Sunday, December 12, 2010

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Connectivity

If we can restore the connectivity we can restore the populations.

The Greatest Migration from EP Films on Vimeo.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Steelheading 2010

My biggest problem when taking pictures on a fishing trip is that I really like to fish and never take time out to shoot (I am not sure how those of you like JayMore, Corey K, and FV manage to do both)..... so when I took my 4 year old son back to Idaho for a quick chrome outing with his grandparents, well I didn't get enough pics.

Now I am not a cinematographer, and partnered with my lack of photo skills, I do not produce the best videos....... but I try.

We fished 2 days, got some nice fish and had a memorable time. My son had a lot of fun, floated the river, fished a bit, rowed a bit, and played with sticks and rocks a lot. He enjoyed his trip with his grandparents and was a great fishing partner.

I am trying to build memories with my kids and hope to make a steelhead outing a yearly experience. As grandpa and grandma also had a great time, this may be an easier sell to Ivana (disguise my chrome addiction as a family outing).

My mother caught the first steelhead of the trip, and her first fish since our Alaska outing years ago. I tied into a few the first day, but it wasn't until the 2nd day that Dad and I landed fish. Both wild, hard fighting, big and both within a couple dozen feet of the other.

Dad picked up 1/2 dozen out of this hole but only managed to land a couple. He did find a very productive hole and had one big bruiser bust his hook.

I took my new spey rod and cast it for the first time. I need spey lessons ;) but I still managed to get into fish.

video

For the bigger, better version of the video click here.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Steelhead sneak peek



Well until I can put together a montage of some of the pics and video clips from last weekend's steelhead outing...... I give you my current gear. 13' 7-8 Echo Classic Spey with Allen & Co. Alpha 9-10, and Allen spey line and my G Loomis 10' 8 wt GL with Allen & Co. XL 8 with 9 wt fast sink line.



The trip north and west was good and everyone except little L (4 yrs old) landed at least 1 steelhead. Even so, L had fun.



I will post more when I get the montage put together.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Magic

There is a indescribable beauty in the MF Salmon River at Dagger Falls. Above the falls the river splits into its headwater creeks; Marsh Creek and Bear Creek, which remain among the best spawning habitat for Salmon and Steelhead any where in the world. And the fish that make the 900 or so mile 6500 foot climb from the ocean to these headwaters are among the "most fit" any where.

Salmon Film Teaser from Epicocity Project on Vimeo.



The mortality rate introduced by the dams on the Columbia is atrocious. But despite the dams, the returns for the last couple of years have been good. It is hard to know how much longer these runs can endure. I am taking my 4 year old boy up to Salmon in late October so that he can build some memories of this river and these fish while there are still fish.......................

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

steelhead ties



Pulled the trigger and bought the tickets. My 4 year old and I are headed to the Salmon River on a 3 day lightning chrome run so I have been at the vice. Copying patterns we got from Rocky Maley and Marty Howard at the IF fly expo. Man those guys can tie!




I figure though it is going to cost a bit, it is worth my sanity to get a cold water and mountain fix.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Tex Hex

A little Pflugerville hexagenia action from my front yard.



Recently purchased a new DPS, still trying to learn macro. Too exposed and not enough detail. Now to figure out where he came from so I can toss big mayflies to hungry bass.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Gibson Jack Creek

I swear I wrote about this one already...... but am not finding it in my ramblings. This little creek is just a few minutes south of the Johnny Creek area, between Johnny Creek and Mink Creek. It is on public land up top and moves into private lands as it comes down the canyon. There are also a lot more houses up the canyon then when I was younger.

There is a nice parking lot and hiking/biking trail head where the road ends and some nice water in this immediate vicinity. The trail head fairly well is the forest service boundary. We used to paintball in the meadows and woods about 1/4 mile up from the traihead, and the area gets a bit of mountain bike use as it provides trails into the Mink Creek and City Creek drainages.

The creek is born of numerous springs in various locations in the headwaters of the north and south branches of the creek. With the added development up the canyon in the last few years I am unsure if the creek makes it to the Portnuef river or if it is disconnected during irrigation season, I suspect disconnected.

