March 21, 2014

Cabin Fever Discovery

I had cabin fever today and drove around and looked at some of my favorite streams and did some knocking on doors to find out the background of one of my favorite photos from a couple years back.

 My search was rewarded with a person of knowledge with tales passed down from his grandfather.

The family all but the father died in the 1918 Spanish flu epidemic.  The father moved back to the East coast after losing his family. The fireplace was built in 1911 along with the structure by a family of four and they had 2 more kids after they built the homestead.

The house was vacant for a couple years.  It was a "Speak Easy" from 1920 to 1924 because of prohibition.

The spring thaw of 1925 was a big one and knocked the structure down.  The chimney and smoke house still stand.  Another log cabin smaller structure was also flattened by the spring flooding in 1925. The land is owned these days by a family from Chicago that deer hunt it now.

60 Degrees Next Sunday

I was looking at the extended forecast for my home water next weekend and high of 60 and low of 43 made me smile.

Most of the south facing hillsides are snow free now but the north facing slopes are still pretty covered with snow.

Next sunday should solve that.

There will be about 3-5 days of high water after the warm up and then optimal trout fishing will happen.

The weeds will be down and easy walking.  The vegetation in the water will minimal also.

These are the times for sneaking up on large trout!!!

March 18, 2014

Rock's Rental House Rolling Ground Wisconsin

16440 Store Rd, Soliders Grove, WI 54655  "Rolling Ground"

Country Gardens Motel and Lounge


Country Gardens Motel and Lounge
100 West Sunbeam Boulevard
Soldiers Grove, WI  54655
Telephone:  (608) 624-3254
Proprietors:  Guy and Tammy Nelson

Best Pizza in Tri-county area!!!

Stump Dodger Campgrounds Gays Mills

Another Great Place To Stay In Southern Wisconsin's Driftless Area

Kickapoo Valley
Fire #45972
Rural Route 2, County Rd S
Gays Mills, WI 54631
(608) 574-7625
(608) 735-4929

Best Place To Stay In Southern Wisconsin Driftless Area

15415 Vance Rd
Soldiers Grove, Wisconsin 54655
(608) 624-3429


Standing at the bottom of this hole and banging some small brook trout like my friend was doing in this video and a massive 25 inch male brown takes your offering.

This is the exact hole that Scott and I walked up on two summers ago.  This is where we saw the monster from the patience blog post.

More Back Problems

The surgery site is doing ok but the degenerative disc 5 vertebrate above is screaming at me.

Had back specialist look at it on thursday.

Have been sleeping with huge lidocaine patch on site of pain.

Seems to help a little.

March 17, 2014


Two years ago Scott LaRochelle were fishing an upper stretch of one of my favorite streams.  We had fished a long ways and I was sucking wind and dragging my left knee.  My vehicle was 40 yards ahead so I kept going.  Scott was ahead of me and he stopped in his tracks 10 yards ahead of me and yelled at me to hold still.  Scott dropped to the prone position and started casting.

  He did this for a long time before he stopped and spoke to me.  He said: "There is a monster brown 15 yards ahead of me in that shallow pool in the middle.  Why don't you throw your spinner in there and try to get it."

My first cast spooked the trout and it ran around in the hole for a while and went tight to the bank.  Scott told me it had to 25 inches and it was a male.

I smiled when he told me about it being so big.  This was headwater and a large brown would be out of place this far up.  I went to the bank where it disappeared and stuck the end of my pole under the back and out it shot.  It was at least 25 inches.  I was flabbergasted.

The pit-bull that I am,....I fished that area 30 more times by the end of the year.  No big boy home.  I fished it 5 times the next spring with no results.

I told a couple of my friends about the monster.  Most rolled their eyes but one in particular old timer listed to every word I said.  He asked if it was ok if he went after it.  I thought the fish had left the building so I said go for it and I told him who to ask for permission.

Abe went after the trout last year in September.  I never heard back from him until yesterday.

Abe told me he went to the stretch I told him about and no one was home there but the next hole upstream was a different story.  He thanked me profusely for turning him on to biggest trout he had ever seen in his life.  He tossed a size 5 countdown in the next hole up and the monster bum rushed his rapala and rolled at it and never appeared again.

He estimated the trout at 27 inches and 6 pounds minimum and male with butter coloring.  I wish this dang knee and back would heal faster so I could chase it.

Photo is of Abe from a different outing we went on in a totally different stream.

Back and knee

I was seriously hoping this surgery on my back would relieve some of my back pain.  My back pain has gotten worse since my surgery.

My knee is still not ready to go for fishing.

I see a lawn chair at the dam in Gays Mills in my future if my back doesn't heal better.

