|Humping way too much weight for what we are doing.|
Thursday, May 31, 2012
Monday, May 28, 2012
Thursday, May 24, 2012
|By local standards this Brown is a trophy.|
|Rattlesnake crossing the trail.|
We made it to a one of the huge pools and I managed a 12 inch brown trout that looked as if it came from the Owens River. If I showed this photo to anyone, they would be shocked to know that this fish came out of this dinky water. It's shocking. We moved to the next pool and it seemed the fishing halted quite a bit. Even getting dinks was proving difficult. On this pool I managed another brown that while not as big as the last was a nice specimen. It was probably 9-10 inches. I missed a few more and lost a few good ones when my tippet failed. Continuing to move upstream, Chul fished a pool where he missed a nice 10 incher the last time he was here. This time he managed to coax him to hit the fly and took him out of his slot that it called home. We arrived at the waterfall and at my second cast I managed a nice rainbow. Chul had a nice fish on until he bumped his rod on an overhead branch and lost the fish. Several casts later the hole shut down.
We started to make our way out fishing a hole here and a hole there. Chul managed a few dinks but the fishing had shut down on the river for whatever reason. Perhaps its the changing barometric pressure or something but we were convinced it's the wacky weather that is coming in. We hiked out of there and got in the car and headed down the mountain. By this time it was past eight and when we reached the bottom we found our selves on the wrong side of a locked gate. Oh crap! It was past 8PM now and pitch black. I saw a silhouette of a man on the other side of the gate and when he came into the light of the car I noticed it was a cop. I got out of the car and he let us know that the gate closes at 8 and you can be cited it you don't make the closing time. I apologized and he opened the gate and let us go without incident. I thanked them and wished them a good night.
Wednesday, May 23, 2012
|Me with a 6lb carp wearing the stupidest pair of fit over sunglasses ever.|
|The fly bent from fighting the carp.|
|Tuck wet wading even after I warned him -WTF are you thinking?|
Saturday, May 19, 2012
|My Best Fish of the Day|
The original plan was to backpack deep into the canyon and camp for the night but that plan was scraped so we were just to fish on Saturday. Chul's girlfriend was to join us. The new plan was to hike deeper than we did the last time and fish all day.
We made it to the trail head and hiked the trail beyond where we dropped in the last time. Finding a safe entry point was proving difficult and finding some fly fishermen already on the water moving downstream was discouraging. After looking at a few sketchy areas we finally found an entry point and after made our way down carefully navigating over a rocky area. Our entry point lead us into an area that required that we swim through a deep large pool to make it back. So before we decided to get wet we ate our lunch not only to lighten our loads but also to make sure our food doesn't get waterlogged if we couldn't get it out of the water. After lunch we fished a few downstream holes before we started our swim upstream.
I was the one to lead the way. Honestly I didn't think it was going to be that hard but then again I never had to swim fully clothed and with wading boots and with one hand while carrying my waist pack and rod above the water. I must have made it about 15 yards before I realized this was going to be a bitch. Its a good thing we wet waded, had we wore waders we would have drowned for sure. I swam to the nearest rock face and found a hand hold. I rested here to catch my breath as I just dove in and the cold water took my breath away momentarily. After a brief rest I swam to the next rock hold I could find. This time though my hat and glasses came off and I grabbed them with my free hand I panicked a bit as I sank and took in a big gulp of water. I managed to find an area in the rock face that I could place my rod and waist pack so I could put away my glasses in my shirt pocket. Holding my self up here for awhile to try and regain my composure, I decided screw the contents of the waist pack and get it wet and swim with both hands.
|Erika Makes the Swim|
|Miner's Lettuce. Edible with a peppery taste.|
|The Arroyo Toad |
I made it to the edge where I could stand, I turned around to find Chul and Erika not there. Did they find an easier way around? If they did I would have been pissed. After a brief moment they reappeared and made their swim. Chul wore his vest today and was able to place both rods in his rod holder in his vest. They were able to swim with both hands so they made it much easier than I. Both made it across and we stood in the sun to warm up wring out water from our shirts. I'm glad we did not backpack this weekend. It would have been impossible to pass this area with a backpack. A few more places in this area required some more deep wading and alot of boulder climbing. It was more exploration than fishing.
We did manage some nice fish but none the beasts we were looking for, many respectable fish in the 8 inch range or so. I managed to hook a large fish, it looked like a 12 inch fish in the water so it must have been at least 14 inches, while on top of a boulder. While trying to find a way down safely the fish came undone. Past this area we ran into the group of fishermen we saw above from the trail. I chatted with them for a while and watched one of them catch a solid 12 incher using his nymph. hey told me they knew very well the swimming hole we just went through. Two of them had exactly the same experience as I.After chatting we moved upstream they moved down. We caught several throughout the day. Chul managed a solid 12 incher or so in a section of water I would have never fished. It was slow almost stillwater section of a long pool. He later told me he caught another about the same size after I left him there. I fished several pocket water catching fish ranging from dinks to 10 inches. I did finally see two Federally protected Arroyo Toad that have given our fishermen such a headache. We managed to finally reach our drop in point from last time. Chul and I fished the tight section where we saw a flash of a very nice trout in our past outing. After a few drifts I had a hard take on my stimulator. We landed it and it was a solid 11-12 incher. While a nice fish, we concluded it was not likely the fish we saw the last time. The flash of the belly seemed much taller and fatter.
