Sunday, December 29, 2013

2013, Closing

As we close out 2013 I'd like to share some photos of a wonderful year. So please enjoy. Here's to 2014, may it be a Happy New Year. Best wishes.

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Winter Waters

Thursday the day after Christmas Kirk and I fished a small stream in southern Connecticut. We have fished this stream many times and figured we knew it pretty well. I had arrived at the stream first and tossed out the pinkie. It was not shown any interest. I moved to several promising sections and they all produced nothing. There are times especially in winter when changes in weather can turn on or turn off a trouts feeding. Today was a typical winter day to me but apparently not to the fish.

I continued to move upstream and came to this likely looking brookie stronghold. Fishing it thoroughly I pretty much covered all of it. In a deep but narrow section I had my first taker. The brook trout was on and a few shakes later he was off. This was to happen again within a few minutes just downstream. 0 for two. Just about that time Kirk came along and we fished the stream together. The next few hours were not very productive for either of us. One bright spot for me was when I fished a shallow riffle and managed to bring a brookie to the surface while pulling back and forth with a Picket Pin. That fish was no further than a yard away from me. The day continued to keep its steel gray color, and now and then a snow shower would take place. It's beautiful fishing in the snow. Time was getting on so we decided to call it a day.

On my way home I pass another stream and it was my intention to stop and toss a fly into the better places, places I hoped would hold a willing trout. On the second cast in the first pool I felt a tug, lifting the rod up I could feel the fish. In a second I held a little brookie. With that I took down the rod and headed for home.

Look what Jeanette had waiting for me when I got home. A very delicious chill breaker.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

A small stream, brook trout, and dry flies.

Christmas Eve day left me a small window of opportunity to fish. I chose a small stream not to far from home so I was able to get as much time in the woods as well as line time in the water as possible. This stream had not been fished by me since September, but the recent rains as well as the snow melt had brought the water levels up and moved fish around. I was happy to see that the clarity of the water was outstanding. Usually after a snow melt the color is less than ideal but that was not the case today.

I chose to fish pinkie and that fly did not let me down. The first brook trout hit it with all the power he had. Several others had me going pretty good.

Several of these brook trout were in their spawning colors.

As I was fishing pinkie I noticed that many of the strikes were coming from some thin ares of the stream. The fish were taking the fly not on the drift but on the retrieve as the fly neared the surface. That gave me the thought to try a dry. I tied on a bomber and was greeted with a strike, a "real rise to the dry".

Brook trout on a "Bomber" Dec. 24th
I had forgot to bring my Gink and could not dress the fly with floatant. Luckily the bomber floats well, but not forever. Looking into the fly box I found a caddis pattern that floats well and gave that a toss.

That caddis dry worked just as well as the bomber. In mid stream at the tail in 6 inches of clear water.

Brook trout on a caddis dry Dec. 24th
Those few hours flew buy so quickly, the time to leave was upon me.

Christmas Eve day, 2013.

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

A Christmas Wish, 2013

May all of you enjoy the peace and happiness of this season.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Winter browns

Friday was the start of a warm up along the northeast. The temps were expected to go into the forties with sunshine and almost no wind. So fishing was going to be a priority on such a day and so it was. I was going to meet up with Kurt and Mark to fish a small stream that flows through a beautiful tract of land. We got there about 9:30 and proceeded through the snow to reach the stream. As we reached the stream we saw what was a true winter wonderland. Nature was here in grand style. The only thing was the stream was pretty much unfishable. The slower runs that held trout were almost completely ice covered, but we were here to fish and that we did.
Mossy Pool which gives up some nice brook trout was pretty much frozen over. I was able to drift a fly just under the shelf ice and promptly drew a strike. At one point I actually had a hookup but the brookie said a quick good bye. After an hour or so of "ice" fishing we decided to try another section that we hoped had a better flow. We walked back out and drove to get some coffee and some needed energy..."peanut butter crackers", "Fig Newtons", and those dark delights "frosted chocolate mini donuts". After the 15 minute energy break we headed for the other section of this wonderful stream.

Walking along and fishing one need only look around to see some of the natural world in it's incredible winter show.

I came to this beautiful pool. It had a nice flow, with a small water fall at the head. The water was deep and dark, and I knew if there were trout in this stream then this would be the place to find one. So the prospecting began. The first cast produced nothing, nor did the second or third, but on the forth cast nearer the head of the pool the fish struck. He could not head upstream so he went down and right to the place I was standing. A second or two later I placed my hand under a handsome wild brown. The fish was beautifully colored and spotted. A quick pic and back he went.

I changed to a dry fly and continued to fish the pool. The fly was not touched. I went back to the wet and several cast later another brown hit and was soon at hand.

