to be consistently consistent in all conditions thrown my way.
So that at the end of the day I do not mutter "God damn Canadians!" as they just smile and put their rods away.
I humbly submit to my masters for now...........just for now..............

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Failure to launch..........

Tom an I got out this morning with the best of intentions. The graph was dropping. Not to the extent we would have liked but it was going in the right direction.
As day light made the water clarity evident, we witnessed a brown flow with a little clarity in the shallows.
There were fish rolling and jumping on the move but no luck came our way. The conditions were less than perfect and an hour or so into our venture it rained pretty steady and more mud was added to the stain .
On my way back across the stream, I bumped into a fish with my boot sitting in 12 inches of water behind a few rocks.
We did not attempt to hit any other tribs as we were pretty soaked from the down poor and not feeling the Mojo.
Drying out until tomorrow...............

Saturday, October 3, 2009

The graph went up..............

The graph went up so I fished the clear water in the lake adjacent to a brown tributary mouth. Today there were no fish jumping or rolling out there and my luck was nil.

On my way home I checked out two other tribs and they were muddy.

Oh well we had yesterday.........

Friday, October 2, 2009

What goes up must come down.............

This morning I rolled off the couch at 5am. I woke up for bit, threw on the waders, and drove down the street to meet Bill at the access point. After the muddy and off colored conditions the last few days I was hoping we would catch the water on the drop and catch a few fish.
The water was more green than brown and things were setting up well.
We started on our walk and fished a spot with no luck but there were fish around. On our way down stream, Bill aka Mr. Mountaineer took a brief spill navigating some boulders in 2 feet of water.
Like any good fisherman Bill sacrificed his forearm and knee to save the rod and reel. No worse for the wear Bill moved downstream with only a wet arm and a shocked look on my face for his troubles.
Bill is a former fireman and will give any man 20 years his junior a run for their money. A man who walks up 3 foot banks and wades across 4 ft boulder strewn runs without blinking an eye. It usually is me playing the part of the dancing bear slipping on rocks or shale.
Well I guess his unexpected baptism was good luck because a few minutes later we set up and Bill got into a few fish. Fish will always make you forget about wet sleeves or broken rods.....mmmm.... well I will leave that for later.
We met up with a friend of Bill's, Craig from Cambridge and the three of us spent a few hours sharing some water . Craig was a friendly guy and a pleasure to fish with.
After leaving that area we moved up river. Bill caught a few. I caught one which decided to release herself when she got close to me and Craig had a few.
Now back to the mmmmm..... this is where Bill while fighting a fish on his IMX hears the ugly sound of his rod snapping. He reeled in what he could and hand lined the fish to shore for release.

God what horrible sight. Well they say adversity builds character or something like that. To remedy this unfortunate situation , Bill and I hopped in his truck and drove down the street to my domicile to pick up a spare rod I had laying around. We got back to the creek and re-rigged and went back to work.

We took a little walk to find some untouched water and Bill got into few in some rock filled runs that the fish were using as a transition area.

By noon the rain started at a steady pace and we decided to call it a day. I would hazard to think that if the rain keeps up the creeks may be muddy again for Saturday.
Bill is cursed with a generous soul. As he is aware of my desire to purchase a Kingpin sometime in the near future; He surprised me with a reel form his collection to use as a loaner. Now I have an opportunity to feel the difference first hand in comparison to my old warhorse.
Bill thank you for your thoughtfulness and Craig a pleasure to meet you.
Until tomorrow.................

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Goldie Locks and the Three Bears............

You know how that story goes. Well that's how it was with trib conditions today but I didn't find one just right.
Fishing felt like work today and that is never good.
Per chance a good nap and a little HNIC tonight will revitalize my weary soul.
Until tomorrow.............