March 18, 2009

the hero

The sun was shining down on the roughfisher on Monday.

I jumped parole and abandoned the big house, witnessing the first 50°F temp of the season. It felt great. Live sounds of Merle Haggard and The Strangers, circa 1969, and vintage Waylon Jennings from '74, rang in the chimes of freedom. The rebel yells of the brownliner anthem boosted morale, as I paralleled the allusions between the Outlaws and brownliner movement. At that moment, I declared Waylon the unofficial artist of the Brownline Nation.

When I arrived streamside, I quickly noticed the river was running a bit more turbid than weeks past, mostly due to the recent snowmelt and localized runoff over the weekend. Flows were still absurdly high for this time of year at 780 cfs. Looking at the gauge a day later, flows have jumped up even higher, with a record discharge of 1040 cfs. The snow melt has just begun; it might be a blown out spring. I rigged up my rods with some of those tungsten beauties tied the other night. Of course, the sparkle yarn caddis was money. So was the MIB. Fish galore. I even chucked a Darth Clam out there for shits and giggles. Found myself unhooking quite a few small buffalo off of it. Couldn't dredge up any big fish with it just yet.

the Darth Clam in action
I think I may have stumbled on to something with the MIB pattern. I don't know if the fish think it is a giant stonefly, a baitfish, or some other ungodly looking bug, but it is Mad money. Those badboys were responsible for turning me into a superhero on the water. Me likey.

carp hero
buffalo slayer
buffalo slayer
buffalo slayer
I finally encountered my first fly angler of the season on the river. This hopeless fellow was in search of some crappies and wandered over my way. He asked how the fishing was going and informed me of his past success. I gave him the carp stare. Once he realized I wasn't budging, he moped off to another reach of river with apparently little success. Poor guy. From the looks of his double hauling, he sure looked like he knew what he was doing. It's a shame he couldn't let the force of the Dark Side draw him in.

this litttle piggie...
Your Hero
Just goes to show that you can swing flies to carp and roughfish. Don't listen to what others say about what you can and can't do, and how and what you can fish for. If that was the case, everyone would still be fishing Catskill dry flies to rising browns with grass sticks and silk lines. Venture past the horizon and break trail. It's more fun out here in Brownliner country.

"Even a blind man knows when the sun is shining"

- the roughfisher

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  1. Those are some sweet buffalo man - nice work. May have to churn out a few of those MIB. Use the same short hook that John Montana uses for the Headstand.

    So to be clear, you were swinging these flies downstream? Could you see the fish you were swinging to? Paint the picture of the presentation a bit... I'm interested.

  2. Those carp look the bollocks.Its nice to have come across a blog that appeals to my warped and often dis-functional approach to fly fishing. Your words really hit home the other day. If its not Trout, then its Bonefish....yes they have their place in fishing folklore but come, I'd rather see any one of these images above with article to boot in a fly-fishing Magazine any day.

  3. every time you go out you seem to catch monster fish, I'm impressed J.P.
    And us northerners are not easily impressed!

  4. @WB I was swinging flies downstream, but I was also drifting flies upstream and across. I had a big pod of fish upstream of me about 10-15 yards. It was just about the length of the head of my fly line. I would cast upstream and drift the fly back to me, repeating as necessary. I could see the fish holding there, but due to the runoff and turbidity, had difficulty distinguishing individual fish within the pod and could not see the take. I was drifting the fly like for trout or steelhead.

  5. @Ben I've just been lucky. John Montana is the real carp godfather,

    He is the king of big fish.