One of our favorite thing about the fly fishing community is how many amazing artists there are out there who express their visions of fish, fishing, and nature through their work. Fish are brings us so much joy, that we can’t imagine our fly shop our our homes without out some of it on display.
While there is no way that we would ever want to or try to pick a favorite artist, the is one artist who stands out for being a friend of ours for the longest time, to the point that we simply consider her a part of the family. We have known Mimi Matsuda since our early days of fishing and guiding around Yellowstone – back when we were skipping too many showers and Mimi was working as a Ranger/Naturalist in Yellowstone Park. That was 20 years ago! This winter, we were able to get together with Mimi and work together to create a series of decals based on some of her amazing Pine Panel Trout creations. When the box of finished outdoor stickers arrived the other day from the folks over at Sticker Mule, we dropped everything and tore into it like kids on Christmas morning. If you like these as much as we do, be sure to swing by the fly shop and grab some, or pop over to our online fly shop and add a few to your cart.
The CPM machine will get me up faster....back to the water.
Now that the winter snow coaching season is officially over for me, I have been sequestered to our couch because of ACL/meniscus surgery. Bad timing you ask?…….is there ever a good time for this? NO, there isn’t. This gets in the way of EVERYTHING, no matter the timeframe. But once it is over I will be back with ferocity. Making turns, wading the rivers and walking the hills for game. Dr. Campbell told me no wading in rivers till mid-June……he didn’t say anything about driftboats. Today’s high temperature is 44 degrees and a little windy. There are low clouds hanging over Hebgen and the Madison Valley to the northwest. I bet there are midges hatching by the droves and maybe even a few small winter stoneflies. Oh to be fishing………here, there, where ever…..just not from this couch. Winter is far from over in the Hebgen Basin, but a quick trip to lower elevations brings green grass and hints of spring. It is only March though and we really have a few more months of winter here in high country.
Nurse Ratched & McMurphy....
My lovey wife, Molly, is kindly being referred to as Nurse Ratched by her friends here in West………”If Mr. McMurphy doesn’t want to take his medication orally, I’m sure we can arrange that he can have it some other way. But I don’t think that he would like it.”
Drreaming of this.....
I woke up earlier this afternoon from a dream and almost fell off the couch. Can’t quite remember what it was about but there was running water and a hint of a river. Molly was in the shower when I woke, so who knows. Keeping medicated has been the only constant thing since we arrived home from Bozeman a couple of days ago. Every minute I seem to feel better, but then the pain meds wear off and hit me like a ton of bricks.
Arriving back at Alpen Guides yesterday evening from a wonderful day in Yellowstone with the crew from Headhunters Fly Shop, I found out that I had today off. Unexpectly, there was a day to go fishing. The weatherman had forecasted warmer weather with snow and some wind. On Horse Butte, the wind was ripping but it wasn’t cold out. 35 degrees on the front porch. Since one can’t catch a trout while sitting on the couch, I wadered up, rigged my rod and drove down to the Madison River. It was dead calm……………..and 36 degrees. Perfect. Absolutely, perfect weather for winter angling. You should have been there. The snow began to fall and the quiet was great for the soul. Just the sound of water rushing over rocks was all I heard for about two hours. Fishing a bobber with a rubber leg and a red midge larve, I managed to hook over a dozen trout. Most were smaller rainbows around 8 inches, but I did fool one 16 in rainbow and one 12 in brown. Both of the larger fish ate the rubber leg.
This brown trout was sitting in fast, shallow water.