Sunday, September 9, 2012

Weekend on the Water

I was able to float the upper Bitterroot both days this weekend and was lucky to have some great company.  Saturday's mission had more to do with collecting trash than fishing.  Myself and a few of friends from the Fly Fisher's of the Bitterroot picked up some interesting items and a few fish to.  Mostly the day included great conversation, friends, beautiful weather and a great party.  The Bitterroot Water Forum put on a awesome party for river clean-up day.

Without a Doubt the Best Piece of Trash Collected.  Free if you want it.

A Days Worth.

Some of the days best finds included a bicycle, 20ft. of irrigation pipe, car parts, carpet, tires, and of course a La-Z-Boy recliner that housed a wide range of aquatic invertebrates. I would encourage everyone to participate in their local river clean-up days, you'll be surprised how much trash is out there.
Oh yeah we caught some fish to.  Top snouted cutthroat.
Sunday's mission was all about fishing.  I went out with my buddy Joe who had never caught a fish on a fly rod, actually he had only cast a rod once before.  Joe took to the game quickly and was soon getting great drifts and consistent dry eats.

J-Funk's first fish on the fly, and on a dry!
 We got a few great fish during the day including some great sneaky water dry eaters.  Joe hooked a big cutty but we didn't quite get it in the net for a photo. 
Nice skinny water fish.
One of the more hilarious events of my fishing season happened as well on Sunday.  I was changing out bugs on the dry fly rod while Joe was working some nymphs through a good looking run.  After tying on and Ginking up the bugs I went up to check things out and left the flies dragging in the water while some Mergansers looked on.  Joe hooked up and I ran back to the raft to grab the net when I noticed the reel on the said dry rod was screaming and was almost out of backing.  That's when I saw the Merganser, flopping downstream struggling to get airborne while dragging 100 yards of fly line and backing!  Crazy stuff.  Not sure if he ate my flies or what.  Luckily after some tugging and some squawking, the flies came unhooked and we both parted ways, unharmed.  Good thing to.  Not sure I would have won that battle.    
Big slash.
A super weekend.  One that reminds me that it's not about numbers or size but time spent with friends on the water watching the world go by only as fast as the river will take you.  That's one of the reasons we fly fish.  Have fun and enjoy the last week few weeks of summer.

And watch out for those Mergansers.

Mergansers, pre-hookup. 



  1. Kudo's to you and any others who spent your day working for the betterment of the environment on the Bitteroot. Great work! Looks like another new fly fisherman in the making.

  2. It was great fun! I had a good time learning and catching all in the same day. You are a great instructor and I hope I get a chance to go again soon. Thanks again for taking the time to teach me. - Joe