Monday, July 9, 2018

It's Not You......


        Hello friends and thanks for checking in at the O’Grady Fly Fishing Adventures. I think I was in 3rd or 4th grade when the boyfriend/girlfriend thing became popular. I’m not really sure why, I didn’t really like to hang out with girls and I was way to young for the physical thing, I guess it was just an issue of self-confidence. My first girlfriend, and I will leave names out to protect the innocent lasted for a few months. It began right before Christmas with a note asking if she would be my girlfriend and a box for a yes and another for a no. She marked yes and we were hitched. My first memory of the girlfriend experience was having to cough up the cash for the obligatory Christmas gift, Valentine’s Day was next and again, my paper route money was NOT spent on what I wanted. I remember the Valentines Dance and sensing something not right and I got the break up letter the next day, what a waste of an ID bracelet. Now in those days, kids didn’t talk to their parents and would never discuss their feelings with their buds. The only person I was able to talk to was my next-door neighbor Kim. I told her about getting dumped and her answer was one that I have heard echoed most of my life. Kim listened and finally in the most caring voice, explained that it wasn’t me, and there was something wrong with the girl, I knew that already but it sure was nice to hear it from someone else. Kim was my main sounding board through high school and in my twenties, I found many other sounding boards, and yes sometimes it worked to my advantage. As I aged it became my brother, my church friends and even my dad and it came full circle when my youngest son had his first break up. For hours I listened to him cry and when the time was just perfect, I told him that it wasn’t him and that there was something wrong with the girl.
          When I finally left Brandon’s room that evening and had time to reminisce, I began to wonder about the gazillion times I heard that over the years. Was it always the other person and never me? Sounds good, but statistically speaking, at least a few of the breakups had to have been about me. I’m not a billionaire, I have been a total jerk, and let’s face it, I’m no Brad Pitt and yet according to my sounding boards, it has never been my fault. Over the last several days fishing and guiding, this old saying has been back running through my skull.
          One morning I had walked into my first run and before casting I could see two different fish chowing. They were in a feeding lane and so I knew they were eating and I looked at the bugs flying around and then the rig I was throwing, and it was a perfect match. I waited to see the fish again and then dropped the flies right in front of them. I was fully expecting the take and nothing, I casted again and again and not interested. I waited for the fish to move again and another round of perfect drifts went unanswered. I changed up a few flies and tossed another round of perfect drifts and still nothing. During BWO season when I see fish, a good drift almost always would produce a take but now I was devastated and then the sounding board was my mind echoing all those years, it wasn’t me, it was the fish.
          The next day I decided to take some time chasing a few carp. Several fish would just bail the second the fly hit the water, and a few actually followed the strip but when it came down to it, it wasn’t me it was the stupid carp.
          My last several guide trips have been mostly all first timers and I have had to explain how difficult our fish can be sometimes. Now as the most caring and perfect guide I have used the “it’s not you” saying more than once, however going back to what I said earlier, statistically speaking, sometimes it’s probably us. I tell everyone that when catching these fish, you have to do a hundred things right and the one error we make can break the deal. The fish are still really eating well but they are not at all easy to land. So if you get out over the next few days and manage to get a fish or two to the net, pat yourself on the back because you earned it. Pics are from today's trip.As always, Connell, Cat, Winston, the Late Kim Crossman and the Drift Flt Shop want to thank you for reading…….



Sunday, July 1, 2018

Independence Day...

          Hello friends and thanks for checking in at the O’Grady Fly Fishing Adventures. I was standing in the river this morning and it hit me that we had just moved into July and Independence Day is only a few days away. As most of our readers know, I don’t take my freedom lightly and I don’t want myself or others to ever forget about how we are, who we are. Several years back I was talking to an employee about their American Poly-sci class and She began to tell me about how her text book explained the 70’s and 80’s in America. I was dumbfounded and figured she had read it incorrectly but when she showed me, I saw how inaccurate it was, and made me read about history with a grain of salt. When I was a kid, I remember watching Revolution films and they all showed this all for one battle against England. Everyone seemed to be on the same page and everyone wanted freedom. Since those early days I have read enough about the time and found there were lots of Americans that wanted no part of the revolution. They said a war wouldn’t be worth the risk and we should just pay the enormous taxes and live according to how the King wanted us to live. So here is why I love Independence Day, there were enough people that said “give me liberty, or give me death”, and many gave their lives so that we could have freedom to live as we please. Today I am so thankful for our forefathers that would accept nothing less than freedom.
          I had guide trips scheduled all weekend but had to postpone yesterdays due to the fire. Fridays trip was really solid, lots of hookups and a few really nice fish to the net. Today I had two first timers and the fish were definitely eating. Good casts and drifts hooked plenty of fish and a few nice fish made it in, although it was a huge numbers day, I think they are hooked and ready for more.
The river is in really good condition right now so if you get a chance, get to the river. I have openings this week so get your trips booked.  Call the shop or my cell 719-568-4927. Enjoy your freedom and as always, Connell, Cat, Winston, Ben and George, and the Drift Fly Shop want to thank you for reading….








