Saturday, December 22, 2012

The Arkansas River Fishing Report !2/22/2012

Change of Seasons

   After several years of winter whining that the “Bait guys” have taken all the fish, I decided this year to be prepared for the changing of seasons. The last few weeks I have noticed the yearly change to winter conditions beginning to take shape. I’m not really sure if it was the low flows or warm fall but we never really saw the major blanket BWO hatches this year, but the fish seemed to be eating well none the less. The fish seemed to be hanging out in their feeding lanes all fall but never got totally stupid for their favorite snack, the BWO. Now I am starting to see fewer and fewer of the piggies in their feeding lanes. Yesterday was the exception; our guide trip got to the river at around 10:00a.m. and getting into our first hole we could see the fish were feeding hard. The fish were feeding hard all day even though the only hatches I saw were a few midges here and there. Lots of big fish takes with the largest landed right at 19 inches. The bows were exceptionally colorful and chunky yesterday, great day on the river. Other customers that were on the river yesterday had phenomenal days with one bow at 22 inches, and the pic looked like 22 was on the conservative side.

  What can we expect over the next few months? First of all be prepared next week to see a lot of other fishermen on the water. So please be polite and give everyone the chance to enjoy this beautiful river we have. As we move into January the piggies will be moving into the deeper, slower runs to conserve energy. There will be moments when the fish will move into feeding lanes and when they do, don’t mess around…Get your flies in front of them!! If you are not seeing fish then stick to the slower deeper hole and watch for the slightest bump of your indicator. We are still picking up fish on BWO nymphs and blood midges but moving into January we should move more toward small midges. For the dry fly enthusiasts out there, bring your A-game and watch the full weir tail outs and the slow flat water. Midge hatches will get the fish eating off the surface most of the winter.

 Cat and I would like to thank all of our readers and want to wish you all the Merriest Christmas ever. Hope to see you on the water chasing the fish of your dreams……


                                          A few from Friday!!!





Thursday, December 13, 2012

Toys and the Affairs They Command...

  Hello and as always, I want to thank you for taking the time to read our blog. I originally moved to Colorado in 1986 after completely falling head over heels in love with skiing. I remember the first year going through a few pairs of skis but never really noticing any huge differences. During my second year in the mountains, the Atomic ski company put out a special purchase price for their coolest and fastest ski. I got all my money together and had just enough to buy the skis and still have drinking money. The day they arrived and I was able to put them in my hand was one of the most exciting days I had in the mountains, the skis were the Atomic SL3’s, they had a deep sidecut, serious camber,  snappy tails and the sexiest deep metallic blue color I had ever seen. I rushed them into the repair shop and mounted them with a pair of Salomon 957 equipe bindings. I waxed them and finished by detuning the tips and tails, and now I was ready to give them a ride. I nearly ran to the lift and when I got to the top of the mountain, I headed straight for my favorite “balls out” cruiser and let them run. High speeds were incredibly stable and then I headed for the bumps, quick turns were like nothing I had ever felt and last I hit the big airs. That day started the strangest love affair I have ever had. I skied those skis every day and felt like I could do anything with them. As I was finishing my second year on them I began to notice that something just wasn’t the same, sure much of the paint had chipped off but they just didn’t ski the same. One day I was looking at them and noticed that the camber was completely gone and the tip on one of the skis actually had actually bent up. Well I talked to Atomic and they said to send them back. They contacted me and told me they would be sending me a new pair of the next year’s (new and improved) model and I was ecstatic. Receiving them was almost exactly the same as the first pair. The main difference was that instead of the metallic blue, these were the most awesomest Neon hot pink, lime green and purple(just like in the movie Hot Tub Time Machine). I got them mounted and ready to go and headed to the slopes. I headed straight over to The Drunken Frenchman to test them in style. Something was wrong, they felt like I was skiing in quick sand, I went to a cruiser and it still just wasn’t right. I skied it over the next week and never could find anything I really liked about those skis and so I finally sold them. I moved out of the mountains in 1991 and had never found anything that quite felt the same as those SL3’s. In 2009 I was trying to buy skis again and after a few failed purchases I bought a pair of Line Prophet 100’s in a size 186 and it was true love all over again. I can’t believe it took twenty years to rekindle that fire.

  So why am I talking about skis in a fly fishing blog, well I’m really not, but I’m talking about the love affair that we sometimes have with our toys. I know the first few years of fly fishing I went through several rods but never really having anything I couldn’t live without. I bought a Sage xp and really liked most everything about it but after the third time it was sent into repair it started feeling like something was missing. I had always thought it would be cool owning a Winston but was aware of the “old man” connotation that went with them. I was playing with the B11-MX in the shop one day and thought it felt better than I expected. I bought a five weight and was so blown away that I went ahead and ordered a nine foot four weight as well, I could not believe what this thing could do. This was the SL3’s all over again, dry flies, triple nymph rigs, roll casts or cutting straight through our gale force winds were no problem. This rod was magic; I could spot a fish and without any second thought roll a cast exactly where I was aiming. The feel, the light weight, the look, the ability to fight fish was incredible. And then last summer I was told the bad news that Winston is discontinuing this rod and replacing it with the new “more better” rod; now where have I heard this before. Needless to say, I was a little skeptical. Our Winston rep was at the shop last month and I was able to cast the replacement and was cautiously, but pleasantly optimistic. The rod had some similarities but also a few differences as well. After thinking about the new B3 –SX’s for a few months I went ahead and ordered myself a couple, a four weight and a new “lake” six weight. It’s funny how even though I am a little nervous that these rods may not be everything I hoped they would be, I feel like a kid the last week before Christmas in hope that they are.

  A couple weeks back Alex and I were talking in the shop and he was talking about carrying two rods, one for dries and one for nymphs and I answered “that’s right you don’t own a Winston” He grinned and said well you know sometimes the wind, and I cut in again “that’s right, you don’t own a Winston”.  Yes, I am head over heels for my B2-MX and I can only hope it does not take twenty years for me to feel this way again.

  If you have read through this entire blog then I would like to say thanks. After I get the rods in, I will be doing a review for the four weight.  As always, thanks for reading. Connell

Monday, December 10, 2012

Shorts To Snow

Fly fishing the Arkansas Tailwater
          Fall of 2012

 Hello and thank you all  for your continuing support of our blog. We apologize that we got a little lazy with our videoing this fall but hopefully you enjoy what we put together. As we enter into the teeth of the winter, this video is a little look back at the Fall. Thanks as always, Connell, Cat and the  Winston….