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Tuesday - February 18
Recovering... Tying more and more flies... And on the water today!
The 2014 Fly Fishing Festival was great fun! As I mentioned on the Message Board, I laugh more in those couple of days than any others of the year! And for that, I thank you all!
With one of his Blue Birds looking on behind him, "Trout Commander" David Chin works on some of his macro photo's of the flies he gathered from the other tiers! >>>>>
It started with the absolutely awesome weather after weeks on end of frozen lines, guides and "guides"! I've never had so many days with frozen feet in an eight week stretch! Just brutal, my toes still hurt! Oh yeah, I was out today and the water is still in the 40's despite the 74° we had for a high today!!!
Anyway, there was all you typically expect at the Little Mo' Fly Fishing Festival! Great fly tying of course with (going around the room)David Chin, Dick Waldrep, Johnny McJunkins, Rex White, Gordon Shaw, John Scarborough, Ashley Berry, Don Lawler, Paul Lawler, Jim Simpson, Larry Offner, Bill Heugel and Wes Traister (thanks again for the book Wes...)! I think that was everyone...
<<<<< Dick Waldrep (left) and "Trout Professor" Johnny McJunkins...
Bill Heugel presented his Fish Senses program and the AGFC's Christy Graham gave us her annual State of the River address and Gordon Shaw took a few minutes to help me collect some bugs at Low Water for our River Critters study. Don Jackson put a dent in his fly fishing section at Ouachita Outdoor Outfitters and brought it over for everyone to pick through.
Who did I miss??? I know I did.
Everyone who brought food really out did themselves this time! That is so appreciated by myself, firstly, and I know by everyone who enjoys it all. The effort you guys put out getting food to the hall is above and beyond - but it wouldn't be the same without ya'll! Thanks so much!
Oh! Those guys - "need constant supervision"!!! Don Lawler and Paul Lawler (right)... >>>>>
The late addition of the Little Mo' Flies Fantasy Draft went over rather nicely I thought! For those who missed that Saturday night, everyone who wanted in brought six of their favorite Little Mo' flies and we went through the hat twice with each contributor getting two shots to pick out three flies each round. You know what, I think next year we'll do three rounds at two flies each time. I like that better...
At any rate, it was quite entertaining! Maybe not so much for Paul Lawler who's name didn't get into the hat at first. Sorry about that Paul, but I think we made up for it as fast as we could and had fun with you and Don and ya'lls "yielding to the gentleman from Loos-y-ana"!
<<<<< My "Better 3/4's" caught red handed! Glad she made it, but she forgot the dog's meds and had to head back to the Port early...
Everyone had decent to awesome fishing with the tremendous weather. The "Can You Take It" casting clinic was useful to those who took part once again. I really do enjoy getting folks to understand how a cast actually works. I see the light going on every time!
And we had quite a few first timer attendees again this year. just shows that Fly Fishing continues to touch a lot of folks. Look for it all to happen again next year - February 13-14-15!
As for the fishing the last couple of days - Sunday was interesting. I hung around the Flat for a little while after the casting clinic and only saw a couple of fish cruise up to the shallower water. And they were really hard to raise. Of course, the people down in the Wall Hole were inudated with fish and there was a lot of sloshing down there. After not being able to do much i got curious and headed down to the Hind's Bluff Access.
Grizzly Bill Heugel (right) gives Larry Offner the "OMG - he might be serious" look! >>>>>
That's where folks were having another field day. Namely John Davis and daughter Millicent among others. After observing for a while I got a Griffith's Gnat to the feeding fish in the shallow riffle below Butt Buster. Raised a number of fish on a dead drift and did all I wanted to do, as far as fishing goes!
Texas Jack and Kathy showed up after a while, intending to hit the road, but he couldn't stand watching all those fish rise and he and Kathy proceeded to land a handful more before giving it up for the day! it was just a nice, nice day to be out.
By the way, thanks Dick Waldrep, for taking some pictures since I didn't stop to get a single one and David has some more posted on his website: Trout Commander! When I get a chance I'll put some of those on the Message Board.
Today, I got out with Fred Meyers (Bismark, AR) today to get into the falling water at 11:00! Fish were reasonably busy while the water was still high, but we headed up to the Skinny Water to see if any of the big boys had been hanging around in there on the high water.
Fred Meyers gets one of the better fish close to hand on just a beautiful February day! >>>>>
I think the water is still too cold for them to be fighting the flows that much and they're sticking to the deeper slower waters. So after a little casting work and half-hearted fishing we were about to head down river, but stopped in the Flat, again, almost out of curiosity. The timing was perfect after all...
We spotted a couple of fish rising on the mid-stream ridge and headed that way. They weren't real interested in a Long Creek, not much at all in an A&W, but were getting after midges more and more frequently and confidently. I went to box and started to pull out a regular Griffith's Gnat and then opted for a Wood Duck Griffith's instead. After a couple of casts Fred was hit promptly and solidly! I think it scared Fred!!!
We proceeded to clean up the casting and getting better and better deliveries and producing more and more takes from better fish. Two that were in great shape, nice colors, white tipped fins, about 13 inches and definitely not right off the truck!
And all of this action was less than 20 feet from us! Several of the takes were only about 12 or 15 feet away and we could watch the fish come up and take the size 18 dry! Fred said that the first fish to hook up on the little fly was worth the admission and made his day - particularly since he got kind of skunked the last time he came out!
Flies? You want them, when??? >>>>>
Even with the cold water, the action is really heating up! If real winter is actually over and the weather is going to continue to act like this for a while, get ready for the March Browns to get cranked up and maybe even some early caddis! I'd better start tying some "Unknown Caddis" pretty soon!
Lots of fly orders in right now, so if you want to get some flies in the works you need to get on the list as quick as you can!!! Let me know. Looks like it's going to be a busy spring!
Friday - February 7
Wow! Where do I start? Where do I finish???
Always seems like such a long time between reports on here. Glad some of you were getting updates on the Message Board! Just been a brutal winter, and I know that's always a relative statement, but it's just plain cold everywhere - just a matter of to what degree... Or "degrees"!
<<<<< Signs of the icing that we had on Wednesday morning! Lost power here for just a little bit, but some folks have been out for two days, still! In all this cold! Hope they had some kind of fire going!
This past couple or three weeks has been some of the consistently coldest I can remember! Day after day of lows in the teens and 20's and highs hovering in the 20's and only up to freezing. Water temperature today was 39° ! As mentioned on the message Board this morning.... "Sheeesh!" Actual snow covered ground as I write tonight!