The creek has a wild native population of yellowstone cutthroats in surprising numbers but don't expect anything too huge.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Next Creek in the Pocatello Area

The next creek north of Goodenough Creek on the west side of Marsh Valley is Bell Marsh Creek. It is smaller than Goodenough Creek. Both Goodenough and Bell Marsh have resident populations of cutthroat and are some of the better small creeks in the area. IDF&G inventories put healthy populations of pure strain yellowstone cutthroat in both of these creek in decent numbers.

Access to Bell Marsh creek is more limited than Goodenough and requires some traversal of two track and possibly permission from land owners. The most direct route involves cutting across from Green Rd, the same road that can provide access to Goodenough creek.

Both creeks are disconnected from Marsh creek in the summer due to irrigation.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Creek of the day: Pocatello Creek

From the east side of Pocatello it flows out of the mountains up around Moonlight Mine down into town. Many prime stretches run through ranchettes, farms and other private property. Years and years of grazing have left the banks impacted in this area and there are irrigation draw downs in the summer.

This creek has potential but I have never fished it. There ought to be some fish in there, but where the creek is on public land it is quite small and access to the lower stretches may be restricted. It is also detached from the river being diverted into a canal at Hiline Road.

Recent (last few years) IDF&G surveys for Yellowstone Cutthroat trout populations in the Portnuef sub basin do not show any cutthroat in the creek.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Cutthroat on TV

Courtesy of PBS and MSU. Discussing the comeback of native trout populations.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Pocatello area creeks continued

If you are looking for a nice Pocatello area creek within about a 30 minute drive of home (assuming home is Pocatello) consider Goodenough Creek. Goodenough Creek is on the west side of Marsh Valley, flowing down a canyon that separates Old Tom and Scout mountains.

The creek runs though a little canyon and is shaded by pines through most of its course. It is one of the larger creeks in the area about 12 feet wide and a foot deep around the campground and has the potential for some nice fish. It is known to hold cutthroat and produced for me the last time I was there.

There is a forest service campground on the creek at the top of Green road, that doesn't see a whole lot of use, but has some nice campsites.


Sunday, August 1, 2010

creepy crawlies, things that bite and things that sting

To interrupt my normally scheduled programing, a quick rant on venomous beasties in Texas.

Back in Idaho the list of things that would bite and were poisonous was pretty short (in ascending order of severity):
mosquitoes (not really poisonous but hey)
ticks
bees
wasps
hobo spiders
black widow spiders
rattle snakes

Here in Texas that list is about an order of magnitude bigger:
mosquitoes
ticks
chiggers
centipedes
bees
wasps
scorpions
black ants
fire ants (damn little beasties that inspired this rant)
big ugly spiders
black widow spiders
brown recluse spiders
water moccasin
cotton mouth
copper head
rattle snake
and I am sure I missing hundreds of other venomous bugs and a couple more snakes down here.

I write this as I have been spending a chunk of time eradicating the fire ants from my yard with the hopes that it will become a safe place for my kids to play. I have been bitten by exactly 1 fire ant................. a little tiny thing, teeny really. But the bite hurts, and then swells and then itches like crazy. Oh, not only do they bite, they also sting with their tails and inject some type of acidic venom. They swarm in mass. Who designed these things?

I can not imagine running afoul of a big mound of these nasties. I have been walking about the lawn spot treating the mounds and yesterday spread a broadcast treatment. I guess running into a mound while mowing the lawn is not a fun experience.

I hope to have some Texas fishing content up soon, looking at buying a sit on top kayak and becoming a bass fisherman. I may have to take up noodlin or jugging....................... ;) No cutthroat for at least 10 hours in any direction but there are some trout nearby. I will have to go hit the waters and report.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

What happens to headwater creeks when they are restored and connected to their watersheds?

the big fish return!


Fish heaven Creek just north of the Idaho/Utah border. The cutthroats are reoccupying the creek.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Happy 4th of July

I woke up too early this morning. My mind spinning with dreams of fishing for trout in small creeks in the foothills around Pocatello, creeks that only exist in my mind. I seem to have a habit of doing that, creating watersheds while I sleep.

The realities of a double dip depression, high unemployment, and having a niche skillset for which there are not many positions in SE Idaho have relocated my family and I (oh on a family note, Happy Birthday to my wonderful wife!) to the hill country of Texas. North and east of Austin whose motto is "Keep Austin Weird." Austin has a good vibe and is full of music, food, activities, a zoo and shopping (shopping is high on my wife's criteria) but the climate reminds me more of Brazil than anywhere else I have resided and the local creeks are warm like my bath tub.

