Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Memories of October

I've got to get out fishing ... and soon ...

My last trip fishing was back in October. I managed to sneak away from work for a day and went fishing in the Jemez with my friend John. The two of us left home well before dawn on a nice Tuesday morning. Why Tuesday? Because John had the day off from work and besides, how many fishermen are going to be out on the stream on a Tuesday in late October? I mean besides the two of us!

Anyways, here's a few pictures that reminded me of the good time we had that day. We only caught 4 fish between the two of us, but had a lot of fun on the river. The first brown I caught decided that my personal variant of the Elk Hair Caddis would be worth the take. I tie this EHC with some golden pheasant tippet (dyed the feathers bright orange using Kool-Aid!) for a tail, a peacock body, elk hair for the wing, and flame orange thread. You can see the fly still hooked on its upper lip. This is the first (and so far only) fish I've taken on a dry fly. It was so much fun to see the fish rise and take the dry fly! I'm looking forward to more dry fly fishing this year.

I saw this little fish cruising in a shallow pool off to the side of the main river flow. I cast a few times towards the head of the pool where there was a little stream of water entering and let my nymph float along in what little current there was until it had passed my target. On the third cast, my soft hackle hare's ear did the trick and "Fish on!" Sure, someone's probably looking at this fish thinking, "But it's so little!" Maybe so, but I still caught it and had a lot of fun doing so. And besides, maybe I'll catch this same fish again this year, only this time it'll be a bit bigger.

Here's John with a nice brown trout. John found a great spot on the river where he was able to pull out this brown and a rainbow. As I recall, this brown trout put a little bit of a bend in John's fly rod as he brought the fish to hand. Good fun and a good looking fish!

Looking back at these pictures has really made me want to get out and catch of few of those beautiful brown trout. I really want to find a place here in NM to catch some brook trout - those are some good looking fish! I'll have to do some NM fishing research to see if I can find some brookies here in the state.

Also, I've realized that I need to get a new pocket-sized digital camera. Our old camera was "destroyed" over Christmas. I need a way to take pictures of my fishing adventures, right?

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Casting Practice

Even though it was a bit chilly on Saturday, I wanted to get out and practice casting. So of course I generously suggested that we all go as a family over the park. I think the last time I had my rod out was back in October. It felt nice to get out, string up some line, and throw a few tailing loops. Yeah, I know ... not good, and I've got a several new wind knots to get out of my practice leader, too. But that's why they call it practice ...

Heidi really liked this picture. It captured the flip in the loose fly line I'm holding in my hand. Pretty cool! (click on the picture to get a better look) Of course, it also shows what a horrible cast it was - I was dropping the rod tip seriously far down on my backcasts. Still, a nice picture nonetheless ... and a reason to practice more ...

I had placed my hat out on the grass as a target. I would cast as best I could from 30' out and try to land the tip of my fly line on top of my hat. It was good target practice. Hopefully I'll get pretty good at this in due time.

For a while my hat was replaced with a moving target. Heidi said, "The fish don't hold still." Well, neither does Sydney, at least not for long.

Of course, this time at the park gave Syd and I a chance to practice casting together. I hope she had a good time casting the fly rod for a few minutes. I'm looking forward to when we'll be able to go out and catch some fish on a fly together ...