But, yes, there are people crazy enough to be out in it! I'm not one, but I do have to go out with these people! Two of them, this week, were Jim Gamble (of S'port Bass Pro) and Rodney Nelson (Shreveport, LA) who, we believe, was at Broadmoor Jr High at the same time I was! We won't say what year...
Quite a few branches and even some whole trees down! And this wasn't all that bad, but it was about time for a little ice storm woods clearing... >>>>>
We got out for a bit on Tuesday afternoon to get Jim some serious casting instruction. It was his first time to really have any instruction and once again, as it is with most folks, there were some real revelations! In the meantime Rodney worked a bit in the Wall Hole and produced a few fish. They did say they had caught a decent number on Monday afternoon. That was the last time we saw any real sun and temperatures in the 40's!
What I would give right now to see a blue sky and a high of 40° ! Going to feel like I'll need a Corona! Average high over the last four days was 33.75° - that's officially. My thermometer wasn't that high any of those days! 29° to 31° is what I was seeing on my hip each day! Average low since the first of January: 24.9° ! And that's with a couple of 9° 's, 10° 's and 12° 's thrown in! Just for fun I looked it up, average low for January here is 28° , record low is -1° . We're a little too close to all time records and too far below average...
<<<<< Decent action for Rodney Nelson at a still fully flowing Sycamore Run.
What's it all mean, apart from being freakin' cold and wet? That we're going to have a very cold lake this summer - unless they have to run a lot of water through the Bunger Valves at some point this spring! I can deal with that! Lake is right at 545' right now too. Nice level for this time of year.
This week, though, the fish were surprisingly active - and there's a lot of them in there. As mentioned, Jim and Rodney did have good action on Monday, and we turned up some fish on Tuesday and Wednesday. We've had high water only in the mornings and I think that may have a little to do with the fish feeling a little better about things than they have in recent weeks.
There's a bunch of fish going into the river and that helps with the frequency of looks, certainly, but the fish have also been much more active, despite the very cold water. We've also been seeing some March Browns popping up, even saw one or two today! All they need is a little incentive to hatch out. A bit of sun here and there and you'll see a few...
<<<<< Jim Gamble did well at the top of the Sycamore - had quite a few on - while Rodney worked the deep end!
On Wednesday we tried to get out of the wind chill that was probably in the mid teens all day and hit the Sycamore Run as soon as the falling water really allowed. Got into quite a few fish there and had a good time, but the wind was still kicking us in the face no matter which way we looked. I thought the section below River Ridge might be worthwhile.
Well, Rodney only turned up one in the fast water below the weir and then we headed down to the "J Ledge". Jim was first in and made it count. After several flashes and a bump or two on the Long Creek we were throwing over the ledge, Jim hooked into a really nice fish. Heavy, Eagle Lake male with good fins and a bit of a hooked jaw! it was obviously a nice fish from the first look!
Jim didn't panic and shortly had in hand a chunky 15+ incher - fully tailed might have put it at 17!!! It was one of those fish that makes a whole trip sometimes. Totally unexpected and just a pretty fish! Made you forget that you couldn't feel your finger tips...
Jim gets a hold of that nice one in the "J Ledge" pool! How's that for timing on the pic? >>>>>
I just don't know how people up north - real north - do it! They can have it...
I talked to Jim just a little while ago and he said they bugged out on Thursday. Their boots and waders were too frozen to warrant trying to get back into them! They had a good trip though, none the less!
Today, another crazy arrived in the personage of Todd Sherwin (West Monroe, LA) for his first real effort at fly fishing and first time to be around trout! It was 24° when I left the apartment by the way...
<<<<< Wish I had gotten a better pic of Jim's fish at the "J Ledge" but you get the idea...
We got his casting cranked up and Todd seems to be a natural casting student! Really got a good grasp of how it truly works real quick! Just about the time we tied on an A & W I heard a familiar sound up on the highway! Yep, stocking time again. Huge number of fish went in at Riverside, at least, and looked like River Ridge had been hit as well as best I could tell later!
Of course within just a few minutes Todd and I were surrounded by hundreds of fish, none of which, naturally, knew anything about what had just happened to them and they barely even sniffed at a fly! Just a bump and a follow. We moved down to the Wall Hole to see if we could turn up some of those that had been in the river for a while.
There's a bunch of fish in there, I've got to tell ya'll! It is time to load in the numbers this month, after all. And that's going to be the case for the next six weeks. And it was here that, after dealing with the infamous Guerin 1, out of 4, out of 4 ratio, Todd did stick his fourth fish and landed his very first fish on a fly and very first trout! Just one of countless who can say they did that on the Little Mo'!!!
Todd was here for the education and we did a few more things until he was ready to warm up and get a late lunch. He called me on his way out of town this afternoon to tell me that he had landed fourteen up at the Park after he came back out! If he wasn't spoiled early on, he probably is now!
<<<<< Todd Sherwin and his first fish on a fly!
It is that time of year to get spoiled by the Little Mo' - if you can pick a good day to be out there! Right now they're saying a high of 47° tomorrow with some sun!!!! And sunny with 50's on Sunday!!! I'll believe it when I see it. But the extended forecast for the Fly Fishing Festival weekend, after some cold rain early in the week, is currently looking pretty good! Let's hope!
I've been swamped with fly tying lately, so I haven't had a whole lot to say other than I've been breathing Long Creek and A&W dubbing! Fly Fishing Festival is taking shape despite my lack of attention and promotion. Of course, after twelve years, it's one of those things that kind of has a life of its own now...
Count on most all of the Usual Suspects being here, with the regular fly tying demos, Don Jackson and his goods from Ouachita Outdoor Outfitters, "real" bug I.D. and Christy Graham of the AGFC Trout Program and her annual "State of the River Address". Oh, and there just might be a bunch of food to munch on too! Keep an eye on the Message Board this week for the final details!
<<<<< Probably not his best fish of the day, but it was a start!!!
And lastly, since the word is starting to get around... I will be changing my "living" situation later this spring! Now that Sandy is retired and we can spend more time together, as well as a bunch of logistical aspects, we will be creating a studio / office at the house for me and I will be making my residence back in the Port before too long!
Nothing really is going to change as far as my getting to the river, guiding, instructing and tying flies! I've been driving back and forth every week for 15 years now, anyway, and the only real difference is that I'll be in the Port more often than not, rather than vice versa. I just don't spend enough days actually on the river each year to warrant keeping a residence here and all it's overhead. And those of you who know my bride will certainly understand wanting to spend as much time with her as possible!
