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Great Waters Flyfishing Expo Ends My Show Season

Yesterday the Great Waters Fly Fishing Expo in St Paul, Minnesota wrapped up the winter show season for me.  2017 will go down as one of the busiest.  I had a terrific time entertaining and visiting with the folks that come to the shows to learn but also all the amazing fellow speakers I had the pleasure to work with.  Here in MN I worked with George Daniel.  Not only is George a pal from Fly Fishing Team USA but he puts on some helpful seminars on nymph and streamer fishing.

 

After the show, old college buddies Andy Thompson and Mike Neuman picked me up and we are presently somewhere in the Driftless area of Wisconsin.  It took us four hours to get here and we are now with five other college friends having a rowdy, entertaining fun as heck time.  Tomorrow starts two days of fly fishing this “off the radar” region.  Stay tuned!!

 

Jeff Currier Global Fly Fishing

Great Waters Fly Fishing Expo 2017

This weekend I speak at my last Fly Fishing Show of the season.  Really?  Winter zipped by that fast?  Indeed it did and I’m ending with a bang with my first ever appearance at the Great Waters Fly Fishing Expo in St. Paul, Minnesota March 17-19.

 

I’ve known of this show for many years and from what I understand if you live in range, you don’t want to miss it!  What’s special about speaking in MN is that this is my old stomping grounds from back in the 80’s.  Therefore, afterwards I’ll be chucking flies with my college buddies in Wisconsin’s Driftless Area.

 

Fellow speakers are friends George Daniel and Dave Whitlock and more.

Here’s my schedule for the weekend

Friday

For me this is my arrival day and although I won’t be giving any presentations I plan to be doing art at my booth the minute I get off the plane which means from around 3PM till 7PM show closing.

Saturday

10:45 – “Casting in the Wind and the Double Haul”

12:00 – Hutton Arena – “Four Seasons of the Yellowstone Trout Bum”

2:30 – Room A – “Saltwater Fly Fishing – Bonefish to Billfish”

Sunday

10:30 – “Casting in the Wind and the Double Haul”

11:45 – Hutton Arena – “Fly Fishing in Warmwater – Bass, Pike, Carp and More”

 

Jeff Currier Global Fly Fishing

Art Projects Keep Me Focused

When I go quiet I’m either on a foreign country expedition or focused on a writing or art project while home for the first time in a while.  Well, this time it’s the latter which meant a pleasurable week at home with the Sharpies and pastels and some amusing pet deer!

 

I drew on several fly boxes including a Beast Jr. Cliff Box.  I had to make time for this one as I was hunkered down preparing my taxes for my tax man.  Tailing redfish on the South Carolina flats.

 

The big project which flat out put me in lock down mode was this commission piece for Paul Hamilton of Alberta, Canada.  Paul caught this monster on the Bow River and it measured an incredible 27”.  I created him in pastels exactly to size and literally dot for dot.  The final piece is 36” x 20” and it may well be my best brown trout art yet!

 

It’s back on the road this week at the Great Lakes Fly Fishing Expo in St. Paul, Minnesota.  Schedule to post on Wednesday.

 

Jeff Currier Global Fly Fishing

California Speaking Tour has been a Blast!

I’m deep into the California speaking tour.  I spoke to Tracy Fly Fishers last week then at the Pleasanton Fly Fishing Show over the weekend.  Both were excellent with high attendance for the show and all my presentations.  Here’s a shot of me teaching the Double Haul on the outside casting pond.

 

On top of the speaking I busted out some mean artwork.  I drew on a banjo for David Blackburn of Kootenai Angler two years ago.  This weekend I did it again only this time I went with a saltwater look.  Here’s finishing up the bonefish on top.

Next was to sketch in the tarpon.

Here’s the completion.  It took me all night at the hotel bar!

I was stoked the way it came out as was Dave!

Granny and I have been chilling out in the boonies of California.  We are just leaving Kernville and I’m speaking in to Kern River Fly Fishers tonight and Fresno Fly Fishers tomorrow.  Then it’s a long drive home but home sweet home it will be.  Looking forward to it!

Jeff Currier Global Fly Fishing

Another California Fly Fishing Tour Begins

No rest for the wicked.  I barely get in the door at home on Mondays before leaving again on Wednesdays.  I like it though because I love my job.  While tomorrow night some of my California friends will catch my “Warmwater Fly Fishing” presentation at Tracy Fly Fishers here in California, those who don’t can catch me this weekend at the Pleasanton Fly Fishing Show and next week in Bakersfield or Fresno.