     

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Worlds of Fun....


        Hello friends and thanks for checking in at the O’Grady Fly Fishing Adventures. As I was standing in the river this morning playing with the fish, my mind magically wisped me back to my youth and the few summer trips my family made down to KC. It was a different world that I grew up in, families weren’t constantly on the move and so the few times we took the day off and headed south, it was special. Our first trip I was too small to ride the biggest roller coaster I had ever seen, the Zambini Zinger, but I did get to ride the Finish Fling, a round room that spun and eventually dropped the floor while you stuck to the wall. When My kids were teens, we made the trip back because I wanted to see if it was as awesome as I remembered. Well the Zambini Zinger and the Finish Fling were long gone and I was a little saddened not being able to share my memories but what replaced those outdated rides was awesome. The newest coaster the Mamba was twice the size and the water rides were exhilarating. The last time we were there the outside temps were about a hundred degrees and the water rides were perfect.
          So how did I make the connection to World Of Fun today? I got to the river today around eight and the temps were already on the rise, it was only a short walk to the first run I wanted to fish and I was already beginning to burn up. I stepped in and got about waist high and I’m guessing anyone within a hundred yards heard me say AAAAHHHHHHHHHHH! I looked down to see what I had fished with last and it looked fine to me. I tossed it up and made a quick mend, the indicator drifted about a foot and then, like the first drop on the Mamba, it exploded straight down. It was a quick back and forth battle and I would love to say I was the victor, but its not always about the picture. I was on my own today, Cat was working and I didn’t want to push it with Pooh because I knew I wanted to work the river hard. I moved from run to run and hooked fish in almost every spot and the fight in the fish was little like trying to hold tight in the old rickety wooden coaster. About noon I began to feel a slow down and decided to make my way back to the car, I hooked a few more but I was ready to go. What a day, not what I so fondly remember from Springtime but what a way to enjoy the summer heat.
          Flows dropped again today to 580cfs and the water definitely is green, that being said, the fish were eating until I left. Our fish get a little soft mouthed this time of the year so if you lose more than your share, don’t take it personally. Caught most of my fish on a Ninja and a few on the Winston Caddis. I have a few openings over the next week or so, so if you want to enjoy the river call the shop or my cell phone, 719-568-4927. Independence Day is Next week and I think Cat and I are heading out for a few days so get your trip booked now. As always Connell, Cat, Winston and the Drift Fly Shop want to thank you for reading….





Thursday, June 14, 2018

Back in the Saddle.....


          Hello friends and thanks for checking in at the O’Grady Fly Fishing Adventures. What a glorious day in O’Gradyland! As most of our readers know, for nearly seven years, I very rarely went fishing without bringing along Pooh-dog. While packing my vehicle, Winston would stare and when finished I would nod and Pooh would run for the car. He would run ahead and always stop where he knew my favorite spots were and then a year or so ago, he began to really have problems with arthritis. At one time, I took him to the vet totally expecting that it was the end but after a thorough examination, the vet told us that his problems were manageable. Winston has been on a really strong anti-inflammatory and this summer he seemed to be feeling pretty good. The last couple of week I have been taking both dogs to the Valco ponds and Winston seemed to be doing better every day. Yesterdays swimming session went so well that today I decided I would try taking him to the river.
          It has been a long time since Winston stared while packing the car and today was no different. When finished I said come on and he had a strange look on his face, I said it again, lets go Pooh and he jumped up and headed for the car. I told myself ahead of time that I really needed to control myself and gave myself a two-hour time limit. When we got to the river it appeared as if Pooh had never missed a day. We walked down and he sat down in the water just below one of my favorite runs. I looked up and could see a tail swinging back and forth and my drift went perfectly by, the indicator jumped and I lifted. The fish headed into the current and popped off almost immediately. I turned to look at Winston and he had a slight look of disgust and I could almost hear him telepathically say, that I looked like the one that hadn’t been out in eight months. I hooked and lost a few more and then finally landed a dink but Pooh-dog didn’t mind a bit. He looked so happy to get another sniff. We headed up river and hooked a few more but couldn’t get any others in and looking at the clock, although I wanted to continue, I knew I needed to leave. Pooh is napping now and looked pretty good when we got home.
          The river now is doing well, flows have been decreasing and clarity is good. Water temps are currently great and the fish are plump and strong. If you get a chance, get out and you might even get a chance to say hi to Winston. As always, Connell, Cat, Winston, and the Drift Fly Shop want to thank you for reading….


Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Spinney Stories 2018


          Hello friends and thanks for checking in at the O’Grady Fly Fishing Adventures. Today I am writing about the greatest fishing story ever told and I hope you enjoy it. I’m going to start by stating that we fished Spinney today and fishing was incredible, I will be needing some ice this evening. The fishing story however is about the most amazing person I have ever known and one of the oddest but quite possibly the most amazing fishing feat that has ever happened.
          Before we get into the story, I need to give a little background on todays event. I’m sure most of our readers and most anyone that has ever spent anytime with Cat knows how incredibly knowledgeable she is about fly fishing. When Cat was first offered the job in the shop, the owner at that time explained that she needed to know everything, about everything that has to do with fly fishing just to keep face at all times. She studied knots, different graphite, different drag systems and even bugs, well not sure that was studying but just reading. Anyway, so last week Cat was working in the shop one day and a gentleman came in and said that he had met someone catching a lot of fish on the river and they told him to come by the shop and get some help. At this point he looked straight at Cat and asked if she knew when someone would be working in the shop that could help him with knots. Cat told me the story and I shook my head and said, did you tell him to come in on the third Thursday of every month, because that is when the knot guy is here. Cat said she should have but told him that she could help. The guy then went on and said he means the really good knots, you know like the ones for fly fishing. I had to stop listening at that point and I’m sure he was very impressed with Cat by the time he left.
          So here is the amazing fishing story. Cat had just finished landing and releasing a Spinney piggie and as she was resetting her indicator when a fish ripped her rig from her hands. On great days this happens quite frequently and usually you just grab the rod and finish the fish off normally. Unfortunately, this time as her leader was shooting away, her indicator caught the top of the rod and spun everything into a nasty old birds nest. There was about fifteen feet of line hanging off the end of the rod and she felt a little like she was now fishing Tenkara, not ideal for Spinney. She tried to lift but couldn’t get the fish any closer than about ten feet, she began to wind the line on her hand but the fish began to fight and the line started cutting into her hand. She was stumped, she didn’t want to break her line because she just remembered that she had forgotten tippet and she would have had to tell me. She noticed that the fish wasn’t to freaked out if he could stay in the ten-foot away zone so Cat got a great idea. Yes, this could be scary, that will be written on Cats tombstone. So, with nothing to lose, Cat reached up as far as she could and cut her line. The line going to the fish she wrapped on her hand just enough to keep it in place and the she quickly reached to the top of the rod and with her left hand, was able to clean up the nest. Wow so far, next she unwrapped the line from her hand and shoved it in her mouth, she quickly pulled the tab from her mouth and tied a perfect blood knot. Anxious but a little nervous, she began to let the line out and put the fish on the reel. A quick battle and Cat landed a beautiful 19inch piggie, she gave it a little wiggle and the fish swam off as if it had never been caught. Now I know that one of Rush Limbaugh’s favorite saying is beating liberals with half his brain tied behind his back, but how nice would it be for Cat to go back in time and answer that guys question. Yeah, I know the really good knots, how about if I teach you while blindfolded, with a fish attached on one side, and the rod hanging by a thread on the other. You see, the most amazing fishing story ever.
          Spinney was absolutely amazing today, If I was forced to throw out a number I would guess I landed 93 today. Fun was had by all; Tyler and his crew were hooking fish all day and every time I looked up it seemed half of us were fighting fish. I didn’t catch any monsters today, they are very difficult to hold but I got one that measure off at 24 inches. One thing about the El Jefe net is that it makes your fish look small. Cat got the big fish of the day, that measured at 25 on the dot, what a hog. If you are thinking about trying the lake fishing, get it going now. With the purchase of any Fishcat or Outcast pontoon boat, you will receive a free sit down class with Cat or I and we will go over rigging, safety, accessories, reading the lake and hopefully everything to get you started on these amazing days. As always, Connell, Cat, Winston, Tyler, and the Drift Fly Shop want to thank you for reading…











Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Opportunity Is Knocking......