So, had I not mentioned it, most folks wouldn't even know the difference! The web-site and Message Board will continue normal operations and I'll be getting on the river just as much as usual! I'll just be back in the Port playing a lot more tennis - watch out Erik Dilts, I'm just about finished recouperating from the eye surgeries!!! Erik and I hit a light workout the other day - he hits a nice ball!
Anyway, that's the news from the Boro! Maybe I can do some of the Bass Pro Thursday night tying with the NLFF again! But really looking forward to being around the house on a regular basis. I know the wife is too! It's a big change and a little change at the same time!
Any carpenters want to do some consulting soon?
Sunday - January 26
Well, the weather roller coaster of 2014 continues!!! For example, back on the 16th we had a low of 27° and a high of 65°, the 18th was 22° and 64°, the 20th was 24° and 70° this past Saturday with a low of 19° and a high of 61°!!!! Nuts!
Throw in some snow, rain, howling winds and bright sun... Consequently, it's hard to know what to expect from the fish. Some days have been good, some OK, some great and some just pitiful! We've really been at the mercy of the weather this winter! If you came on the right day, you had some nice fishing! Otherwise you had frozen lines, cold toes and no feeling in the fingers!
<<<<< Judy Thomas works on some "high-sticking" in the heavy flows at Low Water!
This past Wednesday, Johnny & Judy Thomas (Bossier Parish, LA) returned to get in some early fishing ahead of the NLFF Frozen Chosen gathering this weekend. We found out quickly that the generation schedule had been amended to a shut-down window of 1 PM to 4 PM. Of course we found this out below the River Ridge shoal as we were working downstream when the water hit.
Judy had already turned one chunky Eagle Lake 'Bow with a lot of color in the fast water. She was attached for several moments and we got a decent look at it before it headed back into the run! We had a couple more takes there and only slight interest at the "J Ledge" pool before we had to get out.
We headed down to Low Water, but the river was still a bit high and we didn't really get to do much but continue to develop some fast water techniques, which was much of what they wanted to do that day anyhow...
We had planned to fish on Thursday as well, but the high of 40° and wind chills in the mid 20's and brief fishing window kept us by the hearth!
Charles Smith with one of several nice fish in the cold on Friday afternoon! >>>>>
Friday, I hooked up again with the returning Hal & Mike Maris and Charles Smith (Tyler, TX - Lone Star Fly Fishers) as some of them were here for a club excursion as well!
We met at the Park in the late afternoon to find absolutely no one there! Hal and Charles took advantage of it and got into the Wall Hole while Mike worked part of the Flat where we had seen a few fish rising and signs of March Browns and Winter Stones!
Fortunately, it was pretty calm, but the temps never got out of the 30's on the afternoon! There was some ice in some guides here and there!
But the fish were in the best mood I've seen them all winter! Hal and Charles got into quite a few in short order with several in the 14 inch class and very fat! Couple of dinks in there too, but for the most part the fish were quite nice!
Long Creeks were doing all the work in the deep water. And, of course, it wasn't too long before it got deeper just after 4:00... We headed in for supper and got ready for Saturday.
I wanted to get into the Sycamore to Confluence stretch, expecting a crowded river and for there to be plenty of fish in the section thanks to all the high water the last two months. The guys had fished the stretch with me on several occasions, but we were disappointed to find only so many fish and they were ridiculously spooky!
Charles releases another while Hal Maris keeps working the other side of the Wall Hole. >>>>>
It was calm and warming, but the cold winter nights and cold run-off had the river right at a 40° water temperature! Just not conducive to a lot of activity though we did raise a few.
What we did find were a few rising fish as we approached the pools, but the moment we started putting feet and lines in the quiet, very clear water, they got lock jaw!!! A bump here and there with several flies and an assortment of retrieves, but they just did not want to play.
I was surprised by the lack of fish in the whole stretch and even more surprised by their shyness! We decided they were mad because they hadn't gotten their warm high water that morning... With only a handful of fish in each hole we tried it didn't take long for the word to get out on us. It was kind of one of those one-shot days where we were.
<<<<< Mike Maris prepares for a long roll cast while Hal lands one of the rare fish at the Pipeline!
We did hear from Christy Graham (AGFC) that folks were doing well at the Park and Hind's Bluff Access though. A lot of fresh stockers there - I know they've been loading them in the last couple of weeks, and with the cold water the fresh fish are sticking to the deep holes where they're going in and just not getting around like they typically might.
The river has really cleared up and the lake stabilized in the last couple of weeks too. That was making the fish we were after just that much tougher. I guess four people getting into their pools was not to their liking. It was as though they simply disappeared as soon as you threw them a line!
The Pasture Pool is still one of my favorites and there was some activity there too! Hal and Mike enjoyed the shallow water fishing there for a few minutes at least! >>>>>
Oh well, we're going to be dealing with some educated fish off the beaten path this season, looks like...
Tomorrow night - Monday the 27th - I'll be speaking to the re-kindled Kisatchie Fly Fishers in Alexandria at 6:30 at the Rapides Westside Library on Provine Place just off of Coliseum Blvd. Do a little tying probably and then my usual Little Mo' presentation and answer any questions. Great to see that club re-develop! Had a good bunch of folks down there for a long time! Looking forward to it gang!
Sunday - January 12
Back and forth we go! Always surprising how fast the days go by sometimes, particularly when it's frigid! I got out of Dodge the last Sunday before the brutal stuff moved in! It was bad enough Tuesday morning in the Port where it was 15°, but I see that in the Boro it was officially 10° Monday morning and a crispy 9° on Tuesday!!!
By the way, for anyone who thought they might have wanted to be on the White River at the same time - they were seeing sub-zero lows! They can have it!
Those who have been around here in the last week may have noticed that we've got the new AGFC regulations sign up in most of the locations of import!
<<<<< Double sided sign at Riverside - indicates where the Permanent and Seasonal line exists.
Local contractor, Ricky Branch, has gotten them up in the last few days and they are great signs with all the pertinent information as to what can and, better yet, what cannot be done on the river!
