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> > Yellowstone River near Gardner August 21, 2013 "Fishing with Walter"



Oldredbarn has attached these 14 pictures. The message is below.
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Gearing up
Gearing up
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Having my flies critiqued! Ouch! :)
Having my flies critiqued! Ouch! :)
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I love this pic
I love this pic
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I know you're in there!
I know you're in there!
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Cutthroat
Cutthroat
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Whitefish :)
Whitefish :)
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Another Cutt
Another Cutt
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Wife getting bored
Wife getting bored
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Another Cutt
Another Cutt
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Moon setting in Park on the way to Gardner. Taken with an iPhone!
Moon setting in Park on the way to Gardner. Taken with an iPhone!
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Spence and an old buddy hanging out in Jackson Hole Wyoming...Of all places!
Spence and an old buddy hanging out in Jackson Hole Wyoming...Of all places!
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OldredbarnSeptember 9th, 2013, 7:52 pm
Novi, MI

Posts: 2600
My wife flew to Bozeman August 17th. We were to celebrate our 25th and this required the stowing of the fishing gear. I had one half day float set up and sold this to my wife as a boat ride for her and a chance to watch me fish. Nice work if you can get it! ;)

We were supposed to be in Gardner by 12:30 and were driving over from West Yellowstone. We were driving in to Jackson Hole the day before and my phone rang. It was the shop in Gardner informing me that the guide felt that the fishing wasn't so good in the afternoon and wanted us at the shop by 7:00am.

I looked at my wife for a reaction, and she said, "Once you-re up, you're up." So, we got up around 3:30/4:00am and showered and pulled away from our cabin on the Madison around 4:30, and drove through Yellowstone Park in the dark...They don't have street lights in there. :) It was a trip!

One big bear crossed in front of us, but it was far enough up the road to cause no problems. When we approached Mammoth Hot Springs as the nearly full moon was setting in the west and the sun was rising in the east. Pretty much everyone was asleep except the elk that were keeping the lawns there in shape.

We made it to the shop and were on the river fishing by 8:00am!!!

If you fly tyers out there are unaware of Walter Wiese and his YouTube videos you need to check him out. He has just published a tying book called, "Yellowstone Country Flies: The Fly Patterns of Park's Fly Shop"...Park's fly shop has been in Gardner since 1953 and founded by Merton Parks...His son, Richard Park's is running the show these days and has a wonderfully helpful book out of his own, "Fishing Yellowstone National Park".

I was introduced to Walter's vids by a good friend of mine here in Detroit and was very happy when I contacted Walter about my trip and he sat up a float for us with my wife riding as a passenger and photographer.

For the record, Walter is held in high esteem by everyone I spoke to in the Yellowstone Park area. Guides, and fly shop owners alike know him and had nothing but good things to say and we all had a nice float together.

I think I'll let my wife Lisa's pics do most of the talking here. She had a nice ride and there was even a little "white-water" to add some excitment.

The river is deep just down from Gardner...All those Park rivers, Soda Butte, Lamar, Slough Creek, Gardner, etc...have emptied into the Yellowstone before its left the Park. It has some heft here. There are boulders below the water that are as big as a VW Beetle and completely under water.

I stood most of the way with my legs resting up against the forward brace and tossed the flies in to fishy looking spots. I was a bit too quick with some of these Cutts and missed them, but we caught fish and I finally got to fish the Yellowstone. I have fished the spring creeks of Paradise Valley, DePuy's & Armstrong's in 1995, and Nelson's in 2004, but had not fished the Yellowstaon.

"Even when my best efforts fail it's a satisfying challenge, and that, after all, is the essence of fly fishing." -Chauncy Lively

"Envy not the man who lives beside the river, but the man the river flows through." Joseph T Heywood
Jmd123September 9th, 2013, 9:24 pm
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2492
Wow Spence, that's some big bold water out there. It's been a long time since I have been out west and those rivers look just huge and powerful compared to my small local waters. Looks like a great float! And thank Lisa for the pictures, she illustrated the trip well.

Fishing details? Rod(s), reel(s), line(s)?? FLIES?

