It was right back to another crazy busy week with more than 2 dozen trips this week and our Skagit Casting Course on Saturday with Tim Arsenault.
The Bow saw very mixed results this week. Many boats were having tough days in the heat and low water, while the odd boat was still seeing epic days of fishing. Our guests from South Africa had banner days of fishing with caddis pupae on the same days many other boats were having to work hard to put under half a dozen fish in the boat. The one thing that is extremely consistent across the board is just how fat, healthy and exceptionally strong these fish are. There is no question that the mild winter we had and early spring has made for some of the strongest and healthiest fish we’ve seen for generations. This is one of the first week’s we’ve had where we had to go to nymphing to put fish in the boat. Josh hadn’t done almost any nymphing this month but after a slow and tough morning where the foam stone eats had shut down by 8:30 (and the guests ahd wanted a later start so they only started at 7:30) they tried streamer fishing. The first cast got a giant boil and take from a tank of a rainbow that probably would’ve been 22-23″ and FAT, but after another hour with only 1 more take on the streamers they had to try nymphing. Nymphing wasn’t producing much better until the 11th hr. OK it was actually the 10th hr but you get the point. After only boating 3 fish in the first 10hrs of the day Josh’s guests, who had been here all week, then hooked 15 fish in the last hour and a half including a monster fish that was so big it absolutely schooled them.
Another morning float resulted in yet another “Walter” sighting and this time he ate 4 times!!!! Yes that’s correct 4 times. After one of our regular, and very enjoyable guest to fish with, missed “Walter” there is a rumor that Josh (may or may not have) screamed “you’re ruining my life” which was followed by laughter and tears. During this mourning period “Walter” thought it would be funny to come back and eat the big foam stone again that had been slapped back on the water in what had been assumed to be an act of futility, now that neither Josh or his guest were paying as much attention. This may also have resulted in Josh throwing his hat at said guest (which Josh says can neither be confirmed or denied), who was now visibly rattled, and yet seemingly enjoying the misery Josh was clearly going through. Josh rowed up again and on 2 other passes, on 2 different flies “Walter” ate 2 more times before getting just stung by a hook and then it was all over but the crying. Anyone who says there’s no crying in fly fishing clearly hasn’t seen Walter eat 10 different times on 4 different days now in the last2 1/2 weeks…
A few trips to the mountains for bull trout adventures resulted in large numbers of juvenile fish but not as many of the big dominant trophy bulls we were after. Naoto had several of his guests get into nice bulls in the 25-28″ range but the true trophies are still in there and waiting to be found. We spent a lot of time this week on the mountain streams closer to Calgary, rather than the Oldman drainage we spent a great deal of time in the last few weeks. A few of the guides were still down on the Oldman and Livingstone, which stilled fished well, but with many guests here for 3 days to a week its always nice to be able to show people new water.