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Archive for August, 2010

Another Big Brown from McCoy Spring Creeks

I had an incredible day today at McCoy Spring Creeks with Steve Bielenberg and Steve Summerhill. This beautiful brown was just one of a number big fish that Summerhill stung during the day.  When the day was over we cracked a bottle of  the Mission Hill Merlot, Steve B fired up the grill and we swapped a few fishing stories over a fantastic steak. Both Steve B. and Steve S. think I should move to Montana. I agree. More Later T>
30 Aug

Down in Dillon

Author: Travis 0 comments

Sunset at Poindexter Slough

Drove all day to get to Dillon. Once in town, I checked in with Tim Tollet at Frontier Angler to say hello. Tim suggested I go fish the evening rise at Poindexter. Poindexter Slough is side channel of the Beaverhead River, located about two minutes south of Dillon. Poindexter looks like and fishes just like a traditional spring creek. There's notable spring activity flowing into the slough but flow rates are completely controlled from the Beaverhead.  The evening rise never really materialized but I got some great footage. Tomorrow McCoy Spring Creeks. More Later T>
Gerry casting to a big Cutthroat

That was just about the only Cutthroat, Gerry touched all day.  I have no idea why, but the East Kootenay's just didn't produce like normal. The upper Elk was a bust and so were most of the tribs. The weather wreaked havoc on us today. It was snowing up high most of the morning and the Steeples were capped in snow on the drive back. We never saw a Green Drake hatch and the BWO's hardly materialized either. So after a tough day of fishing Gerry and I sat back and enjoyed a few of  Tree Brewing's Cutthroat Pale Ale.  That saved the day. The fishing was disappointing. What wasn't disappointing though was my stay with my great friends Gerry and Susan. Susan all looks after the menu and it's a good thing. After a day of freezing cold rain we came home to a great Beef stew and as always Uvetsi was served on Saturday. I gave Susan and Gerry one of the Mission Hill Select Lot Collection Merlot's. Lucky for me they opened it right away and we washed our miserable day's fishing away with a stellar bottle of wine.  Off to Dillon tomorrow, the weather isn't looking any better.

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29 Aug


Author: Travis 0 comments
How many CFS is this?
Yes Gerry and I did find a spring creek yesterday (sort of)  on our way to the White River. Not much of a spring maybe one CFS and definately not much of a creek. In fact it wasn't either one of them. It was glacial melt snow that has filtered down through the mountains to the valley and was trickling out the side of a vertical rock wall and running under the road in a culvert.  From the culvert it ran straight into Alces Lake, where about 100 rainbows had stacked up 10 ft. or so from the shore to enjoy the 2 or 3 degree temperature change. These were no ordinary trout though. They were ROAD WARRIORS, accustomed to TRAFFIC.  They had seen every lure, every kids bobber and worm and apparently every fly in Gerry's box. Nothing moved them except naturals.  We got sucked into their devious time vortex and wasted two hours, dazed by their siren song of a trout all over 24" and some around the 4 to 5lb mark. All for nothing. I just wanted to point out to everyone that BC's has no spring creeks to speak of. Certainly NOTHING like in Montana. Yes we have seepage from some springs into our water... and perhaps like a Professor of Karst Geology from the University of Victoria has suggested, their may be some undiscovered somewhere in BC... but we just don't have the topography that produces spring creeks. Gerry and I are off to the upper Elk today in the pouring rain. The Green Drake Parade should be all day long. Good thing I brought my Simms G3 Guide coat.
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28 Aug

The White River

Author: Travis 0 comments
Gerry Frederick on the White
Arrived in Cranbrook last night after a 6 and half  hour drive at 1:30am.  Was up at first light and off to the White River. Gerry and I got a little sidetracked when we found a Spring Creek in BC! More on that later. Unfortunately, there are not a lot of Bulls around in the White, those that were there aren't in a taking mood. Temperatures every where seemed to have plummeted and wet wading is over here at least. Sunday we are off to the upper Elk to see if the Bulls have showed in numbers there.
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Tree Brewing's Cutthroat Pale Ale

I love Cutthroat and not just the fish. No, I love Cutthroat Pale Ale, because it's a classic Pale Ale. The perfect balance of five different malts and hand selected Hops. The distinctive flavour and aroma make this one truly smooth and inviting beer. Okay, okay, I (may have) cut and pasted that from the website but it's true. I also love all the great people down the street at Tree Brewing like Meghan Yewell, because Tree Brewing and Cutthroat Pale Ale like to sponsor every fishy, trout  themed or fly fishing inspired idea, that I come up with. For instance, the RM Angler Fly Fishing Film Festival, a benefit for the local TU Chapter that anglers here in Kelowna are starting up. Tree Brewing has now stepped in to be my Beer supplier for all those thirsty Montanan's, who may require a celebretory libation after a hard day's angling and filming on any number of  spring creeks.  While many people I spoke to in Montana, didn't seem to know much about the great wines made here in the Okanagan, the sure know about our Beer. And so it seemed only appropriate that I should endeavour to supply some finest post fishing pops  for their participation in the film.  Thanks to Tree Brewing those thirsty Montanan's shall get to taste some of the liquid gold brewed right here in Kelowna. We'll just see how much of all this liquor I get through the border! Cheers! More Later T>