So as I ponder ways of becoming independently wealthy to the point where I can return to mountain headwaters, that or convince my wife to simplify, simplify, simplify our lives to the point where we live with a much smaller house, foot print and income..... my dreams about creeks return my thoughts to a project I had intended to undertake this summer; namely fishing the small creeks that flow into the Portnuef in the Pocatello valley.

I will start with the three northern most on the west side of the valley:
Trail Creek, City Creek and Cusick Creek.

Trail Creek is born from small springs in a notch south of Horward Mountain and the unnamed peak to the south which is essentially the top of the "west bench" valley view dr. area. It is a small creek, never really growing much more than 3-4 feet wide. It flows through some pastures and countrified residential areas in its lower boundaries before disappearing underground or to irrigation, and through sage and juniper around and above the BLM boundary. I have never caught anything here despite fishing it once or twice (plunking worms) when I was about 10 or 11 or so. My gut tells me if there are any fish in the creek they most likely reside in the shaded stretch right in the area where the creek crosses the BLM boundary. This is also where the creek is at its largest as various branches come together here (it may be a bit larger downstream but it is all in private land around meadowlark). There could be few hiding in here, but temps may get to high during the summer months.

On a side note if you want to view a cool rock go visit "holey rock" a large rock with various holes through it, in a horse pasture next to Trail Creek above where Meadowlark splits off of the main road.

City Creek is also the result of springs that feed it from a draw about 1/2 way up and more spirngs at the foot of Kinport peak. City Creek is a larger creek than Trail Creek and has more flow, probably about twice as big. The City creek area has always been used for recreation by Pocatello residents and is now part of a really good mountain biking trail system.

When I was a boy scout we used to go camp along the creek which was also a popular destination for partying teens. About 20 years ago or so the city got [more] serious about protecting City Creek as a part of the Pocatello watershed and banned camping along the creek (if I remember correctly). We caught small trout out of City Creek when I was a scout. I can not remember if they were Cutts or rainbows but I imagine that there could possibly still be some cutthroat in the creek. The best bet would be in the shady willowed and aspen lined areas below where the road up Kinport peak does the sharp bend back (just below the gate that is closed in the winter on the upper road).

City is a very scenic creek from the trailhead at the LDS church up to its beginning and I have hiked or ridden most of its length. Both City Creek and Cussick Creek are owned by the city of Pocatello as part of a 3000 acre watershed management area as part of the City's drinking water supply.

Cusick Creek is born of springs in a grove of pines about 3/4 of the way up Kinport. In the pine areas it is very shaded but lower down it is very exposed. Cusik creek used to be diverted and provided at one point much of nascent Pocatello's drinking water and the old holding pool can still be visited. I have never fished Cusick Creek but I think the creek could hold fish. If it does they are most likely in the more protected areas above where the old two track that is now part of the "Prison Trail" loop intersects the creek or down below in the canyon directly above the cabin area that the Pocatello Police Department has at the foot of the bench. I think this creek could hold some cutthroat ;)

The difficulty for these creeks is that they are all now essentially detached from the Portnuef River, and that the river itself through Pocatello, while once a major spawning corridor for Cutthroat is now severely impacted and largely turned into a large concrete ditch. Any fish in these creeks are either remnants from past plantings, or holdover from original populations now resident in the small creeks (must be a heck of a time in the winter).

If anyone who reads this has any knowledge of fish in these three creeks (or other Pocatello area creeks) in the last few years let me know, or if you have any photos of the area creek that I can use, well they would be appreciated!

I plan on writing about more Pocatello area creeks (and I know a few with a certainty hold fish and cutthroat) in the next little while and will visit a couple as soon as I can (which will most likely not be any time soon as we are now in the south).

Friday, July 2, 2010

Salmon and salmon flies.

Sitting on the sofa in TX. The kids and I waded a local creek last Saturday. The bottom was a solid piece of limestone, kind of cool, and the temps were like my bathtub.

Hoping to make if back to the SF for a day next week, hopefully the salmon flies put in an appearance.

Support wild salmon and steelhead. Wild salmon at dagger falls on the headwaters of the MF of the Salmon. Nice!

