Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Frustrating but Beautiful Day on the River

While lots of the US is getting snowed in, it was another beautiful day here on the South Concho. It started off a bit chilly at 30, but warmed up to 60 by noon. As I had said in another post, I was going out today to try out some new furled leaders. I was not impressed and quite a bit frustrated, but was able to get on the water and catch some fish.

It was smooth paddling at the put in after I dropped the kids off at school, got on the water by 8:15.


The weather was great, albeit a bit chilly first off, but after about an hour I had to start shedding some layers. Fortunately I brought some gloves or things might have been a little rough. And the wind was also being a pal today.

On this stretch of the South Concho, there is a spot that gets real shallow, 1-2 inches of swift water over smooth rock. I had a weird idea to try and not leave another layer of yak there today so I decided to give the cart a try at that spot. It should work just fine. This is at the edge of the real shallow stretch.

Well, that didn't work as good as it did in my mind last night. I gave a shot and got about a foot before I needed to tighten it up, so I did....and the (choice word) strap snapped off at the buckle, right in half. So I got to lug that dumb thing and all it's weight over the rocks. :(

But after that, things got better. I had a cookie and a diet coke and gathered my fishing thoughts. I had about a dozen perch and a bass in about fifteen minutes. As I moved on and battled my fly rod, I caught a few more bass. At least the fish didn't care too much of the rough casts. All the bass were small, with the biggest being 1.5 pounds.


Overall a great day on the water with some nice scenery.



I will try the furled leaders again, maybe with some more guidance, but I think I will have a better backup just in case I start getting that frustrated feeling again. I still can't complain. Beautiful day, beautiful fish, and I wasn't sitting behind my desk daydreaming of the river....that will be there for me tomorrow. :)

Thanks for coming along,

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Beautiful Day with the Kids

 My wife had to work today, and I needed to get a bunch of things done, but my daughter asked if we could take out her new ,to her, kayak. (My son's old one before the new Prowler) What was I supposed to do? Say no? So we headed to the lake for an afternoon of kayak fishing. It was a gorgeous day to be on the water.  She can kayak, she can fish, but put the two together...and she's in the trees, the rocks, the sticks. Reminds me of her old man. lol.  She was all smiles tho. She's learning, we just need to get in some more practice on the water.

 A little kayak racing is always gonna happen, can't stop it.

Can't wait for the next time on the water.

Thanks for coming along,

Monday, January 13, 2014

Weekend in Alpine

 It was an awesome weekend in Alpine Texas, but the Big Bend Livestock Show 2014 is over and i'm back home...at work...working.....
 I had a ton of fun down there getting to visit friends and family (not exactly family by blood, but the next closest thing). The weather was the oddest i've seen in a long time for any stock show. Sunny, warm, and a bit breezy some days. Usually it's freezing, snowing, gail force winds, etc..., but mother nature smiled upon us this year.
 Those guys with the BBLSA are some of the best i've had the privilege to know. There are many, many lifelong friendships made there through that show. All started by just being the guy that takes pictures of pigs and goats. lol. I think the good Lord knew what he was doing when he pointed me toward Alpine, Texas all those years ago, way back in the early nineties. Starting with Woodward Ranch all the way to the hundreds of folks I call friends there now.
 My normal photography duties had me runnin and gunnin most the weekend. I'm a bit wore out, and a little sore, and kinda wishing I could have woke up again to the sound of the Southern Pacific Railroad engineer blaring his horn 100 yards from my room. It's weird, I miss it once I got back home.
 And of course, the great trips to Woodward Ranch. Always a blessing to see the ranch and my ranch family. This trip to the ranch, like so many before it, was predictable. Beautiful scenery and peaceful serenity. Just the sound of a slight breeze through the cedars and the trickling of Calamity Creek over the rocks. The occasional splash of a fish, the distant call of a lone hawk, the buzz of a determined bee, all the things I wait to hear, sitting under the shade of the great tree down by the creek. If you can't tell, i'm not too excited to be back in Angelo. The time runs too fast. Slow down dang it, I just got here and now i'm already home.

Thanks for coming along,

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

It may be Cold....

But some guys are just tougher than me. I love to fish in any weather, but since I mainly fish from the kayak, mother nature does have a little say in what she wants me to do.  It may be cold, but there's fish to be caught. It's sad, i'm starting to feel like a "fair-weather fisherman". NO, I can't accept that! That's it, i'm going right now!................Holy Moly that wind is cold, maybe i'll wait a little while before I go, um, yea, I- I- I think my wife, uh, had something or other I need to probably do or something, so I probably better, you know, she's gonna be mad if I don't and all. No need to get momma mad :)

I saw this on the TPWD Sharelunker Program Facebook page. These guys show that a true winter fisherman shrugs off the wind and cold to get the job done.

Jason Lee Hanson of Athens, Texas, caught Toyota ShareLunker 551 from Lake Athens December 30. The fish weighed 13.76 pounds.

Blake Eppinette of Downsville, Louisiana caught Toyota ShareLunker 550 from Lake Fork December 27. It weighed 13.6 pounds.

Congrats gents, good lookin fish! Whew, where's my extra blanket? It's gettin chilly in here, time for some hot chocolate. :)

Thanks for coming along,

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

It's cold....tooooo cold

So I would rather think of the good days to come and not the cold wind hitting my face like a bat.
Maybe a sunny summer afternoon, high around 83, light breeze, oh, and the fish are biting. Yeah, I think i'll be ok for a little while now. :)

Friday, January 3, 2014

Goodbye 2013!

It has been an amazing year, but i'm glad it's done and we can get started with 2014. It has also been a tough year. Lots of ups and downs, but we made it through with flying colors. Last years resolutions were met and new ones were made. From last year......get out on the water more. Check. Update this site more. Check. Fly fish more and leave the arsenal at home more. Check. Lose some weight. 40 pounds. Check. Grow up.....still working on that one. I will be keeping these with some additional ones this year. Like, learn to fish a lake properly or sell that big boat that keeps getting me skunked. (gotta be the boat). Stop being lazy in the evenings and tie more flies. Plan more overnight river trips with my son. Win the big lottery. Just little things to improve on to make a better quality of life.
 Here are a few of my top highlights of this past year.......

My son got a new kayak. This was a big deal for us since it opened up a whole new world of kayaking and fishing that he can now be apart of with out the struggles of his other bathtub, I mean kayak.

Which in turn added more time we could spend together. At least once a week we were going out after he got it. Many a sunset fell below the lake's horizon while we paddled around.

I did fly fish more this year than I have in a long time. Just trying to get back to those days where it was more fun to be out on the water......just to be on the water.

Many, many, many fish were caught and released. It's amazing how many fish you catch when you actually get on the water to fish. (rolling eyes). I made it a point to get out more this year, and I did.

And of course the best part of the year in kayaking and camping.....our Pecos River Adventure. Truly the highlight of my year. Best 40th birthday I ever had. :)

Our trip to Woodward Ranch was the best family vacation in recent memory.

I somehow got the eye of Orvis and they put my video on their website. Pretty cool.

There were so many great things it's impossible to mention all of the blessing we received this past year. So hopefully this new year will bring us more of these blessings and a ton more fish.

Thanks for coming along on this journey.