Wednesday, March 15, 2017

#keepemwet is #keepemstupid

The whole #keepemwet thing is a joke. Anyone who has that much "respect" for the fish, that they can't take it out of the water to remove the hook or snap a photo - shouldn't be SPENDING THEIR OFF DAYS JAMMING RAZOR SHARP HOOKS INTO FISH'S MOUTHS AND YANKING THEM FROM THEIR WORLD, MAKING THEM FIGHT FOR THEIR LIVES ( so far as the fish knows.) If you are that worried about the state of each and every fish, you are too much of a snowflake to be fishing. 

Burn your rods, run your reels over with your car, give your lures and hooks and $500 coolers to charity and TAKE UP GOLF. You can call me a redneck or uneducated ( you'd be wrong, but feel free...) or whatever you want, but this ridiculous and scientifically UNFOUNDED notion that a fish shouldn't be held out of the water for a few seconds and be released is about as stupid a thing as the fly fishing world has come up with yet - and I've lived through the demonization of felt soles and the rumblings of "hookless fishing!" So enough. ENOUGH. STOP IT. 

You aren't hurting the fish any worse by holding it up for a photo, than you are catching it in the first place. You're making yourself feel better about molesting fish by pretending that if you just keep it underwater, it's like it never happened. WELL, tell that to the fish! You snowflake liberal commie yellow bellied eco-nuts are just about to get on my last nerve.

Monday, March 6, 2017

Down and Out

The birds are chirping, the air is warming, the flowers and blooming - and it won't be long before the bass - well, the bass are already biting to be honest about it. Alas, I am sitting here in front of this laptop today instead of fishing, because two weeks ago I picked up a dog and twisted something around pretty badly in my lower back.

They called it a lumbar sprain, but I call it "Learn to curse out loud in one easy step, Vol. 1."

So as my back rests and I try not to think about what I'm missing, let's talk about that time in Elementary School when I climbed the rope the fastest and didn't win the 1st Place Ribbon because they said I didn't touch the correct bit of metal at the top of the rope. Didn't even use my legs. I was a decently strong little kid and I'd figured out that I was faster just pulling myself up the rope hand over hand than trying to get my feet to stick to it, inch worm style - and it worked, too! Up the rope I flew, not a chubby bone in my body at the ripe old age of eight and a half - but when I'd reached the top, I'd apparently touched one thing and not another and upon hitting the ground in the most triumphant "thrill of victory" pose, I was promptly informed that what I would now experience was the "agony of defeat."


Yeah anyway, now that I really want to go fishing, I can't. So you just read all that nonsense.
Maybe in a week or so I'll be healed up enough to hit it again and can FINALLY get some real fishing related content on this blog.

If you're reading this, and you have any fishing or fly tying related stuff you'd like to contribute, it pays absolutely nothing, but I'd be glad to post it up here for ya while I recuperate.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Fishing Log: Trip 1, 2017

Yahoola Creek Reservoir, Dahlonega GA
Feb.. 14th, 2017

Slight north wind, sunny, 68 degrees

Water Conditions: mostly clear, slight tea colored stain in places

Techniques: 6 inch Red Shad plastic ribbon tail worm fished on a 1/8 ounce red bullet weight and 4/0 worm hook. One bite, missed. Probably a bluegill nipping at the tail.
Small Strike King spinnerbait, slow rolled over bottom, then pulled around mid-level ( 2-5 ft. deep).
Bread under a cork for bream. No takers.

Fish caught: None

Several people fishing for crappie and bass around the banks, but I didn't see anyone make a catch. The weather was nice for human beings and ducks, but the fish are still in a slight slumber from last week's cold. I am out of shape and tired after just three hours standing and walking the banks. Kayak fishing has maybe softened me. That and an extra 25 lbs. put on last year.

Friday, February 10, 2017

What's that smell?

Oh, it's me.

No, it's not. It's winter. Cold, dark, windy, damp winter. Today is Feb. 10th if my laptop is correct, and despite a few weeks of mild weather, it seems that this week is going to be mostly "winterish."

I'm supposed to go into town today to pick up some new glasses, but I'd much rather stay here in the warm house and tie some flies. I saw a video yesterday on a very simple hopper pattern that I'm really wanting to try - and I need quite a few warmwater flies to replace the ones I lost last spring. Mostly to tree limbs, stumps and rust.

Sitting mighty high in that Nucanoe Frontier 12. 

All that said, I feel like I am ahead of the game this year. After all, it is only February and I've already cleaned up the fly tying desk, fixed a few minor things on some fishing rods, gathered together my panfish gear and things like that. The kayak is still piled a foot high with things in "storage," but other than that, there's not much left to do in preparation for the best fishing of time of the year.

The older I get, the more I look forward to spring each year, even if I'm not going at it at the same fever pitch as in my youth. I always rushed spring and spent many days cold and wind-burned and fishless back then - but the trade off for being a little older and a tiny bit wiser is that sometimes I'm too laid back and I delay getting started too long - and miss some good early season fishing, not to mention the best time of year for the chance at a really monstrous bass or three.