          Hello friends and thanks for checking in at the O’Grady Fly Fishing Adventures. After answering the phone in the shop about river conditions a few days ago, I began thinking about a friend of mine that years ago, told me that all waters go through its ups and downs. At that time, our river had just began coming into its own and I kind of laughed and thought ours will only get better. After two and a half years of drought conditions and then followed by huge runoff years, I realized how right my friend was. So, this is where the “when opportunity knocks” mantra comes from. The lower flows have afforded us an opportunity that we have no idea when it will come around again. Fish are eating and very happy, bugs are sporadically hatching all day, and the anglers on the river have been friendlier than I have ever seen. Yesterday, my client and I were walking by a guy that was re-rigging and told us we could fish his spot because he just got broke off. So here is the best answer I can give on river conditions, I’m not sure how long the excellent conditions will continue and more so, don’t waste the current opportunity and come and fish.
          Now, I want to tell you about an opportunity for our readers. As most of you know, Cat and I just spent a week in Belize and had an incredible time. Leading up to our trip, honestly, we were really nervous about heading to another country for an unknown adventure. Thankfully, we ended up at an incredible lodge and very quickly our fears were relieved.  The place and the fishing were incredible, I have a tattoo to prove it..haha. Prices were much less expensive than the other lodges we looked into and not an ounce of quality was sacrificed for it. Each morning we rose from a comfy bed and had breakfast and coffee waiting without us lifting a finger. The friendly and insanely skilled guides arrived at the lodge at seven and off we went for a full day of fishing for bonefish, Permit, and Tarpon. The fishing was only paused to gnash down on lunches prepacked for us and which never failed to fill the belly.  The boats would bring us back to the lodge around three. The evenings were filled with soaks in the pool, a trip into town to take in some local culture, and amazing dinners. Needless to say, we found it very hard to leave.  
If you are not aware, saltwater fishing is everything that I love about fly fishing. We rarely cast until we see fish and then after watching bones chase down your fly, you get to listen to your reel scream. Its not easy, but nothing worth while ever is. We have decided that we are going back next year and Cat and I will be hosting our first saltwater trip. We have our date set for the 13th through the 20th of April 2019. Yes, I know that that is a year out but you can never start planning to early. The lodge is set up for the vacation you choose. For the hard-core fisherman, six guided days will give you tons of opportunities. For the families, the lodge can get you snorkeling or diving. One of the couples that we were there with, swam with the nurse sharks. Maybe one of the best things about the hosted trips is that Cat and I have been there before and we get to spend the week with our friends. The lodge is limited and a few of the spots have already been taken so if you are interested at all, don’t hesitate and get in touch with us. Call us at the shop 719-543-3900 or my cell 719-568-4927.
The pics posted are from Glenn’s trip today, we had another excellent day of hooking fish but a little more difficult time getting them to the net. The smaller bow, 18 incher, was taken on a dry, I should probably add that it was on Cats zombie apocalypse fly. As always, Connell, Cat, Winston, the Bluebonefish, and the Drift Fly Shop want to thank you for reading….















Sunday, April 22, 2018

How Bad Do You Want It ?

          Hello friends and thanks for checking in at the O’Grady Fly Fishing Adventures. It is that time of the year again where you have to ask the question many times a day. I have told the story before where years ago I was fighting this fish up and down the river and when he had had enough of me, broke my line. At the top of my lungs I yelled a few, not so pretty expletives, and stormed off up the river. I turned the corner and saw a friend and embarrassingly, asked him if he heard my tantrum. He told me he heard something and then kept his distance, I’m guessing he figured I had some serious anger issues. I don’t think I have at all gotten bored with fishing but these days I am way more excited fooling fish than actually landing them.

            The river right now is coming into prime condition, flows are just over 400cfs and the BWO’s are popping. With the water warming up, the moss is just starting to cover the bottom and making the footing a little slippery. Now with these conditions, nearly every hook up, you have to ask yourself how bad you want to get him landed. On Wednesday I had a client in a place where he was hooking a lot of fish but they were nearly impossible to land, they would stay just across from us and then they would head below us and grab the current. The reel would scream and once the line started going under water, the hook would pop out. On Friday I fished by myself and anchored up on a run through the middle of the river. I hooked several fish and the biggest looked to be about 18 inches. Now I could have chased each one down and across to get them in a safe spot but I just didn’t want to work that hard.
            Todays trip was a father and son and what a great day. The first few hook ups we had to stand still and the fish were able to beat us. I got Dillon into a run and his first hook up looked to be an awesome fish. I grabbed the back of his waders and told him we needed to follow, the fish headed towards some rocks and he got is rod way up in the air. We chased him down river and were able to get him into some quiet water and get him landed. He was an absolutely perfect, eighteen-and-a-half-inch brownie. We walked back up into the run and hooked a few more but couldn’t chase the rest down. Mark, hooked the next fish and we quickly chased him down river and in true father/son, rivalry, he landed an eighteen and three-quarter inch rainbow. They continued to hook fish all afternoon but the frustrating part happened when Dillon hooked what looked to be a twenty plus inch fish, he got below us and I didn’t feel like we could safely chase him and the piggie flipped us a fin. We didn’t get him landed but laughed anyway and Dillon will have something to think about when shutting his eyes this evening. The last two fish were an eighteen and seven eighth and an eighteen and seven and a half eighth. Yeah, I know, the last two were lengths were estimated. What an awesome day!
            If you get to the river over the next few weeks make the decision quickly, is the fish worth it or not. Do you want to have to walk all the way back up river and more importantly, are you putting yourself in an unsafe spot? Running down a slick river can turn bad in a hurry and there are plenty of other fish that are eating. I have openings early this week so give us a call 719-568-4927 and as Always, Connell, Cat, Winston, and the Drift Fly Shop want to thank you for reading….








Monday, April 16, 2018

I Belize I Can Fly......


