Friday, October 4, 2013

No Time

The past couple months could be the busiest of my life. Heck, I've barely had time to fish. I said barely, this means I've gotten out, just not as much as I'm used to or want to. It's ok though, because I've been doing some fun things.

My family and I went to an indoor water park in the Poconos and I fished while I was there, but... it didn't turn out so well. That's ok though because I had a good time, fishing, and with the family at the park.

I got to fish one of my favorite streams on my birthday, and although the water was low and clear I connected on a few nice fish. One was around the 18" mark, and all were taken on top. It started to rain and usually during a good rain the fishing really turns on, but I just don't think I was there long enough for that to happen. There were other obligations so I had to take off before it got good.

This week I got to do something that I've been waiting to do all my life, and I wasn't sure if it was going to happen or not... Go to a Pittsburgh Pirates playoff game!!!!! I've told my wife for years that if it happened (they make the playoffs) I wouldn't miss it, and I'd do whatever it took. Well they made it! After all those years of following one of the worst teams in baseball I was finally rewarded for my loyalty. There were years that I thought I may be the only person in the country (other than the players) wearing a Pirates hat. I was rewarded beyond what I could have ever imagined. The energy at the stadium was so amazing, it was truly unbelievable. It's something that I'll never forget as long as I live.

The Fishing:

Small Brown

This Brown Was Big Enough That I Had To Put Him In The Witness Protection Program

The Rain Came

A Nice View Even In The Rain

The Game:

The View From My Seat

The Atmosphere Was Amazing

My Friend Having A Good Time

Friday, August 16, 2013

Simms Gortex PacLite Wading Jacket

I am a firm believer that if you are going to do a gear review, you need to wait at least a year before doing one. Your opinion on a purchase can change a lot over a years time. Did it hold up over that year? Does it function the way you though it would? Are there design flaws? Would you do the purchase it again?

I bought a Simms Gortex PacLite wading jacket about a year and a half ago from a guy "used" (I put used in quotation marks because it hardly looked used when I bought it) for $100. When I bought this jacket, my thinking was that I would never buy a jacket for $300 (new price) but at 1/3 the cost it might be worth it. I know they have changed the style of the PacLite since this version. This version is more like the new G4 ($479-way too much) than PacLite (now $229).

I thought that it would be a nice jacket for when it rains, and in the fall and spring, if needed. I was completely wrong on a lot of things about this jacket!!!! I wore this jacket all year round. By layering underneath this jacket, it worked great for any condition. In the fall and spring it works well over a long sleve shirt. In the winter as many layers as you need. In the summer just over a t-shirt. It keeps out the wind, rain, and snow. What more can you ask?

Some of the good aspects of this jacket:
  • Two large front waterproof pockets
  • One large waterproof rear pocket that can also be used to self-stuff the jacket
  • Two Simms style zingers
  • Velcro sleeves
  • Large hood
  • Velcro fly dock
The bad:
  • Sometimes the water can get in on the casting arm, but unless you have gasket sleeves that's going to happen.
  • The short style of the jacket. I know this is for wading but if it wasn't so short, I would wear this even when not fishing.

 This jacket turned out to be one of the best investments that I've made. After owning this for a year, I don't know what I did without it. I even think I would pay the original price if forced to.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Some Days Are Just Good

I met up with a friend the other day to fish Spring Creek. The plan was to hit the Trico's, but when we got over there it was sprinkling on and off, so we figured it probably wouldn't happen. I had a feeling it would be a good day fishing due to the overcast skies and the slight milky color Spring gets when a little bit of water is add to it.

We started the day nymphing, and it took about twenty minutes to figure out which flies to use but once I did the fish were on. The fly combo of the day was a tan San Juan Worm and a Green Weenie. Now, I know a lot of you guy cringe at fishing these types of flies, but they produce results, and results are what I got. It wasn't long before I had picked up a few fish, but nothing over 13"-14".