Friday, June 4, 2010

Good Eats

So if any of my readers ever make it to Cuba NM, make sure to try the pinon crusted rainbow trout w/ mango salsa at El Bruno's (excellent). The restaurant is very nice with an outdoor eating court. Since it sits at about 7000' elevation it was great outside in the shade.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Changing of my ways............

Exchanging white water runs and steelhead, the little headwater creeks full of cutthroat that I love, and the Mecca of all things dry fly (SF of the Snake and HF of the snake) for Brushy Creek, Lake Travis, bass and possible trips to the salt.

Leaving my raft with family and most likely getting a SOT kayak.

Austin here we come.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Wet

When it is pouring rain, and your waders are leaking also, wet is all you can become.

Tons of BWOs on the surface and little puffball birds picking them off the top, but the only trout I saw was 4 inches long.

So much for my last hurrah.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Little Creek, Big...........Salmon Flies?



So I bought little L (my 4 year old) a set of waders in late April thinking he would wear them on a steelheading trip towards the end of the month (very nice bootfoot waders at reasonable prices by the way). Unfortunately the weather went to crap after they came in, and I couldn't see dragging a 4 year old up around Stanley in sub freezing weather for him to catch steelhead.



Work has intervened on my life situation, meaning I have been laid-off and had to spend some time job hunting instead of fishing. The good news is, I am very marketable. The bad news is there are very few tech jobs for control systems security gurus in Rigby Idaho. But this is fodder for a later blog post.



As the weather finally turned back to nice yesterday, I decided L and I needed to go fishing. We initially were headed for Willow Creek but as I thought of hiking down the 200' of rock scramble and then hiking L back out..... well I decided to go some where easier to access. So we were headed to Hatchery Ford on the Henry's when we got to Rexburg and I had an epiphany about another little creek fairly close, that met 2 important criteria: not blown out, and open for fishing.



This little creek is high desert, one of the drier areas of the state but surrounded by towering peaks. We got there, got rigged and headed down to the water. The creek is small, generally less than 10 feet across. I was quite surprised when we arrived at the banks and found the willows crawling with salmon flies. This is the earliest in the season I have seen the big bugs anywhere around here. Especially considering the cold, somewhat rainy spring we have so far had.



The fish were looking up, not perhaps as actively as would have been optimal, nor were they very large, but catching fish in a small creek on salmon flies (O2 Stone) in mid May was fun for L and I. We tied into a few, landed a couple and had the big fish of the day break us of and leap, leap, leap to mock us with his freedom.



This could be my only Salmon fly outing this year. I am going to try to get out on the HF when they hatch but it with the upcoming move to warmer climes.... it may not be possible.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Low Holing

To the Low Holing richard cranium with the spey rod and your buddy with the single hander who moved in not 15 feet below me as I was swinging to steelhead, I really don't mind your lack of courtesy and decorum. As long as you didn't mind the fact that after every third cast or so I stepped down stream, slowly squeezing you two out. I didn't say anything, and you knew better than to complain as I slowly moved downstream while still covering the top of the hole. It wasn't like there wasn't a couple of hundred yards of vacant river just above us..... oh yeah there was.

For all I know this might have been your most favorite hole on the river. Sorry I didn't abandon it despite your hopes that crowding me would get me to move. I just continued to step down after about every third cast. And when I started to cast on top of the water you were covering.... well just what did you expect?

The river wasn't but 20 feet wide here and less than 18 inches deep, so I guess you felt the need to get up and personal with a complete stranger.

Anyway, after moving up into the above mentioned vacant upstream water (after you left back up the hill) we found tons of fish.... Your loss.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Supporting local music

Check out the new CD by Steelhead Redd. A folksy Pocatello band with a great name and great sound. Audio samples re available on the site.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Even though winters in SE Idaho

Even though the winter here is long and ofttimes brutal it has its rewards.

Idaho Fly Fishing from RT on Vimeo.



I recognize most of the stretches in the video and most are less than 30 minutes from my doorstep.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Steelheading the headwaters

Took a trip up above Challis and fished from a few miles above Challis to a few miles above Clayton. The water really gets skinny above Clayton but all of the water from Challis up is a lot more fly fish friendly than below the MF confluence.



