February 11, 2017

Wisconsin Ideal Conditions For Early Trout

Wisconsin has such extreme weather in early season it is important to do a little weather research prior to going out.

Snow does not turn off trout.  On the other hand rain during winter conditions do.

 Thanks for photo Luke

Rain melts the snow and runoff causes the stream temperatures to plummet and you almost have to beat the trout on the head to get them to hit.

If I am going after trout I look at the day's weather prior.  First thing I look at is how warm the day before was.  I look how long the warmer weather was the day before.  A 10 degree above freezing day prior to your outing is good.  A 20 degree above freezing the day before is a stay home day.  The runoff will be bad.

Next I look at what the overnight temps were.  I target an overnight that the temps went down below freezing but not extremely.  This slows the melt.  The warmth the streams increased from the day prior is still in the waterway somewhat.

I don't hit the stream day of early.  I try to start around noon.  If I am really picky...I look for an overcast day.  Sunny is not a deal breaker on a winter's day.  Target the non-sunny side of the stream with your cast.

Back when I bow hunted I watched a really informative event.  I set up on a stream crossing with my tree stand.  As the sun changed and sun shined on the opposite side of the stream it happened.  It almost looked like the trout had the sun changing sides choreographed.  The trout in a unison motion went from one side of the stream to the other to get out of the sun.

Thanks for photo Dan

February 10, 2017

Things Trout Like To Eat

There are 2 here the trout really like eating. What do you think?

February 09, 2017

Vivid Memory

I came upon this hole the first time I ever fished this stretch. It was late September.  I had a tradition back in the day to end my season each year with a new stream way up in the head waters in the boonies in search of brookies.  I took the photo after I had fished the hole.  The photo is taken downstream.

I had fished the hole from below first and caught a leaf about every cast.  I dismissed the hole and looped around it because the top of the hole looked good.

I obviously was less than stealthy and spooked a couple fish out of the upper part of the rock wall.  I saw where they went to and decided to hold in place for a while and let them calm down.

While i was motionless waiting i stared at the 2 forms in the shallow leafy mess.  I was certain I could see their fins and they were red with white accent.  These two fish were a couple of big brookies.

After standing still for 15 minutes I cast at the two forms.  I let the spinner drop to the bottom to avoid the leaves and then retrieved. They both began to follow my panther.  The smaller of the two attacked it and I was hooked up.  This fish had shoulders and wasn't giving up without a fight.

Then something weird happened.  The other fish that had followed began shadowing the trout on my line.  It wasn't attacking the fish...it was matching its battle and keeping the trout company.

I landed the fish on my line.  It was a crazy fat male brookie.  The other fish held in the leafy shallows not more than a rod length out.

I snapped a couple photos and sent him on his way.  I guess him at 15-16 male brookie and the fattest brookie I had ever caught.

When I released the portly brookie it went back and swam up to its mate, a massive female brookie and they swam back into the leaf covered mess.  It was the last day of the season and I had to think and dream of that huge brookie all closed season.

I went back at least 20 times during all different seasons trying to catch the huge female brookie with no luck.  Photo above was taken in June when the leaves were reasonable and from the bottom of the hole upstream.

Below is a comparison shot of another brookie and blimpo I caught in this leave hole.

Now visualize a brook trout that makes Mr. Blimp look small.....Picture is clear now and vivid.

Tax Return/Tackle Box Renewal

I am already book marking lures I want to buy to get my pike/walleye box back to full strength.

Friday Dilemma

Will be low 40s by afternoon.

Option one:

Option two:

 Season closes the end of February for 2 months and no one has fished here for the minimum of 2 months.

February 06, 2017

Same Stream Two Outings

My brown from my trip today is on the left and my prior outing is on the right.

Very similar patterns.

Trip Report Three Hours On Water

The temps hit 38 by noon here.  I was on the water by 1pm.

Stream temp 38 at 2pm

Caught this micro on the first cast.

All trout were in slow water.

19 to hand.  Many short hits.

February 05, 2017

Wildcat Mountain State Park And Kickapoo Valley Reserve

My wife Barb was out hiking today.



~ Brené Brown

''I think midlife is when the universe gently places her hands upon your shoulders, pulls you close, and whispers in your ear:

I’m not screwing around. It’s time. All of this pretending and performing – these coping mechanisms that you’ve developed to protect yourself from feeling inadequate and getting hurt – has to go.

Your armor is preventing you from growing into your gifts. I understand that you needed these protections when you were small. I understand that you believed your armor could help you secure all of the things you needed to feel worthy of love and belonging, but you’re still searching and you’re more lost than ever.

Time is growing short. There are unexplored adventures ahead of you. You can’t live the rest of your life worried about what other people think. You were born worthy of love and belonging.

Courage and daring are coursing through you. You were made to live and love with your whole heart. It’s time to show up and be seen.''

~ Brené Brown

The Nose Knows

Every person that loves the outdoors has experienced them.

The smells of the seasons.

The smell of that pile of leaves you played in as a child hearkens to the simple days.

That same smell as a hunter reminds you of your first adventure as a bow hunter.

 The smell of the earth melting in the spring is special.  It is indescribable. I believe it is special because the winter was so long and you want the greens to reappear.

I am not sure which smells better.  The smell of freshly plowed fields or the plum trees blooming?

Lilacs in June

The smell of a cleansing Spring rain.

A stroll through an apple orchard on a foggy morning in early may.

The smells of a wetland are just too many to describe.

I will leave you without a photo of this.  I want you to close your eyes and imagine the smell.

The first campfire of the year.