Then, I started to notice Trico's hanging out over the water. I kept a close eye on them, because if I can I would rather fish a dry fly any day. Soon I began to notice risers. They would turn on and then turn off, so I threw on a Trico spinner. I missed one right away, and the excitement began to percolate, but something just wasn't right.... I was laying out some perfectly drag free drifts with no takes. You know what I mean, the ones where you know if a fish is there it's going to take, you've just seen it so many times you can tell when it's the right drift. Well, it wasn't happening, I tried every Trico pattern I had with the same results, so I figured they must be taking something else that I just couldn't see. Maybe it was a BWO, maybe it was a midge. I never did find out.

After about an hour of frustration, I decided to put the nymphs back on. First cast... fish, within another two minutes... fish. I took the hint and left the nymphs on. We fished for a little while and it began to rain and my friend decided that he was going to take off. I figured I was catching fish and had a rain jacket, and a few hours before I needed to go anywhere, so I stayed. It wasn't long before it began to pour. I thought the fishing was pretty good before this, but it was on fire after. For the next two hours it was; cast, lift, release. Before I knew it, I know that I had brought about 40 fish to hand, and all before 1:00. It turned out to be a great day. One that I won't soon forget.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013


  by coty_soult
The View As We Ate One Night

My family and I went on vacation this week. All I can say is wow, what a great time!!

We stopped in Baltimore and went to a game at Camden Yards. What a nice ballpark, next to PNC so far it's the nicest I've been to.

Then it was on to Ocean City with the family and great friends. I had a great time, but it's the beach how couldn't I?

I have more pictures but sharing from the I-pad is really tough so this is the one you get.

Monday, July 22, 2013

A Good Day Nymphing

Water was up and colder than normal despite the heat of the past week. A friend and I got together to fish for the first time since spring. We had a good day. Things started slow but really picked up later in the morning. At one point it seemed like every cast I was hooked into a fish, not landing them all, but you can't have it all.

Fighting The One That Got Away
 I hooked into one fish (above picture) that would have been 2' I think, I worked it for a while but never quite got it in. As disappointing as that is, I can't complain. It was a good day.

The Fist Nice One Brought To Hand

I Love Browns

Biggest Fish Brought To Hand

Monday, July 15, 2013

Spring To Summer

I get sooooo busy during the Spring and Summer, that I never have time to post. But you know what..... I love it. I've fished more new streams this year than I have any year so far. I've also had AMAZING, and I do mean AMAZING, days on Penns, Pine, Spring, and Big Fishing Creek since I last posted. Not to mention all the great fishing on some smaller streams. I've caught great hatches of Sulphurs, March Browns, Light Cahill, Caddis, Green Drakes, as well as others. The warm water fishing hasn't been as good this year due to high water but, I'm not complaining.

Thickest Caddis Hatch EVER

The Beauty Of Central PA
This Was At The Circus

Obligatory Fish Porn

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Quill Gordon Summit

The Quill Gordon Summit is a small get together that some of us from the paflyfish forum put together for fishing in Potter County PA. Potter County is one of the most beautiful areas in the state, and offers some excellent fishing, but even better scenery. They call it god's country, and with the beauty of this area, it's hard to argue.

When I got there on Thursday there was snow on the ground from the night before, and that should have given us an indication on how the fishing would be that morning. It was slow, but we fished a few beautiful streams, streams that I have wanted to fish for a while now. Fish were caught by all of us, and there can be no complaints about that, just not in the numbers that we had hoped.

That night, more guys showed up, and it was decided that the next day some would head to a smaller stream while I decide to go with my friend Dave (wetfly01) to fish Pine Creek. I tend to have pretty good luck on Pine Creek, and I was excited to hit the big water and punch out long casts without worrying about my back cast being caught in the trees. I mean who doesn't love to cast to rising fish, while testing the limits of your cast.

When we first got to the stream we found the water level to be at a perfect level, with a slight green tint. The first hour and a half neither of us moved a fish. So we decided to move down the stream slightly. Another half hour had gone by and no fish. I was begining to worry. Then, it was like someone turned on a switch, well I actually think it was the Caddis coming through the water column, and the fact that I switched to wetfly following Dave's lead. Within an hour I had landed more fish than I could keep track of.