            Hello friends and thanks for checking in at the O’Grady Fly Fishing Adventures. Now that I have been home for a few days and have had time to reflect on our vacation, I wanted to write a little about our Belize vacation. I think the only constants that we have found in our adventures is that the more excited we are about a trip, the more likely we are to run into snags.
            With the fog and sleet rolling through Colorado, we left extra early to make sure we made our flights. We made it to the airport with hours to spare but when the plane was ready to take off, the fog kept us grounded. We sat on the tarmac for almost four hours and missed all the connecting flights into Belize. We wanted to cry but decided that we would make the most of the rest of our time. We made it to our lodge and only missed one day of fishing.
            Fishing Belize was like nothing we have ever seen. The first day we spent chasing bone fish and then blind casting under mangroves for snook and baby tarpon. When our guide picked us up for our second day, he asked us what we wanted and we told him we wanted to look for permit. We got onto our first flat and after about a half an hour, the guide called out the school at 120 feet and coming at us. He then yelled to look for the fins and they were now at 90 feet. 11:00 o’clock and they are moving, I began to cast and as I saw the outline of the leading fish, I gave the rod an extra push and my cast collapsed woefully short. We fought the wind pretty hard that day and ended up chasing more bones. The last three days had the best weather and our guide was able to put us on small permit schools constantly. We had some great casts that failed and some awful casts that were even worse. We caught as many bones as we wanted and I was able to land three permit. The last day had us most intrigued, our guide took us South to a flat called the Savannah. Our hope was to hook a tarpon. I got the first cast but the fish did not seem interested. We drifted down a little way and then we had three absolute monsters moving toward us, Cat put the perfect cast in front of them and began to strip, the fish teased us by staying just a little behind the fly and when they got right in front of the boat they turned and I think one of them winked, the guide guessed them out at around 90lbs. We knew at that moment, we were coming back.
            Evenings at the lodge started with a long soak in the pool and then an incredible Belizean dinner. Most nights were spent swapping stories and trying to get tips from the lodge owner. Thursday evening, we headed into town to check out the world famous “Chicken Drop”. If you are wondering what that is, there is a small fenced area with boards covered in numbers. People buy tickets with numbers and then a chicken is brought in, a woman is picked from the crowd to give the chicken a gentle shake, lift the tail feather and blow, and then drops the chicken into the ring. And if you haven’t guessed, what ever number the chicken poops on, the person with the number has to clean the board and wins all the cash. I’m not sure PETA would ever allow anything like that to happen in the states, but it was actually pretty amusing to watch.
            I’m not sure how else to describe the trip other than to say it was absolutely incredible. As we were sitting in the San Pedro airstrip waiting to head home, we started planning on when we can make it back. We talked to the lodge owner and are planning on hosting a trip next Spring. Now I know that seems like a long time from now but if you have ever thought about trying some saltwater fly fishing I would encourage you to get with us and see if this lodge is right for you. The lodge is much less expensive than other lodges that I have looked into and is much quicker to the flats than any other lodges on Ambergris Caye. The lodge can accommodate about 12 anglers and even more with non-anglers, we are looking at either the second or third week of April next year. If you are part of our trip, Cat and I can do casting instruction, and fly tying ahead of time. We already have a few spots taken so let us know if you are interested. We would love to spend the week in paradise with some of you.  
            The video was a little difficult to produce. Saltwater fish take a little extra time landing and we didn't want a two hour video of us fighting fish. We got a little scenery and hope we made it look as fun as it was. 
            Now, back a little closer to home. The river is on fire right now so get out and fish. As always, Connell, Cat, Winston, The Blue Bonefish, and the Drift Fly Shop want to thank you for reading….




Thursday, April 12, 2018

My Dilemma....