Remember, last year at the Fly Fishing Festival, that we gave $2,000 to the AGFC specifically for the upgraded signage. They look great and the ones at Riverside are very specific about the Seasonal Catch & Release boundaries and dates. Right down to arrows facing the proper directions on a sign that faces both the parking area and the water. (We also gained a few yards of Permanent C&R zone according to where the sign actually is now.) But all the signs show that all Browns must be released and have good pictures on them. Also says that you "cannot" use specific "bait" in C&R areas and seasons.
River Ridge sign! All the signs also have additional information about the "Didymo" algae and what you can do about it... >>>>>
There are no excuses for ignorance any more! And the outlaws need to be carted off!
Back here yesterday, though, with the nicest weather we've seen since before Thanksgiving! Sunny, 60's a little breeze and a few fish that were happier! I met with Monique Kohles & Chris Shirey (Natchitoches, LA) to see what we could do...
We hung around the Park for a little while mostly developing some casting techniques and trying to see if there were any fish in the Flat. There wasn't really much going on there so we headed down to River Ridge and got into the fast water below the weir where one can usually turn up a few fish - and we did!
<<<<< Chris Shirey works on one in the murky fast water below the Couch Hole...
There's been some of those silver 1" to 2" shad coming through off the lake on high water... All the fish we've seen the last couple of days do appear to have been eating rather well. All of them were fat and chunky! And what we found right off in the murky water showed that.
Both Chris and Monique had quite a few fish on and in as they worked on mending and high sticking in the fast water of Friday's run-off! I knew it had been raining and I see that we had over an inch of rain during the week. Some of that may have been snow though. Which explains why the water was still hovering around 47° today!
We moved down to the "J Ledge" pool and only saw one show itself there with only one take to speak of. As you can see the water was very murky and we could only turn up so many fish in so many places. They are definitely sticking to hugging the bottom in the stiller parts of the deep holes. Maybe with the weather that's expected over the next week and a half we will see some fish moving about. Water temps should be on the rise a little bit at least...
Monique Kohles deals with hers in the Couch Hole Shoal too! >>>>>
Haven't seen an updated schedule from SWEPCO on the generation yet, but the lake did come up 2 1/2 feet over the weekend. Still, it's only at 545.85' tonight - two feet below flood pool. I don't think we have to worry about a lot of high water this week, but it's possible they might increase the hours of generation a little bit just to keep the lake from getting much higher at this point.
In the meantime, Chris and Monique were learning a lot of stuff and raising just enough fish to keep it interesting throughout the afternoon! Best fish they found were in the 12 to 14 inch class. And big fun in the heavier water that we had on Saturday! Most everything was caught on Long Creeks the Chartreuse Wooly Bugger! In fact I don't recall that we threw anything else actually...
<<<<< Monique got hers for the skillet!!!
We finished the day up at Low Water where there was some substantial flow going! We made our ways over to the island and fished the cut-bank that, by the way, has changed profile significantly over the last several months! The overhanging, fly eating tree is completely gone! Some folks will probably appreciate that, but I always thought it added to the character and challenge of fishing that run! Not to mention giving the fish a little cover too. They may be a little less likely to want to stay there as much as they have in the past.
Oh well, river beds are constantly changing. There's no fly eating, overhanging Sycamore at the Sycamore Run any more either. But we did get several fish to take in the deep part of the run at least. Several fish on actually!
As has been the case to this point this winter, you really had to get a fly in the right line to raise fish in so many of the places we've hit so far. But when you do, and they fly is in their sight, they will play! Today, though, they were considerably more active then yesterday! It was also 70° here too!!!
Yep! That's the way to spend your day! >>>>>
And David O'Malley (Oregon by way of Minden, LA) was the beneficiary of today's awesome weather! We headed up to the Park to take the obligatory look and simply found virtually no activity or movement in the Flat once again. They just don't want to come out of the deep quiet water for any reason just yet. With water temperatures where they are, the less effort they put out the better. And that's fine, let them stay down there in the dark of the Wall Hole, get healthy and smart - at least those that don't get taken out.
And by the way, a bunch of those big Browns have already made their ways up into the "Closed Zone"! I like that, actually...
At any rate, David and I headed down to River Ridge, trying to see several parts of the river on his first trip. We headed right down to the Big Rock Hole where we did get into a few fish. Once again, we were not seeing any activity in some of the pockets that I had expected, or hoped maybe, to see some fish. But once David got his Long Creek into the right drift he produced quite a few good takes and some really nice fish! They were just down really deep in the hole - gotta reach them!
Back up at the Couch Hole we threw a few times before stepping out to get "surveyed" by Blake doing creel surveys. AGFC will be conducting surveys for the next year and in case you see a low flying plane going up and down the river - that's the AGFC counting anglers from the air! Blake did say that he measured a 16 inch Bow caught down at Low Water this morning! We are definitely seeing bigger fish, generally, this season from the AGFC!!!
David O'Malley gets control of one of the several really hefty fish at the Sycamore Run! >>>>>
We stopped in at the Hind's Bluff Access briefly and made a few token drifts, but it got crowded suddenly and we headed up to the Sycamore Run where we had the most fun!
There was a big midge hatch pretty much all afternoon and by mid afternoon some of the fish in the now clearing water closer to the dam were starting to get after them! It was the most activity I've seen since the Light Cahill hatch finished in October! There were also some of the little Winter Stones coming off today to boot!
And fish were finally showing on a regular basis too! Still, David had to get the right drift and depth before we could really raise any fish with consistency, but he definitely raised some fish in the afternoon! We finished the afternoon at the Spectator Hole after educating several really nice Bows in the Sycamore Run!
Numerous nice fish in the 13-14 inch class and one really fat, hook-jawed male Eagle Lake Bow that was pushing 15" and about as big around as a really large pear! If its tail had been fully grown out I suspect we'd have been talking at least 16" if not a tad more!
The Spectator Hole produced almost as well and it was just about as good a day as one could hope for in the first part of January! Good fishing and great company. I just hate that I didn't get a picture of David's big one - it naturally let go just as I was about to get a good shot!
With 15,000 fish scheduled to be stocked this month (and anther 15,000 in February and March each) I think you can expect things to really get cranking soon! And a couple weeks of highs in the 60's sure isn't going to hurt! Get ready!
Monday - December 30
Back on the river yesterday, and today, after the two week odyssey of two cataract surgeries with the Christmas festivities sandwiched in between! Felt really nice to step into the river again and to be able to see everything so cleanly and clear! An awesome Christmas for yours truly!
