No mas pelota…..mas pesca

somewhere

Yes, the USA is now out of the World Cup.  We played good enough to win, but our defensive breakdowns and early goals have sent us home.  Honestly, I thought it was a good run for the US side.  2014 is not too far away.  Today’s game of England V Germany was a thriller.  The Germans will win the Cup if they get past this next round.  If they play Argentina it should be THE game to watch……………

The Madison is shaping up and there are rumors of Salmonflies in Beartrap Canyon.  A few folks are fishing the Big Bugs, but dropping a nymph off is working a bit better.  Anyday now, the Salmonflies are going to pop, but so will the hatch of boats.  I am headed to the Missouri for the next week to avoid the onslaught of anglers headed to the Madison for “The Hatch”.  The Mo’ is still high, but clear, and should come down some this week.  Nymphing is still king on the Missouri.  I know Gordon (the good Doc from MS) is hoping for some dry flies…….so am I.  So is everyone. 

South Holston River

One of my roommates and good friends, David Stelling, guides for App Angler and we put in below the dam with brothers Justin and Rhett who both work and guide for App Angler as well. We started out nymphing with a SJW and a BWO nymph. Once we got below the weir it seemed like there was a trout in every seam we fished. The rainbows really got on the worm for awhile, but then things changed and the BWO nymph was the ticket. I got a nice brown about 19 inches up to the net, but he spit my nymph just as I was easing him to the net. While anchored up and nymphing a slot, Justin and Rhett did the short float, just to Jack’s, and spent more time upstream. From the sound of it, they got’em good.

North Carolina – Watauga River

I have been fishing several times since arriving to Blowing Rock, NC for the Winter, but it hasn’t really felt like Winter until today. Finally, we got some snow. The ski hills around here are in need of this snow fall and colder temps. Two days ago, in a rainstorm that lasted most of the day, I fished the Watauga upstream of Appalachian Angler. We tossed streamers most of the time as the river had come up with the rain, but we managed to catch a few good trout and had a ton of follows. I love the look of the Watauga River…..the large boulders and tight casting remind me of the Gallatin River. I am going to float the Watauga in TN next week somtime and will report on that soon after.

Florida

Florida’s water is now starting to warm up to a consistent temperature and today I packed my bags to make the long trip home. Bummer. There are several stops along the way and we won’t be in MT until the first of May. Next year, I hope to stay down here until the first June so that I can get a shot at a Tarpon.

Since we are leaving a little earlier than we had once thought, I am going to hunt turkey’s in IL and MO. My Dad has been out scouting the spots over the past few weeks (he also found some nice white tail sheds) and says the turkeys have been very active. Last night he sat and glassed 10 birds on a hillside where we have killed several Toms over the years. There was one big Tom which was all fanned out and strutting. Gobble gobble!!

The mountains around SW Montana have been receiving more snow over the past couple of weeks. Rain in the vally and snow in the peaks. I bet we don’t see any substantial run off until June. May has been very wet the past few years and I would bet nothing changes this year. Expect to have great fishing in April and May on the area rivers.

I friend of mine in Bozeman called and said the BWOs have popped on the Yellowstone, Spring Creeks and the lower Madison. He reported good action on dry flies and nymphs.

The upper Madison above Ennis is fishing pretty well with nymphs and buggers. On warmer overcast days there should fish poking their heads out for BWOs. A few more weeks and there should be some March Browns.

Back to Montana

We are in IL on our way back to MT and the weather has been wonderful. I have been out turkey hunting but have not shot a Tom just yet. The turkeys have been extremely vocal until they fly off the roost. Once down on the ground, they seem to be busy with the hens and unwilling to come and check out our decoys. “Henned Up” as my Dad says. We have had hens and coyotes in our decoys, but no Toms or Jakes. I got some great video of a coyote stalking our decoys, but he did not pounce. My Dad had a bearded hen in his decoys this morning. Very rare. I have one more to hunt and hopefully I’ll luck out.

Florida

Over the past few weeks I took another trip to Titusville and fished another back slough off Palma Sola Bay. The first evening in the Indian River was windy and cool, but I was able to hook into a red that I spoted laid up on a sand spot. That red came unbuttoned after about 5 seconds and we decided to drink beer and head back to the boat dock instead of dealing with the 20 mph winds. The boat ride back was bumpy and wet, to say the least. Pat, Holly and I went up to the St. John’s River the following day in search of the Shad that run during the Spring. Another windy day and no fish. We did however take a cruise way up the St. John’s and that proved to be a great time. Lots of gators.

The slough off Palma Sola Bay, which I call CS Slough, has a few reds and snook that hang out when the tide is right. I have hooked a few fish in there but they run for the mangroves and I have to break them off. I busted a fly line in there last week. I think the line was nicked.

Montana – The snow is still falling in most parts of Montana, but there are fish biting from what I hear. I talked with Cam from Blue Ribbon a few days ago and he said that there is still atleast 4 feet of snow on the ground in West Yellowstone. The Madison and Gallatin Range are still above 100% of normal snowpack. There are select days when it gets warm, but there has been no significant melting yet. The lower Madison below Bear Trap has been fishing pretty good with nymphs. I have not heard whether there are any BWO’s yet. Most likey they should emerge in the next few weeks.

I will be heading home to MT on April 9th with a few stops along the way. After turkey hunting in Illinois or Missouri in late April, Holly and I should be back in SW Montana by the middle of May.