           Hello friends and thanks for checking in at the O’Grady Fly Fishing Adventures. This blog is about my day and the dilemma that now confronts me. When our guide George showed to pick us up this morning he asked us what we were looking for, our answer was that we so over the bones and we wanted to spend the day looking for permit, even if we never hooked a fish.                                                                                  The boat ride took a while and as we slowed, George told us that the island we were fishing was owned by Leonardo Dicaprio, I was not impressed but looked for him anyway. I jumped to the front and after a short few minutes, George yelled that we had a small school at 12 o’clock, 80 feet out coming straight at us. I took a breath and began to false cast. George yelled, a little to the right and let it down. I had already started my next cast and as I was bringing my cast forward, I saw the school. My fly landed perfectly about five feet in front of the fish and I began to strip. The leading fish flashed and I felt nothing. I tried to take a breath but my nads had blocked my airway. Another long slow strip and “Kerchunk”, a long strip set and the battle was on. OMG, I just hooked a freekin permit and I have him on the reel. Now my dilemma went through my mind.
            A year or so ago, my wife, mother, siblings’, nephews and nieces were hanging around talking when the topic of tattoos came up. They were all showing there’s off when I was asked when I was planning on getting one. If you are a long-time reader then you know that I am a little conservative as well as a little wimpy so my answer was the normal, NEVER. Unfortunately, I laughed and said, maybe after I catch a permit. You see, I figured there was a better chance of me getting hit by lightning then ever catching a permit, but now I was thoroughly in a twofold panic mode. I really wanted to get him landed but I’m not so sure about the tattoo thing. The battle was fierce and back and forth when I noticed an upcoming fishtrap. George tried to ease my nerves by saying take your time but you really need to get him in, in a hurry, there are big barracudas near the trap. I though for just a second, that that might be my way out but then I remembered Cody saying that the deal had changed and I was set even if I broke him off. I got him in and when I got him in my hands, I didn’t care a lick, I caught a permit. He wasn’t a monster but he was a permit.
            So here is what I want to do, we have many readers out there and I want to put it in your hands. Do I get the permit tattoo, and if so, where does it go and how should it look? Should it be cartoonish or very realistic, with color or black and white? This is your time to be involved my friends, give me your ideas, but please keep it clean. We have one more day to fish and hopefully Cat sticks a pig, she is a little warn out from all the bones, maybe we can both get some ink.
            It appears that the river is in prime condition so get your spots filled for next week. We will be home soon so as always, Connell, Cat, Winston, George the Guide, and the Drift Fly Shop want to thank you for reading….





Thursday, April 5, 2018

The Ark In All Its Glory With Epic Video...


          Hello friends and thanks for checking in at the O’Grady Fly Fishing Adventures. What a fun Spring we are having. The mild winter had the fish out early, the tearing out of the cofferdam temporarily ruined the clarity, and just recently, the fear of the river blowing up and even through all that, the river has been amazing. Now I do have to admit, the river no longer has the goober fish of yesteryear, but a great cast and drift and the fish will eat. The last update the shop received stated that the “big flush” is no longer needed and that the river should stay low, now the day we got the e-mail, the river jumped up 300cfs. The river is still very fishable, but please be very careful in these flows.
            Cat and I will be out next week and the Big Boss will be running the shop. We thought that we had planned our trip perfectly around the “big flush” but now we may actually find ourselves missing our water. My prediction for the water is that I think around the 15th, the river will drop back into the 300-500cfs range and after seeing the size of fish during the spawn, I think this will be the best Spring fishing we have seen in years. My schedule is already beginning to fill up late in April and into May so if you want to see what this river can produce, call the shop and get your date booked.
            This Spring has been so busy for Cat and I that when we got to the river yesterday together, we realized it had been over a month since we had fished together. The video we produced, we hope is the best we have ever made, it was a little bittersweet since it is the first video without pooh-dog to make everyone smile. Pooh-dog watched the video at home and approved but at the same time had a longing in his eyes. Trying to make people laugh, we added a little parody and hope you find it amusing. The music is a little heavier than I usually prefer but after I heard it, I was blown away. Music is from a guy called, Iamlamprey out of Australia and is awesome! I wanted to ask our readers a favor, if you enjoy the blog and the youtube videos then please subscribe to both and give them a like. As always, Connell, Cat, Winston and the Drift Fly Shop want to thank you for reading….

Sunday, March 18, 2018

A Sushi Type of Day.....


           Hello friends and thanks for checking in at the O’Grady Fly Fishing Adventures. Well hopefully the title of this post has your interest and even more so, I hope the analogy isn’t too much of a stretch. A few years back, my incredible wife Cat had a lunch date with a friend and she came home raving about how awesome sushi was. Now if you know me at all, then you know that the thought of eating not just fish, but raw fish just turns my stomach. Yep, after I spend the day on the water and before I eat, I have to scrub my hands to remove the smell. Last year, Cat and I went to Hawaii with a few of our best friends and I had already decided that I wanted to try my hardest to eat as the Hawaiians do. The Kahlua Pig, Macadamia Nut Pancakes and Musubi were easy but I was dreading the trip to Kuru Kuru, the world-famous sushi restaurant. I think there were twelve of us that went and they all seemed to be looking like Pavlov’s dog as we entered. Cody noticed my confused look as I was scanning the menu and he pointed out a few items that I might be able to stomach. I watched as they all prepared for their dinner, they pulled out their chop sticks, put wasabi in a dish and then stirred in Soy sauce. When the food came I watched Cody perfectly pick up the piece and dunk in in his sauce and shove the whole piece in his mouth. I didn’t get it, my roll had rice, raw fish, seaweed, mystery parts and then I had soy mix. Other than the fish, all the items seem okay but just nothing seemed special about any of it. I managed to get my roll up with my sticks and I dunked it at put it in my mouth. The whole table was watching for my reaction and as it hit my tasted buds, the magic happened. By the third or fourth piece I got down, I tried to figure out how so many strange parts can make anything so perfect. Cat and I have since made sushi a regular in our dinner plans and I think it is the only item that as we eat it, we look at each other and just say Ahhhhhhhhhhhhh.
          So here is where the comparison comes in, over the last month or so we have had all kinds of days on the river. We have had lots of great weather days, lousy weather days, great water days and dirty water days, we have had spawning fish days and eating fish days, on guided trips we have had experienced anglers and brand spanking new anglers and most of the days have felt a little like the individual parts of sushi. Now with sushi, the parts seem pretty bland but when put together, they are magic, and today everything fell into place. The water was clear, and the fish had entered feeding lanes and my chop stick skills were adequate. I didn’t want to spend time just fishing runs so I went out looking for fish. The first few I saw didn’t seem interested and then I found the dinner table. For an hour and a half, it was a sushi type of day, I’m not sure how many I landed but it seemed every third cast or so I hooked a fish. I got two landed that looked as if their life goal was to replace the pigskin with fishskin and several that felt very spawned out. As the clouds began to move in, I felt like I needed to say, Ahhhhhhhhhhhhh.
          The river is absolutely incredible right now, it is not easy, but oh so good. If you have been thinking about a guide trip, now is the time to get it booked. We are looking at a serious flush at some point but I don’t think it will begin until April. Fish the last few days were on Ninjas and a few on FOD’s. If you are planning on fishing the tail water between now and run off, make sure you stop by the shop and stock up on FOD’s and Ninjas. Sorry, this wasn't my best picture taking day. As always, Connell, Cat, Winston, Miyakis, and the Drift Fly Shop want to thank you for reading……..









