Saturday, July 25, 2015

The Cure...

            Hello all and thanks for checking in at The O’Grady Flyfishing Adventures. I wanted to write a little today about a pretty serious problem that I didn’t even knew I had. I know the Who had a song about the summer time blues, but I think for me it has become the post Taylor trip blues. With the last few summers seeing extended runoff here in P-town I have found myself falling into this lazy longing for fish. Now I know that fish aren’t really very far away, but it just gets a little difficult to get motivated. Well today I found the cure for my summertime blues.
            Today Cat, Brandon, myself, Cody and Travis made our way to the upper Ark for a float trip. Travis is just a few short miles away from being certified and we were more than happy to help him reach his needed miles. We floated around eleven miles today and I just want to say, if you have never fished out of a raft before than you are missing out, Period!  I was checking the weather the night before and I saw it was supposed to be 96 and sunny. I was a little nervous when we got to the river and it was sprinkling, but as we were waiting for everyone to get ready I tossed a few flies and landed my fish of the day; it was a 13 inch bow. I know it doesn’t sound very big, but I felt like I was home. We headed down the river and after already having my day made, I got to soak in the beauty of the float. It was Brandon’s first float and he was already talking about buying a boat on the way home. Cat had the ciggle going most of the day and Me, Travis and Cody were our usual ornery selves. I got to row a little today, it always confuses me a little when they put a super valuable boat in my paws, but at least they got to catch a few fish.
            What I really wanted to brag on with this write up is how awesome Cody and Travis have become on the oars. This was my first time out with Travis and we have been with Cody on several occasions. The first few trips I thought Cody was very good, heck he was even a pro at going through The Cottonwood rapids backwards, but watching these two today was like watching an ace pitcher carve up a Rockies line up. Every rapid was perfectly executed and I always seemed to be the same distance from the bank. Fishing was easy and the rapids were exhilarating. I know when the crew gets together there can be a tease or two, but I just wanted to say how proud I was of both of their oarsmenship today. Thanks !

            Now I can’t promise anyone that they would have the kind of day we had today, Cat and Brandon lost count at a butt-load, but if you are looking for a cure to your summertime blues then I would encourage you to book a float trip, it fixed me. The Drift can get you set up for trips on the upper Ark and maybe it can cure a problem that you didn’t know you had. As Always, Connell, Cat, Sad Winston, Brandon, Cody, Travis and The Drift Fly Shop want to thank you for reading…..

Monday, July 6, 2015

Taylor River Trip July 2015 (with video)

          Hello all and thanks for checking in at The O’Grady Flyfishing Adventures. I hope you all had an incredible and safe Independence Day. Over the weekend I got the chance to sit back and reminisce over some of the truly incredible blessings that we Americans have and the Awesomeness that is America. A few weeks back, Cody, Cat and Cody’s cousin and I decided to waste a perfectly good day by going golfing. As most of our readers know, I used to play quite a bit. My handicap one summer dropped to a 4 but realistically I played at around a 7. Now I know that I have not at all kept up with the game but really expect to hit a few balls well. We got to one and my drive ended up in the driving range, on two my drive flew straight and long but my approach was shanked right. Hole after hole I could not put two descent shots together. I was ready to pull my hair out, I was so frustrated (and yes I know it wouldn’t take much to pull what little I have left). When I finished, Cody started laughing at me and wanted to know why I took it so serious, after all, even as bad as I hit the ball, I played the best. I thought about that for a day or so and realized why it was so important to me, and in addition how close it resembles fly fishing.
          When I am standing on a tee box looking down the cactus surrounded fairway, my thoughts race to “Me vrs. The fairway”, I could care less where the other players hit their drives. My mindset on the approach is my trajectory and direction and, no one else’s. On the green, it’s just me and the hole. Now when the round is over, there might be time for a little talk or exchanging of coin, but on the course it’s like I’m playing alone. I find flyfishing to be much the same. I have never been a social fisherman, when I’m on the water it is me vs the fish. Oh how I love to walk the bank, spot an eater, line up and cast, and watch the fish demolish my fly. The fight, net, and a quick grip and grin are cool, but the enjoyment and the true satisfaction comes from beating each and every fish. Now when we get to the campfire at night, I may make mention or two, or many times over about the numbers and sizes of my days boast, but on the river it’s me versus the fish, period. I find myself to be a very competitive person, but not so much with others, but by perfecting whatever I do, and I think that is what is Great about the U.S.A..
          This weekend we made our yearly migration to the Taylor River and it was by far the finest fishing we have ever seen. We had been watching the flows over the last few weeks and were nervous we would have to cancel due to high water. The flows began to ebb last week and turned the normally skittish Taylor into the perfect eating storm.  Jimbo, Brandon and Charlie made it up a day earlier and Cat and I made it Wednesday afternoon. Cat and I stepped into the river and before I even got my line wet, Cat let out her “ciggle” and it was fish on. I think five of my first ten casts produced fish and Cat turned to me and said, “are you sure this is the Taylor?”. We moved slowly up river and I nestled into about a thirty foot stretch that all I would do was spot a fish, get my junk near him, and then hold on. By early evening, my hand and arm had cramped from being in the fighting position for so long. The browns were as fat, chunky, and feisty as I had ever seen them. Yes there was a little talk around the fire that evening, but everyone else had shot a pretty good round as well. Thursday was a little more difficult, but I got my Eagle when I landed the trip fish, a 23 inch bow. Friday and Saturday got a little crowded but even though the fishing toughened, we continued to catch fish. I have to say that after watching Cat, Brandon, Jimbo and even Charlie demolish fish this weekend, I don’t think I have ever been more proud of a bunch of fishermen. It warms my heart to think that just maybe I played a role in helping them see their full fly fishing potentials. They have all become great, just a little less great than me….hehe.

          Now, a little on the non fishing joys of the trip. When we first got to our campsite, we let Winston out of the back of the vehicle. Winnie took a quick look around and I could see his eyelids raise and he began to prance around the camp as if he had missed it as much as us. I’m not sure if dogs technically smile but his mile wide grin put a chill down my back. When leaving on Sunday, we just happened to look up and saw a moose getting a drink, thank you God, you get an A+ for making them. Now on a funny note, if you have ever fished with me or been guided by me and you hooked a tree, than you have heard my Dr Seuss comments, no matter what he wrote, there are no fish in that tree. I know Brandon heard it on Thursday. Anyways I did a first, in one of our favorite runs we cast with the dirt road at our backs. The road does not see a lot of traffic so it is not something we usually worry about. At one point I looked up and saw two vehicles coming by, I waited and after hearing the second vehicle pass, I went to cast mode. As I was casting, I suddenly heard another vehicle and one of the passengers exclaimed that I had caught them. Sheepishly I turned and saw a stopped truck with my flies lodged into the corner of its mouth (the antenna). Luckily they laughed about it and I was able to retrieve my flies. Cat thought it was so funny she took several pics and yep, one even made it into the video. It’s a good thing I was fishing the One with the Sage 4200 reel or I may have not been able to bring the Ford to a complete submission. Hehe. And lastly, we had several nephews and friends camp with us and I learned a valuable lesson, that even without fireworks teenagers can still light up the sky with gasoline. What an incredible way to spend Americas Independence weekend. I hope you all enjoy watching the video as much as we had making it. As always, Connell, Cat, Winton, Brandon, Jimbo, Charlie, Uncle Sam, and the Drift Fly Shop want to thank you for reading and watching…..