Winter Cutthroat

January in the Hole

Onwards and upwards as we delve into 2020! Hope folks had a good holiday season. Mine was filled with visiting family and friends. I managed to sneak in a little fishing just before New Years, joining my friend Kurt at his place on the New Jersey Bay. The weather was fairly warm for late December, low 50s and we spent a day cruising the bay in hopes of finding some Stripers. Unfortunately we weren’t able to find any despite seeing a few bait fish emerge from the surface. The next day we walked the beach for an hour or two in hopes of finding some fish. We cast in some promising looking troughs and breaks but never found anything. In the end it was still fun getting out on some new water while working on double hauling sinking line. I get the sense that if fish are there and feeding, it’s hard not to hook up. BUT, if they aren’t around, there’s not much you can do.

Since getting back home to Jackson, I’ve been engaged in my usual winter activities- substitute teaching, painting, fly tying and some guitar playing. I’ve had a few eager anglers who didn’t mind the cold and wanted to fish. While Jackson in the winter is more of skiing destination, it’s possible to hook a few fish on the Snake if you know where to go. We bundled up, donned snowshoes and hiked into some productive water. Each trip was fun, allowing me to introduce folks to winter fishing. We focused on nymphing slow runs and were reward with a few fish. As we get through January (the coldest, least fish-friendly month) I expect the fishing to pickup. It’ll be fun to continue to get out now and then. Here at Teton Fly Fishing, I’m already looking forward to the upcoming fishing season. A lot of return clients are already booking trips, as well as some new folks! It’s nice to see the calendar filling up already.

me and my ski buddy Lulu enjoying the white stuff 

Skiing

Great day on the water with Taylor and Scot

Snake river winter fly fishing

First cutthroat trout of 2020!

First trout of 2020

Teton Fly Fishing Christmas card

Merry Christmas

Hope everyone is having a very merry Christmas

Merry Christmas 2019

Mark’s Trout

staying busy with fall fishing

Finally getting some time to catch up on the Blog. My weeks have been busy fishing anglers on our local rivers. The dry fly fishing has been really good as you’d expect this time of year. With October nearing, I’m looking forward to more good fishing, both with dry flies for our native cutthroat trout and also with streamers for large brown trout.

Great day on the water with Dennis and Tutu. Tutu fished dries with some southern flair and shows off one of his cutthroat trout from the Snake River.

Tutu with a nice snake river cutthroat

Always fun fishing folks out of the Teton Fly Fishing cabin. Allows us to fish remote waters for gems like this… Brook trout in the fall are about as pretty a fish as you can catch.

fall colors

Jamie and I got to fish together on a day off. We hit the spring creeks in the park and Jamie fooled this guy with a caddis fly.

jamie getting it done

Mark shows off a nice Yellowstone cutthroat trout. Always fun fishing him and his friends every September. Despite having to cover some ground, fish were eager to take our dry flies.

mark in ynp

Nice Bow

Green River

It’s been nice this week to float folks on the upper Green River. The weather’s been about perfect (aside from some wind) and hopefully the dry fly fishing will pick up. Here’s Melissa showing off the largest trout she’s ever caught on a fly. Super fun fishing her and her husband Jamie again on this fun river!

melissa with rainbow

Firehole Brown Trout

Firehole

Been doing some trips up to Yellowstone lately with folks. The Firehole is fishing pretty well and it’s hard to beat spending a day amongst the geysers and buffalo. Sporadic hatches of BWOs and PMDs have allowed clients to catch some fiesty browns and rainbows on various stretches of the fabled water. When the fish aren’t rising, we’ve swung wet flies and nymphs with success.

trapper on firehole

Trapper shows off a nice Firehole River brown trout. Not bad for his first time fly fishing.

The Firehole isn’t known for big fish. Most anglers can expect to catch spunky browns and rainbows in the 6-12″ range, but it’s possible to catch some larger fish. The Salmonflies should start appearing in the canyon stretch in the next week or so. In addition to Yellowstone, we’ve also been fishing some area lakes. I always find lakes to be hit or miss. When they’re on, they can be some of the most fun fishing around. When they’re not, like yesterday, it makes for a tough day…. Regardless it’s always fun to introduce anglers to some of our fine stillwater options.

On days i haven’t been on the water, I’ve been tying flies and getting the Dubois cabin ready for guests. When I was working over there last week, Lulu and I discovered a fresh bear cache just above our property. Looked like a Grizzly had picked off an elk calf and devoured most of it. I got a few lousy picks on the game cam and am hoping next time i check it I’ll have something worth posting.

New Fork Brown

Fishing picking up round here

Memorial Day weekend marks the opening of fishing in Yellowstone National Park. I was up on the Firehole guiding Doug, Joyce, Marcie and Zippy; great folks who hail from Philadelphia. Despite never having fly fished before, they had a great time catching wild browns and rainbows! The weather was typical for springtime in Yellowstone, cool and cloudy. This was great for fly fishing; BWOs hatched, bringing trout to the surface to feed.

on the water in Wyoming

Fly Fishing somewhere in Wyoming where brown trout eat streamers…

Fishing up there should only get better in the weeks to come and I look forward to more days up there. Also have some fun floating folks on the Green River lately. The weather has slowed our runoff making the Green a great choice for early season float fishing. Nymphing and Streamers got the fishes’ attention and rewarded clients with some nice browns and rainbows. Fishing around the valley will continue to be fun even with water levels rising. There’s plenty of good options around here if you know where to go and are flexible with where you want to fish. As I mentioned, best fishing will be in YNP and area lakes.

seth with rainbow

Seth getting it done subsurface

Zippy in Jellystone

Zippy shows off a rainbow on the Firehole. Looks like he’s getting the hang of it

matt

Good day fishing some new water with my Friend Matt. He found some Browns that liked his streamers.