Got out yesterday afternoon with Chris Gibson (Tyler, TX) who came down from Albert Pike with his dad, James who mostly observed the goings on... I was excited to get started as the day was looking to be spectacular with full sun and about 60°! Just beautiful and there were signs of activity with some busy fish and a few March Browns and even a couple of Black Winter Stones fluttering about! It was looking good!
Then winter came back...
In no time the clouds moved in from the north and the winds came with them. That brought in the cold air and before we knew it, the temperatures had dropped back into the 40's with a pretty significant wind chill again! The critter activity, both winged and finned, went south with the sun...
Bryan Rice deals with his first fish on! >>>>>
I had Chris throw about eight different patterns, from Long Creeks to the Chartreuse Wooly Bugger and we had some interest in just about everything - but not a lot... We did raise a few fish, and tightened a line, but nothing landed in the session.
I was really hoping the fish were going to be nicer on my return. Still, Chris had a nice learning session, barely interrupted by fish to any extent. Maybe next time, as always.
Today, I met with Susan Desjarlais (South Florida) and her son Bryan Rice (Hot Springs, AR) for their first attempt with a fly rid as well!
Despite a high today of 37° , today was a good pick for their trip! Fortunately it was quite calm and it didn't feel near as cold as it has in recent weeks! But that's not what made the difference today...
Not long after we had attached flies and were starting to get serious about the fishing I heard a familiar sound behind me - that of a large diesel truck. Stocking time! And we just happened to be standing right there.
Susan Desjarlais gets a hold of something really interesting! >>>>>
Now, typically I wouldn't be all that excited about fishing a fresh off the truck load of fish, but this was a tad different... Earlier this fall I had been in touch with Melissa Jones and happened to ask about any plans for Brown trout stocking this season. She let me know that they had been holding some Browns and were planning to stock them in January and that they were getting to be decent sized. Well I guess today was close enough to January.
However, she didn't really make clear what "decent sized" meant at the time. I figured maybe some 12 and 14 inchers.
I was off by a bit... The first fish I saw come out of the hose as I held it in position was more like TWENTY!!!
Not sure how many they brought, I'd guess about 300 or so (along with several hundred Bows) and every last one of them were in the 18" to 22" class!!! And I mean fat, fat, FAT fish. Probably all of them around 4 pounds!
Usually, fish right off the truck are pretty dis-oriented and confused and I didn't really expect to get much action out of them, but they were actively getting after the Long Creeks within a half hour or so!
<<<<< Bryan prepares to get about a 12 incher in hand!
But for Susan and Bryan, what was really cool was the fact that they were suddenly surrounded, quite literally, by these huge fish just a couple of feet away, giving the guys a really good look at them. It was really a neat experience actually. And it didn't hurt that they caught quite a few of the freshies on a cold day. Kind of makes you forget the lack of feeling in your toes!
After having several follows and a few bumps, Susan had the first fish hooked up and it just happened to be a Brown of right at 20 inches!!! Hooked jaw and decent color for a freshie! What a first fish on a fly!
Susan displays her 20" inch Brown - first fish on a fly - on a 3 wgt - 5X tippet and a Long Creek!!!! >>>>>
The guys landed several Bows from about 10 inches up to about 14" and they were all pretty feisty and gave the Susan and Bryan plenty to do for the rest of the short session!
Yep, they picked the right day to be at the river!
We also got the generation schedule working in our favor this week with two-a-days high water from 5:00 AM to 10:00 AM and again from 5:00 PM to 10:00 PM! That's going to give the several thousand fresh Rainbows and all these big Browns a chance to move around a bit this week! And we will have some great water conditions downriver all day too!
Looking like it's going to be a great New Years!!!!
Saturday - December 14
Man! It's not even Christmas yet and I'm already sick of winter!!! This has been ridiculous. And we don't even live where it's really cold!
Like north Arkansas...
Christy Graham (AGFC Trout Biologist) is here this week doing creel surveys and she said earlier this week they (in Mountain Home) had an inch and a half of freezing rain and then eight inches of snow on top of that! Which explains why Melissa Jones e-mailed me last Tuesday wondering what the roads were like before she sent a load of fresh fish down! Which did happen last Thursday, by the way!
I was gone most of the last week as Sandy and I finished up the kitchen remodel!!! Whoo Hooo! That's been going on for months, but it's done! Now for some real fun!
I'll be heading right back to the Port tomorrow and will be there till after New Years or close to it probably! This week I'm going to have the eyes remodeled too! Getting one eye done this week and the other one done on the 27th! Hopefully I'll be able to make out faces from 60 feet away again! And maybe spot cars on the highway too! Should be a simple lens swap and no problems! I'll let ya'll know...
Today, though, I did get out on the river for a bit. At mid-day the sun came out and the high was 46° at 11:00 AM! That didn't last very long. By 2:00 the sun was long gone and the north winds returned with a vengeance! It was 40° and the wind at Riverside was killing the fingers.
I spent about 20 minutes up around the Triangle and Trough - landed one nicely conditioned Eagle Lake male with a bit of a jaw and white-tipped fins already! There are fish out there that have already been in the river for two months after all... I suspect this was one of them.
I will tell ya'll, I don't think I've ever seen - or "felt" more appropriately - the river be this slick!!! I know I had the rubber soles on my wading boots, but I've had them on there most of this year, and I was sliding all over the place! Just as slimy as I can imagine! Not sure what the reason is that it's this bad, but cleats might be a good idea until the water chemistry shifts... The lake usually turns over about now or should have already, but I just ever remember having that much trouble with footing!
At least the fish seemed to be a little happier today than they have been in the last few weeks! I had a lot of hits at Riverside, below River Ridge at the "J Ledge" and Big Rock area, and at the Hind's Bluff Access. The consistent "two-a-day" generation the last couple of weeks has indeed got some fish spread out. Tom Cathey came up from around The Bend at Hind's Bluff and his bunch had had a good amount of activity down there. At the access proper we were getting a bunch of action.
I did equally well this time with the Chartreuse Wooly Bugger and a Long Creek. The hits were a little tentative for the most part. I think the fish are tired of being cold already too! But if you hit the right line in the murky winter water you were going to get hit! I had numerous drifts at Hind's Bluff where I'd have three or four bumps each time through - they just weren't sticking very well.
In the shallow fast water in the shoal below River Ridge I could see fish following the Wooly, but not being very committed. Just making half hearted swipes and coming up a little short on most attempts. But at least they were doing something! Unlike the last few times out...
