Wednesday, September 10, 2014

A Slow Summer

I hardly fished at all this summer.  The early summer rains swelled the streams to unfishable coffee flows early in the season, and life got in the way.  When I did make it out, the time spent was usually short and I was greeted by the skunk.  I did have a great time fishing in Michigan on the annual trip.  Here is a highlight reel.

Big rock bass

my smallest fish

Dad setting the hook in the background.

This bass had taken both mine and
my dad's lures!


 One of the nicer fish of the week.

I only made in into the Milwaukee twice this summer.  I caught a couple fish both times

My happiest day fishing was just a couple weeks ago.  In the Menomonee, I had a light hit on a scud, so I set the hook.  I gave my rod to Cleo after I was sure she could handle it, and I let her bring it in.

Isn't she the cutest little thing?  Of course I filmed it.

Sorry it's been months again, I still don't have regular computer access.  I'll try to post more regularly.  I'm feeling like the salmon are going to run very soon!

Sunday, June 1, 2014

A Pretty Good Week

A good week indeed, considering the slump I'm coming out of.  After a few other failed attempts at landing a carp on fly gear, I finally brought one to shore in the concrete section on the Menomonee River over Memorial Day Weekend.  The fish wasn't as big as the one I hooked in the marina a while back, but this river carp took off downstream and led me on quite a chase!  It was like trying to slow down Juggernaut from X-Men with a 2X tippet!  I never really did slow the fish down,  it circled back upstream and looped around.  As the fish came back down, I scooped it with the net.  I snapped one quick picture and released the fish.

I think my 9 weight is a little bit too heavy for a size 8 streamer.  The Juggernaut started to straighten my hook!  

A little later on, I was making casts at a pike, and what I thought was a pile of goose poo jumped in and attacked my fly.  It scared the hell out of me!

Bullfrog on a Woolly Bugger, that's a first!  the frog was very upset with me, but he seemed fine once he got back in the water.

Yesterday was such a beautiful day, I made a last minute decision to make one last trip into Waukesha County for the season before it's unfishable.

The grass is already getting tall, but the water isn't overgrown yet.  The ground is still very swampy downstream, and I had hits, but no takes.  I decided to try it out upstream on more solid, manicured ground.  I was able to find some nice fish in the relatively short period I was there.  I fished about an hour, landed three trout and missed about a half dozen or so.  Two of them were really close to ten inches, one was about five.  All were beautiful

I took one of the nature trails through the wilderness back to my car.  Everything turned green so quick this spring.  Soon it will be unbearably hot and humid.

When the dog days come, I'll be waist deep in the Milwaukee chasing smallmouth bass.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

The One That Got Away

Saturday morning, Cleo and I went to the Washington Park Pond to test out her Ugly Stik.  We found a worm in the leaves and fished under a bobber.  We caught no fish, and neither did the other dozen or so people around the pond.  Little Cleo sure had fun though.

Later on after dropping Cleo off, I drove down to Lake Michigan with my 9wt to catch some warmwater fish or whatever else.  There were a few bass, some pike, many very small hatchery trout, and schools of very large carp.  I went for the carp.

I had a hit early on, but most casts toward the schooling carp went unnoticed.  The hit was enough to let me know I was on the right track though, so I kept at it.  Eventually I put my fly right in front of a carp.  As it sank, he dove for it like I had just thrown in a piece of chocolate cake.  I set the hook.

My 9wt  held up to the fight perfectly but I lost the fish at the shore trying to land it without a net.  It counts, right? a long distance release?  I caught a little video right before I tried to land the fish.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Two Week Long Slump

Wednesday was my day off of work, and I was determined to spend as much time as I could trying to end my slump.  I planned on fishing in the Menomonee for rough fish, possible late steelhead and whatever warm water species might be in there.  I got a new reel for my 9wt and I'm yet to break it in.

I picked up my little girl and started for the river just after 9:00.  It wasn't long before it was raining, but we continued.  As we got closer to the river, it became apparent that the crews were working at the improvements again.  And they were working right where we usually find access.  The rain really started to fall, and we were forced to seek shelter under the Wisconsin Avenue bridge over the valley.  The Menomonee would not be fished today.

The storm really raged.  Thunder and lightning, hail, and a raging torrent where the Menomonee flowed calmly minutes before.

With my morning plans ruined, I dropped off Cleo for her nap and made for the Cafe Hollander for lunch.  I had a wild boar sandwich with ginger sriracha barbecue sauce, sweet potato fries, and a Chimay White.  Truly a world class beer and a great meal all around.

Round two, we headed out to Oconomowoc for some trout fishing.  All I could do was hope that all the  streams in Southeast Wisconsin weren't totally blown out by the storm.  I know this stream rebounds quick, but how quick?  We were going to find out.

The stream flowed clearly, but the surrounding land was swamped.  Walking along the stream was a miserable experience.  I was ankle deep in muck much of the time as spot after spot failed to yield any fish.  

Finally, the stretch above gave up one trout.  Cleo said "I love that brook trout."

The slump is over.

Friday, May 2, 2014

Slow Week In Milwaukee

I've went out fishing three times this past week on the Menomonee and haven't caught a single fish.  I did, however, catch this adorable turtle by hand.

Yesterday, I tied some flies from some clearance bin craft store yarn hoping they'll be good for rough fish.  I call the flies "hooker eyelashes," it's funny on a couple different levels

The fishing was no different yesterday than it has been.  I probably covered a mile of stream and only saw three fish.  I think the rain and cold has slowed the sucker run, but I don't really know what temperature suckers spawn at.  I took the opportunity to explore the restoration progress since the fishing was slow.  The improvements are looking nice!