Bahamas Blue Hole

Two weeks on Andros

Just returned from spending two weeks on Andros Island in the Bahamas. Andros is the largest island in the Bahamas, yet one of the least populated. Much of it is wild, unsettled country (mangroves, swamps, forests, etc.) with a few tiny “towns” thrown in for good measure. It’s known as the bonefish capitol of the world and expectations were high as we stepped off the small charter plane at Andros Town Airport.

friends on charter

A group selfie as Kieno flew us from Nassau to Andros.

I’ve fished the Bahamas many times over the years and love it! Fish are good size, flats are white sand and the people are super friendly. It was good to be back on Andros after a great trip to the northern tip of the island last year. Joining Jamie and I were our great friends, Kurt, Kelly and Connie. We rented a nice house a few miles south of Fresh Creek and had a blast. Kurt and I were particularly excited about the fishing potentials since the house was situated on a bay with flats as far as the eye could see. Unfortunately the fishing was a bit of a bust. Each day we walked the flats and saw very few if any bonefish. Waters that looked like they should teaming with fish were empty. Empty not just of bonefish, but seemingly all life, save sharks and the occasional barracuda. It left us scratching our heads and drowning our tears in Kalik and spiced rum.

Kurt with bonefish

Kurt showing off a nice bonefish.

andros watercolor sketch

I took my watercolors and did quite a few sketches. This one is of the beach in front of the house.

Never before have i experienced such a beatdown on the flats. Now we did manage to catch some bonefish, all of whom were big and angry. In fact, Kurt caught a huge one in a mangrove-choked area behind our house. I also found a few mutton snapper who were hungry and harassed some boxfish. While we did get a few shots at fish here and there, most of few fish we saw were super spooked and moving fast across the flats. Locals told us the recent inconsistent weather and cold fronts sent the fish to deep water. It did seem like the shallow waters were chilly and maybe that does explain the empty flats. In any event, it was a hard two weeks of fishing in paradise. The good news is that we got to fish in paradise for two weeks and had a blast!! I can’t wait to get back!

nate with bonefish

Me with a bonefish. On this particular day, we found a few fish and hooked them!

mutton snapper

I love the mutton snapper! They are beautiful and pull some line. This guy’s a smaller one, but equally cool.

uke jam at the airport

I also took a uke with me and played quite a bit. I decided to give an impromptu concert while waiting for a hotel taxi in Tampa on the return journey

ladies at blue hole

My favorite pic from the trip. Jamie and I Connie are exploring and snorkeling a blue hole that was near our house.

Cigar Box Guitars

Longer days, decent fishing

Sorry for the radio silence. Since the holidays, we’ve been dealing with some fairly heavy stuff round here. Long story short, my dad has liver disease despite never drinking. This has really taken a toll on him and over the holidays his condition worsened greatly. He’s on the transplant list and we’re hoping he gets the call soon that they found a liver for him. In the meantime, I’m in the process of possibly being a living donor. So needless to say, things have been a little stressful round here.

Now for more upbeat things! Days are getting longer around here in Wyoming and fishing is improving. I’ve had the pleasure of guiding some folks lately on the Snake, introducing visitors to winter fly fishing. Some days have been tough, while others have been pretty good. We had some pretty great dry fly fishing with small midges one day in particular. I expect things to improve each week. Typically March and early April offer up some of the best fishing of the year. Huge midge hatches often bring all the fish in the river up to the surface to feed followed by the spring skwala stonefly hatch.

My favorite winter dry flies fresh off the vise…

mid-winter midges

If anyone’s going to be out here in March or April and would like to book a fishing trip, give me a shout. I’d love to show you what later winter/early spring fly fishing can be like. If you really want to have some late winter fun, consider an overnight trip to my fishing cabin in Dubois. While there you’ll experience some warmer temperatures, good fishing on the Wind river and also the option of doing some fun cross country skiing!

I’ve got an art show going at the Snake River Brewery through the end of March. You’ll find a bunch of cigar box guitar built by yours truely…..

nate's lone boulder guitars

merry christmas

2018 tff merry xmas

December

Well here we are in December, getting ready to close out 2018. Fly fishing-wise things are a bit slow at the moment here at Teton Fly Fishing world headquarters. Jamie and I took a nice road trip vacation a few weeks back, visiting friends in California. We had a great time and I managed to sneak in a day of surf fishing around Pismo Beach. Unfortunately the ocean was angry that day and I didn’t have much luck. I definitely should have had a fast sinking salt line on my reel instead of a floating line. I wasn’t able to get the fly down on the bottom due to the pounding surf. Oh well, live and learn. Overall though it was fun trying some new fishing and even more fun spending Thanksgiving week with great friends at the beach!

Since getting back home, I’ve been building cigar box guitars for christmas. My woodshop resembles Santa’s workshop (minus the elves, although I could sure use them!) with wood, guitars and tools everywhere. Last weekend I took newlyweds, Nick and Aaricka out fishing for a few hours. Conditions were tough for these novices, but they picked up casting like champs and didn’t complain at all about the temperatures. In the end, we had great day!

Aaricka learns to cast while Nick watches…. Fun day in the sun fishing the Salt river for these two newlyweds.

newlyweds winter fly fishing

Me and some of my cigar box guitars at the Jackson Hole Christmas Bizarre

me with cigar box guitars

Lu and a Grand Teton Park Bison engage in a staredown….

staredown