Maybe once we're past the winter solstice next week, the weather will return to "typical" winter and we'll once again have happy fish and some decent days to fish! Of course the first part of this coming week is supposed to be beautiful - naturally - and I won't be here to tell you about it! Hope some of ya'll get to enjoy it! I was surprised to see how many folks were out today with the "WWC" (wet-wind-chill) the way it was. Like I said, I was at Riverside for about 20 minutes when I decided to get out of the wind elsewhere!
Generation this coming week is the same... Monday thru Friday 6 AM to 8 AM and again 6 PM to 8 PM with nothing slated for the weekend. Sure like those "two-a-days"! The lake is at a comfortable 543.15' tonight - five feet below flood pool and probably a tiny bit higher than normal for this time of year. Holding pretty steady.
Hope everyone has a great holiday season and I trust some of ya'll will be out there in the middle of it! Maybe I'll be here for New Years! Cataract surgery recovery is supposed to be a piece of cake now a days... And the results are by all accounts, excellent! I should SEE ya'll next year!
Sunday - December 1
I trust everyone had a great Thanksgiving week! We had a real nice holiday ourselves and it was nice to see so many folks here on the river! I'm usually not here on such holidays but it just worked out that it was going to be too much running around to head to the Port and back! And since the wife is now retired she came up and pretty much relaxed for a few days!
The cold started to moderate a bit as the week went on, though it was pretty dog-gone chilly through Thanksgiving Day! Particularly in the mornings... Officially 25° - 22° and 22° for those three mornings! Much better now!
On Friday and Saturday Dee Radin and Melissa Fields (Houston, TX) were here to see what they could learn and how the fish might treat them!
<<<<< Dee Radin very close to getting her hands on one!
They learned a lot and the fish treated them pretty much like everybody else this week. Not horribly, but not exactly decent either! Everyone was having some trouble getting fish to et serious this week. The reports I got were only mildly exciting. If you could find a concentration of fish anywhere, you might catch a few of them... That's about how things went. It just wasn't great fishing and I don't really have an explanation for it!
I thought we were on to something earlier in the week with the chartreuse and there was some action with the Clousers and straight chartreuse Wooly Buggers, but in the long run those didn't produce a whole lot more than the Long Creeks, Smidges and Little Mo' Woolies we threw through the weekend!
Melissa and Dee had tried the Sycamore Run on their own on Thursday and did produce some action with both the Long Creek and the chartreuse Woolies. Did in fact land a couple of fish!
We started up at the Flat on Friday morning and there weren't a whole lot of people out, but the fish weren't showing themselves much either. We had a flash or two at the Chartreuse Woolies while reworking the casting a bit and developing some really solid roll strokes! The girls found out just how much bad information is out there on casting!
People are still teaching 10:00 to 2:00! Oh well...
At any rate, we headed down past the Sycamore Run and into the Pipeline stretch where we did at least find some fish working the shallows. They were only so congenial, but at least we had a hit and looks.
Melissa and Dee take their turn at the Pipeline! >>>>>
On down at the Pipeline and had some decent action with a few fish on and the place to ourselves! It was nice to have some fish spread out on the river so we could get away from any crowds already, but the fish were also happy to be left alone as well! We're kind of in the "you only get a few shots and they're done" mode right now... You'll have a flurry of action on one fly and then it seems they won't touch it again! Great short term memories?
We then moved on down to the Confluence Hole, but didn't do anything there, in fact we saw only one fish show itself! I was very disappointed in that as I had expected to see quite a few fish in there with the generation we have had.
By the way - two a day generation for the coming week days: 6:00 to 10:00 in the mornings and 6:00 to 10:00 in the evenings! Very nice and if we get some fresh fish in this week they'll really get to spread out!
But either fish just hadn't moved into the Confluence all that much yet or the ones that may have gotten in there vacated or have been taken out. That'll get better in the coming weeks, though!
On Saturday, Dee and Melissa got to fish the part of the Flat we didn't get to on Friday and there wee actually quite a few fish showing themselves in one of their favorite spots! We had decent action, relatively, there for a while with Smidges mostly! I did see one Light Cahill flying around still and Charlie Droddy said he had seen a couple as well. I guess there's always gonna be some stragglers!
<<<<< Dee releases one in The Flat...
By mid-day the Wall Hole had virtually gone quiet - both people-wise and, unfortunately, fish-wise! We actually got in to the top of the hole by ourselves only to find that the fish had kind of shut down anyway! We didn't get but one bump I believe! So we headed down to Hind's Bluff to see if the crowds there had cleared as well!
Wasn't too bad there and eventually we ended up at the bottom of the pool where fish were showing,but once again, they only showed us so much interest. A few hits, but only so much going on! It's been kind of a tough autumn for some reason.
We finished our day back up at the park where the water is considerably warmer than what's downstream! At Hind's Bluff it was 44°! Up in the park it's closer to the low 50's most of the time! It certainly felt warmer when you stepped in there after being thigh deep in the colder stuff for a while!
In the middle of The Flat we produced a few ore takes and a couple of bent rods with Smidges again. It was the one thing that produced solid takes on the day...
I finished up the afternoon working just a little bit with Charlie's wife Mary at the Meat Hole while Charlie and the kids observed for a bit from the bank. I tacked a Smidge on quickly and Mary had several hits and a couple of solid hook-ups in just a short while!
But then, just as much as they were hitting - they shut down just as much! Annoying if nothing else...
Tuesday - November 26
Holy Cow!!!! Winter moved in here these past few days, that's for certain!!!
Last Friday afternoon, Tania & Josh Ricciardone (Lafayette, LA) arrived to a cold rain and winter on the doorstep! The official high Friday was 63°, but I know that must have been in the early morning some time... By mid-day the wind was cranking up and it was in the 40's!
We managed to get some casting instruction in before we had had enough and it was getting late in the day! Josh and Tania brought all the cold weather gear they could muster up, but it wasn't quite enough to deal with the WWC! Wet-wind-chill!
We waited till late morning on Saturday to get in the river, but it really didn't matter. It was getting colder for the most part, the wind was really starting to howl. It was damp and drizzly and the temps were staying in the 30's! But we gave it a shot anyway.
Tania Ricciardonne lands her first trout on a fly at the Spectator Hole! >>>>>
There was mild success and the guys had some fish on at the Sycamore Run and Spectator Hole with Long Creeks. Tania did get her first trout on a fly at least in the first session!
We took a warm-up break and came back out after some lunch. We tried Hind's Bluff Access and had kind of tough going with a few takes and a couple of fish on in another weather shortened afternoon! Anyone who says it wasn't cold this weekend ain't from around these parts!!!