 

As always, I’ll be giving several PowerPoint presentations (schedule below) and demoing on the Fly Casting Pond.  And of course, I’ll have plenty of my famous coffee mugs and beer steins as well as every color Sharpie you can imagine and boxes to draw on.  Feel free to bring your own box, computer or whatever.  Hope to see you there!

 

Here’s my presentation schedule for the Pleasanton Fly Fishing Show:

Friday

1:00 – Autograph Booth

2:00 – Release Room – “Tricks & Tactics for Fly Fishing the World’s Best Flats”

4:15 – Inside Pond – “Fly Casting 101”

Saturday

11:15 – Outside Pond – “Casting in the Wind and the Double Haul”

1:00 – Autograph Booth

3:00 – “Fly Fishing for Carp – A 20lb Fish near Home”

Sunday

11:00 – Autograph Booth

12:45 – Inside Pond – “Fly Casting 101”

3:00 – “Streamer Tricks for More and Larger Trout”

 

Jeff Currier Global Fly Fishing

Winter Continues to Steam On By

Exhausted would be an understatement as I make my way home from Indianapolis this morning.  But you know I love it.  I just got done speaking and sketching on fly boxes for three days at the Indianapolis Boat, Travel and Sport Show.  The show was fantastic and I had a great time teaching and entertaining, but big shows (this one dwarfs the usual fly fishing shows) drain you.

 

Then this morning I checked out of my hotel at 4 AM, had an hour drive through pea soup fog, returned a rental car then caught my 6 AM flight from Indi towards Idaho.  I rarely put myself in such travel hell but with little time at home lately the early flight might allow me time for a ski this afternoon.

 

Next in line is a ten-day California tour.  It begins Thursday night speaking to Tracy Fly Fishers where I’ll present “Fly Fishing Warmwater – Bass, Pike, Carp and More” followed by Friday through Sunday at the Pleasanton Fly Fishing Show (I’ll post my Pleasanton Show seminar schedule Wednesday).  Then I’ll relax Monday and Tuesday and return to the stage in Bakersfield for a Carp talk then Fresno for Streamer Tactics.

 

Normally on this CA tour I head out on the Delta for a day of striped bass fishing with my friend Ben Byng.  Not this year.  The rains have doomed most fishing opportunities for this trip.

 

Jeff Currier Global Fly Fishing

The Indianapolis Sports Show Feb 17-19, 2017

Here we go again!  It’s time for the Indianapolis Boat, Sport and Travel Show.  I did this show last winter and thoroughly enjoyed.  If you’re in the area swing by and catch one of my presentations!

 

Here are my seminar times for this weekend.  Click on the presentation titles for full details:

Friday

4:00 – “Warmwater Fly Fishing – Bass, Pike and More”

Saturday

12:00 – “Trout Bumming the World”

3:00 – “Fly Fishing Jackson Hole”

Sunday 

12:00 – “Fly Fishing Tails from Africa”

3:00 – “Four Seasons of the Yellowstone Trout Bum”

Jeff Currier Global Fly Fishing

Frigig Cold & Wind Shorten Last Day on the Ice

Wind shook the Chippewa Retreat Lodge starting in the wee hours.  By the time I got up to meet the guys for ice fishing, everyone but two of the guides, Joe and James, bagged the idea of fishing.  I layered up and off we went.

 

We didn’t go far from the lodge and it wasn’t to a lake.  We fished a wide section of the river.  Ice conditions were poor with thin ice and slush on top.  We walked with caution but safely got in six tip ups and over a two hour period managed to land five pike.

 

The wind can be not only cold but just plain annoying.  We packed it in around 11 AM.  It was a great weekend of ice fishing in Wisconsin and there was no need for a full day today.  We spent the rest of the day playing pool and dice and just flat out had a great time.  And of course, George took us to dinner one last time.  We ate at the White Oak Grill next to Chippewa Retreat and had one last epic feast!

 

I’m flying home today then back in a plane for work this weekend.  I’ll be speaking at the Indianapolis Boat, Sport and Travel Show.  I’ll post my speaking schedule on Thursday.  Hope to see some of you there!

 

Jeff Currier Global Fly Fishing

Musky Through the Ice

What a difference a day makes.  The wind stopped and there were splashes of sunshine as we took to the ice here in Manitowish Waters, Wisconsin. The temperature also rose.  It was 22° before we had all our tip ups in.  This is way above average for northern Wisconsin in February.