Things started to slow down just a bit, so we decided to break for lunch around 3:00. As we're eating lunch and drinking a beer, the action was heating up again. This time it was Hendrickson's that were popping, and unlike earlier the fish were starting to rise.

The Hendrickson hatch was fairly strong at times and the fish rose to take both the wet, and dry fly the whole time. This alone would have made for an epic day, but the action still wasn't over....

Last year, when we put this trip together, the thinking was that we would be able to fish the elusive Quill Gordon hatch. This fly seems to be disappearing from all but the northern streams. Look, I'm not an entemologist and most times I just match size and color. But this is different, it's what we named the trip after. So when this fly started to show itself on a day that was already amazing without it, it was almost to good to be true. It was as though it were meant to be.

This hatch was not as strong as the Hendrickson hatch, and that proved to be a good thing, making the rising fish easier to target. Giving my fly less competition for fish that were still hungry, or maybe just too greedy to pass up a tender morsel of a meal made for a great finish to the day.

I don't count fish. I tend to lose track too easily. I think because I become so engaged in the moment that it all just blends together, but I know on this day I caught over 30 fish. Dave out fished me, so I'm assuming that together we caught over 80 fish. That is a good day, no, a great day. One that I will remember for quite some time.

That night, we drove back to the cabin where we were all staying. We ate well, drank beer, and told stories of the day, and more of other days. This, moreso than the fishing, is why I enjoy these get togethers. It's the camaraderie of our hobby that causes us to gather, but the quality of the people that makes us do it again and again.

The next day we went back to Pine expecting a good day, and we recieved the exact opposite. There were plenty of bugs but the fishing was tough. I only managed two, and both of those came from nymphing the same riffle. I only saw one rising fish throughout the day, and it wasn't until almost dark that I saw others. I did get  to see some good sights, and got a good sunburn.

I expect that I'll be back again next year, although not for the fishing, but for the people. People are much more interesting than fish.

This week I turn my focus to brewing, so stayed tuned.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

A Hidden Gem

No signs of anyone ever fishing it. Hardly a sign of people ever visiting it. These streams hold a special place for me.

Although I live in an area that has, arguably, some of the best streams in the state, and even the country. But it's the ones that no one fishes that hold the most intrigue, for me. I always have people ask me how I find these streams that hold such big and beautiful brookies. Well, I think a lot of it has to do with the area I live in. Browns just do not thrive in this immediate area, and I believe that because of the lack of browns this leaves the bookies uncontested, and allows them to grow to a larger size. The other thing is these streams that I'm fishing are small, but they aren't really what most would consider brookie streams. The size of the stream that I fished yesterday is similar to spruce creek. It has no where near the ecosystem that spruce creek has but with a stream that size you are going to get some decent sized fish. You are also going to get some small ones in the process.


Something that I noticed about the fish in this stream, is that the yellow spots seem to be more pronounced than the fish from other streams in my area.

The water was extremely cold yesterday and I still did pretty well, but I can't wait to get back to this stream in the summer, when the fish are more active, and I can take some on top. I tried to do that yesterday but after no hits, and my feet going numb, I knew this was the wrong approach. There are some real large fish in this stream, I know because I spooked one. I'll be itching to get back to this one, and the great thing is that I know when I go back I'll be alone unless I take someone with me.

Monday, March 18, 2013

It's Still Cold

I got out to fish again on Friday.... It was supposed to warm up, the key word was supposed. 35 degrees not 44, and windy. 35, I can handle but when you throw in a consistent wind, it just kicked my ass for about three hours. That is until Olives started to hatch, then I didn't feel a thing.

The risers were more consistent today than they were the other day, and that always makes for a good day. Not to mention that they were all nice fish, nothing too small. It's the beginning dryfly season and I love it. Now all we need are warm temps, and I don't look for that for at least a few more weeks. I'll survive as long the bugs keep hatching.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Dries...OMG Dries

Things have been incredibly busy lately so I haven't posted. I've fished, because there's always time for that, but just haven't posted about it. Heck, I haven't even brewed any beer, and that's bad because I've had such big plans.

