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Piss on this weather, there is fishing to be done.

21 Apr

With the rain letting up just enough to tease before the stream guages get blown out again by that bitch of a mother nature we said fuck it and packed up the gear, boat, and coolers for a rondavu on the Watauga river.  I met up with Ryan and Chris for a short float on friday that was productive but only slightly beyond just getting a line wet.  That night we were joined by Tim the broken heart Doctor from theDrake Forum for arnold palmers and Vodka until late into the night.  Saturday mourning Shane joined in, also from the Drake, for a lazy river boat ride down the Trophy section of the Watauga river followed by some post generation wading.  Repeating it all again on Sunday minus Shane.  The fishing wasn’t the best we’ve done on these sections of river but who can really complain about floating down a river, drinking beer, eating food and fly fishing with NO OTHER BOATS IN SIGHT?  We did manage a few nice fish and the weather held out for the most part with a few sprinkles here and there.  I would like to indulge everyone with our after hour shenanigans but my contract, nor wedding vows will allow it.   Enjoy.

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Tennessee Pusher

18 Mar

The camping gear is finally dry and the yota is sparkling, that means our Tennessee weekend is over.  3 days of slinging big chunks of meat on 8 weights would typically scare away the average fly fisherman, but with the thought of turning a 30 inch fish burnt into our minds it didn’t matter how much work we would have to put in.  I met up with Chris and Ryan friday around 2-ish for a late afternoon float on the upper So-Ho.  Ryan doesn’t need an introduction, no one likes him and he always catches a big fish bla bla bla.  But Chris has just returned to the States after serving our country, doing what I’m really not sure but i have a few ideas, and he’s glad to be back.

The following day we picked up a few players from the Drake Forum including the man who has touched the ass of every bass on the Holston River, Randy “Super Awesome” Ratliff.  With all 4 boats locked and loaded we launched all 4 crafts (1 hyde, 1 lavro, 1 x-13, and 1 clackacraft) from the campground and began to covered every nook and cranny of the next 14 miles of river all the way into Bluff City.

Sunday the decision was made to do some exploring since it was the weekend and it was absolutely beautiful outside which meant every guide and average joe would be out on the water. We were down to 2 boats and the 4 of us that were left could row and throw so we headed for an untamed section of the Watauga river for an 8 mile float.   The fishing was great all 3 days, plenty of fishing on nymphs and good but low numbers on streamers.  Just about everyone caught fish on nymphs, streamers and dry flies.   No one landed that “Big” fish although the group did turn some big heads which you could tell by the spontaneous outbreaks in loud profane language that could be heard up and down the stream. Including in our boat. I got to add a few more people to the phone list of fishing buddies and I can’t wait to get back down to the So-Ho for some low water action.

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UPDATE:  Today is March 17….got a call from Ryan.  Him and Chris floated the upper section of the Watauga again today and boated at 25 inch brown.  Be sure to check out AppFlyGuides for a report and pics soon to come!!!!!

I do my Anti-Rain Dance Naked!!!

9 Mar

God of your Choice  + 

the Willingness of Mr.

=Me on the South Holston

Catching These

Louis cahill Photography

I’m not asking for much I don’t think.

Pass the TOmato Juice….I’ve been Skunked!!!!

21 Feb

The smell of skunk still lingers and it will take at least until the next trip for the smell and thought of getting skunked to air itself out from the mind, body and soul.  I’m even considering a Intravenous transfusion of Tomato Soup to help speed my recovery.  I can’t recall the last skunking that I took on a trout stream, but from what I do recall of it I think it came from this same stream a few years back.  Don’t get me wrong about the NBP, it’s a beautiful stream and a great float trip.  The upper and lower sections both are plentiful with trout in the wild and stocked varieties.     

Despite getting punched in the face by Mother Nature’s occasional gale force winds and then getting kicked in the NUTS by Mr Trouts lack of cooperation, it was a good trip as far as company and a comfy boat ride goes.  Blue bird skies, warm temps, good food, cold beer, plenty of laughs, a 2 day old fresh stocking of fish, no problems with the boat, or running shuttle (thanks to JMM).  We did have a few chasers and a take or 4 here and there but nothing to hand.  Personally I blame it on Teddy for;  1.  Not drinking any of the beer I brought (wife probably told him he couldn’t).  2.  Spending 99.9% of the trip on the Lean-Bar (see reason 3).  3.  Rowing the boat around like a 1 armed kid with turrets syndrome scaring the shit out of me  (was his first time).  So basically like I said I blame 90% of the skunk on Teddy and around 10% on myself, but I’m sure I can think of ways to lower that 10% (CFS drop from 680 to 370 less than 24 hrs of our arrival and water temps in the 37-40 range).  

STOP HERE if you expect to see anything of the Trout variety below…………..it’s not all about the fishing…….or is it???   

On the Road to Shangri-La.

Yet did we know that smell was not only from the plant but from the skunking we were about to get.

The Prius gives birth to the Nanner.

Access to Shangri-La.

Locked and Loaded.

Famous "Is this thing on?" GoPro camera picture. Anyone who owns a GoPro gets at least 4 or 5 of these a trip.

The first stop.

Teddy playing the Re-Rig Game.

Your's truely after rowing a class 8 rapid.

Picture perfect section of water that usually produces 15-20 trout.

Lunch time with Mr Mountain House

Built in Prius Rod holder.

The End

Little, Yellow, Awesome

26 Jul

Got a day off to head to the S. Holston and watch the sulfur factory belch bugs till the little orange bastards covered the river like your favorite blanky.  There can be situations  where there are too many bugs but I liken it to having too many testicles.  People may point in horror at the sheer numbers, but you’d rather have three nuts then have none. Enjoy the pics by my buddy Steve.

