Early Adventures in Fly Fishing for Musky

It is pretty awesome when you move outside your fishing bubble and meet new people. You never know what you might learn. For instance, I learned I have a wadable stream not to far from where I live that supports a healthy musky population. I also learned how to tie articulated flies (which, by the way, big brown trout also seem to like). 
The musky season in Wisconsin runs May through December. I didn’t start my search until the last days of November. The last couple outings were in snowy cold weather. 
I essentially spent time looking for dark water. Deep pools where big musky might be waiting to ambush unsuspecting prey. 

Lots of bushwhacking and exploration over several short trips yielded no follows or fish seen. 

Dead Dear Run is one of my favorite spots on this new found stream. Named as such for obvious reasons. 

Lots of frozen guides and cold fingers until finally… finally…

I caught my first musky on the fly. He took it right at my feet. It was so fun to watch. No too big. Maybe a little over 25′ (though, naturally, he gets bigger every time I tell the story).

Big hunks of meat for these big toothy fish. 

Here is @normalicious showing off his o’pros dragonfly rod holder. they are handy in certain situations. I like when standing in a stream and tying on a new fly. Sometimes line get’s caught up in it, but in general, it is a nifty too to add to the arsenal. easy stocking stuffer too. 

Red Tuna and OBN Writing Challenge

As long as we are being hypothetical, let’s go back. Maybe a couple hundred years. Yeah, far enough that the only people we’d come across would be Objibwe or Menominee peoples.

Of course we’d bring a drift boat. That way we’ll be able to cover more of the tanned rivers of Northern Wisconsin.

I’ll steer from the beginning. Robert, Bob as her prefers to be called, will be at the bow. We will drift down the river casting at the shoreline. Stripping magenta and chartreuse streamers across the surface of the water.

Because we are so far back in time, all we’ll hear is the song of the North Woods. And maybe Bob humming a tune.

“How about Standing in the Doorway? Sing that one Bob.” I’d say.

The rhythm of our casts are in sync with his rusted, whisky-soaked voice.  All day long…

Then, with the fading day, something changes. Drop the acoustic tunes. “People call and say beware doll…Do you want to make a deal?”

SLAM!


The powerful olive-backed body of a muskie DESTROYS my fly.  The beast fights and pulls our boat off course. I don’t even need to bring her into the boat. Subdued and exhausted, I revive her. Back and forth, back and forth… Then with a massive sweep she splashes me in the face as if to say, “Thanks, *sshole.”

Then Bob Zimmerman (Dylan, to the people back in our time) asks with a smirk, “So, how does it feel? Tell me, how does it feel?”

What do I say?  Nothing. I’m a complete unknown.

If you need a better visual of my entry for the Red Tuna OBN Writing Challenge, watch this video from Third Year Fly Fisher, Robert Thompson. It was my inspiration. Go HERE if the embed below isn’t working.

*** Update: These are the guys! http://www.muskycountryoutfitters.com