 

A few of us went on a crappie hunt.  Crappie are very active fish under the ice in the dead of winter.  The problem is you must find the school in order to catch them.  The best way is to drill a line of holes and drop down tiny jigs.  Fish the hole from top to bottom.  If you don’t hit a fish move.  When you finally hit that first crappie you’re in for a treat.  We hit a few in an area and managed to land about ten of average size.

 

 

Unlike yesterday where we spent most the day in the ice shack, we lounged around outside.  We grabbed the lawn chairs and spread them out like it was a summer afternoon.  We sipped beers and watched for flags.  It doesn’t get any more relaxing that this.

 

While we caught numerous pike and a scattering of yellow perch, there was one flag to remember.  The flag popped on our furthest tip up from where we had our party.  Rather than charge for the flag myself, I offered it to the guys.  Everyone seemed lazy so off I went.

 

 

 

 

When I got to the tip up the fish wasn’t running at all.  In fact whatever fish it was had only taken a few inches of line.  But I had a feeling as I went into action.  At that time the spool began to spin frantically.  Normally you’d let it stop then strike the fish but this one didn’t stop.  I reached in and set and it was game on.

 

If you’ve never hand lined a strong fish I’ll tell you it’s a unique feeling.  You need to have a magic touch or one swift headshake and they’ll break you off.  It’s even more likely when you have a toothy critter like a pike.  I gently fought the fish to the surface for times.  We saw flashes below our ice hole but then the fish would run back out 30 feet of line and I’d work him back.  At last I got him – a small musky!

 

A muskellunge through the ice is a rarity.  In more than thirty years of Wisconsin ice fishing this handsome member of the pike family is only my second on a tip up.   Pretty cool stuff.  After this quick photo I released him unharmed.  All I can think about now is how bad I need to get back here in October with my fly rod like I last did in 2012.

 

It was another magic day on the ice.  We continued to enjoy ourselves from the lounge.  Joe fried up our pike and perch and along with it we had shrimp, scallops and lobster tails.  I wonder what the guides are serving in the warm destinations around the world today?  Probably not quite as good.  One more day.  Loving it here in Wisconsin!

 

Jeff Currier Global Fly Fishing

Ice Fishing In Wisconsin 2017

No doubt fly fishing is my passion.  But I learned every type of fishing along the journey and its likely why I know what I’m doing with a fly rod no matter what fish I’m after.  And still to this day one of my all-time favorites is ice fishing for Northern pike, walleye, perch, crappie and bluegill with tip-ups and light jigging sticks.

 

I’m up in the Great Northwood’s of Wisconsin with longtime friends on an ice fishing trip as a guest of George Hillenbrand.  George has been flying us up to Manitowish Waters to stay at Chippewa Retreat Resort almost every winter since 2007.  In case you’ve never been, northern Wisconsin is one of the best kept secrets in the lower 48.  I studied at Northland College in Ashland from 1983-87 and can honestly say they were some of the most enjoyable fishing years of my life.

 

Today was a cold windy one on the ice.  The temperature was likely 15°.  Toss in the wind and for sure the chill kept things well below zero.  This may not sound fun but to make things comfortable we also have ice tents for jigging and a well built and equipped shack to keep warm in.  It helps further that George hires guides (good friends) to handle most of the cold finger work.

 

In comparison to other years today’s fishing was slow.  There were six of us which in turn means we had eighteen tip-ups on the ice.  Each tip-up is baited with a live minnow and when a fish takes the bait the flag of the tip-up pops.  We probably had around fifteen flags total but landed only a few pike and a couple perch.

 

I’m a catch and release man at heart but when ice fishing in Wisconsin these fish get eaten.  Despite our slower than normal fishing we managed more than enough cookie cutter pike to make a meal.  Our head guide Joe Peska made us his normal lunch to die for of fried fish straight out of the ice hole with heaps of French fries to go with.

 

It was a wonderful day on the ice that ends with another feast.  Every night George takes us to one of the fine restaurants in the Manitowish Waters area.  George orders enough appetizers of shrimp, scallops and lobster tails to feed a group of twelve.  All six of us however managed to crush it all then we followed up with prime ribs.  After dinner out came the deserts.  I devoured this incredible creampuff desert!

 

I’m exhausted and feel like I might pop!  Stay tuned for tomorrow. . . . .

 

Jeff Currier Global Fly Fishing

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