– Nymph-0

Friday is Picture day Silly Rabbits: Trips left Unpublished

23 Jul

07/23/2010:  Seems like every day I get time to hit some water a summer thunderstorm showed up and pissed on my parade for local loitering at the watering hole.  Mitch and I did make it up to the Elk river about a week ago but neither of us were smart enough to bring a simple digital camera so we broke out a small underwater video camera.  I just haven’t sat down and cut anything to show anyone.  I would say the fishing was great but what else would anyone expect when 2 expert fly casters like ourselves set foot on a stream full of fish. 

What I’m going to attempt here has never been done before……I’m going to give you my little version of someone elses trip.  One of many trips that haven’t been posted on and that I have only seen pictures of.  So here goes. 

Once upon a time there was a young man, probably mexican, named Ryan, we will call him Raul.  Raul was planning a trip the next morning to his favorite Tennessee river.  There Raul sat, naked in his basement, sitting indian style in front of his self-made fish god shrine that he prays to daily.  How else could 1 person have that much luck with so little skill on the trout stream?  It can only be the work of the devil.  There Raul sat speaking in tongues, pouring hot wax on himself, drinking the blood of a virgin female goat in order to call upon the fish god once again. 

As you can see below his new water exploration did not disappoint.        

elkriver2010005.jpg picture by Bentrod2010

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North Branch Part Deux

6 May

Every year we head North to the Maryland , West Virginia line to fish the North Branch Potomac tail water. Last year was a banner trip, lots of fish, and numerous fish landed over 20 inches. This year was another story,well at least the first part of the trip.

Last years pics !

Number 2 within 20 mins !

After working all day on thursday, I loaded the truck, and hit the road. One Redbull and a 5 Hour Energy shot and I was hopping. It was the longest 7 hours of my life, my body was tired, but my eyes were wide open from all the energy supplements.  I wheeled into the Savage River State Forest and set up camp around 6 in the morning. Murph, Mitch and Jeff (aka Shawn) wheeled in shortly after I did.

I had a quick pepperoni roll breakfast along with a redbull and I was set. We launched the boats , run shuttle, etc and were fishing by 9:30.

Evidently WV had just stocked the put and take section above the Catch and Release section, cause the hoards had converged on that section of river. It was a sight!

What a Pussy! Nice day on the river and he is sick!

On to the fishing, or lack of good fishing. It was a killer day weather wise, 80 plus degrees, sunny, bluebird skies, but the fish were hunkered down. I managed a few fish, but the one that stuck out in my mind was the Cutthroat I landed after lunch.

Murphy seemed to have the hot fly for the day, because he was catching three fish to my one. Mitch was sick and slept through most of the float. Jeff kept changing flies until Murphy graciously gave him one of the special flies he used to rake fish. I reverted to the streamer game and had many follows and missed strikes, but none seemed to want to commit.  So needless to say, Friday wasn’t a banner day. But we were on the water and that is what counts.

Saturday we fished the section Below Westernport where the dirty water discharge from the paper plant stains the river. Our amigo Otto had joined us for the remainder of the weekend. Jeff left earlier that Morning and Murphy left for Florida the night before (might I add Murphy is a giant D-bag for bailing on the rest of the weekend).  According to some this section of river holds the biggest fish. But man its an ugly float for the most part. A difference of daylight and dark when you compare it to the upper section we floated Friday. Anyways, the fishing was steady, and a lot better than Friday. Most fish were cookie cutters, a few 14 inchers, and one lost 16+, and a few bass in the mix. We found the flashier the fly the better.

We floated for about 8 hours, wading and exploring some side channels along the way. After the float Mitch decided to call it a day early and head home. Otto and I returned to camp for some dinner and beer. Shortly after we get back Otto found some fresh Morrell’s that had taken up residence under a tree near our tents. We threw together some fired potatoes and deer back strap for dinner, drank some beer and watch the fire. Shortly after polishing off some beer a MD DNR officer showed up. He was checking   see if we had paid the camping fees and to inform us that Maryland had just passed a law starting in 2010 regarding the possession of Alcohol on State lands. Well this was new to us, and since we were from out-of-town and the law just went into effect. he let us off with a warning. I will say he was a rely nice guy, and he filled us in on some really good fishing spots.

Sunday we awoke to cloudy skies and fog. It had rained during the night. We packed up camp ate some pop tarts and headed back to float the Barnum section, and get some redemption on the fish that had eluded us on Friday”s float. After dropping a truck at the takeout, we arrived at the put in just as the rain started back. There was a dense fog blanketing the river as well. We launched and worked our way down to the C and R section. It seemed like a great fishing day. Cool temps, a light rain, and a little fog cover. As soon as we anchored I nailed two fish and lost two more. This continued for the next several holes. The fish were definitely eager to eat. At one point I watched a nice bow come up and eat on the surface and return to the depths. One cast later he ate my nymph and gave up a hell of a fight.  Otto was nailing an equal amount of fish as well. he was drifting a crawdad pattern along rock ledges and was cleaning house. My only question at this point was ” Where the hell were these fish on Friday”, it seemed like a totally different river.

Poor critter didn't make it across!

As it neared lunch time we pulled the boat off at a killer wading spot to fish and eat. We decided to wade out and fish for a few. After a few casts I hear Otto holler big fish, so I made a mad dash for the boat to retrieve the net and stumble down to him. Sure enough it was a big fish, and she had no plans of giving up. After slipping and sliding to get down river and sneak up on this slab I was able to net her. We snapped a few pics and Otto released her unharmed.

On my way to fish a side channel, and I am confronted by this pissed off goose!

The rest of the day we floated drank some beer, and slapped streamers.  Knowing I had a 7 hour drive back, we decided to call it a day at 4:30.

Ryan