Mediocre Fishing Amongst Great Company

August 12, 2011



Yesterday I fished with friends Gary and Cooper Eckman. Many of you will remember both of them from last summer’s blogs. Gary was a longtime customer of mine at the fly shop and is now a great friend. Gary is the founder and sponsor of the Good Times Team that competes in the Jackson Hole One Fly and I have the good fortune of being on it. Cooper is Gary’s 15 year old son. You won’t find many 15 year olds that like to fly fish as much as Cooper or that can do it as well. He spends every free minute on the water – and at 15 that’s a lot!

We went to the South Fork. This was my first time to the South Fork since I was helping with a Fly Fishing School at South Fork Lodge way back in May. Last year by now me and the Eckman’s had at least 5 good days under out belts on the South Fork, but this years impressive snowpack and high water has kept us away.

Let’s just say that although I’ve heard of a few good fishing days on the South Fork of late, today was not one of them. We floated from Conant to Cottonwood through the Canyon (15 miles of river) and caught about ten fish between the three of us. Most of these fish were ok and I probably shouldn’t complain, but seriously, when the South Fork is on, expect 20 nice fish per angler!

Conditions of the river are strange. Levels are just about perfect however the South Fork continues to run slightly off color. Even odder, at least on our stretch yesterday, there were no hatches. None! These are very bizarre conditions for this river.

We threw streamers all day. Even on a bad day on the South Fork I usually drum up a dozen quality fish, but today I saw few and landed maybe five. However, I noticed that there were some guided trips passing and I saw them catching way more fish than us. Rather than streamer fishing, they were nymphing with gigantic indicators, something you are doubtfully going to see me do. It’s not a terrible technique, in fact it’s deadly, but I just don’t enjoy the method. So from that observation, if you are headed that way and don’t mind nymphing, expect to catch some nice fish.

All in all it was a nice day of fishing. I’ve missed spending time with Gary and Cooper so it was great to catch up. And the scenery and weather were beyond spectacular. One thing that often happens on the South Fork is that when the fishing is great I often forget to look up away from my fly and take in what incredible scenery there is.

I have a busy week ahead so expect some good blogs. I’ll be taking Granny out for a float on Tuesday. Then to the Henry’s Fork on Wednesday with one of my best friends from CA. Then off to Louisiana on Thursday for the Fly Tackle Dealer Show. Never slow down!

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