Tuesday, April 26, 2011


A lightweight beer. A lightweight fisherman. A lightweight day on the lake.
Hoped for bass. Expected pickeral. Caught crappie.
Not much of a challenge on an 8wt.
But there are worse ways to spend a glorious Carolina Easter weekend.
Most ways are.
A lightweight beer. A lightweight fisherman. A lightweight day on the lake.
Southern spring delight.

Thanks, Jo and Dewey, for a wonderful time.  We love ya!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011


I cut me a good straight sapling, ‘bout half-ag'in tall as Pap.

Decided to go with the Predator - graphite, 7’10” 6wt. It’s sturdy in the backbone and fast enough for big flies and a good strong hookset. Slotted on a mid-arbor Battenkill III, the perfect compliment.  Good drag and quick retrieve.

Found some old string behind Widow Douglas' place.

Spooled up a 7wt bass taper, overlining the Predator a step.  Heavy front end punches the breeze and carries wind resistant bass bugs well while the stiffer coating doesn’t go noodley in warm waters. Added a six-foot 1X knotless tapered monofilament leader, stout enough to turn over the big stuff.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Back On Home Waters

I could stand it no longer. Spring is in full riot and my river has been completely unfishable. Regular rains have kept the flow high and the waters dirty – conditions not particularly conducive to my wading habits. But the itch finally demanded scratching and the USGS’s website showed potentially marginal level and flow. That was close enough for me. I headed down the path, bass rod in hand.

Forgot my belt and gravel guards.
Scraped a leak into my waders clearing a trail blow down.
Found the river higher and muddier than I'd hoped.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

The First Hundred

My most reliable fishing buddy turned 100 this week. 100-thousand, that is. Miles.

My Ridgeline has gotten me to the stream before dawn and back to the house on schedule more times than I can count over the past three years. Well, maybe not so much back to the house on schedule, but those perpetually problematic punctuality issues are mine, not the truck’s.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

How Many?

So, how many fishing poles do you have now?
she asked, peering into the back of the closet at the jumble of rod tubes. She knows bloody well that they aren’t “fishing poles”, but she also knows how to yank my chain for a little fun.

Not too many, I responded, and immediately realized the hopeless inadequacy of the answer.

Let me think.

You see, I’m turning into a hopeless fly fishing gearhead, tragically addicted to the feather slinger’s drug of choice - fly rods.  And, like any junkie, I always need just one more.

It all started innocently enough with a gift, a seven foot Dogwood Canyon 4wt, an inexpensive Bass Pro starter rod and reel combo, given to me by my step-sons.  They’d seen my fascination with the clear mountain streams as we hiked the North Carolina Appalachians and they thought I would enjoy splashing about in them with the small stream rod.

They were right and I’m forever grateful, and forever changed.  My problem is their fault.


That starter rod was followed shortly by a sweet nine foot, 6wt Winston IM6, sold to me by my professional and fishing mentor, Frank, for the ridiculous sum of $200.   He’d only fished it once, briefly in Scotland, but said he wanted a faster stick.  Maybe that’s true, but really I think he just wanted to get me going right. Good friend, that Frank. Pusher.


Wednesday, April 6, 2011


We live in North Carolina, our grandchildren in Illinois. It’s not a grandparent’s ideal, but we do what we can to stay in touch. We visit when we are able, do the occasional phone call, and Skype at every possible opportunity. But one of the most fun things we do is send to our three-year-old granddaughter a weekly picture postcard – a Because it’s Monday card.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

The Winds

The stiff westerly wind blew our fourteen-foot Henry O around the lake like it was just another dried oak leaf. Fin and I had hoped to find a few of the trophy largemouths that occupy this small Piedmont reservoir but they appeared to be hunkered as deep against the howl as possible. The fly rods, our preferred tackle, remained under the gunnels, or, in my case, never left the rod tubes, and we futilely tossed our dusty spinning gear against the gale. Sitting here, eighteen hours later, the blast still reverberates in my ears.

Friday, April 1, 2011

The End of the Road

It's a sad day here at Mike’s Gone Fishin’ for today I must say goodbye to you all.  With a heavy heart, and with great reluctance, I plan to pull the plug on the blog, effective immediately.  This will be my final post. I’m sorry.

When I retired, I thought that keeping a blog would be a fun thing to do, giving me a creative outlet while keeping me in touch with the I/T industry from which I’d departed.  I reasoned that a blog would also allow me to incorporate my rediscovered love of the long rod and share my adventures in the outdoors with whoever might be interested.