Enough about that... I went in search of dries for the first time this year. I figured, it's just a matter of time before Olives come off, and on this particular stream, next to Suphurs, these fish love nothing more than Olives.

What A Beautiful Day
When I got to the the stream it was as warm as it has been in a long time, and sunny. Just a beautiful day to be on the water. There were midges everywhere, but not a single fish rising. So, I decided to nymph for a while. It was fairly productive. I picked up quite a few fish, so it was already a good day.

A Beautiful Brown

As I'm working my way up the stream I started to notice mayflies floating around like little baby angels. Man do I love fishing dries, but I gave it a few minutes to see if the fish would react. It didn't take long before I saw a rise. The hatch was sporadic, but that didn't matter to me, as I immediatly switch to a dry followed by an emerger. Unbelievably, on the first cast I hooked up, and for the next hour or so it was on.

First Fish On A Dry For The Year

After taking a few more fish , and missing a few, I had to call it a day. But I got to fish dries for the first time this year and I caught few fish on nymphs. Add all that to the warmth, and I take that every time.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Bass Bugs, Beer, & Blogs

Bass Bugs
As I told you before, I started tying flies. Well, as it turns out, I have all the dry flies and nymphs I need for now. Okay, that's not true, you can never have enough flies, but there are some flies that I need more than others. This summer I was buying a fly from my local fly shop that was just killing the smallmouths. There's only one problem... they're not getting that fly in anymore.

Being an excellent fly shop owner he got me some of the materials that it takes to tie it. Problem is, I just started tying and I wasn't sure if I could tie it. I gave it a try anyway. The only problem was I had to do it from memory, and substitute the stuff I did have for the things I didn't. It took me three tries, but I got something close, and something that I think the smallmouth should smash.

First fishable bass bug

My friends and I finished the IPA that I brewed this weekend. It was good, the whole way down to the last glass. And I say last glass, because when we got to the last glass in the keg, it was obvious that some of the ingredients had fallen out of the beer to the bottom, as you can tell from the pic. This is even after I had it through a secondary fermentor. I tried it, and it tasted the same just a little grittier, my friends however wouldn't touch it. Having finished the last of the IPA, we tapped the Pilsner that it seemed like we've been working on for ever. More on that later.....

The one on the left is the last of the keg, everything else looked like the right

I've been following the blogs listed on this page for a little while now, and I just want to say that those guys are doing an excellent job. I thoroughly enjoy checking these sites out everyday. If any of you guys are paying attention.... Thanks, it's good stuff, and entertaining. And if you're not following thes guys, you should, it's worth it.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Snow Melt

Some friends contacted me about fishing. I have a really hard time passing up any chance to fish. I also thought it would be a good chance for my brother to meet some new guys to fish with. He just started fishing and I'm not really the best teacher. We had a great time, but the fishing really slowed down once it started to warmed up, and the snow started to melt.

We finished the day off with an excellent meal and a few beers at Spruce Creek Tavern. If you're in the area, I would reccomend this palce. I've been there a few times and the food is always good, and they always have Otto's Spruce Creek Lager on tap. You can't beat that.

When this is where you're fishing, you know you're in the right spot.

The fish in this stream are absolutely beautiful

It's still too cold to put hand in the water to take photo's

I marvel at these bridges every time

Fishing with these guys is always a good time
Beer update: We kegged the Prima Pils clone last night and finished off the IPA. I can't wait to tap this, and when I do I'll let you know how it turns out.

Friday, January 11, 2013


I got a quick fix of fishing today in the rain. I'm fishing The Little J tomorrow, but things worked out that I could get out for a couple of hours today. I'm glad I did. The stream I fished has always produced above average sized brookies for a freestone stream.Well, it didn't dissapoint today either. I only caught a few fish, but the ones I did catch were nice.

It also rained the whole time, and with my new camera I had no worries at all. I do have to say that I was not willing to sumbmerge my hand in the water to take a pic. That part of the camera review is going to have to wait.

First Fish Of 2013
Sharp Fins
Beautiful Spots

I'll add more photos later, gotta go for Mexican. Win for me!