Archive for the ‘Cabin Fever’ Tag
Stephen Rose and his son Heron (named for a bird that Stephen admires, but also named for Hank Aaron, Stephen’s childhood baseball hero) went out to the Driftless yesterday with a spinning rod and some #9 Panther Martins and got after it, with encouraging success.
They found the stream they were fishing loaded with Brook Trout, and the Brook Trout were much further down in the system than they tend to be during the warm months. It is our suspicion that they’re comfortable lower downstream right now because water temps are still cool enough for them to feel comfortable.
The fish in the photo below has some health issues. Not sure what it is, but it looks like fin rot to me. Has anyone seen this before in trout they’ve caught?
At any rate, It’s gratifying to me to see a young fisherman like Heron get out there with his dad and catch fish, especially on a day that snow fell from the sky. Way to go guys!
A nice-sized Driftless Brook Trout, suffering from fin rot, me thinks.
Heron and Stephen after a successful outing in the Driftless of Wisconsin
Hey! I went out and fished yesterday with Stephen Rose, and let me tell you what. It felt good!
It was a chilly, bright day with a slight breeze and very little evidence of piscine activity. But, whatever. It was fun casting flies again to moving water and watching everything drift downstream just so. And it is evident that the plants and animals in these wonderful creek valleys are all waiting on the edges of their seats (what?) for spring to pop. Let’s hope it will, eventually.
Below are some photographs from our outing. Enjoy!
Driving the Driftless
Bear Valley in springtime
Tom angling with fly
Stephen angling with fly
The rock walls of Willow Creek
Stephen fishing Willow to no avail (but God is it Pretty!)
Tom exhibiting his “shooting” technique (which works for sh*t, by the way)
Stephen got out today, lucky dog!
Stephen Rose at Trout Creek, Iowa County
Here’s what I did today…
I could really use some time on a river.
Ten hours north of here lie dozens of rivers as fertile as the Brule River, and wilder to boot. Naturally-reproducing, wild Steelhead and Coaster Brook Trout swim in rocky, wild rivers.
A trip is in order!
Late April is only eight months away. Better get it on the calendar!
I took a little time to get out to my home waters and I didn’t see a lot of action, but there were beautiful swallows swooping all around, the trees were flowering and smelling like honey, and the air breathed crisp and fresh.
I hope you can get out to catch some trout this weekend. I’m likely to be seen on the shores of Monona Bay, chasing down a hunch overheard by my ten-year-old son at school about big bass being caught at sunrise. Hopefully I can convince him that Sunday will be the better day to fish. Saturday morning looks like rain and cold. I’d prefer to read the paper and drink my coffee in that kind of weather. But it ain’t easy to make an eager kid wait.
Sunday, by all accounts, was a day everyone should have stayed inside. It was 34° and raining. A friend of mine cleaned out his gutters on Sunday, so I suppose you could do worse than taking a hike through the woods.
That’s where our troop was, tromping through the woods enjoying the sights and having a good time.
I hope you enjoy the photos!
Skillet Creek runs through the gorge at Pewitt’s Nest
Pewitt’s Nest pine bough
Water drips off the limestone at Pewitt’s Nest
A crew of buddies in the woods at Pewitt’s Nest
Shepard on the slide at Pewitt’s Nest
Sawyer on the Slide at Pewitt’s Nest
Bode on the Slide at Pewitt’s Nest
Heron and Joe on the Slide at Pewitt’s Nest
Bracket Fungi reaching for the sky at Pewitt’s Nest
The work of large woodpeckers was everywhere at Pewitt’s Nest
Check out this picture of a Cutthroat eating a mouse. Pretty cool! Makes me want to keep working on that goal of catching a big trout on a mouse pattern.
Mouse in Trout
The year 2012 was one hell of a roller coaster ride for me and the people in my orbit. Ahead lies 2013, a year that, at the moment, seems to stretch out in front of me forever. There are so many goals, new experiences, trips, and friendships to grow, and healing to be done. I hope your 2013 is off to a good start and continues to deliver on all you’ve hoped for.
The 2013 Early Season Trout Opener is about four weeks away, here in Wisconsin. Have you got a plan? My friends and I have started making plans. Here’s a shot of the stretch we’re planning to fish on March 2nd (sorry, I can’t spray the location all over the internet).
Some Driftless trout water, Wisconsin
Afterwards we’ll wet our whistles here and recount the epic day of fishing we shared.
The Silent Woman
And after that, we’ll come up with many more plans, ideas to improve our success, and talk of hunting Turkeys, Deer, Musky, and many, many more trout.
Here’s to 2013!
Here we are in the thick of wintertime. I was wondering if it would be with us this year. Thankfully it is, at least in my opinion. We are a family of skiers. Alpine skiers. Nothing beats it. I put it on a very high pedestal alongside fly fishing and a good-value-for-the-money bourbon. Like maybe $20 for a 750ml bottle.
Even though I have so much winter to look forward to, with skiing, coaching the Blackhawk Alpine Racing Team with my friend Brian, and some epic games of Cribbage and Euchre to get through the cold, dark evenings, I can’t help but keep my eye on March 2nd, the early season trout opener. I’m not sure if any of you feel this way. Lovers of winter with an eye toward that first spring creek trout of the season.
But since it wasn’t that long ago, here are a few pictures of Christmas with my family. Enjoy Winter, and look ahead to Spring!
Christmas with the Andersons
Rebecca and Wes
It’s fun to feel this way about Christmas
Don’t be mistaken. These two are hell on wheels.
After an hour of Lego Indiana Jones on the Wii and Minecraft on the PC, kids need to get the heck outside. Saturday morning, Stephen and I took advantage of the glorious weather, put rubber pants on the kids, and hit the water. We found clams, set up a hammock, made a little fire for roasting marshamallows and warming hands, and even sniffed a fish or two (it’s tough to sneak up on a trout with 8 small feet tromping around).
Rubber Pants, Marshmallows, Hammock, and Republic Clone Trooper DC-15 Rifle. Check.
Serious Fun in the Driftless of Wisconsin.
This photo needs a caption contest. Any ideas?
When the sun reached its peak it was time for some lunch. We took the kids into Black Earth and filled up at the Luckenbooth Cafe. I highly recommend the burgers. And the kids each got a scoop of ice cream topped with whipped cream and caramel to make good and well sure they were full.
This is what nature does to your kids. Any Questions?
After the long and lazy lunch we stopped over at On The Creek to visit Todd Opsal. I’d bought a TFO reel (the $60 job) and was having some trouble with it free-spooling in the cold weather. Pulling out line felt like Russian Roulette. Every now and then the drag would just turn off, and I’d be left with a bird’s nest of line tangled up in the reel. I had reported this to Todd, who recommended I try one more time out to see if I could reproduce the problem, and after doing so, Todd kept his word and allowed me to trade the reel in. I paid the difference and upgraded to the large arbor TFO reel. So far, so good. Thanks Todd!
After arriving back home, hanging up our gear to dry, and settling in for the evening, my oldest and middle sons both thanked me for taking them out to spend time in the natural world. There often seems to be some arm twisting required when it’s time to get out and play in nature, but without fail, everyone ends the day feeling good about soaking up some sunlight, fresh air, and moving water.
Oh, and the rubber pants. Let’s not forget about the rubber pants.