Monday, April 29, 2013

Roaring Fork/Gianinetti Spring Creeks- 4/28/13

I have a buddy that works for Rocky Mountain Angling Club that can get us on private waters from time to time.  Although our state has miles and miles of quality public fishing, there is just something pretty awesome about being the only anglers on a stretch of water, not having to fight anyone for holes, and free to move around as you please.  This past weekend, we headed to the Roaring Fork Valley to explore one of RMAC's best properties: Gianinetti Spring Creeks.  Gianinetti's is billed as one of RMAC's top properties.  With 2 miles of very small, very productive spring creeks, and 3/4 mile of the Roaring Fork River, all in the shadow of Snowmass mountain, this property makes for an absolutely spectactular place to fly fish.

I fished this property exactly two years ago, when I was a very novice angler.  The spring creeks were a little past my skill level, as I did not have the casting skill that is required that is necessary to successfully fish them.  I did hook and land my first brown trout in the Roaring Fork, so I was looking forward to getting back out there to see if I would catch more fish this time around.  My Dad and I fished the Roaring Fork in the morning, seemingly starting to hook fish from the very beginning.  The fish were very active, taking both stonefly and baetis patterns.  Rainbows and browns were both caught, and I even landed a couple Mountain Whitefish as well.  I had never caught any of them before, but they fought hard and were fun to catch nonetheless.  My Dad had his best day on any Colorado river, landing and releasing lots of healthy fish.

Me and my buddy fished the Spring Creeks in the afternoon, slowly leapfrogging each other up the two miles of the North Fork of the Spring Creek.  Heavily weighted patterns and lots of split shot were required to get down fast enough to have a chance at catching fish, but once you got it dialed it, seemingly every pool yielded at least a couple fish.  We fished all the way to property line, where you are greeted by arguably the best view on the entire property.  Fishing this amazing place makes me so grateful to be back in Colorado, doing what I love with the people that I love in such beautiful places.

Property line at Gianinetti Spring Creeks
First Mountain Whitefish

Nice face, Better fish! 

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Houston Zoo- Carp Heaven?

Every pond at the Houston Zoo was completely full of carp and koi.  Had a dream last night that heaven was the zoo, and I was the only one there, armed with a fly rod and box full of flies.  Ideas of fruitless stealth missions continue to go through my head this morning.  I would love to hook into a koi sometime!!

Pond in the Tiger exhibit at the Houston Zoo

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Turtle on a Fly!?

Went to a local Houston pond after work to try to hook into some bass or bluegill, but the only thing I managed to catch was a turtle.  I was fishing a little, white Wooly Bugger slowly along the bottom, and I felt a tug on the line.  Reeled in and the turtle had tried to eat the fly.  Kind of adding to the weirdness of the fly fishing down here in Texas.  Never a dull moment down here with a fly rod in your hand.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Salt Life- Espiritu Santo Bay, Texas- 4/7/13

Had the chance to go fishing with a co-worker this past weekend in the salt water, chasing Redfish and Speckled Trout around.  Very different to what I'm used to, but I can see why so many anglers out there become addicted to the salt.  Even though the water was very dirty, and the wind was unrelenting, I will call my first salt experience a success.  The thoughts of large bull Redfish will have to get me through until the next time I get a chance to get out in the salt water.

I drove the 3 hrs south from Houston to Port O'Connor to fish the marshes around Espiritu Santo Bay with a co worker.  He had a little john boat that would be our vessel out into the ocean.  I was treated to a giant seafood feast when I first got down there, full of red drum, trout, and fresh oysters.  Nothing like fresh oysters that were caught in the bay that day.  Absolutely stuffed myself on them, both raw and grilled.  Ventured to the boat ramp at night to try to fish bait fish flies to the fish that get drawn into the lights.  Hooked into some very cool Speckled Trout that put up a decent fight.  Only fished for a few hours, but managed to catch a few keepers (I didn't keep them, but my co worker feels obligated to try catch his limit every time he fishes.  To each their own).

Headed out the next morning at sunrise to the marshes.  An experience I am soon not to forget is the peaceful boat ride across Espiritu Santo, nothing but water, marshes and sun in my eyes.  One of the highlights of my young fly fishing career thus far.  The day started promising, with a nice Speckled Trout being landed in the first handful of casts.  Hoping for more, we continued to explore the various ins and outs of the marsh system all day.  Pringle Lake, Contee Lake, and South Pass Lake just to name a few.  What's fun about the salt fishing is the sheer amount of water that is available, making you feel very small in this big world of ours.  Sure you see boats cruising around from time to time, but mostly it was just us and the fish.  As the day wore on, the wind continued to punish us, making casting difficult.  I consider myself a decent caster, but if I fished salt more often, it is a skill that I would have to work on tremendously.  Finally, my co-worker finally hooked a little Red, but not the giant Red that we were looking for.

Finally, we decided that the day was a wash, heading back to the boat ramp to lick our wounds.  I will definitely be planning a salt water trip soon, but I will be doing my research to find a guide that will put me on some Redfish.  I can only imagine how fun it would to find a group of feeding Redfish, put a fly in front of their face, watch it turn and inhale the fly, and then hold on.  It is definitely something that is on my fly fishing  to-do list.  It was an awesome trip and another great experience that fly fishing allowed me.

Seafood feast
First Speckled Trout caught on the fly

Beautiful Texas sunrise

Very cool Redfish fly

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Mile High Trout

One thing that I am very passionate about is the love that I have for our home state, Colorado.  I do not believe a more beautiful place to live exists.  The snow capped mountains in the winter, the roar of Mile High Stadium in the fall, the popping of tree buds in the spring, and the gorgeous blue skies of summer make our state what it is.  The amount of fly fishing in our state is beyond belief.  Large Mysis fed trout on the Frying Pan and Blue, gorgeous mountain canyons like Cheesman Canyon and Elevenmile Canyon, wild trout on the Yampa, Greenback Cutthroat in Rocky Mountain National Park, Green Drake hatch on the Roaring Fork, monster brown trout on the Dream Stream, caddis hatch on the Arkansas, and summer evening dry-droppers on Bear Creek are just a small sample of what makes Colorado fishing so special to me.

There have been a lot of local companies popping up, selling Colorado logo gear with a fly fishing twist.  I enjoy seeing the different logos that people come up, and have bought my fair share of hats and shirts myself.  I think one of the cooler logos out there belongs to Mile High Trout.  They sell very cool apparel for the Colorado fly fisherman, and I want to send a huge shoutout to Mile High Trout for hooking me up with some cool gear.  I very much look forward to wearing this gear in my adventures.