Is there more coming? ;oD

Jonathon
No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
WbranchSeptember 9th, 2013, 9:50 pm
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2661
"I love this pic"

What river were you fishing? It just doesn't look like the Yellowstone as there is so little water. If it is the Yellowstone did you float through Yankee Jim Canyon? There doesn't look to be enough water for the guide to get that big drift boat through that skinny and boulder strewn stretch without banging the heck out of the boat.
Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.
OldredbarnSeptember 9th, 2013, 11:09 pm
Novi, MI

Posts: 2600
Matt,

It's the Yellowstone just below Gardner. If you look at the sign behind us in the second picture you can see the sign, "McConnell River Access". This is just a little ways downstream of town. We got out before Yankee Jim Canyon. It was a half day float and we were on the river just over four hours or so.

I do remember some rolling moments but I don't remember Walter hitting anything...He did have me sit a couple times just in case. It would of been a drag to have done a header overboard. :)

I can't remember where we actually exited the river. By the time we got there we had a few large rafts catch up with us with folks in them with life jackets on...We got out on the west side of the river...Somewhere before the Canyon. We finished up just after noon.

Matt...I added another pic that shows a little more of the "rougher" bit of water. It's a little difficult to see but the water below us was quite deep. Like I said there were boulders the size of VW beetles, or small garages below us.

That Claka-Craft seemed quite light...Lighter than a Hyde I would guess...He seemed able to move it around pretty much at will, and if I leaned out of the brace up front and on one side of the boat more than the other he seemed hampered a bit and would remind me to square up.

Fishing details? Rod(s), reel(s), line(s)?? FLIES?


Jonathon...Rod was a 9' 5wt Sage RPL built for an earlier Montana trip (1995) by my fishing friend Bill...If you hold it to the light you can see my name near the handle...He said he did this so I wouldn't sell it. :) I also have it in a 4wt 8' version. The reel I think was my Hardy...LRH Lightweight Golden Hardy...It is my sentimental reel that has such a wonderful clicking scream when a fish makes a good run. Unfortunately you have to keep control on these guys and I seldom got them on the reel...I would of heard it from the guides if they caught me playing a fish to reel just for the pleasure of making the Hardy squeal! :)

Flies...Walter is one hell of a tyer and he changed flies often, more so than most. We joked that he was running some proto-types so he could see how they worked...We fished tandem dries...Some version of the Hopper/Dropper deal, but without the weighted nymphs. He is also fond of foam and we usually had some sort of ant as the terminal fly.

Hoppers of all sorts were everywhere and this ant I saw a great deal that has a dark rear and reddish/orange front end...See his Hi-Viz Bicolor Para Ant. There was this yellowish hopper that when it flew made a very loud clicking sound...Pretty cool and it flew some distances.

Walter has a vid on YouTube of a fly that is rather popular out west called the Purple Haze...An old hippie favorite. ;) He has a Haze Cripple Series and I think we ran one of those awhile. Along with a Purple Phase Emerger...No that's not a typo.

Spence
"Even when my best efforts fail it's a satisfying challenge, and that, after all, is the essence of fly fishing." -Chauncy Lively

"Envy not the man who lives beside the river, but the man the river flows through." Joseph T Heywood
CrepuscularSeptember 10th, 2013, 8:09 am
Boiling Springs, PA

Posts: 920
Nice report Spence! One day I'll venture out west...

sold this to my wife as a boat ride for her and a chance to watch me fish.


Wow! how nice of you to let her watch you fish ;)

Walter has a vid on YouTube of a fly that is rather popular out west called the Purple Haze...An old hippie favorite. ;) He has a Haze Cripple Series and I think we ran one of those awhile. Along with a Purple Phase Emerger


This may be an issue for a guy like me whose idea of crazy is an adams...
EntomanSeptember 10th, 2013, 2:51 pm
Northern CA & ID

Posts: 2604
This may be an issue for a guy like me whose idea of crazy is an adams...