But this year I feel like it's all going to work out.  I'm thinking positive and trying my best not to have that feeling in the back of my head that feeling this way is just the jinx that will cause some minor disaster that will rock the boat before it all comes together.

While I'm thinking positive, I'm going to sit down at the vice and think about making a dozen or so of those hoppers. I'm not so sure about how he pulls the last leg though the foam without gluing it down, but I'll find a solution to that, I'm sure - with enough messing around with it. Here's the video:

Happy Friday.

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Stop. Popper Time. (duuuuuh, duh, duh, dah.)

Today I'm playing Mr. Mom and cooking dinner for the wife. Yes, at 11:38 a.m. ( The time blogger shows on the posts is way off ) It's a slow cooker recipe. Something called Minestrone alla Milanese. I found it in a crock pot cook book and it looked like a weird, meatless chicken noodle soup. It's also noodle-less. Anyway, since I'll eat almost anything and the wife likes soups and such in winter, I thought I'd give it a whirl.

I'm actually pretty good with our Big Green Egg ( one of our most prized material possessions, in truth), and not bad in the kitchen, although I tend to use every  pot, pan and dish in the house. My (much)better half says she doesn't mind though - and she cleans the dishes, so it kinda works out I guess. I don't mind the cooking part and actually kind of enjoy it if I don't have to do it every night.

Anyway, between getting things ready for a 5 hour Tour of Duty in the old Crock Pot, I've started cleaning and sorting out my bucktail selection. It's only 57 here today, but the Jonquils are blooming and some of the Forsythia are starting to bud, so I know spring is not that far away. Before you know it the dogwoods will be blooming and the carpenter bees will be "bowing up" at each other, and anything else that goes through their territory. I know they won't sting me, but I hate it when they pick a fight with the wacky worm that is usually dangling off the end of my line in spring. Walking a pond and bank fishing, they are every 20 feet and always very upset that my long, skinny "bee" has invaded their space. Could you fish for a ...


So I've got all the deer tails I need it seems, with the exception of the color white. Somehow, even though most of my poppers use wild colors and not white, I've really cut into the white one until it looks like it was in a 2 a.m. bar fight with some elk hair and a couple of hair stacker bikers.

I've got a whole bag of poppers already "painted" that just need to be epoxied and attached to hooks. Then it's just a matter of putting on the extra floatation (trade secret - shhh, it's 2mm foam), the rubber legs, deer hair tail and Krystal Flash. Just in case someone who hasn't seen them stops by the blog, here's an old photo of some from a few years ago. My friends are probably tired of seeing this pic, but it's the only decent one I have from back then - and I really haven't tied any in about two years.

Hey, I think it's time to get the veggies into the slow cooker. I better get my mind of fishing for at least a few minutes - but it's hard to do with the sunshine beaming in the kitchen window and the Jonquils shouting at me that spring is almost here. :)



OH and btw - I have a new Instagram account. I can't remember why I created it, but you can follow along now on Instagram here:

It lists me as "RK Brooks." It's a long story about adoption, mystery and oxycodone. Just, ... just go with it. :)

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

A sleepless winter night's dream...

I admire and maybe even envy people who get 8 hours of sleep each night. I get roughly 3 to 5 hours for several nights in a row, and then end up playing "catch up" and sleeping for 10 hours or more for one night - before going back to my normal 3-5 hours per night schedule. Efforts to change my sleep habits have, so far, proven futile.

And so it is tonight, having amassed a grand total of three hours of sleep (and three more piddling around, trying not to wake the wife) that I sit here in front of this laptop, thinking about the past - and the future, and fishing and camping and Cheetos and the meaning of life. Just to be clear, the poofy Cheetos are the best.

For quite a few years I've often thought about keeping a fishing journal. This year I'm thinking about it again with a renewed interest in both record keeping and blogging about my experiences; boring and mundane though they may be at times. What hasn't been written already about fishing in general, and fly fishing as well?

I started reading a Nick Lyons book tonight - one I've read a dozen times from cover to over over the last ten or twelve winters. I stopped on page four.

"I've read that." I exclaimed quietly to no one in particular.

 "Done that. Know that story. Lived it with ole Nick a dozen times over."

After half a decade of depression and aimless wandering (and a questionably successful short term career as a fine art painter) I think I'm ready for more of my story, now.

And my story invariably involves fly line and cricket cages, fat Shellcracker, monster bass that got away and selective trout that turn up their noses at even the most precisely tied and well presented dry fly.

My story isn't particularly interesting. I'll consider it high praise that a few of my online fishing friends stop by once a month to see if I've finally gone completely mad and posted photos of me fishing naked with a three-treble-hooked Rapala. Any pipe dreams about "fly fishing world domination" were just that. Tongue in cheek or not.

Still, it's my story and I think this year I get back to living it and sharing it. Why? You've got me there. I have no idea why I feel the urge to write about catching a dozen 7 inch bluegills any more than I have an idea about why anyone would want to read about the same.

 And yet, here we are. :)

tick tock. No one lives forever.

- Owl