We hit Deadman's Hole right at about sunrise and I saw a couple of big steelhead rolling in the hole right below the cliffs. Within a few casts I was into my fist steelhead. A big (around 30 inch) wild buck. I didn't take him out of the water, and so didn't get a picture.



As the sun rose more people started to crowd the hole right above and below the rock so Jake and I moved down 20 yards to a bend in the river. I worked the bend and picked up the hatchery buck after just a few minutes. Worked the hole for a while longer and then wondered a few hundred yard down and then up the river looking for other spots.



Jake and his dad stayed in the bend and fished it for a couple of hours with no success. They were getting ready to meet some friends down at Ellis when I came back. So I started to fish the bend again and again iin a few mintes tied into the hen.



After lunch I fished closer down by Challis for a while and had one good bite. I then drove up river scouting it out and fished a few areas above Clayton. The river is very skinny above the East Fork and will be for a while longer until run off season really starts.



Yellow was the hot color of the day so I tied up a bead bodied yellow spey when I got home.



This was my fastest day of steelheading yet and I hope to go 1-2 more times before the end of the season.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Steelhead

So..........

Last week Jake and I went up to Salmon steelheading. Jake with gear and I on the fly. We perused the river a little in the morning trying to decide where to go. Jake decided he like the hole right under the bridge in town. So he "utahed" his way in and promptly got into double digits in fish (and he actually landed some too). We must have seen over 60 fish come out of that hole in an hour.



Being on a fly rod I went up above the hole away from the elbow to elbow crowds, but I didn't get any bites. The weather was incredible. Must have been near 60 all day. Forecast had called for rain. We didn't see hardly any clouds let alone any raindrops.



After about an hour we jumped into the boat and floated down to Carmen. I tied into one nice steelie at the Lemhi hole. Fought him for a while and then he spit me. We made it down to Carmen then went up rivers a ways and fished till dusk. Tally for the day: 2 suckers, 2 whitefish and one almost steelhead.



I will be heading up around Ellis in the next little while. Need to tie some flies this weekend.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Preparation Chrome

So today in preparation of a steelhead trip at some point in the near future I:

Examined my old Chota STL wading puts and thought about putting the stud kit in them. 5 years of hard use and they are pretty much beyond redemption. Soles are destroyed, leather is worn through in a couple of spots. They were great boots but they are now gone.

Took the Reddingtoon Boots I purchased cheap last spring and put the studs into them. These have not been real good boots. I have glued the soles back on a couple of times. The nylon spots are wearing through without a whole lot of use. And they have always been a little loose. So I glued and the screwed the soles on, used the Chota screw studs. Soles won't be coming back off ;) and threw an extra foot liner into them from an old pair of sneaker both to tighten them up and so that the screw tips never meet my waders.

I am either going to get another set of STLs (those Chotas have been great boots for me) or a pair of Korkers to match my summer hikers.

Patched a leak in my waders. Hope I got that bugger. Though last time I went a couple of weeks back the water was actually much warmer than it was for my last fall trip.

Replaced the trailer wiring kit on my rig. It hadn't been working for a while and I purchased the replacement kit last fall.

Replaced the tail lights on my boat trailer with submersible LED lights. No more blown bulbs when hot light meets cold river. Though it does appear that I have a side marker out still. I'll have to chase that down later. Those LEDs look awesome... much brighter than my old filament bulbs.

Now it is time to tie up some replacement soft milking eggs. Lost 1/2 dozen last outing. Reports have 24 fish up to the Pahsemeroi hatchery so there are fish now most of the way up to Challis. I will most likely fish right around North fork or Carmen.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Allen & Co gear

As the prices were too good to pass up I picked up an Allen & Co XL reel, a spare spool, and two lines. With shipping the whole shooting match was just over $100.00 (now where else can you get a LA reel, a spare spool and 2 lines for under $100.00 bones?). I have used the reel and line once and am pleased with the results. The machine work and tolerances look very good. The carbon fiber drag has nice adjustability and good stopping power. In all, I am very happy with the purchase.



From my interactions with the owner of the company, Justin, I would say that he is a very stand up guy. By my interaction and various other reports on the web it shows he goes out of his way to ensure that his customers are satisfied with their purchases.

