Friday, May 13, 2011

Friday Fishing Report: Getting Guided on the Madison

So for the summer I am switching things up and rather than the Backyard Flow we have tried to do most fridays, we will throw up a Friday fishing report. Most of the content will be about SW Montana, but if c-squad does something in Central Washington he'll be sure to post it. Most of them will be nowhere near as long as todays, but there was a ton of funny things that happened yesterday, so I have to share.

Yesterday while drinking my morning coffee and debating on tying more worms or mowing the lawn, B.Seng, fellow guide at The Stonefly Inn, called me and reminded me that because of my knee surgery he was guiding a single angler, and that if I wanted to go fishing he'd swing by on his way out of town and let my gimp ass sit in the back of the boat. After a couple minutes of lawn mowing thoughts I did my usual mind trick and erased all notions of responsibility and got my gear together. After picking up his truck from the shop for a brake job, Brett and his guest Ryan picked me up and we did something I rarely do, drove past the flashing light in the middle of Twin Bridges and went to the Madison.

We dropped down through Ennis, and as we pulled into Varney Bridge, Brett's truck starting making a weird rattle from the front left brake. After stopping and checking it out, Brett declared it good to go, and he backed in to launch his boat. At this point we all realized something was really wrong with the brake as it made a loud groan and stopped working, smack in the middle of the varney boat launch. In order to launch the boat we pulled the trailer off of the truck, slid it down the ramp, launched, then hauled it up by hand. Brett made a call to the mechanic who did the brake job the day before, and he agreed to drive over and fix his truck at the boat launch, which was very nice for saving our fishing day, but forced us to change our shuttle time, a change that the shuttle driver could apparently not comprehend.

After finally getting into the water, Ryan hooked up in the first decent piece of water, and we all thought it was going to be game on. This of course would not be the case, and it was several hours before we finally put a couple of trout in the boat. About 2:30 a nice string of clouds rolled over and fishing got somewhat consistent, but still left us scratching our heads. There was not a full blown mothers day hatch, but there was certainly enough caddis around that our pupa's should have produced better than they did. Although we didn't break any records, the fish that hooked were really good ones, including a cranker that handed Ryan his ass just below the 8 mile take out. This was defintely one of those fish that you want to at least see if you can't land it.

As mentioned above, changing shuttle plans because of the brake situation was a little much for yesterday, so when we arrived at valley garden Brett's truck had not be moved. Fortunatley a couple of guides on a day off were able to give Brett a ride up to Varney while Ryan and I kicked back and drank a beer at the take out. Every guide season we all have days like yesterday, and lucky for Brett he got his out fo the way early this year. It was definitely a great time, and really nice to sit in the back of the boat and tell Brett where to row, what flies to tie on, and complain when we were not catching very many. I am sure that he appreciated my constructive criticism.


  1. Yeah, we've been lucky it's been super nice all week. I actually wore shorts all day thursday.

  2. It's good, every now and then, to be a worthless participant, sitting in the back of the boat, doing nothing to contribute, isn't it? Did Brett tie on your flies for you?

  3. Brett tied my flies on at one period in the day because he couldn't catch us any fish, and wanted two rods with what he thought would actually work. I then caught a fish, so he tried to take credit for it, which was highly debateable.

  4. Ryan you're a dog. Nice fish buddy.


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