The second brown from that dark pool.

Walking out at the end of the day a feeling of satisfaction was with me, in more ways than one.


Friday, December 20, 2013

Venison stuffed cabbage.

Here is another way to enjoy venison. It's a simple recipe that can be prepared in short time and requires pretty basic ingredients. Growing up we had stuffed cabbage at least once a week, my mom was Polish and a very good cook. So what I did here is to take her recipe and tweak it a bit. These go well during the winter and provide that nice warm comforting feeling. A crusty rye bread is great with this dish.

Venison  stuffed cabbage, wild harvest enjoyed.

Ingredients, 1 med. head of cabbage, one and a half pounds of ground deer meat, one half pound of ground pork, a few slices of salt pork, one and a half cups cooked white rice, one egg, salt and pepper to taste, a tiny bit of nutmeg, two cans of tomato sauce, one can of tomato soup.

Core cabbage and drop into boiling water. Continue to boil for about 15 minutes until the leaves start to become soft and start to peel back. Remove cabbage and place into a colander to cool. When cool peel back the leaves and place on a dish, you'll need at least 15. In a bowl mix venison and pork salt and pepper, nutmeg and egg, add rice "the cooked rice should be somewhat hard or under cooked" mix well. Take one leaf of cabbage and add meat filling, do not over stuff, fold over, tuck both sides in and roll to complete. Cutup the remaining cabbage and place it in the bottom of large Pyrex baking dish. Place the stuffed cabbage on top. Cut the salt pork into slices and then cut those in half and place them in with the stuffed cabbage. In a large bowl mix you tomato sauce and soup with some a couple of cans of water, broth can be used instead of water. I tweak to sauce mixture with crushed red pepper. Pour sauce mixture over cabbage rolls cover with foil and place in preheated 350 oven. Bake for about an hour, and enjoy.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Being faithful, Journals

Keeping a fishing journal is something I have been doing for years. It was started to enable me to look back on previous outings to see how I did. It sort of gave me an idea of what flies worked that day. The streams condition, weather and the fish taken. I was pretty faithful in writing, or should I say just jotting down what happened on each trip. As time went on the entries in the journal began to take a backseat, I would say I'll write in it tomorrow, but that never happened. The journal began to look like this, May 3rd..good conditions..Bomber worked well..a couple brookies. May 29..rained all high. It was like Swiss cheese full of holes.

So the last few days I have been going through a couple of journals. I found an entry of an outing I made in early Spring. It was to a stream in north east Connecticut. The stream flowed through some of the prettiest countryside one has seen. The lush green banks, towering hemlocks, and briars galore. It twisted and turned over rocks and wood. Its undercuts were deep, and the waters were amber in color. On this day the bomber was the king. It worked its magic and the brook trout it fooled were beautiful.

Reading the entry brought me back there as if it were yesterday. I hope in the new year I will be more faithful in writing down the memories of such days.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Lavender "Lace"

This weekends snow event allowed me to sit at the desk and tie up a few flies. Several of those flies were feather wing streamers. These flies can be very relaxing to tie. It can be quite enjoyable just selecting the materials being used. Lavender "Lace" may have the look of an attractor pattern, but it's colors and shape can represent a smelt when fished at various depths as well as the clarity of the water where fished.

Lavender "Lace"

Hook, Mike Martinek Rangeley Streamer....Body, Red Yarn....Tag and Rib, Flat Silver Tinsel....Belly, Lavender Bucktail....Throat,Red Hackle....Wing, Two Pink, and Two Silver Badger Saddle Hackles....Cheeks, Jungle Cock.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Snow, what to do this day

Out my window right now the snow is falling. These are the days to tie a few flies, do a check on the fly reels and other gear or sit down and read a good book and I have one for you.

"A Tale of Two Rivers" by Ron Lasko is a book about two rivers on Cape Cod. The Mashpee and Quashnet are two coastal rivers that hold wild sea run brook trout. Ron go into detail on each stream, the seasons of the year, the habitat, the flies, and the brook trout. Ron lives very near to both streams and has fished them for 25 years. The book contains many color photos of the flies Ron uses many of his own ties. There are some hand drawn maps of the two rivers, which can help someone new to the area find and fish the trout holding sections. This book is very well written and I highly recommend it.

You can get a signed copy of his book at Tell him you learned of his book here.

"Ethan's Dragon" and "Morgan's Fancy"
As for flies. I never tied a fly until my grand daughter was born, that was 13 years ago. At that time I decided to tie a streamer fly to commemorate her birth. The fly was named "Morgans Fancy" it's the streamer on the right. Two years later my grandson was born, and a streamer was tied for him, "Ethan's Dragon" the streamer on the left.