This trip was brutal. Alot of swimming. Alot of bouldering. Alot of tough work. The fishing was not as good as the last time. Mostly because we were working so hard just to get to some fishable water. Nevertheless I think we all had a good time and we managed a few decent fish. I told Chul the next time we trout fish lets choose an easier (in terms of hiking) place. I think he agreed. We had dinner at a nearby Italian restaurant and the calamari and pizza definitely hit the spot. I was so hungry I probably could have ate a rhino's asshole and it would have tasted good. Throughout our hike Erica and Chul did show me some more wild edible plants which was nice so if I ever get stuck in the woods at least I will know a few more edibles to keep me alive until help arrives. I'm not sure how many calories I must have burned throughout the day but I'm sure it was a lot.
|Chia seeds that have a boba-like texture|
Thursday, May 17, 2012
|Chul hooks up on his first ever carp with his new Sage DS2 rod|
Normally such an occurrence would leave me cussing but for whatever reason today I just moved on. Within minutes I spotted more and casted to them. I missed several. I would either be late to set the hook, too fast to set the hook or just pull the fly away from the fish. I was on a pod of fish when Chul called again I let me know he was here. I let him know where I was on the water and met up. I spot a few fish for him, by this time the wind was ridiculously hard. Casting was now problematic and I was concerned that I had Chul come over again just to waste his time. We fished together at several pods trying to get one to take. Chul as what seems like an everytime occurrence, sank too deep in the water filling his rubber boots with that nasty ass water. I chuckled and we moved on.
Afterwards I managed a dink largemouth just so I wouldn't be skunked for the day.
Tuesday, May 15, 2012
Monday, May 14, 2012
Sunday, May 13, 2012
Saturday, May 12, 2012
|Chul's Monster But There are Bigger Ones Out There|
With a bad taste in our mouths from our MVL outing on Thursday, Chul and I wanted to head out for some fast action on wild trout. Our plan originally was to hit a mountain close to home on Friday but since Chul thought rather than go after dinks we should head out to a further mountain stream where respectable fish can be caught. I agreed and we changed our plan for a Saturday all day outing. As I woke up on Friday feeling like crap I was glad that the plan changed, not to mention the fact that I have heard recent reports that serious fish are being landed here.
|Typical Sized Fish For Here|
Saturday morning I woke and drove to Chul's and we headed out for the hour and half or so drive to the mountains. Its such a pain to get here from where we live that I rarely fish here as much as would like especially since gas prices are what they are now but big fish live here. I have personally witnessed a 18 inch fish spook out of the undercuts and have seen some photos of 20 inchers on the internet. That is unreal for Southern California where a 10 inch wild trout would be considered a trophy. We managed to reach our destination to find out that the second gate was closed and so we had to make a short hike to the water. Once we made it to the trail we saw one fly fisherman rigging up on stream. Our plan was to get in deep hiking on the trail til we found a decent entry point to hit the water.
|Viola. Edible Flower With a Sweet Flavor|
We finally found one and made our way down, cautiously looking out for rattlesnakes. Chul lead the way and said at least if he startles a rattler it will most likely strike me as I followed behind. Thanks pal. Making it down without incident, we fished the first hole we saw. I managed several out of my hole including one with a large bump on its head. None were of the big fish we were hunting but nonetheless they were fun. Much of the fish were the same as we moved upstream. Chul managed to find a pig in some pocket water, we ended up spooking it but we managed to see its wide tall fat body flash as it moved. Unbelievable.
We continued, excited about seeing a beast while looking for another. The fishing continued to be great and while we were catching several fish in the 8 to 10 inch range we were still on the look out for the pigs. Although I considered fishing nymphs before this outing I decided to keep my intrgrity intact and stay with dries. I refuse to fish subsurface on our local waters. Simply refuse. Chul rigged up a dropper on his stimulator. We found a deep pool and I began fishing the mouth. I landed several good fish while Chul spotted me on the ledge of a granite boulder. With a good vantage point he spotted two pigs in the submerged structure below. After my fly cooled down I told him to fish his set up. In no time Chul had one of those pigs on his dry. It was a bit comical trying to see him land this fish that refused to give up or even to let him take a photo of it. Once he finally got his fish and picture we moved on.
|My Best Fish of the Day|
Moving upstream we continued to get more fish, many in the 10 inch plus range. I managed one at least 12 inches maybe more but not much in the mouth of another large pool. These fish do not quit. They continue to fight. They do not like being held and struggle as you try to remove the hook out of its mouth. Chul helped me land his one and held it just long enough for a photo. These fish definitely have spunk. We debated beforehand on whether or not to bring a net. We opted for leaving it behind. That was a mistake that we will not make the next time. Toward the end of the day I was coughing up all my insides as the smog was unbearable. The winds must have pushed all that to the mountains. I was having a hard time not choking. You try to escape the city and it still finds you such is life in and around SoCal. It was a long day and I didn't get home until about 10pm after Chul and I had dinner near his house. It was a long day but a good one. Hopefully we make it back there before it gets Africa hot out there. The plan though is to camp out there one night so that we can thoroughly work that water without being rushed to do so and find some more of those lunkers. We both lost several good maybe even great fish today including Chul's last cast of the day. That one was a pig. We will be back for them.
Thursday, May 10, 2012
Wednesday, May 9, 2012
Ground Wild Boar
Fresh Thyme, Rosemary
Yukon Gold potato
Peel and boil potatoes in boiling water.
Prep work. Grate onion and carrots. Mince garlic. Take herbs off the stem and chop.
In a large pan add oil when pan is hot and pour the meat and season. Brown the meat while breaking it into small pieces. When brown add grated veggies and garlic. Once thoroughly mixed add tomato paste and a few splashes of Worcestershire sauce. Mix thoroughly. Add red wine and reduce. Once reduced add herbs and frozen peas and chicken stock.
Once potatoes are cooked, drain and mash them adding cream. Season and add Parmesan cheese. Mix. Finish with creme fraiche.
In a casserole pan scoop meat filling and level it. Add mashed potato on the top and shred more cheese on top. Poke the top with a few holes so steam can exit. Bake in a preheated 400 degree oven for 20 minute.
Not long after I managed a 4.5 pounder. After releasing it, I hadn't noticed I was in some sinking mud. I was at least shin deep in the mud before I moved and lost my balance. I feel right on my ass landing in some of the nastiest black mud ever. Although I couldn't see I could only imagine what it looked like-as if I shit my pants. To clean my pants I squatted over the water as if to take a dump and started scooping water on my ass while trying to clean off the mud. I only wished one of my fishing buddies were around to witness this as it must have been hilarious. Thankfully this area is not widely used by joggers or morning walkers as I can't imagine what they would have thought I was doing.
I started to make my way back to the truck looking for tails on the way back. A pod of 5 of so rather large carp were on the other side of the river. I double hauled to reach the other side. I lost connection with the fly line with my stripping hand. The carp took it on the drop. I set the hook with only one hand by rotating my waist to the right. Surprisingly the fish was on. This one was about 3.5.
While trying to cast in front of a cruising carp I spooked it but continued to strip and felt a light bump. As I pulled him in I noticed it was a baby bass. Its nice to see that the bass have successfully bred. This is only the third bass I've ever caught out of here. All fish caught on a BH Rubber-Legged Hare's Ear on a Sage 6 wt XP with Abel Pt5.
Monday, May 7, 2012
The Tricky Dick:
Tail: 3 strands of midge krystal flash
Body: Goose biot (any color to match the hatch-I have brown, tan, black, among others in my box)
Thorax: Black/ Gunmetal bead (can use gold but ideally use a dark color)
Legs/wings: 2 strands of midge krystal flash on each side
Head: Black thread
Thursday, May 3, 2012
|Another Pig Redear on a Five Weight. Weighted just a hair under 2 lbs|
I gave Chul the Sage DS2 590-2 I built him and he fished that first with a gurgler. Armed with my RPLX 10 wt, I started with a monster rattle popper Webb gave me. The Charleton Reel, I was using was loaded with an ancient shooting head. So ancient that the running line wasn't even integrated into the head. This set up sucks. Do they even still make set ups like this? I certainly hope not. I bored rather quickly with the 10 wt, as I usually do when I fish big rods. So I switched to my recently repaired T&T 5wt. I've said it before and I will say it again, I absolutely love this rod. Going from the 10 to 5 wt was like night and day. I felt like I was casting air. After seeing some bass in the shallows Chul switched to his 6 wt and sinking line.
|The Days Arsenal.|
From then on, the rest of the day it shut down. Literally. Hundreds of casts and various flies produced not even a single strike. The sun was starting to poke out of the clouds by then. For whatever reason the fish became lock jawed and would follow the fly for a bit but refused to honor us with a take. We did find two other locations that held monster bass. I would guess at least 10 lbs maybe bigger. Its always hard to judge fish size when they are in the water, they always look smaller than they actually are. Towards the end of the day we did find a bluegill nest with at least 10 huge bluegills in the immediate area. They were fighting, mating, spawning, or protecting but none wanted to open their damn mouth. I have no ideal what happened to the water and why it just shut down. Although the fishing sucked after having to come back to the marina, we at least managed not to get skunked. We found 2 new locations where some of the monster bass are located. Chul got to fish his new rod and I managed to fish two of my favorite rods that are now finally back in my arsenal (Sage RPLXi 890-3 and my T&T Helix 5wt S).