The fish we did get were fat and feisty, though! At least the water was still kind of warm to that point. It was running nicely, but substantially murky from the frequent rains we've had of late. For first timers, the fishing was a little challenging!
Sunday we gave it another go! At least there was a little sun out there for a little while, but we still finished the fishing with ice in the guides! The sky soon gave way to a high thin over-cast. It wasn't quite as "nice" as we thought it was going to be... But we did get into quite a few fish at the Pipeline, including one decent resident fish with nice colors mixed in with the fresh stockers. We've had two-a-day generation for the last couple of weeks and that has helped the fish spread out a bit!
I did check my air and water at one point. The water was right about 48°... Chilly, but not brutal. I looked at the air temp and told the guys: "You know why it feels so cold out here right now? Cause it's 38°!"
The WWC was just a tad lower than that... Which kind of explained the ice in the guides at that point...
But we were into enough fish to keep it interesting so we headed down the trail to the Pasture Pool (as much to warm up a bit), but all we could get out of there were a few Creek Chubs! I was a little surprised we didn't do more, though Josh did see something larger swim by. Guess we need so more substantial generation...
Tania and Josh hanging in there with ice in the guides! You know it's windy when there's that much chop on the surface at the very protected Pipeline!!! >>>>>
The only real problem with hiking downriver was that we were going to have to walk back into the wind! You could feel it for certain! I'd hate to think what it would have been like out at Riverside, River Ridge or the Factory Site!!! But it was worth the effort at least and we had some nice fish to show for it!
Monday was, uh, worse to say the least. Brutal to say the obvious. But Kevin Kelly (Friendswood, TX) had made the trip and by golly we were fishing! He had gotten here in time to fish a little bit Sunday afternoon and moved a few, but overnight we got into the freezing rain and that just kept coming all morning. We held off getting out there as long as we could and tried to do the afternoon.
We met at River Ridge and gave the "J-Ledge" pool some work which only produced one solid hit... As we made our way down to the Big Rock Hole the freezing drizzle continued. Thanks the heavens that the wind was done! Dead calm and the mist was rising off of the "warm" water! It was almost bearable - except for the wet hands. Of course we were both geared up clothing-wise for the temperatures, but there's just not much you can do for the hands!
At any rate, we did see a couple of fish working out in front of the new house that's being built near the Big Rock, but we tried several things to try and raise them. The only thing that they could be rising to right now would be midges, but I didn't see any, and they certainly seemed to be "midging rises" in the surface film... But they didn't want to play with a Smudge, Long Creek or Little Mo' Wooly!!!
We did finally bring up some action at the actual Hind's Bluff and Kevin managed a couple there with a Long Creek. We tried a little bit in the top of the Big Rock Hole, but we had been standing in the thigh deep water too long and the warmth of a vehicle and the warmer water closer to the dam seemed like a better move!
At Riverside I watched for several minutes only to see a handful of fish show themselves! I didn't like the looks of that. But we headed to the drop-off of the Wall Hole since we were the only nuts out there and stayed as shallow as we could. May as well throw where there's at least a concentration of fish!
We tried several flies once again. We went through the "usuals" and then started into the unusuals! Kevin had moved a couple of fish on Sunday evening with a Muddler so we tried that and he had a fish try to chase it down as he started a drag for a cast! That was it, though, for the Muddler...
He had a fly that had worked for him before, a fuzzy furry, white rabbit with mallard streamer and a big cone-head. He landed the fly on one cast and a fish swirled it right after the landing - but that was it for that one!
A near frozen Kevin Kelly displays one of the several fish with which we finished the day! Put that Chartreuse & White Clouser on your list of five flies you have to have in your box!!! >>>>>
All right... The last time Kevin was here, he had gotten a couple of Chartreuse & White Clousers from me for some attempts at some of the basses. I've caught quite a few nice trout with a C&W Clouser here, elsewhere and countless other species of fish with it too - so, "why not?" It was near the end of the day, getting dark - what the hell?
He got hammered on nearly the first cast! Then proceeded to get hit with great frequency and landed at least three in the next ten minutes or so! Hmmmm....
Kevin also reported that he had substantial action on the Clouser today too! Go figure? So I did a little figgurrin'!
We had tried all kinds of flies with every conceiveable retrieve. The C&W was the only thing the fish really tried to eat. We noticed that all the hook-ups were right in the top of the snout! That's feeding - even for fresh stockers. I'm actually beginning to believe this theory:
These fish have already seen scads of PowerBait thrown into the river, which has taste and smell. They try to eat it and it doubtless tastes pretty good to them. PowerBait is also generally fluorescent colors, such as - you guessed it - chartreuse, pink, yellow! The fish that don't get taken out or manage to eat some PowerBait without getting hooked are quickly learning that these nice colors may mean something tasty!
Hence the reason such regional flies as the "Pink Weenie", "Christmas Tree", assorted crappie jigs for example, produce a lot of fish! Is it too much to think that a lot of these fish think that these colors represent the "new" food source on their new environment? At least until they find more plentiful critters in the late winter? I think the PowerBait'ers have actually created a new "hatch" which the fish learn faster than anything because of the smell and taste they are getting!
I'm tying up some more C&W Clousers....
Ya'll ponder on that "morsel" for a bit and have a great Thanksgiving! My bride is here this year and we're going to have a nice week! The weather is also supposed to be awesome after tomorrow!
Wednesday - November 20
Busy few days on the river all of a sudden! The wife and I went to Houston last week to surprise her daughter at their opening game of the season. In the 20+ or so years that Angie has been coaching, Sandy has never been able to be a the first game of the season, so when we showed up at the gym that night it was pretty cool!
And after that it was back to trying to finish up all the work on the kitchen! We've been working on that the entire fall - for real!
But last Saturday I was able to get in the water when John Davis (Shreveport, LA) brought his daughter, Millicent, to the river to take advantage of one of my "eBay trips" he had. Good to see John and Ardis Peace out on the river again, but Millicent and I left all them to see about some casting and maybe get into some fish.
Millicent Davis did catch fish last Saturday! >>>>>
We headed into the Flat and got her throwing a line with a bit better comprehension of how that fly casting thing works! She was actually a little amazed at how the cast develops and the assorted causes and effects.
We did eventually get a fly in the water and had a little bit of action in the short session. The weather has been a bit of an issue the last few days with nothing bad, but a lot of variation throughout each day. It's the instability the fish don't like and Saturday was calm and very subdued. The fish weren't doing a whole heck of a lot...