Funny example, Eric, as the Purple Haze is an Adams --- only with a purple body. An Adams with a black body has been one of may favorites for years. Can I claim the invention and call it the Black something or other? Nah... Black-bodied Adams is more honest...:)
"It's not that I find fishing so important, it's just that I find all other endeavors of Man equally unimportant... And not nearly as much fun!" Robert Traver, Anatomy of a Fisherman
Kschaefer3September 10th, 2013, 3:19 pm
St. Paul, MN

Posts: 376
Can I claim the invention and call it the Black something or other? Nah... Black-bodied Adams is more honest...:)
I like the honesty. Many out there would claim they created a new fly. I saw someone tie a rubber legged woolly bugger and named it something else as if they invented a new fly. I'm going to tie Mr. Galloups sex dungeon with saddle hackle instead of schlappen and call it the "intercourse chamber". ;)
EntomanSeptember 10th, 2013, 3:27 pm
Northern CA & ID

Posts: 2604
LOL - yes, we fly fishers are a funny bunch with small egos.:) The most humorous examples of this behavior perhaps took place in the classic steelhead genre. Back in the day the identical fly with a mere substitution of body chenille color was deserving of a new name according to its proud "inventor.":) A lot of this stuff is probably sincere, though. There have been lots of fly patterns over the years that have developed a following by a different name because the tier or angling community is simply ignorant of the pedigree. Jack Horner brought a fly from CA to the Rocky Mtn. states he called the Horner Deer Hair. A few years later, somebody tied it with a body of red floss and it became the Goofus Bug. Also a few years later in a different part of the region it was tied with elk hair and yellow floss and the Humpy was born. Anglers unaware of history assume these patterns were derived from whole cloth. True innovation is actually quite rare. Bob Quigley's cripple designs come to mind as an example.
"It's not that I find fishing so important, it's just that I find all other endeavors of Man equally unimportant... And not nearly as much fun!" Robert Traver, Anatomy of a Fisherman
Jmd123September 10th, 2013, 3:33 pm
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2492
Kurt's Black Adams - KBA. There, now you have a fly with a 3-letter acronym that you can claim to be all your own (ala the KBF, eh?)...

;oD

Jonathon
No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
EntomanSeptember 10th, 2013, 3:49 pm
Northern CA & ID

Posts: 2604
Lol;) Very good, Jonathon. Lets say we didn't know each other and that I have tied a fly for years with brindle materials along the lines of a Comet. I think I named it the Kurt's Comet, commonly referred to by its adherents (me) as the KC... See how it works? LOL
"It's not that I find fishing so important, it's just that I find all other endeavors of Man equally unimportant... And not nearly as much fun!" Robert Traver, Anatomy of a Fisherman
OldredbarnSeptember 10th, 2013, 3:56 pm
Novi, MI

Posts: 2600
Lets see Kurt...My first black bodied Adams was 1991. A great midge imitator for those stocked trout in that local pond here in April. I got bored with it and substituted a nearly all black Klinkhammer. If I was honest ;) I'd admit that a fishing buddy passed those on to me.

I have read somewhere, "that there is nothing new under the sun."

In terms of Jimi's fly, the Purple Haze, Walters use of the material "Life Flex" is interesting. There are other manufacturers, but this ones from Hareline. A stretchy material in all the right colors for legs and bodies.
"Even when my best efforts fail it's a satisfying challenge, and that, after all, is the essence of fly fishing." -Chauncy Lively

"Envy not the man who lives beside the river, but the man the river flows through." Joseph T Heywood
EntomanSeptember 10th, 2013, 4:14 pm
Northern CA & ID

Posts: 2604
Got ya! Mine was in '73.:) Nobody before us ever thought of substituting the body color of an Adams...:) It proved deadly on North Slope grayling that seemed to have a real attraction for black. I could see the Adams better than the Black Gnat that drew more strikes, so I made the adaption. Since then, I have used it all over the West with great results. Believe it or not, it often works well when fish are working march browns or speckled spinners and the fish seem picky over more imitative patterns. It's also a good fly to use on Summer mornings when terrestrials (particularly ants) are about. The Adams variations also work well with yellow bodies, tan bodies, blue bodies, and yes, even purple bodies. We can only carry so many flies, though.:)

PS - I prefer them with standard hackle if the surface is broken by current or breeze.
"It's not that I find fishing so important, it's just that I find all other endeavors of Man equally unimportant... And not nearly as much fun!" Robert Traver, Anatomy of a Fisherman
OldredbarnSeptember 10th, 2013, 4:22 pm
Novi, MI

