Friday, October 27, 2017

Moving Back Home

My wife and I have been discussing for sometime to move back to Jasper. Why, you ask, well we are lonesome for our friends and the small town atmosphere that we had in Jasper Alabama.

For me I’ve missed fishing with my buddies that I fished with for over 25 years. I’ve also missed my beloved Smith Lake and the Sipsey Tailrace. I didn’t realize until after we left Jasper that I gave up a fantastic fishing area. I could be on Smith Lake in 20 minutes and on the Sipsey fishing for trout in 25 minutes. The fishing in and around Spring Hill is limited to a few small lakes that are fished heavy and fertilized to the limit. The Caney was a great place to trout fish but driving an hour and half to get there was a bit too long for me. In fact I could actually see myself as I got older fishing less here because of the distance I had to travel to connect with bluegill, bass, or trout.

Cathey and I hope our house moves fast and we can be back in Jasper by the first of the year. We differently need to be back before the spring fishing season begins on Smith, Walker County Lake and the Sipsey.
I will start my BLUEGILL QUEST again in the spring of 2018.  Smith and Walker County Lake will provide the challenge to take some super size gills from their waters.  I never landed anything here worthy of the QUEST-------it’s a good thing my back in getting back to normal.  

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

A Few Odds and Ends

Talk about dreary days, Monday through today would make one think that we are on the verge of winter. Low sixties with steady rain from Irma has kept me inside still dealing with pain and thinking of spring fishing which is a long way off. 

I had a MRI this past Thursday which showed that I have Degenerative Disk Pain which I don't wish on anyone. I will meet with an Orthopedic Surgeon next Wednesday to give me some options on how to relieve the pain and hopefully avoid surgery. The one option I hope he suggests is the Epidural!!

In the meantime I’ll stay in touch commenting on your blog post. ----------------By the way been watching some really great movies lately while lying on the sofa; which is the most comfortable position I’ve found to deal with this ordeal-----check out Sharon Stone in “Running Wild”----5 star movie and worth every star!!     

Friday, September 1, 2017

The Betty Crocker of Fly Fishing

I wonder if you guys knew that all of us bloggers had a fantastic pastry chef in our blog community. I formed that opinion after I sampled some of The River Damsel’s fantastic cookies that arrived in the mail today. These are the chocolate chip variety big and thick that makes you want seconds, if fact I down two after lunch. She also packed in a great read featuring Henry Winkler’s book, “I’ve Never Met an Idiot on the River” which I will read while my back is on the mend. Emily’s thanks so much for the care package; this kind of generosity is why I enjoy blogging so much.
 I needed my spirits lifted today and Emily’s package helped with what I’ve been going through for the past two week; constant lower back pain in my right hip. I won’t bore all of you with the details but I’ve been seeing my MD, Chiropractor and Physical Therapist for the past two weeks and I’m still in pain daily. In fact I’ve never experienced pain like this before in my life. The only relief I can get from the pain is lying flat on my back, which I do quite a bit. No fishing for me or anything else until I get back on my feet, which according to the Therapist could be weeks.
Hope everyone has a great Labor Day!!

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Big Trout Awesome Float

I spent early Sunday morning this past week on the best float trip I’ve ever experienced landing some of the largest browns and rainbow trout I’ve ever landed. My son-in-laws Dad, Ron made the trip with me which was his first fly fishing experience. David Perry, our guide had him casting in no time and on fish soon into the float. The fog was still on the water in places as we made our way down the banks using our 6 weights 9 foot fly rods.
Nice rainbow that give quite a fight on the 6 weight; this trout and the others I landed made up for the number I lost. Fish seem to always hit when the fisherman isn’t watching.
Ron with a quality brown!
After landing this brown I can honestly say that it put up more of a fight than the rainbow I landed earlier in the morning. I lost another brown in this size range because I wasn’t able to maneuver it away from structure.
  The prize of the morning for me was this 22” brown, which was the largest trout I’ve ever landed. I was beyond happy from the look on my face! A big thank you to David for making this one of my most memorable trout fishing trips; I’m looking forward to our next outing!!


Wednesday, August 16, 2017

A Learning Curve

My phone alarm went off at 5 AM and I was up and ready by 5:45 for my next fishing class on the Caney Fork. That’s what my trips are like every time I wet a fly on this beautiful tailrace now. I arrived at 7:30 suited up and made my way to some new areas on the river that I’ve not fished before. As usual the fog was present with no surface activity at all. With expectations of landing stocker trout again today I decided I would use my 3 wt. 9 ft. Streamflex.    

Any of you guys think the brown is more of a fighter than the rainbow and brook?
How I wish I could get my grass in my front yard to look this green----a trout supermarket for sure.
I’m still trying to break the 14” mark here and so far those size trout have eluded me. Fishing the Caney is going to take much more work on my part to equal the success I had on the Sipsey in Jasper Alabama.
Thought I would share some images of my son Jason who lives in Sacramento fishing from his new Hobie Kayak. Fuller Lake north of Sacramento is one of the mountain lakes he fishes there.
 One of the colorful rainbow he landed for the afternoon fishing Lake Fuller!!


Thursday, August 3, 2017

Fishing the Flats

I was back on the Caney again today fishing the flats that level out from the main channel. Some of these areas can be less than a foot and some areas can be knee deep. I seldom wade in water on the Caney anymore deeper than knee deep. I don’t have to wade any deeper than that to land trout there. This tailrace is packed with stocker trout in the size range from 8 to 12 inches. Of course there is the occasional 16” and above but most of the time the stocker trout is the main course. I’ll take the stocker trout all day on a 3 or 4 weight fly rod in the fast moving water. If I’m lucky enough to connect with a bigger trout then I consider that a bonus. All I need to make my day a success on the Caney is outstanding scenery, crystal clear water, beautiful rainbow, browns and brook trout to bend my fly rod and I’m happy. That’s what I encountered on my Caney outing today. 
Quality brown just over the 12” stocker size put up quite a fight just off a gravel  flat in a fast run. This was my only trout to land on a near perfect drift, “is there a perfect drift” for the morning. I landed a couple more rainbows at the end of the drift just letting the midge flutter in the ripples. No mistaking the take when the trout nail the fly on this type presentation. Presentation and patience were the main elements for today's trip, in other words the trout made me work for the takes.

It's really easy to wade here because most all the time you are wading on gravel beds, and occasionally submerged vegetation. The vegetation produces an abundance of food to support a healthy trout population.
Cathey and I have always been a collector of nice driftwood stumps and branches for landscaping , but I think this one is a little out of our range!!!
I spent the morning roaming these flats enjoying another relaxing trip on my favorite southeastern tailrace.
P.S. I have found out that a 5 hour wade trip is about my limit here, the back starts to act up beyond that. There are no boulders to sit on here like the Sipsey but lots more trout, I will take the trout over the boulders!!!