Wilson Lake August 2014

This summer has been the busiest summer for me in a long time which has led to not much fishing. I usually try to make a couple of trips a year to Wilson Lake in western Kansas to do some fishing. Occasionally I get lucky and find some stripers busting bait in a cove.

I only had an afternoon to fish on this trip. The wind was blowing harder than I like for fly fishing so I loaded some conventional gear and made it to the lake around 3:00pm. I don’t have much to say about the rest of the day because I never found the fish. I did get to try out a very cool swimbait from Kanan Lures. The swimming motion is great and I’m excited to use it more!

Check out WetFlyFish.com

If you haven’t done so yet, you need to check out some of the cool stuff at Wetflyfish.com! While your there pick up one of their awesome Farmer John hats. You won’t regret it!
WetFlyFish hat, farmer john hat, fly fishing hat

ENO Hammock Review

Shortly after moving into our current home I noticed that two of the trees in the back yard looked perfect for hanging a hammock. I have never been a big fan of hammocks, due to the fact that I have never found one I felt comfortable (ie. safe to hold my large frame) in. After seeing some great reviews on Twitter and some blogs I decided I would try one of the ENO hammocks.

ENO hammock, backyard, family fun

We purchased the DoubleNest hammock and the Atlas straps from Dicks Sporting goods. With its 400lb rating and plenty of room I feel safe and it’s really comfortable!

ENO hammock, ENO DoubleNest

It fits a fat guy with room to spare!

It’s light weight, compresses down small into the built-in carrying pouch. The material seems very sturdy for as light as it is. Overall it seems to be a great addition to our outdoor gear. I can’t wait to relax in it next to the lake! Anyone in the market to buy a hammock should definitely check out ENO hammocks. My family is happy I did!

She loves it!

She loves it!

#MuskyMeatMonday Fly

musky fly fishing, big flies, musky fly tying, Brad Bohen musky

Musky fly

The #MuskyMeatMonday fly of the day is big, articulated, and pushes tons of water! The fish will crush it! What more could you ask for?

I call it the Wiz Crusher. Only in black and yellow!

Yellow Perch fly fishing

A few weeks ago I was on vacation in Ohio and decided that I would try catching a yellow perch on a fly. I had never caught one before due to the fact that there are none in Kansas waters.

I found out to one of the reservoirs that has a nice population of perch. Before going I looked up a topo map and found a place where the deep water came closer to the bank. I figured this would be my best bet for the middle of the day fishing excursion.

I did some reading on the internet and found that black woolly buggers are the fly to use. So I rigged up my 5wt with a fast sinking poly leader and size 4 woolly bugger.

It was sunny with not a cloud in sight so I didn’t expect the fishing to be great. After fishing different parts of the water column I located my first fish.

Yellow Perch fly fishing, perch, ohio fly fishing

Yellow perch on a fly!

That was the only fish I was able to catch but I had accomplished what I came for! These fish are easy to catch, put up a good fight, and make for some fine table fare.

P.S. My daughter did catch the first perch of the day on a worm! We enjoyed it for supper!

Callie's first yellow perch!

Callie’s first yellow perch!

Driftless Iowa Trout Fishing

A couple weeks ago I was fortunate enought to be able to spend a day of my vacation fishing in the Northeast corner of Iowa, also known as the Driftless Region.

I arrived on Sunday evening and planned on fishing all day Monday. Sunday night a big storm rolled through and dumped rain on the area. I figured it wouldn’t affect all the waters so I got up early and headed out.

driftless Iowa, fly fishing Iowa

Clear creek was not so clear.

I planned on fishing at least 5 different waters but found the majority of them high and the color of chocolate milk. The only waters that were not high and dirty were the South Bear Creek and Seiwers Springs from the Decorah Fish Hatchery.

I stopped at a the Highlandville general store to pick up something to drink and spoke to an older gentelman that was very helpfull on where and how to access the waters of the area. I made my way along the creek that has many runs and pools. I found some fish rising in the tailout of a pool and found a spot I could cast to them.

South Bear Creek Trout

South Bear Creek Trout

It wasn’t long and I my first rainbow to hand.

Driftless rainbow trout, Iowa fly fishing

Driftless rainbow trout

I landed three more fish before moving on the the next area. As I started fishing the next area I heared a big boom of thunder and the rain started pouring down.

south bear creek iowa, Driftless Iowa Flyfishing

Fishing in the rain can be productive.

It was fairly warm out so I contuined fishing and a few minutes later I landed my second ever brook trout.

Iowa driftless brook trout

Quick pic in the rain and then realese!

After a quick picture and release I decided it was time to go dry out. So I headed back towards Decorah to visit the Hatchery and fish the springs that come out of it.

The Decorah fish hatchery raised rainbow and brook trout that are stocked in the local waters. I took my wife and daughter to visit the hatchery. The rainbows are raised in concrete runways and the brook trout were kept in large pond impoundments.

rainbow trout feeding, Decorah fish hatchery

Callie enjoyed feeding the trout


pellet pigs, Decorah fish hatchery

They love the pellets


The brook trout loved the pellets too!

The brook trout loved the pellets too!

After visiting the hatchery I fished the springs outlet from the hatchery. The rain earlier in the day had the water a little off color but I figured I could still catch a few fish. I found a section that had a nice bend in the creek with a riffle that pushed into the bend. I drifted a few nymphs through the feeding lanes and didn’t get any stikes. I decided to switch to something with more action to it, so I decided to try swinging a size 10 Purple Haze softhackle. A few swings later I hooked up with a small rainbow.

Iowa rainbow

Iowa rainbow

As I fished on though the stream I kept hoping for a brown to complete my three species of Iowa trout. After several more small rainbows I finally hooked the brown I was hoping for. It wasn’t big but the colors made up for the lack of size.

brown trout, Iowa driftless brown trout, Iowa fly fishing, Driftless fly fishing

Brown trout from the driftless of Iowa!

After that fish I decided it was time to call it a day. After all I had to take my wife to Chicago for a Cubs game the next day, since she put up with me fishing away a day on our vacation.

#MuskyMeatMonday The 44 Special Fly

As some of you that follow my instagram and twitter account know, I have fallen into the sickness know as “Flytying Junkie”. I figured it’s time I shared some of that here.

So with that I bring you the #MuskyMeatMonday fly for today. I call it the 44 Special Fly.

musky fly, fly fishing musky, 44 special

The 44 Special Fly

9 inches of bucktail and hackle with two 4/0 hooks. Nothing short of a monster fish would pass that up!