Tuesday, March 6, 2018

The Ark, a 3/6/18 Update....


           Hello friends and thanks for checking in at the O’Grady Fly Fishing Adventures. When I was just a wee lad I remember a fad toy that a bunch of my friends had. It was called the Magic 8-Ball and you were supposed to ask it a question and then shake the toy and an answer would show up in the window. I had really mixed emotions about the toy, I was so jealous that everyone I knew had one and I didn’t, but at the same time I thought the thing was so stupid. The answers were very generic that came out as “most certainly yes”, “not a chance”, and the really generic answer of “that is a definite maybe”.  After the last week of answering the phone in the fly shop, I kind of wished I had a Magic 8-ball to answer the questions about the river conditions.
          This blog is my best attempt of giving info on our river. I wanted to start by what we have been told and I will finish with my best educated guess. First, we were informed that on Monday, the tear out of the cofferdam above Juniper Bridge would begin and last possibly into next week. With that, we were expecting very dirty conditions. Next, we know that the 15th is the end of winter storage and flows could fluctuate depending on water calls. And lastly, we were told that before the 15th of April, the Reservoir level has to be drastically reduced to a predetermined level and there is a big water release planned for some time in the first two weeks of April.
          I had a friend run by the river yesterday to tell me how dirty it was and he called and said it was still clean. I wanted to check for myself and headed to the river today and I was pleasantly surprised. The water had a green tint and very good visibility. So, the removal of the cofferdam has not yet begun and we really don’t know when that will happen but it has to be out by the 15th.
          I spent the day fishing and had really varied success. I saw lots of fish on redds, with just a few Billy Bobs harassing them, I saw lots of fish staging and a few fish actively in feeding lanes. I didn’t see many bugs today so the lack of feeding fish didn’t surprise me. The fish that I did land were really prettied up but the battles made me think the fish were spent. And once again, the fish all ate the J-bomb.
          Now I wanted to give my own personal opinion of how the river will fish in the near future. With the increase in flows, the water temps have dropped several degrees and the hatches have really slowed down. Last week I was seeing BWO’s showing up but the water was way to cold for them today. Between now and the 15th, look for feeding fish in the tail outs of feeding lanes and try to get really small midges in front of them. If you make the trip and the water turns dirty, put on an egg or a Depth Charge and dredge the deeper pools. Now after the 15th, look for the water clarity to really clear up and we should have some really great feeding days. If you happen to be here on a water call day and you begin to see trash and debris float by, take a break and give the river an hour or so to clear. As we near the end of March and the temps begin to edge up, start looking for BWO’s
          As April hits, we will try our best to give info on the lowering of the reservoir. As for April 15th and beyond, I am really hopeful that we will have an awesome late spring season. With the really full reservoir and the relatively low snow pack we don’t have a clue what the flows will do but the construction should be completely done and the water should have great clarity.
          Well I’m not sure if that has cleared up any of the questions about the water but I hope that it is better than the answer you might get if you call the shop, “that is a definite maybe”.  Fishing is always better than not fishing so get here and enjoy. As Always, Connell, Cat, Winston, the Magic 8-ball and the Drift Fly Shop want to thank you for reading….




Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Fly Fishing and PON FARR......

