2015 Photo Dump- Flies and Fish

Continuing to dig through lucky shots for 2015. This time featuring the true stars of the show, Fish and the Flies we use to fool them. There is a ton of scrutiny out there at the moment regarding grip and grins and fish mortality. There is even some finger pointing at the guide community claiming our cameras are some sort of weapon of mass extinction all of a sudden. I can only speak for myself and the guides I work very closely with daily in saying all the fish I trip on are treated with a great deal of respect. They feed my family and I truly hope a strain  of these wonderful creatures survive for countless generations in these world class waters. Truth be told most fish people land are not picture takers and they are not even touched. Grip and grins are well thought out, talked about and done very quickly with wet hands over a good rubber net. A wet fish at water level is even better.

That's all I got on that, seems like a trendy perennial topic for people who never catch fish and just assume they must have been killed by some dude who caught too many.

Respect Eagle River Wild Trout

Yeah, Le Squirm makes the "best of" cut

Barn Hole Cuttbow

Winter Caddis Magic

Spring Sipper

Cha Ching

All Muscle Eagle River Rainbow

White Beads, not just a lake pattern anymore.
Get your self some Acne today, whiteheads are all the rage.

Brad Gamble and my Client Fish of the Year

I've always said "If I ever grow up and get a real job, what little vacation time I got I would use right here on THE Eagle River." Prettiest damn fish on the planet.

Carry On, 

West Slope Jig Rig

I've been around my share of comp flies in the past several years. To be honest with you I never found the need to REALLY look at them until a year or so ago. These guys catch a shit ton of fish but in most cases I looked at patterns that made me giggle a little, but facts are facts and they were always railing fish. So recipes aside I logically decided to put my bugs where these knuckleheads were putting them and it all starts with the hook. The jig hook itself makes gin clear sense to all of us dirty nymphers and especially so once the weeds start taking over the bottom of trout town. Sure Frenchies, Walts Worm, Valdi's Boo Boo and those Hot Spot La La La's work but my wheel was already round. So onto the old Jig Hook goes some of my proven poop and boom.....I'm hooked on the jig baby.

After jamming my nonsense on jig hooks I had to tweek the traditional rig and get them to where they do the most damage. My normal nymph rig, like most peoples, puts the attractor pattern and the weight at the top of the system with smaller flies  dropped below and of course Mr Bobber pulls the train.The New Zealand lads taught me it's called "Truck and Trailer". The jig will work there, as the first fly in the rig, just make sure there is a barb or a pinched one there if you tie droppers to the bend of the fly (I lost a half dozen bugs from the tippet sliding off barbless hooks before the light came on). An eye to eye connection works well also.

Truly getting Jiggy would mean I would eventually have to drop the goodness to the bottom of the system. Don't worry, the bobber remains, I can'y try out for Team USA, I don't own a blazer. Jig on the bottom means small flies above it on tags, which can complicate things for 74% of my clients, but I'm having fun with it.

Love to lead with little Stones and this small #12 Golden Stone has an even nastier bite with it's hook riding up. I jam 18-20 wraps of .030 Lead Free Wire on the shank and then flatten it with pliers so the gap isnt compromised. The wing case is coated with Fluorescing UV Clear Coat just cuz I'm tricky. 

Jig that Caddis. The Fall Caddis Color rocked it o the Upper Colorado and the Eagle August- September.

Originally used for the a late Summer PMD pattern but the touch of yellow
helps this little booger work all year

Flip that shit over.
Carry On

2015 Photo Dump- Ankle Biters

So I sat down to try and pile up the best images the ol Nikon captured this year and like every year, I realized I pushed the button a few times. Too much to choose from so it's categories this year starting with everyone's favorite, children, ankle biters, spawn, your freaking pride and joy.......OMG get a picture of my kid please!!

No fish were harmed in the process of collecting these memories and possibly creating a new steward of our dying sport, just saying.

Kid proved youngsters can do it from the boat......sweet glasses too.

White bead and a small clown.

These 2 little demons set the skittle record this season.

Great Father-Son double for the Knights. Not really an ankle biter anymore.

Spent a few lovely days with a couple of lads from Team New Zealand. They clobbered it.

One of my favorite families to fish with and one of my favorite guides to work with. This shot and coined phrase "hardest working guides on the planet" is one of the best moments I have managed to luck into.

Again, I'm pretty sure no body was hurt in the creation of this image.

Time flies by, it won't be long before he is rowing for reel....

I'll be honest, I don't always enjoy guiding youngsters (say under 8) but when the stars align and the kid has some patience, focus and likes to learn they become the most memorable of days. Thanks to everybody who has let me baby sit your kidos with a fly rod, now keep them the hell out of my boat until they are old enough to pay for your trip.

Carry On  

Gen 2

Lost an old friend a few weeks ago, one that has been by my side for literally thousands of fish.
I had a chance to look back and see just how many pictures that net was photo bombing, I remember every moment. Here's a few high lights from over the last 8 years or so with the money stick..

Spock and Fiver, upper Roaring Fork

Sam's first look at a trout,
I miss the Valley Pond.

Pipeline with Brooks and Eddie the day
Sam netted 30 and got his first tip

I talked so much with that net in hand
it understood bad north eastern english

Doubled as a wading staf for
lots of important crossings

One of THE best days I ever spent with that
net. 9 doubles with John Muir and Lew

Fishbus weekend with the big Zim

Multiple pre season runs with

Doc and the only place we were allowed to
float with Sam back when

THE G and a blonde on
the Fork one fine fall day

Got to be 70 pounds ago. That net many have landed 70 pounds
of fish for mr Thompson over the years.I remember this day, 
with Scott and his dog George, I believe there was a
razorback chub involved.

So let me introduce Generation 2...

So it begins fresh. Hopefully that old wand is in a good place, holding a shit ton of fish....like it's used to.

Carry On