26 Aug

The Bulls are In…

Author: Travis 0 comments


Gerry Frederick with an Elk River tributary Bull Trout

Friday after work I'm heading straight for the Rocky Mountains. It's time to hook up with my old friend and former outfitter,  Gerry Frederick. Back in the day when I used  to impersonate a fishing guide, I used to guide for Gerry's Rocky Mountain Angler Fly Fishing School and Guide Service, out of Cranbrook. Now Gerry and I actually get to fish every once in awhile instead of the landing other people's fish we can land our own. So any visit to Gerry's requires the sharpening of the BARBS and I'm not taling about the ones on the end of a hook. Frederick and I are masters of the verbal barbs while fishing. Gerry was up the White today and while managing not to get hit by any windfall he does say the Bulls have moved into the White. We'll be there Saturday and find out if they are taking the fly or already have more amorous ideas on their minds. Gerry.... starting making the Uvetsi.

More Later


26 Aug

Tom Milesnick

Author: Travis 0 comments
Rancher Tom Milesnick tells an incredibly compelling story, of how his family settled in the Gallatin Valley on Benhart and Thompson spring creeks. Here's preview from our interview. More Later T>

Steve courtesy Dale Spartas

Shooting at McCoy Spring Creeks  next week could preset some minor problems. I'll be shooting with McCoy Fishing Manager and larger than life, spring creek guru  Steve "Saftey First" Bielenberg and his guest Steve Summerhill from The River's Edge Fly Shop.   With these two guys on stream, the fish at McCoy's should be nervous. I should be able fill my waders for the "fish porn" category of the film! When the fishing does finally end, the real fun will begin when Steve B. starts the BBQ and I crank open few wines from Mission Hill.  Tuesday won't be the only shoot with Steve Summerhill on Friday I plan to visit The River's Edge and get tuned into just how important fly fishing is to the fabric of Montana. Maybe I can even drag him over to Milesnick's for the evening rise. Here's a bio on Steve Summerhill:

Steve Summerhill  has enjoyed the sport of fly fishing for over 30 years in Alaska, Montana, Wyoming, Idaho, and in many different Salt water destinations. Having guided since 1991, he has a good understanding of what it takes to be a successful guide in an ever growing business. Steve has a Bachelor of Science degree from Montana State University and now lives in Bozeman, Montana with his wife and three children. He bagan his guiding career as an Orvis endorsed guide out of Ennis, Montana and is now the outfitter and co-owner of The River's Edge Fly Shop in Bozeman, Montana.

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24 Aug

25 Million Sockeye

Author: Travis 0 comments

Adams River Sockeye

Headlines are proclaiming "Hope Returns to the Fraser"  and if ever a front needed some good news it's the Pacific salmon front. The Pacific Salmon Commission is predicting the greatest run of sockeye  in almost a century. Over 25 million salmon bound for the Fraser according to experts. After years of dismal returns that seemed to herald an end to the Pacific Salmon resource, this years prediction of the best run since 1913 is welcome news. If anything it proves that the people managing the resource have absolutley no clue about what the hell is going on with it. Let's not forget that this year is the dominant return year of the four year salmon cycle.  But 25 million? I'm not going to believe it until the real numbers are in.  In fact I won't believe until I can walk across the backs of sockeye salmon at the mouth of Adams River and watch as crimson waves of salmon crash against the mouth forcing the river to move upstream this fall. The DFO and Pacific Salmon Commission are infamous for revising their number predictions two or three times a year as salmon runs just never seem to materialize. So while I welcome the good news, my excitement is tempered by past experiences. What does all this mean? Well it should be an absolutely KILLER year at the Adams River. The last dominant run was four years ago and I remember visiting the Adams early one morning to cover the run for the news. Myself and a reporter decided to go 4 hours before our start time in order to get some time fishing at the mouth of the river where rainbows stack up waiting to gorge themselves on sockeye eggs.  The Adams river delta was so thick with salmon that we couldn't even get a fly down through the sockeye to reach the rainbows below. I got two fish that day. They were the only ones big enough to actually muscle up to the river mouth and hang with the salmon. One fish was 8lbs. and the other 10lbs. When the river is full of sockeye the lake is full rainbows and the more the salmon the bigger the rainbows. The only drawback, the crowds. The only way to beat the crowds, is to be the first one on ther river. Years ago when I impersonated a guide, I co-hosted an episode of Sportfishing on the Fly at the mouth of the Adams Rver with Don Freschi and Grant Fines. These guys complained non-stop about how early we had to get up in order to fish the mouth. Until they realized why.Don is still producing the show for WFN and recently posted the episode on-line. More Later T>