So for anyone looking for some good gear at incredible prices check out Allen & Co.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Steelheading



Got the fly box ready and went up to Salmon. Went too far down the river to deep water. Deeper than I could really cover on the swing.

As all I tied into was one 4 inch bow, one 13" cutthroat and one sucker fish I am just going to show the fly box ;)



Eggs of which I lost about 1/2 of the ones seen here. Luckily they take about a minute an egg. These are otter soft eggs in the 6mm size. I pushed a small red glass bead into the egg before pushing the egg over the eye.



Various flies tied over the last few months. Each takes me over an hour.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Another Spey Fly

I am learning that material makes a huge difference. The last one I tied used only schlappen which was too short and too stiff, this one uses mainly marabou... a little too soft. I may have to try rhea or BEP for the next one.



I still need to figure out what to use to make a neater head coating.




But I am happier with this one.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Steelhead Flies

Still trying to improve my ties.

First: Green Butt Skunk.



I am pretty happy with this one but next time need to use some type of hair wing for the lower wing instead of marabou fibers. Tied on a size 4 tiemco hook. I forget the number. Cut off the eye and replaced it with some 30 lb backing. Sharpened the point with a file to a long gradual transition for easier penetration.

One thing I would like to do better is the finish on the head of my flies. This one used nail polish and it is a little lumpy. I want to achieve a nice uniform finish.... I have tried flex cement with ok result. There must be a better cement/paint/something out there that the pros are using. So what is it?

Next a spey fly... supposed to look like:



(from silveysflyfishing.blogspot.com)


ended up like:



Sorry about the crappy photo, using macro in low light situations with no flash is not ideal.

I used 5-7 inch schlappen and the fibers do not look as long nor as soft as the feathers in the fly I was trying to achieve. So if any one has any hints on what materials to use and how to tie the original, the hints are appreciated.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Getting caught up





In late January, on a sunny afternoon I went out on the SF at the Lorenzo bridge hoping for some midges on top and possibly some BWOs. I had been thinking about going up to the Big Lost but decided to take the 5 minute drive instead of the 95 minute drive. Apparently it was the wrong decision.





No bugs on top, no rising fish seen all day. I couldn't even dredge up a white fish on a nymph. When you can't catch a white fish on a nymph on the SF you need to rethink your hobby ;).



So in an effort to get the skunk off of me, I and Mike S took a little trip down to a local spring creek that feeds a reservoir and has a run of large rainbows in the late winter. Fish that can average 5 lbs on a good day. The big pigs weren't in. This is a water I usually catch rainbows in, and the odd cutthroat. This day I caught brown trout up to about 18 inches, rainbows up to about 13 inches, no cutts and of all the unexpected things, a yellow perch. First pan fish I have ever caught on a fly, I reckon he was a fugitive from the reservoir.





Been tying steelhead flies as steelhead are another of Idaho native species. I purchased some better materials than the craft store guinea hen hackle and watched a couple of videos, and my flies are getting better.




Next couple of weeks will see me back at the spring creek, out on the Big Lost and then up on the Salmon around Challis for steelhead.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Update on Utah Water Access Battle

I really need to post my shots from my last outing, but it may have to wait till after my next outing (couple of days till hog hunting on a local spring creek).

The battle goes on in Utah. HB-80 essentially died in the House Rules and Natural Resources committees and so it has been taken to the other chamber where it has been introduced as Senate Bill 267 (so SB-267).

2 Other bills have been introduced to the House. McIff's bill HB-141 that would essentialy overturn the Conatser decision and prohibit the public from utilizing any of the public's water and fish over private property, and HB-290 which require "wet boot". HB-290 also includes language stating that the public has no easement, again in direct opposition to the 5-0 Utah Supreme Court decision.

If you are a Utah resident make sure you contact all your representatives, both in the House and Senate seeking support for SB-267 and voicing opposition to HB-141 & HB-290.

Hopefully I will have some fishing pics up by the end of the week.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Going Viral Utah HB-80

Well I was planning to post pics and a write up about my last outing on the SF.... but pleas to get the word out on the water access battle going on in Utah have reached me and so I will help the campaign.



There is currently a piece of Legislature before the Utah House sponsored by Rep Lorie Fowlke defining the easement to recreate on all waters in the state per the Conatser Supreme Court Decision. HB-80 was drafted following an open process seeking the input of both land owners and recreationist, with the goal of producing a compromise for both parties.

