The Microbrew Pride of Wisconsin 

Moving to Wisconsin, there are a few certain truths I have had to reason with. First, most people around me are Green Bay Packers fans. Second, there are five seasons here. Winter, Spring, Summer, fall, and deer hunting. Thirdly, Oktoberfest is taken very seriously. Fourth, Miller light trumps Bud light.

Now, The other local source of pride is the new Glarus brewing Company. Nearly everyone in Wisconsin has enjoyed a spotted cow. The beer is only sold in Wisconsin. There are bars in Minnesota who have been fine for illegally smuggling kegs of the brew across the border. I know I enjoy a wide variety of beers and probably don’t have the most select a pallet, but I can say with certainty he that I enjoy every flavor of new Glarus beer.

So what’s the point of this post? Nothing really. I suppose if anything it is just to remind you that if you make it to Wisconsin, take advantage of the opportunity and find yourself some of the exclusive local breweries. They are pretty darn good.
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Yes I realize I may have lost most of my followers by switching from the Google form it to WordPress, but I’ve never posted for the followers. I enjoy the blog and community and it has been fun to get to know all of you. But in the end, this blog is an outlet and Google was making that outlet in accessible for me. I’ve already posted three times since making the switch in the last week. Maybe it’s the novelty of the switch, or maybe they improved accessibility really is the difference. Either way, it’s good to be posting again.

Getting the Kids Out

Here is the first post on the WordPress site that is not on the blogger page. Crazy!!

For the past week, we’ve been having some pretty amazing weather. 50s every day. For February, that is pretty ridiculous. Part of me is pretty pleased. Another part of me is a little disappointed in the Northern Winter. 

That said, one of the benefits of warm weather is that my son is willing to go outside. Last weekend we went to a local creek with easy access and met another buddy who had an infant he could drag along. 

We spent most of the morning throwing sticks and snow in the water. David did take his shot at casting the Tenkara rod. Eventually he decided to ride in my back carrier and we worked a few holes together. 

Courtney and Maya were the only ones to hook up. But I think my son really just enjoy getting outside and playing by the water. There will be plenty of time to catch more fish. 


It is supposed to get cold again this weekend so we likely won’t go out. But by the time summer comes I see plenty of mornings been fishing with David.

New water, new friends, new camera

With a sudden opening in my schedule, my habit of storing my fishing gear in the car paid off. Instaagram again gets a nod for connecting fly fishers. I connected with @hotdishflyfish recently and shot him a message. His work schedule usually results in free days/mornings, so we met for a couple hours on his local stream.
The water was new to me. It had plenty approachable holes and runs, but the clarity was a little too clear. Even with the overcast skies, the fish were jumpy. I managed a few flashes and finally landed a standard driftless brown.

Hot Dish spend the morning casting his Blue Halo with a nymphing rig. He had a few takes that were not sticks but nothing to hand. That was fine by him. Dry hands are warms hands in the winter.

We have a warm spell coming through. That should bring the trout out to feed especially as the snow melt leads to turbid waters.

On another note, I finally gave in and bought a camera other than my phone. We will see how it goes. I’ve always enjoyed taking pictures, so I think the Sony a6000 will do well for me. If not, you may see it re-listed on ebay 🙂

Winter Season Begins Jan 1st/8th

I found time to get out twice in the early winter season. The first day was a shot at some new water. There is so much water between Minnesota and Wisconsin. I’ve found some great streams, but it is really fun to try new things from time to time. In fact, in general, I prefer to fish a new stream than fish the same stream twice (unless it is a new section).

So, for my first day out in 2017, I found a new section on a this phenomenal trout map. I don’t know who made it for Minnesota, but it is awesome. I love it. I’m hoping someone will make it for Wisconsin.

The section I fished had easement access but it was really hard to find so I stopped at someone’s house to ask for directions. They were very helpful and said I could fish anywhere I liked. Score!

The stream has only a mile of publicly fishable land that had work done on it back in the 80s. A beaver did some work on it this last summer, but that is another story I’m sure.

Anyway, after finding the easement, I hiked my way down to the stream and found myself facing a phenomenal run and pool.
There was a nice undercut near the run so I threw a streamer through the run and caught a healthy driftless brown on my first cast. It is one of those sparsely spotted browns with good olive and gold color. It amazes me how variable these fish can look.
 
I got a new Patagonia hip pack.  I love it. I’m a hip pack person for sure.
I fished down stream until I came to a long, slow, deep section. I started hoping over a few muskrat or beaver dens and quickly saw when the section is so deep.
A broad, sturdy dam was doing its job. I wonder how that affects the fish population in that part of the stream. Darker water. Deeper water. Bigger fish?
 
On my way back out, I hit a few spots I a spooked earlier and manages a gorgeous native brookie. There is something special about the native brookie. Sure they don’t get as big as the big browns, but, man, I really love them.
 

It was a great way to finish a first day out on the water in 2017. My next outing would prove to be a bit tougher as far as fishing is concerned.

We recently had a bit of a cold snap in Wisconsin, as such finding open water was more of a task. I hoped a favorite stretch would be open, but it was much harder than I thought. I should have searched for a sunnier stretch of water. So all in all, no fish came to hand.

I threw streamers because I’m not that confident in my nymphing technique or skill.
 
You can see how sparse the pockets of water were at times. It made for a gorgeous day. At times, I was able to simply walk across slow runs because the ice was nice and thick.
 
A couple amazing finds were this frozen hawk. I think it is a Nrothern Goshawk, but if any of you know can identify it as another type, let me know! I looked closely, but left the bird to the wild.
It was surprisingly light weight for its size. I suppose that’s the deal when you are a bird.

I also found this big buck. I presume is a hunter’s lost harvest. a gorgeous rack, just squeaking out that 9th point.

By the time I got back to the car, I decided to leave the waders on for the drive home. My gators were frozen to my laces. My feet were warm though.

Once we have a slight warm up, the water will get a slight stain and the fish will get hungry. The bite will turn on again!

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.