            Hello All, this is Cat writing to you today. As many of you know, despite the coolness fly fishing has added to my reputation, deep down I am a super nerd. Below you will find a sci-fi tale with a fly fishing moral. I hope you enjoy!

            Earth dwellers called the alien planet Rivora.  Hidden behind the dark side of Mars, it existed undetected until the year 2018. From the moment the first astronauts set foot on Rivora, the human race knew they had found a new home. The flora, fauna, and even the people on this new planet mirrored earth in most ways. Most ways, however, is very far from being similar in every way.
            After completing the first three month mission to Rivora most the astronauts were excited to return to Earth and report all of their findings to the scientists back home. The flight engineer, BillyBob, wanted to stay behind. He loved discovering new things on Rivora and to be honest didn’t have any friends back on Earth. BillyBob did find a very good friend on Rivora named Trouvis. The two were buds from the time they met. They played together, they hungout, and were virtually inseparable. Trouvis loved hearing stories from Earth and BillyBob loved exploring with his new friend.
            For several months the new friendship went swimmingly but then something changed. One night, BillyBob, knocked on Trouvis door, pizza in hand and smile on lip. It took Trouvis longer than normal to answer the door. “Dude, answer the door. I found the best pizza place. You’ve got to grub down on this,” BillyBob shouted. When Trouvis answered the door he wasn’t baring the same big grin as his friend. In fact, he looked annoyed to see BillyBob. “I’m getting ready for a date. I think I am going to pass,” Trouvis said. BillyBob was confused. His friend had never canceled on him before. Not only that but he had never even heard Trouvis mention a girl he was interested in. He was definitely dressed for something though. Normally clothed in earthy tones, Trouvis was head to toe in bold bright colors. His eyes darted back and forth nervously peeking around BillyBob’s body filling the doorway.
            “Well, when is your date?” BillyBob asked.
            “I don’t know. Whenever she shows up, but I have to be ready.”
            “Are we talking two hours or five, or what?”
            BillyBob fell speechless when Trouvis told him it might be weeks. BillyBob grew angry as he walked back to his rental car. He was on an alien planet and had exactly one friend. He wanted to spend time with him. He wanted to be entertained and for some reason his friend was blowing him off for weeks. Which for Bob meant weeks of isolation. For a chick? Back in his car, still holding his pizza, Bob got pissed. This was ridiculous. A few minutes later and Bob was back pounding on Trouvis’ door.
            “WHAT!? Trouvis screamed as he swung the door open, almost hitting Bob in its path. Bob wanted to yell at his friend, but instead he tempted him . Trouvis loved pizza, and knowing this Bob flipped open the box. Trouvis’ stomach growled as he stared down at the melted cheese. “I can’t. What if she shows, up,” Trouvis was arguing more with his hunger than with Bob at this point. His hand reached out and he grabbed a slice as Bob pushed his way inside. Only a few bites in and Trouvis began puking into the toilet. Either it was an allergy or food poisoning or perhaps Trouvis simply shouldn’t have been eating while waiting for a date. Either way, Bob, the ever devoted and pushy friend, stayed by his side all night.
            In the morning a knock came at the door. Bob answered it and found a beautiful woman dressed in the same vibrant colors Trouvis had been wearing. She shrieked at the sight of Bob and ran back to her car. He tried to stop her, but she was gone. Trouvis, hearing the commotion, joined Bob outside.
“Sorry, Dude, don’t know what happened. Was that your date?” Bob asked. Trouvis fell to his knees and wept openly and as he cried he explained, “You weren’t supposed to be here. I was supposed to give her my full attention. That’s it. It is over. I will never get to spend time with her and I might NEVER have a child!”
Come to find out the people of Rivora and Earth were indeed NOT exactly alike.  In Fact, they were more like Vulcans. Reproduction only came once a year for them. Not only that, but the situation had to be perfect for children to be reproduced. Bob had blown it for Trouvis. He had deprived his friend of a blissful encounter and to pass down his DNA. As you can imagine the story got out. Every newspaper ran the headline, ALIEN PREVENTS FRIEND FROM A NIGHT OF PLEASURE AND CHILDREN.  Bob and Trouvis’ friendship never recovered and Bob became an outcast. None of the other residents wanted to be friend someone who would be so selfish as to spoil a man’s one night a year to make whoopy. It took years for another Earth ship to return to Rivora and for years Bob was miserable.


            Here is the moral of the story; DON’T get in the way of love and romance even by accident. DON’T be Bob. Redds are popping up all over the river. Our wonderful trout friends are desperately trying to reproduce. It is in my humble opinion that we should let them do this in peace and feed our “pizza” to all the other finned friends not trying to bring a new generation to the water. Thanks for indulging me in a little story and as always Cat, Connell, Winston, Rivora, and The Drift Fly Shop thank you for 
reading......

In case you were wondering, I grabbed a few pics of Redds today so please do your best to avoid. If you have any more questions, feel free to catch us and ask at the shop.