Currently the bill is being held up in the Rules committee chaired by Rep. Ferry (who sponsored a bill last year HB-187 that would have effectively gutted the Conatser decision boo!). The rumor mill also notes that there are two other bills in the pipes. Both have no public input. One of the rumored bills is seeking for a "wet boot" definition of the easement. The other, sponsored by Rep McIff would allegedly legislate away the Conatser ruling. Such a bill passing would most likely end up in court, as the Conatser decision was unanimous and based on public doctrine.

If you live in Utah an recreate on the state water ways get involved and contact your representative seeking support for the bill that was derived through a public process, HB-80.

The main clearing houses for information on the battle are the Utah on the Fly website www.utahonthefly.com and the Utah Water Guardians website http://utahwaterguardians.org .

Utah Water Guardians have solicited the aid of a full time lobbyist and so are accepting donations to help fund the battle.

Again if you in any way recreate on the many waters of Utah, be it fishing, rafting, kayaking, boating, water fowl hunting etc then you need to get involved in this battle. you do not necessarily have to be a citizen of the state. If you spend your $$$s recreating in the state and the outcome of this battle will effect the way you spend your dollars then contact member of the legislature and let them know.

There is a rally at the Utah State Capitol building Febuary 5th 11:30 am.

Get Involved!

Monday, January 25, 2010

TFO Great Customer Service

Those of you who know or who have fished with me know that I am a fan of TFO rods. I own a TicR and TicRx both 9' 5wts and my dad has a TicR also. Dad broke the tip off his rod a while and my neighbor Chad, broke the tip off hisrod on our last outing so I sent both rods in at the same time to save on shipping.

$25.00 a rod and 4 days later the rods are back with new tip sections. Great service and quick turn around, what more can you ask for?

Kudos to TFO.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Loosing the Railroad Ranch

There has been a flurry of posts on various forums and blogs about possibility of the State of Idaho shutting down Harriman State Park in a effort to cut costs. If the park is shut down under the agreement by which the land was awarded to the state, the land reverts to the Harrimans.

While I think it a pretty bone headed and shortsighted move, would the park being shut down cut access to the river?

If I understand Idaho law, no. The river is navigable and the public would still have access rights to the normal high water mark. Easy access across the meadows and along the banks could potentially be eliminated, but I do think that access from Last Chance and from the Osborne Bridge would still be legal. As the public has used the banks for the last 25 years there could also possibly be a public easement along the banks.

If I am off in my thinking please correct me.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

New Idaho Cutthroat Wildlife License Plate

While I have the wildlife plate with the trout on them this new one is sure nice. Wonder when my tags expire so I can upgrade? ;)

http://www.klewtv.com/news/local/81191377.html

Monday, January 11, 2010

Think Snow

So for the most part the storms this season have parted around SE Idaho and left us with much below normal snow pack for this point in the season. While there is a couple of months of winter left the immediate forecast does not look too promising. Could be a dry summer.

Snow Report By Drainage for Idaho
http://www.wrds.uwyo.edu/wrds/nrcs/updatesur/update-id.sno

Other western states
http://www.wrds.uwyo.edu/wrds/nrcs/updatesur/updatesur.html

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Feral Pigs

I just read that some "bucket biologist" released some feral pigs in the Bruneau desert area of SW Idaho. Feral pigs are highly adaptive, reproduce like fleas, and are incredibly destructive to the local ecology being both a vector for disease and trashing flora. These pigs they noted were most likely transported from California. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is going to try to eradicate them through the winter hoping to impact the population before they are able to reproduce. If you are in the SW corner of the state and see any sign of the oinkers please report the information to the Idaho Department of Agriculture.

This is another case of somebody's personal selfishness like dumping lake trout in Yellowstone Lake. As the pigs can severely impact stream-side vegetation they could adversely impact trout habitat.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Put your christmas tree to good use!

Recycle it as trout habitat. Many of the local conservation groups, fish and game departments, TU Chapters etc collect clean fir, or spruce tree to use as habitat.

Here is a link for a program in the Teton Valley. http://www.tetonvalleynews.net/articles/2009/12/23/news/doc4b315cb83e8bf047395350.txt

I may post more links as I find them.