Thursday, September 30, 2010

Good ending to the WI Season

I've caught this big brown a hundred times this year... In my dreams. In reality I caught him once this Spring. Uncle Nate and I decided to end the Wisco season where we started it -- in search of big browns in Grant Co WI.

We didn't hook into any big browns. Still, a couple days in paradise on the spring creeks of the driftless area.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Wisconsin season ender

Uncle John and I closed the Wisconsin season out where we opened it, down in Grant County. You may recall that John landed a 20 inch Brown down there in March. So we were searching for big fish. We found none. Not even a hook-up with something big. In fact the largest fish either of us landed was 12 inches. As I reflect on the weekend, I wonder where those big browns are right now? I know we were fishing over areas that are likely to attract spawning fish, so it isn't like they were farther upstream. Maybe they just weren't hungry. Who knows, I guess that's why they call it fishing.

Despite not landing any lunkers, we had a great time fishing and landed a lot of 10 and 12 inch fish and it is always beautiful on a Wisco spring creek.

Flooding on the Black

After the 4.5 inches of rain we recieved on Wed, we got 2 more inches on Thursday. Region-wide totals were about 6 inches on average. This pushed the Black well beyond flood stage. The scene from our back door is incredible. Below is a video from our neighbors backyard and some pics as well. The river is fishable at around 1200 cfs and the long-term average for this time of year is well below 1000 cfs. It is cranking at around 70,000 cfs right now, that's a full order of magnitude higher than normal.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

4 more inches last night

Since the start of May, the Black River has been fishable on 29 of the past 144 days, that's 20% of the summer.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010


Hit a creek with Dan H. over the weekend. We went in search of big browns getting ready to spawn. The water was pretty dirty on this stream, which I think limited our success. Nevertheless, we each landed 14 inch browns, which ain't bad.
Here is a 12 inch fish that took a nice photo.

The photos don't really do this fish justice. It went 14 inches and was really pretty.

Even the small fish were really fat. This is a 10 incher that just ate something big.

Small streams, big(er) fish, and dry flies...

For most of the summer I have been driving over a small stream on my way to larger, more productive trout waters. This isn't to say that this creek doesn't hold trout, because it does. It just doesn't fish well during the summer, at least not for me. But in September, this stream comes alive with fish that are disproportionately large relative to the size of the stream. Most runs are knee deep, and during the summer I presume too 'exposed' for larger fish to hold in them. But during the fall, as the bigger browns get ready to spawn, they move up into these runs and get pretty aggressive. Last September I caught a couple of 14 inch fish from these shallow runs and spotted a few others.

So it was with great anticipation that Sam and I hit the water this past weekend. We were armed with streamers and dry flies and our goal was to find some large fish sitting in shallow water. I started out fishing a black foam-bodied terrestrial with rubber legs and never had to change flies. The best fish of the day was this 16 inch brown (below) that rose out of a knee-deep run to take my fly. I lost one fish that was bigger (I think) after it went air borne and shook the fly.
Fish of the day!
From this run...

Small streams, big(er) fish, and dry flies-if only fall could stick around a bit longer.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Low Creeks

The creeks in my area are low and clear. These conditions make for some predictable smallies.

There were a bunch of frogs on the water. I smacked a popper along these rocks and that was the best producer.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Goat Roast

A week or so ago we were invited to a neighborhood goat roast. What, you’ve never been?

The whole thing started with a couple of guys talking about buying, slaughtering, and smoking a goat-doing it all from start to finish. Things progressed to the point where a goat was purchased and there was no turning back. On a cool autumn night down by the Black river, the deed was done. Here are the highlights in photo….

A lot of peopled warned that goat doesn’t taste good. But they were wrong, it was really, really, tasty. Of course, anything that has been rubbed down with spices and smoked for 4 hours is bound to taste pretty good.

The Goat

A very hairy goat...
Starting to look like food...
Oh yeah, smoky, spicy goodness.