Triple Trojan

Back in the early 90s I was employed by Dane County Sheriff’s Office.  I ran into many Fisheries Employees during my 14 years with Dane County.  I made friends with lots of the WDNR folks. I was invited to come and help with a couple shocking crews.  I am a trout nut so I eagerly went along.

The first time I went with the crew is when I heard the “Triple Trojan”.  I didn’t know what it meant and blew it off.  The WDNR guys were talking at the end of the outing to one and other and they questioned each other if there were going to be any “Triple Trojans” from the day.  I dismissed it as some lingo they shared between themselves.

The second time I went with them the shockers were a little more familiar with me and they came right out and said I was not a “Triple Trojan.”  I asked them what that meant but they wouldn’t say.  The workers were much more relaxed this time out and they took me to a special spot to shock some “salmon”.  

 This stretch held large browns the size of salmon they told me before we started.  The stretch did not disappoint.  We shocked maybe a dozen over 23 inches and one 28 inch male trout that was scary to touch.  It had such a huge kype it protruded through the upper jaw.  IT had teeth like a big pike. My buds from the WDNR snatched him right out of the water by his gill plate and weighed and didn't wet their hands and measured him and off we went.

A couple years went by and I was invited to the hatchery to see the staff milk the brooders.  There was a briefing before the milking by the staff.  They assured us that they were not hurting any of the trout by squeezing them to milk them and they said they were all very skilled in handling large trout.  The demonstration went off without a hitch.  As I was leaving I heard the same code word bantered about by the staff.  They wondered if there would be any “Triple Trojans” from this tour.

Both the shocking crews and the hatchery staff used this and it piqued my curiosity.  I wanted to know what it meant.  I was even in my Deputy Sheriff uniform when I asked the staff what it meant.  The guy sidestepped the question and changed the subject.

A couple years passed and I was assigned to the Bailiff’s Office.  One day in Initial Appearances Court I recognized the Court Officer for the WDNR.  He was the one shocking crew member I had heard the “Triple Trojans” term first be used by.  I asked him what it meant because he was out of that area and I thought might explain to me what that meant.  He told me his lips were sealed and he could not say anything about it.

The years passed and he was still the court officer.  We made friends and went out socially.  He and I went to Essen Haus together after work once and I interrogated him after 3 liters of German beer and he still would not give up the meaning.

Two years ago I met him at the Madison fishing Expo.  I asked him how he was doing.  He told me he was retired these days.  I told him I out of Dane County for almost 10 years.  We went to Essen Haus again after the expo.  I was going to get that meaning of “Triple Trojan” out of him.

He finally told me what it meant.  As a WDNR employee he and all staff was a representative of the state of Wisconsin when they did tours and shocking outings.  If anything went wrong on those tours there were typically citizen complaint forms filled out.  The state took those complaints seriously and investigated each thoroughly.  

 He told me that a Triple Trojan was a hyper sensitive angler that typically complained after the tours about shocking employees because the WDNR staff was too rough with the trout. They complained about the staff not wetting their hands before touching the trout.  They complained about the staff laying the trout on an artificial surface to weight them. The whiners even looked at their second hands on their watches to time how long the trout were out of the water. Anything past 15 seconds the timer seemed to be agitated.  He told me they complained about the milking almost every time and the same folks would complain about the staff touching gill plates of the trout and it was “unlimited.” 

 My friend told me these were the folks that when they had sex they didn’t wear just one condom.  They wrapped it with three Trojans.  The WDNR employees had made up the “Triple Trojan” code word up to be stealthy. 

Trout are not made of glass and I knew this and so did every WDNR employee.   I have heard this from numerous seasoned anglers and in my 52 years of trout angling I have discovered this also.

March 16, 2014

Luke Weber Scores!!

Luke came up from Chicago area Saturday and fished some Crawford County streams.  He went to a couple streams I recommend.  He was fishing alone.
He started the day with his personal best of 19 inches on a panther martin spinner.  Luke was alone and didn't want to miss some once in a lifetime opportunities so he took less than optimal photos.

He was not going to be asked where the photos were to prove his conquests.

Luke was happy with his 19 incher until 20 casts later he caught the pictured below.  He measured it and it was an eye lash over 26 inches.  He snapped a selfie.

Some may disagree with the way Luke handled this monster brown but trout are not made of glass and the extra large ones like this one have much stronger gill plates than tiny trout.

Luke went to another small stream in the area I recommended for brook trout and scored another 20 inch brown.  He said the brookie were few and far and in between.
All trout were released and swam away to fight another day.

a............... 19...... 26.... 20 incher.......all in one day alone on the snow covered banks of Crawford County in the heart of the driftless area.