Monday, April 30, 2012

DF&F, Bluegill

Drawing Fish & Flies 52.  Subject - Bluegill
Anyone following along is welcome to use my bluegill piece as screen wallpaper.

I've missed a few weeks of DF&F. I've had this bluegill sketch on my desk since March. Decided to finish it off today.

DF&F announces a weekly subject for those who want to play/follow along. Only one rule, 30 minutes for production. Check out Jason & Jeff's work at the links below.
Jason Borger - Bluegill
Jeff Kennedy - Pumpkinseed

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Black River Gar

I caught my fist gar of 2012 over the weekend. It was rolling along the bank in a backwater when I saw it, cast to it, and got it to follow my rope fly about half way back to my boat. I saw a number of other fish rising in the backwater but could not induce a strike. Out in the current, there were some very large fish rolling, they would not take my fly. I've not had much luck taking fish from the main channel of the black river, although that seems to be where the very large fish hang out. I have not caught a gar fishing blind. Every fish I've caught has been one that I've seen rolling around. These fish can breathe oxygen from the air, unlike most other fish (another exception are bowfin). They could be rising for air, chasing bait fish, or I've even heard that they rise to shake parasites. Whatever the reason, when I spot em, 50% of the time I catch them some of time.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

fringe of the driftless

John posted some photos on his blog of a recent float trip we took.

Quote of the trip from John-
"If fishing tiny dry flies on small and well-manicured streams for 10 inch trout is the 'heart of the driftless' then I want to be on the fringes of the driftless: a big unkempt waterway casting nasty streamers in search of large trout"
Photos from John Jensen

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Driftless in April

The swing of the samurai and other moments captured in pixels. 
I drifted into this spot to fish the riffles downstream. As i got out of the boat I looked over the grass and saw the corner pocket.   A stealthy shot into the hole gave up the healthy brown pictured below. We hooked fish in some really cool holding spots. 
Streamside pineapple brats and home brews for lunch. so good. 
Nate's samurai recipe was the fly of the trip.
Streamside burritos. Yum. 

Monday, April 9, 2012


Excitement is building about a float trip this Friday. Tied up a few Samurai streamers for the occasion. I'm optimistic the browns fall victim to the swing of the samurai. 
Miyamoto Musashi -- greatest samurai warrior of all-time

Friday, April 6, 2012

Good Friday Catfish

The story from the daycare is that my son, 2-1/2 years old, overachieved at the egg hunt. We've been hiding eggs all week so when his class blew the whistle on the egg hunt he sprinted out the gate like a pro and proceeded to snatch up much more than his fair share of the eggs. I was told he shared very well. Got a good chuckle from that story today. 

Tossed a bunny fly for pike on the Iowa River Reservoir (Coralville Lake). I'll take some catfish any day. 

Thursday, April 5, 2012


Pictures from a recent driftless outing. I had bounced some emails to a local blog follower and we eventually made a day of chasing trout. This was Andy's first time fishing the driftless. In the first picture Andy hooked up with the biggest brown of the day -- it happend to be the one that got away. Andy's expression after the fish came unbuttoned was priceless. It's fun to fish with someone who shows excitement, enthusiasm.

The picture below features Andy swinging a bugger through the top of a shallow run. This technique on shallow riffle runs is my favorite. Caught a lot of fish this spring with this approach.

Caddis are popping

It was too windy to truely experience the goodness of the caddis hatch. Yet, fish were rising. Get out there and get yourself some Grannom love!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Paper mouths

Paper mouths and clousers. I lined my 4wt with a 6wt Rio Clouser line. Suggested by a friend. Good advice for throwing streamers on a smaller rod.