Wednesday, December 31, 2014

High Water, Rainbows, and a Hogsucker

My little brother had a tournament in south VA so I hit a stream early beforehand.  Stream has running high and discolored, but found some trout willing to play.  Only one Brown wanted to tango, and it was a nice one.  Around the 15/16 inch mark and made a run into some fast riffles where he came unbuttoned.  Caught a bunch of rainbows and am odd ball northern hogsucker that fought like a champ.  Thought it was a big brown until I saw it's discoloration and fins.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Revisiting a Stream

I have been wanting to hit this stream for a while now.  I scouted this stream once two years ago on a cold day and caught one decent brookie and had another good one come unbuttoned.  Knew this stream had potential to be good.  Hit this stream again back in January during the week of the polar vortex and it looked like this:


Ever since that day I have been wanting to revisit this stream and see how it managed over the winter last year and summer this year.  I was disappointed in the stream results but think it has potential to be good in a couple years again.  Here is what I think happened to this stream.  It is a fairly shallow, low gradient stream and I think the deep freeze did a number to this streams older trout.  I caught a lot of 4 inch trout, but nothing bigger was seen or spooked.  I really like a lot of things that are going for this stream though and will give it a couple of years before I fish it again.

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Streamers for Browns.

Fished a new section of a good brown trout fishery we have here in Virginia.  Long day of tough wading and throw big streamers for browns.  Was able to get the skunk off fairly early with a good trout.  Moved a couple more fish, but wasn't able to connect again.  It was a warm winter day and a good day to get out though.

Cold morning frost to start the day.  It ended up being in the 50's though by mid day.

This brown crushed the streamer.

Some cheap gas is always good.

Monday, December 22, 2014

Mid Week Brookie Outing

Got out last week for some trout fishing.  Dry flies are still getting hammered on the small streams. 

Some caddis.  Amazed at how many caddis are in this stream.

Rattlesnake Orchid

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Recent Striper Fly Tying

I usually stick to Bucktail, but I recently been messing around with some synthetics.  I'll have to give these EP flies a go soon on the water.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Well Protected Brookie

Hit a brookie stream for a couple hours on Monday.  The fishing was a little slower than usual, but it was still a great day to get out.  I came upon a nice deep hole in the back of an otherwise shallow pool.  The front of the pool was shallow, the middle was shallow, but the back of the pool had a log blocking it and created a nice 3 foot deep hole.  Perfect to be holding a nice trout.  Only problem is there was Rhododendron to the left and above the hole, brush to the right, Rhododendron behind me blocking my backcast, and a stick on the surface of the hole.  See picture below.

I broke out the good ole bow and arrow cast to land the fly a few feet above the stick, but there wasn't enough distance for the fly to get deep enough the first try.  So I stripped another foot of line from the reel and did the cast again, this time landing in the beginning of the deep run.  As soon as the fly drifted down to the stick my leader went tight and I was kindly rewarded by this stream.

By no means the bigger of the brook trout I've caught this year, but the challenge of getting to him makes it a memorable fish.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Skunking it up on Smith Mountain Lake

Fished Smith Mountain Lake twice over the week of Thanksgiving and got skunked both times.  First time was weather related, and the second was just a short outing.  I will figure out these stripers this year.  Plan on staying on the lake through the end of winter.  Hardest part is locating where these fish are holding, especially when your fly fishing, and even more so when your fish finder does not work.... Still a beautiful lake to be out on and a fun challenging fishery to learn on a fly rod.

Monday, November 24, 2014

January Brook Trout Fishing

Fished a stream this past weekend and it fished like it was already January in Virginia.  The fish were sluggish and deep in their pools.  It took several drifts in order to coax them into eating as well.  I thought it may of just been the stream I was fishing, but I drove to another stream and it was fishing the same way.  Still a great time to get on a trout stream though.

Lots of ice built up around the rocks on both streams.

Neat tree growing between two rocks

Winter is closing in.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Smith Mountain Lake Striper Fishing

I have a love hate relationship with this fishery.  Yesterday was one of those "this lake is awesome, but I hate it" kind of days.  There were a couple hours where the stripers were rising all over the place in the middle of the day busting shad.  A couple stripers did a complete summersault out of the water.  We witnessed one pretty good blitz going on but by the time we got over there they were gone.  No stripers were caught, but it was a nice day to get out and see the potential of this lake now that I have  a good boat for it.

Lake with it's fall colors.

Managed to get the wrong variety of bass to take my fly, I won't complain though.

It was a great day to get out on the water and I'll figure out this fishery before the end of the year.

Friday, November 7, 2014

Some Striper Flies

Weather is cooling and been tying up some striper flies for the local lake.

Also messing around with some bigger flies for the saltwater trophy stripers this spring.  Big one is on a 6/0 hook.

Liking the fish mask, even though they are more for the human eye appeal than the fish eye appeal.  Plus they hide my crowded hook eye well.

Monday, November 3, 2014

Fall Trip Part 2

So I arrived at my friends cabin after fishing the stream earlier.  I beat him there so had time to browse his collection of bugs.

When he arrived we ate some dinner and chatted with the neighbors for a while before calling it a night.  We were planning on hitting the stream early the next day as there was a big stretch we were planning on covering.  We awoke to 30 degree temperatures and a thick layer of frost every where.  Some good breakfast was a good start to the cold morning.

We hit the stream from the top and got to watch the sun rise over the mountains before we started the cold descend down the stream.

This tree had a neat burl.  Would fetch a pretty penny on the market if you could haul it off the mountain.
Started the morning with a creek chub.

Shortly after I caught the fish I posted about previously.  He was a nicely colored up brookie getting ready for the spawn.


The overall average size of the fish were impressive.


Came back to some good BBQ bear, Venison burgers, and Rabbit cooked by a neighbor.  The people back in this town are super friendly and I enjoyed talking with them over dinner and a campfire.

Thanks for reading.