Posts: 2600
Now you tell me!!! You mean that there's a limit to the flies I can carry?! Is that in the fishing regs somewhere? :)
"Even when my best efforts fail it's a satisfying challenge, and that, after all, is the essence of fly fishing." -Chauncy Lively

"Envy not the man who lives beside the river, but the man the river flows through." Joseph T Heywood
EntomanSeptember 10th, 2013, 4:33 pm
Northern CA & ID

Posts: 2604
Angler is working with a difficult fish. After several refusals he determines that that certain blue-winged olive variation he tied two Winters ago would be just the ticket. After combing through a dozen fly boxes, he finally locates the beast and manages to tie it on with trembling fingers, just knowing it will prove to be the big trout's demise. He again looks at the stream for the precise location to plant his fly. While false casting, he mutters to himself, "Hey - where did he go?"...

Full of disappointment as he trudges out of the stream, he missteps and tweaks his back because of the massive weight shift of his vest. At least his chiropractor will be happy.:)
"It's not that I find fishing so important, it's just that I find all other endeavors of Man equally unimportant... And not nearly as much fun!" Robert Traver, Anatomy of a Fisherman
OldredbarnSeptember 10th, 2013, 5:14 pm
Novi, MI

Posts: 2600
:)

I am always overloaded. After I get home I realize that my best fish were oft times taken on a simple old stand bye. I had a small plastic carrying case loaded with extras...Never needed them.

In 2004, on Slough, not my biggest, but most memorable fish took a damn fur bodied ant with a wrapped hackle waist!!! Old as angling probably.
"Even when my best efforts fail it's a satisfying challenge, and that, after all, is the essence of fly fishing." -Chauncy Lively

"Envy not the man who lives beside the river, but the man the river flows through." Joseph T Heywood
PaulRobertsSeptember 10th, 2013, 9:27 pm
Colorado

Posts: 1776
This conversation reveals that there is something major missing in our understanding of fish, or ourselves.
EntomanSeptember 10th, 2013, 9:37 pm
Northern CA & ID

Posts: 2604
Ha! It seems the more I learn, the less I know about either...;)
"It's not that I find fishing so important, it's just that I find all other endeavors of Man equally unimportant... And not nearly as much fun!" Robert Traver, Anatomy of a Fisherman
OldredbarnSeptember 10th, 2013, 10:18 pm
Novi, MI

Posts: 2600
Yes Paul. It's a long slow slog. :)
"Even when my best efforts fail it's a satisfying challenge, and that, after all, is the essence of fly fishing." -Chauncy Lively

"Envy not the man who lives beside the river, but the man the river flows through." Joseph T Heywood
OldredbarnSeptember 10th, 2013, 10:52 pm
Novi, MI

Posts: 2600
Spent the evening at my local Audubon group...Had a young man speaking that blows my "Nerder Birder" designation to shreds. He spends his evenings listening to a receiver system placed up on the roof of his home listening to vocalizations made by passing migratory birds. There exists sonograms of these birds and he counts them without ever seeing them...This is tied in to a system of others like him and they are working out migratory patterns etc from this.

My little Zeiss binoculars are looking a little puny!
"Even when my best efforts fail it's a satisfying challenge, and that, after all, is the essence of fly fishing." -Chauncy Lively

"Envy not the man who lives beside the river, but the man the river flows through." Joseph T Heywood
Jmd123September 11th, 2013, 12:25 am
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2492
Hey Nerder Birder, I should mention that I took my very last Field Biology class trip out to Tuttle Marsh. Where else can you pull off the side of the road and watch osprey feed their young at 50x? Though, the best part of the trip was pulling the 20-foot seine through the water in both the big pond on the one side and the two small overflow ponds on the other, we caught a whole bunch of black bullheads and the class was thrilled!

But, I digress...

I think when it comes to carrying flies, I am the antithesis of Spence - if he carries too many, I carry too few. Yet we both somehow manage to catch our share of fish. Tonight on the Rifle was quiet, not much hatching, I threw a #12 EHC around as a searching pattern and got little response, until a 7-inch brown hit that jumped 3 feet out of the water like a rainbow. Then later, during a somewhat sparse Nectopsyche hatch, an 11-inch rainbow took my fly silently, lifted to make another cast and what the heck, something's on there...and it didn't jump at all. Role reversal...go figure.

Jonathon
No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
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