Saturday, October 31, 2009

The Trout Shack

He can roll out of bed, stumble out the front door, and practically land in a pretty little trout stream. You can't ask for much more than that in a mountain hideaway. My thanks to my Neuse wading buddy John for inviting me up to see his trout shack and fish the Shelton Laurel Creek that's happily gurgling along in front of it.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Dragonfly Riffles

As I drove across the county yesterday, I was struck by the amazing combination of cool overcast morning light, the opening salvos of brilliant fall color, and their combined effects through my polarized sunglasses. It felt like I was driving through an impressionist watercolor painting. That visual imprint set the tone for the day and for the images in this post.

I was on my way to find the Rocky River, a small flash stream located some fifteen miles west of here. Recently, I happened upon a small brochure distributed by the Rocky River Heritage Foundation that described the waterway as "37 miles of beautiful pools and riffles resembling a mountain stream" and it seemed worth a short trip to check it out.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Arkansas River Ambrosia - Colorado Style

A time honored, traditional recipe. Good for both body and soul.

1 medium sized Colorado freestone river
2 lifelong friends, aged and generously salt-and-peppered
2 large boxes of hoppers, humpies, and assorted terrestrials
1 flask of Kentucky’s finest

Reduce the river over a slow Indian summer heat and then cool with the first breaths of high country autumn frost until the surrounding aspen dazzle the eye.

Add the fishermen and sprinkle liberally with the terrestrial assortment until the mixture begins a slow boil of rising trout. Whisk lightly with 6wt utensils and carefully strain with a fine 5X monofilament mesh, removing the fisherman and a precious few trout after a long, satisfying day.

Clean and dress the fish - a simple field gutting is sufficient - and place them on ice. Marinate the fishermen with the contents of the flask to soften their grizzled flesh and set both fish and fishermen aside to chill for a couple hours.

Friday, October 16, 2009

To My New Fishing Buddy

You don't know it yet, young master Carter, but your grandpa is ready to take you fishing. Yes, he knows you are only a few hours old, but don't worry. He'll wait.

Grandpa wants you to enjoy this time when all that is important in life is that you eat heartily, sleep soundly, and poop with gusto. (In truth, he envies you this simple existence). But as soon as your world expands, you and he can get started. You can begin with Dr. Suess' One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish, except that in Grandpa's version the redfish are tailing and the bluefish are swimming happily in bait balls with their playmates Manny Mackeral and Fattie Albie.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Natural Halloween Decorations

We have some early Halloween decorations displayed, courtesy of this marbled orb-weaver and a whole host of his friends. They have been in a web building frenzy of late and it seems I can't walk out of a door in the morning without getting a face full of silk. The corners of our decks are a fly's worse nightmare and forget about walking in the woods without getting draped in a layer of gossamer fine threading.

I wonder if fish like spiders.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Clearwater Memories

I know it's cliche, but a picture truly is worth a thousand words. That is, unless you are comparing my words to the images created by my buddy, Alan Folger. Then the exchange rate is more like ten-thousand per pic. His beautiful images capture the simple grace of our sport and the fish we love.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Explaining Another New Fly Rod

And now, the winning ticket for the TFO Lefty Kreh Signature fly rod is, number 4-1-8-7.

YES!!! It's MINE!!!

And, best of all, Mary was there with me at the annual club pig pickin' and saw that I hadn’t spent an arm and a leg on my newest fly rod, this time. All was right with the world until that all too familiar sense of deja vu began to creep in…