SAO Pages

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

I'm A Wanna-Be Trout Bum.....Part III

When I first started learning how to fly fish, all I dreamed about was catching trout in as many states as possible. I was mesmerized by Fly-Fisherman Magazine! I would cut out all the trout photos and put them in a journal of places and species I wanted to catch. Watching Joe Humphreys completely school Babe Winkleman with a fly rod in the mid 1980's on TV set my young mind into overload.

Today that urge is still as strong as the day I laid hands on my first Martin rod and reel combo from the local tackle shop. The cost was just $35.00, or to a young kid, about two weeks of mowing at five bucks a lawn. A week later I bought my first flies. That assortment was made up of the Muddler Minnow in standard and marabou versions, a few Montana Stone Fly nymphs (heck they were from Montana they gotta be good right?), a couple of Mickey Finns, and a pair of Adams and Elk Hair Caddis dry flies. In my mind I had finally become a fly fisherman! I just wish someone would have told me you needed to buy backing for your fly line, not to mention that you needed to secure your fly line to the reel?

My first "Trout" on the fly rod just happened to be a very large Elk Creek Steelhead, which proceeded to tear ass down stream and promptly take my entire fly line with it! This is the point where a young middle school aged boy looks downstream with a pretty big "WTF" grin on his face! Thankfully a gentleman fishing below me was able to retrieve my line, and out of kindness at least secured it to the reel...

Over the next 8 years Jason Gregory and I would ride our scooters, ten speeds, and mountain bikes to all the local steelhead tributaries and stocked trout streams in search of the next trout fix. Along the way we learned how to tie our own flies by detouring over to Folly's End Fly Shop for free fly tying classes with local legend Clyde Murray. I was on cloud nine, and in the best shape of my life, as a 10 mile bike ride was worth exploring rumors of a few small wild trout in a stream located in some farmers field in the middle of "BFE"! As we got older, possessed drivers licences, were able to fly, and we were able to explore streams that were always out of reach, I finally realized that my dreams were finally within my grasp! Always willing to learn and listen to rumors of big trout has now landed me in the west, and in honor of my youth and my childhood dreams I have been fortunate enough to have landed and released trout in 16 states. I only hope to complete this "Trout Bum" dream before it is too late.

Brett McCrae casting dries on Wyoming's North Fork of the Powder River.

Brett is rewareded with a heavy North Fork Powder River Brown Trout!

Wyoming has become a very special stop for me! It's a fly fishing destination worthy of visiting every year, and holds the potential for stalling my goal of catching a trout in every state they still swim. The trout fishing, scenery, and people here in Wyoming are so inviting that it haunts my dreams when I am long gone. I guess dreams are for just that...

Taking the time to take in the beautiful scenery along
the North Fork of the Powder River.

Posing with a feisty North Fork Brown Trout
from the run seen in the photo above.

A close up of a beautifully colored Wyoming Brown Trout!

The North fork of the Powder River is a terrestrial insect haven. The undercut grassy banks, and willow sections of the stream offered exceptional dry fly fishing with big foam bodied flies. The splashy takes while drifting under the willows, or over sections of wood debris made me yearn for this type of action back home. Watching large trout track a dry fly out of a five foot deep pool, and eat the fly in reverse is what brings me back to these small waters. If my trout bum journey would have to end on these waters I would not be disappointed. Here are just a few of the Brown Trout we caught on that day.

Casting foam dries under the willows in search of Brown Trout.

This is an example of an average sized fish for these waters.

Brett poses with another solid Brown Trout.

Even a guy like me managed a few really nice fish!

If Brown trout like this on large dries doesn't get you
excited, please find another hobby!

Hope to see you next year a few inches bigger!

Stay positive, keep learning, live your dreams no matter what they are, and ignore the comments and things that are negative in nature. After a few days of fly fishing, no matter the location you should feel right with the world around you...

No comments: