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Back again November 22, 2013

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A lot of water under the bridge. Sold the Ultimate Flyfishing Machine in August and upgraded to a Clackacraft drift boat. 3/3 on floating the Skykomish with Noah catching pinks on our first two floats, and a healthy sea run to my hand on the third. The B-run fish should be in the river soon…Skykomish PinkClackacraftfloating

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At the vise March 10, 2012

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trying out a few things.  holographic foil, red synthetic floss, fine wire, peacock herl, orange neck hackle, bronze mallard, red schlappen, badger hackle wing

Hood Canal Cutt March 3, 2012

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Caught on a conehead squid tied by Jeffrey Delia.

Cold steel September 12, 2011

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I got up early to swing some flies on the Sky yesterday but no luck finding a fish. Noah and I found a long sweeper last year that looked like pretty ideal holding water so I thought I’d give it a try. I wanted to beat any crowds so I got there well before daylight and used a headlamp to beat through the blackberries.  Eventually I made my way  to the top of the hole and ended up standing around for a few minutes before I could see the end of my rod. I threw the same black General Practitioner I used on the Hoh — which, coincidentally, is the same fly I caught a small wild steelhead two years ago on the Sky — using a 10′ sink tip on the end of my floating line. That setup worked good at the head and tailout, but I didn’t like it in the slower part of the run, so I ended up monkeying around a bit in places trying to figure out the best method for keeping the fly in play. I brought my spool with the intermediate shooting head and tried a stimulator/dropper setup with a stonefly at one point, then went back to the floater with a regular 9′ leader and dredged the hole again with an egg-sucking bunny leech. It really should have been a dynamite morning as there was a heavy fog that kept the sun off the water until almost 9. Guess that’s why they call it fishing and not catching.

King me August 30, 2011

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Bonked this 13lb blackmouth fishing with Pardis off West Point this morning.  The fish hit a green speckled hoochie at 115′.  We also picked up a 6lb coho on the way in.  Great way to start the day.

 

First salmon of the year August 3, 2011

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On my Redington 8wt casting a Pink Comet tied by Jimmy LeMert.  On my birthday.  Booya.  

The Quilcene River and a Life Ruined July 8, 2011

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Noah and I fished the Quilcene on Sunday, the first time either of us had stepped foot in the river.  We tried to get advice on access points from the ranger station in Qulcene, but the two cotton-tops behind the counter were less than helpful.  Apparently they don’t much care for fishermen in the park. 

With the hatchery closed, we made our way up FS27 and scouted the upper section of the river.  There we found more water than I expected.  It was cold and fast and although we whipped the water in a few places, weren’t able to raise a fish. 

I’d read a bit about the Quilcene estuary through Doug Rose and Les Johnson so downstream we went.  A nice guy at the boat launch directed us to the access point and a few minutes later we were wandering down the road paralleling the lower section of the river.   We didn’t get very far before the first long hole appeared.  It was too nice to pass up so we stepped in and I helped Noah find his swing with the 8.5 foot Browning boron rod dad gave us. 

On about his third cast he rolled a fish just off the bank below us using an elk hair caddis I tied this spring.  Several more casts and the fish took another swing.  Noah started picking his way down the bank, casting and seeing if he could raise him again.  I headed back over the bank to tie on an Adams when I heard him holler.  There he was, knee deep in the run, rod tip up and a beauty of a sea run cutthroat showing off his best acrobatics.

Noah played him well, even when the fish ran straight at him, and before too long had him to hand.  I slipped the hook out and Noah let him on his way.  I swear I’ve never seen that kid smile so big in my life.  That was his first fish on a fly rod where he did all the work.  “He’s ruined forever,” dad said the next day when I told him what happened. 

Ruined forever indeed.

Salty Cutt June 18, 2011

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Not his first, but definitely his biggest.  Noah B. wrestling a scrappy sea run cutthroat off Meadowdale beach.

Meadowdale May 29, 2011

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Beautiful 14-15″ cutt to hand this morning.  Bright and free of sea lice.  Fished the last two hours of the drop to 0.   Walked into a school of baitfish and started casting a brown sand lance, solid pickup but didn’t hammer the fly.  Saw a few other nice fish jump but no other hookups.  I ended throwing one of Jeffrey Delia’s cone head squid patterns.  At least the sculpin liked it.

Spring Training May 23, 2011

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Prince Nymph, March Brown and Delectable Golden Stone.