Saturday, April 30, 2011


All spring I have felt like I was back in high school, playing in the state tourney against a Havre team that had us seriously out talented. They were big (6 ft 9 vs our tallest player at 6 ft 2) and fast (the guy I guarded was Jason of the few times in my playing days when I didn't have a decided advantage in the speed department). Our game plan was simple, and the opposite of our normal fly up the court, press and shoot attack. We held the ball, ran patient offense and in general made the talented boys from Havre aggravated and annoyed. I remember trying to run around the wide bodied screen of the big (and wide...really wide) power forward named Lanning. I remember Andy Cripe and Mike Bauer keeping us in the game with spectacular plays after 50 seconds of passing and cutting. The worst part was that feeling of wanting to run downhill at full speed and having to hold yourself in check. As the point guard, I had to manage the tempo of that game and constantly slow myself and the team down when all I wanted to do was RUN!

The slow pace and start to this spring has felt the same. I look at the weather, the temps the water levels and the rain and all I want to do is run to the river on the off chance that the fish will be in and the sun will pop out of the dark clouds and drop one single ray to illuminate a 30 lb beast in the shallows. It hasn't happened...and we didn't beat Havre that night either. Sometimes you are forced to play slow and be patient...I have never been very good at it.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

San Diego

I flew all the way to San Diego for carp and all I caught was this stupid bass.

All I can say is thank god for google. I had done some searching for carp in San Diego and came up with a goofy man made lake not too far from where I was staying. With work keeping me busy I only had an hour or two in the evening so I couldn't hit the hot spots that a local fly shop told me about ( I have to say, what a beautiful shop and the owner Peter was a great guy. Had I more time he would have put me right on some great carping. As it was, he shared some bay fishing secrets (more on that in a second). If you are in San Diego, check out this shop.

Back to the man made lake...not exactly my cup of tea. I walked around looking for carp and got some funny looks as the only guy with a flyrod...some of the looks could have been because I stood in the parking lot and changed out of a suit to my fishing clothes. Should have just left the suit on. I didn't see a single carp but I saw about a dozen big bass in the shallows. I managed to catch two of them, with the one above being the biggest. It is a pretty nice bass, but...not a carp.

I also took a shot at the bay and thanks to some flies from So Cal Flyfishing and some incredibly detailed instruction I was able to stumble onto some fish. This isn't really streamer fishing, more of a tight line nymph with a salt water over small weedbeds that you can't really see. interesting, and challenging. I got three takes...I think. And landed two fish. No clue what this sucker was

But it fought better than you would think. This fish (sand bass I think they call it) was awesome. Great pressure take and a better than expected fight. looks cool.

Pretty fun deal. I will give it another shot in the morning before picking up the wife and kids at the airport for a few vacation days and some sea world action. I miss my family.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Worst spring ever

We need some sun!

I have every picture I have ever taken memorized, and I have read every fly fishing blog on the net twice. I need to catch a carp badly.

Saturday, April 09, 2011

Thank You Del Monte


Plus this:

Equals this:

And this:

Yeah, ain't on a fly but the kids are smiling.

Sunday, April 03, 2011

The long, cold winter

Continues. Ugh. Not one to go down without a fight I have taken three trips to the river over the past few weeks. Given the conditions none of the trips began with high hopes but the ever present fisherman optimism always takes over while gearing up at the car. So what if you have to put your rain jacket on to stay dry...bad conditions often lead to big fish. So what if the sky is so dark you can actually see better without your polarized glasses...all you need is a tail breaking the surface and you are golden. So what if the water is in the trees and the color of your morning coffee...high water just pushes the fish close to shore. Unfortunately, more often than not bad conditions = crappy fishing, and that has held true this year. I saw one carp, 60 ft from shore floating on the surface of a tiny pond. I chucked a fly out there and somehow managed to snag the poor bugger and scored my first scale of the year. Other than that, I haven't even seen any signs of carp. While expected (it is only the beginning of April) I have to admit I am pretty disappointed. Most flyfishermen will tell you that catching fish is an extra; that the sum of the experience is more important than any one individual piece (pretty sure I have made that comment a time or two) but it sure as hell is easier to say that when one is catching some fish.

On the bright side, at this point I will be taking more pictures like the one above sooner rather than later.