But Millicent did get a few fish to hit - I think we were throwing a Smidge as I recall - and a couple of fish on before it was lunch time. So far, the majority of the fish the AGFC has brought in have been pretty decent. Fat and averaging about 11 inches I'd say. At least that's what I've seen to this point.
Monday, I hooked up with Judy & Johnny Thomas (Bossier City / Rocky Mount, LA) for their first trip to the Little Mo'! They'd been a bunch of other places including the White earlier this fall and they're just really getting started in fly fishing. So they got a little education on casting Monday afternoon and a little bit of fishing in. Once again, the fish weren't very happy...
They're out there, they're just confused, I think, but Judy and Johnny are planning to be here through Friday so we weren't working real hard to produce a lot. Mostly learning to cast properly and we were planning to get back together today anyway.
Judy Thomas gains control of a nice chunk at Hind's Bluff. Always so much fun trying to decide what to do with the rod at this point, eh ya'll? >>>>>
Yesterday (Tuesday) was a bit different, though! Brian Fowler of KTBS Channel 3 in Shreveport came to the river with director/camera guy Josh Hale to do a story on fly fishing with me!
We had a really great time but didn't produce much in the fish department. Unfortunately the guys couldn't leave until after their mid-day news so we didn't get out until late afternoon! Kind of cut in to the best part of the day for fishing as they had to get as much footage of what they needed to produce the segment.
So by the time we got serious about actually fishing we were running out of day anyway. But we did get a little bit of action for the tube! As mentioned we had a really good time and maybe that will come across when we see the finished production on cannel 3, probably in about ten days to two weeks. I will certainly let everyone know when it will be showing and then it will be on Channel 3's website after that!
<<<<< Johhny Thomas does battle with a really nice beefy fish under just about perfect conditions! That's just hard to beat for a Wednesday afternoon!!
Today, I got back out for a little bit with Judy and Johnny Thomas and we finally did get them a few nice fish at hind's Bluff! Apparently they didn't have much luck on their own yesterday. Today through the mid-day was much better weather conditions and we also had falling water too! We stirred up a decent number of fish on the falling water with both versions of the Little Mo' Wooly. Gary Sutherland was there too and got into fish almost immediately with the one he had just gotten from me as I walked by him!
Looks like we've been getting generation from about 6:00 to 9:00 AM this week, although when I met Judy and Johnny on Monday afternoon at Riverside at 2:30 the water was still falling! So without getting an updated schedule from SWEPCO as yet, just checking the Rivergages.com site we're getting the "two-a-days" like we had last week. And that's really good because it'll be moving a lot of fresh fish around instead of having them trapped at the stocking sites like they usually are in the fall!
Judy shows just about all you need to know! Trouting on a really great afternoon... >>>>>
Eric Anderson went around The Bend at Hind's Bluff this afternoon - I'll be curious to see what he found down there!
I did find some fish on Sunday around the Sycamore and Spectator Hole too. I would have gone further, but I was going to get back in to see the Saints game!
Don't be surprised if we see another load of fish this week, next week at least likely, I'd say. We've also got a cold and wet scenario for a few days too. Don't be surprised if it snows next week, too!!!
Friday - November 1
Well! Here we go!!!
A new season has officially begun! Fresh fish got into the river this past Wednesday, everywhere except Low Water, which of course, is where I looked for them yesterday and didn't see any... I had neglected to remember that they were not going to stock down there on the first round...
So there's a couple of thousand new fish in the river today and, yes, there are plenty more to come in the next few weeks!
I actually got out and fished a little this afternoon and spent my time up in the shallows of the Chute and the Triangle for the most part. There were quite a few resident fish up there just a feeding away and I managed to raise a few of them with a Smudge, an ADL, an R&A Light Cahill and a Griffith's Gnat! I think that's all I threw this afternoon... They all raised fish , but I had the best hits on the Smudge!
There are still some nice, healthy Resident fish left and I'd say I caught this one just about 4:00 PM!!! >>>>>
There were supposed to be a few hundred Browns on this load too, but I haven't seen or heard about any yet.Christy Graham had told me that they wee "holding" them this summer for here. Maybe that will mean they are nice sized at least. Hopefully they will stay in the river like they're supposed to as well.
So, that's what's happening right now! But many have asked "where have YOU been???"
It has been a very busy month, that's for certain! i had all kinds of tennis going on with the kids I teach both here in town and some from Nashville too. The Boro sent seven of our kids to District - one of which qualified for State! One of my girls from Nashville made it to the finals of District and lost in the second round at State! So there was a bunch of coaching and lessons going on there for a while!
By the time that was all done I was in Tyler playing in the USPTA National Hardcourts tournament where I was soundly thrashed by a couple of the best players in the country slightly closer to my age, but we didn't have 55's this year and I had to play in the 45's! The guy I played in the first match had been ranked as high as the mid 300's IN THE WORLD when he was on the tour!!!
I did actually get a game off of him...
So that was a couple of weeks ago and immediately following that I settled in to the last of the Diamond Festival prep and actual event last weekend. Some of you may recall that I do the entertainment and sound for that, but this was the first time we've tried it in the fall! Would have been great IF it hadn't rained pretty much all day Saturday when it was supposed to be a 20% chance... Of course, even with the cool weather it still takes me a day or so to recover form all that. Very physical jumping up onto and off of a stage countless times in a day!
So this week, I've been trying to catch up with the fly orders that came in recently (they all went out by the way... except Al's - got to get the stuff Al). Between the bad eyes and a bit of a sore back from the weekend, the tying isn't going very fast ya'll, so if you have an order in mind, get it in as quick as you can! It's looks like it's going to take me longer to do things unless I can get the cataracts taken care of sooner than later. I just can't look into a bright light and see much right now, which is making really hard to tie and look across the water! Damn!!!
However, the diabetes thing is well under control. Numbers have been excellent over the last couple of months and I've lost right at 20 pounds already! Just from eating good!
We had kind of a mild turn-out for the Wall Hole Gathering I'm afraid, pretty much due to various conflicts, not to mention the threatening weather. I looked at the rain history for October and ir rained on just five days in the month! One was on the Wall Hole Gathering and another on the Diamond Festival! Sheeesh....
Starting to re-tool the brain, now, for FISHING! Ya'll get on out - the freshies are out there!!!
Always On The Water - Jeff
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