Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Day 2 of Powell

Because the fishing at Powell was pretty slow we decided to head east and catch a few Pike. Fishing was not nearly as fast as it was for us in the spring but we did manage a few good fish. Brent took the largest fish of the trip.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Striper (not Stripper) Search

Brent Stout and I spent a southern Utah weekend at Lake Powell in search of Stripers. A Striper is the only Utah game fish that Stout has not caught on a fly and this weekend he was going to accomplish that goal. We thought that the shad would be in the bays with the stripers following. Right at first light we saw quite a few small boils, probably small or largemouth chasing little schools of shad. These small boils were nothing like the large bay filled boils that I have seen in Youtube videos of Stripers feeding on shad. We kicked and rowed our little boats all over in search of boils and big fish. We were able to find a small boil that produced some smallmouth.

Another time I was taking a break high on a rock enjoying the scenery in shell lady bay and I was able to witness many small boils and watch the small mouth attack the bait balls from below. We were not able to catch any stripers, although we did catch many other species.

I am not sure if it was the full moon or the recent cold front that caused our limited success; nevertheless, it was a great time in a magical place. There is nothing quite like kicking a small pontoon next to hundred foot cliffs or having a small bay all to yourself. Next year I am going to try again and hopefully the timing will be better and we can find the stripers.

Confident green sunfish and bluegill

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Perfect Lake for a Lunch Break

Every September there are a few local Stillwaters that start to get good, and when I say local I mean 15 minutes from Salt Lake. On one such water I rarely see another Fisherperson. The water is Emerald Green, Crystal clear and full of shore line patrolling aggressive Bonneville Cutthroat. I go to work, hit the lake at lunch for an hour (or two) catch fish, no more stress...

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Great North Slope Trip

Brent called me and wanted to catch some Utah Grayling, so off we went to a North Slope Lake. On the way out we saw Pronghorn and this nice big Bull Moose. We hiked our boats into the destination lake and right off the bat we were hooking up with Grayling. These were not wimpy 8” grayling that you see near the Mirror Lake Highway but these were well fed with bulging bellies and big beautiful dorsal fins. We measured a few at 14”. This lake is also famous for large Brooke Trout, we were not able to catch any giants but we did manage some respectable trout. The only downside to the lake is the lack of cutthroat. In the 80’s I used to catch some nice cutts in the lake but they were nowhere to be found on this trip.

On the way out we decided to stop and check out the stream. Brent saw some glimpses of red and down we went for a Coke or two. What a great day to get into the high country.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Grandpa Thomas

A couple of weeks ago I received news that my Grandfather was in poor health and did not have much time left on this earth. My Grandfather was the person that taught me how to fish when I was a young boy, at first with worms and live grasshoppers he showed me how to sink them into the deep holes of the Bear River in Rich County. As I got older I moved on to Daredevils, Panther Martin spinners and eventually flies behind the clear bubble. In my early teens he showed me how to use a fly rod at Little Creek Reservoir just west of his home in Randolph, Utah.

Every year when school got out for the summer I would go spend a couple of weeks in Randolph fishing the many waters and riding the miles of dirt roads in the Fish & Game truck with Grandpa while he checked licenses, busted poachers and completed his general conservation officer tasks.

Grandpa retired in the early 90’s and moved back to his home town of Duchesne, Utah where he was able to purchase 10 beautiful acres right on the Duchesne River. We have had some incredible days on the river, including caddis hatches right at sunset for enormous slurping Brown trout.

I got the call tonight at 7:30pm that my Grandpa passed away peacefully at his home in Duchesne. Thanks Grandpa for all of the lessons and memories.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

I finally went fishing again. It had been a while but the wait was worth it. I fished my favorite stream for a few hours this morning and had a great time. I was the only person on the water and the CRC's were fat and handsome. No browns today. Hoppers were the ticket (the kind with big rubber yellow legs)

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Pike & Bass Weekend......on flies

With a new supply of salt water streamers I hit the road with Brent Stout to try a reservoir in southern Utah that was rumored to have abundant Northern Pike and some pretty nice Largemouth. We packed our boats into the Chevy Impala and gassed it to our destination.
This was my first time fly-fishing for Pike and I was not quite sure what to expect. We were not on the water more than 10 minutes when I had my first take. I was slowly stripping a big yellow and white streamer which was tied onto a 20 mono tippet. The fish was gone as fast as it struck. My mono looked as if it had gone through an extra fine cheese grater. Luckily Brent had his Tiger Musky supplies and hooked me up with some toothy critter leader.

Shortly after Brent had a fish; it turned out to be a small Northern Pike. Just after Brent got his fish I took one just outside the weeds. With such a bright fly I was able to watch the take. The Pike strikes are vicious and they would pound the sides of the streamers with ferocious speed. We kept catching Pike and even mixed in a few Largemouth. Just before lunch as we were making out way over to the dam a small group German tourists stripped down and decided to take a dip. It turned out that this is a hot spot for swimmers and as we sat eating our subways on our boats we were entertained by three large girls cliff jumping off of the rocks. “Come on Hailey, just jump”

As evening was approaching Brent threw on the Black Popper and started to slay some nice Large Mouth. I could only get the dinks to rise to my popper but I did manage a few nice Bass on the streamers.

I think that it is safe to say that this is going to be a yearly trip for me.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

More Stillwater

I was reading a post on Utah on the Fly about how bad a certain Stillwater had become. I found it pretty entertaining considering that I have been fishing this little lake for about 5 years and this was the best that it has ever been (for me). Big Juicy Rainbows

Monday, May 4, 2009

Another lake, another ice off

I decided to head solo up to the most popular stillwater in the state. The ice where I fished was about 30' off the shore and there was a slight breeze. The weather was typical Utah spring conditions including snow, rain and sun. I only fished for about an hour but it was a productive hour for cookie cutter 16" Cuttthroat. I was hoping for some of the big boys but I never found them. Today the ticket was a small black tadpole imitation under and indicator at the ice edge. A slight breeze or twitch was all that was needed to entice strikes.

Friday, April 24, 2009


April is a great month to Fly Fish in Utah. I love fishing Ice off. It was a great day for catching as the ice was retreating at a local stillwater. The ice is going fast and the catching should be pretty good for another week or so. We caught Rainbows, Tiger trout and Crayfish. It was not as fast fishing as last year but we still managed a few doubles and too many fish to count.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

I don't know how but little brother talked me into hitting the lower Provo. As always with this stream I had to resort to the old basketball skills of boxing people out and flaring elbows. Once we were able to establish position on a good run the fishing was constant for chunky rainbows and browns.