January, 2009

Last Logbook Entry  for previous day            

1/17:  To call today's trip down on the Eagle a "fishing" expedition stretches the truth somewhat.  I would have preferred that it really include some fish, but it did not, so let's call it a dog outing instead.

This is MLK weekend here in Vail, and that means hordes of people clogging the town and the slopes.  Good for business in this indifferent economic climate but not a lot of fun to be around that many folks all at once.  Happily it was also a nice sunny day, something we've had very little of since mid November.

Did some tax work this morning in an attempt to let the air temperatures get above freezing (they did not) and also in the hopes that the flow ice would have been gone by the time we hit the river (mostly did happen).  


Drove the freeway to the town of Eagle and grabbed a quick fast food bite at Wendy's before washing the car in anticipation of our trip to Salt Lake this coming week.


After that we (the dogs & I) drove to the fairgrounds area, rigged up, and made our way through the snowdrifts down to the confluence of the river with Brush Creek.  Interestingly Brush Creek was running dark brown where it entered the Eagle.  Had to be the result of some kind of construction upstream, as there certainly is no runoff coming down any streams right now with these cold temperatures.

Rigged up with a couple of nymphs and some weight and cast the length of the long run where those two streams collide.  


Would like to imagine I actually had one real strike here, but the reality is that it too was likely the bottom.  The dogs had fun - I was happy to be outside, but no strikes is really not much fun either.


Walked well up the bank and found a couple of other decent places to throw the flies but nothing else doing here either.  The water's really very cold right now & I suspect the fish more or less dormant (at least that's my current excuse).  As might be expected, ice had to be broken from the guides every handful of casts, and even more interesting, the leader and tippet themselves also grew skins of ice despite being in the water most of the time.

The river is extremely iced over (see photo).  Where I'm taking this picture from is the middle of a fairly deep braid in the summer months, so even here, there's very little open water to work.


What we've found historically is that the trout tend to lie along the edges of the stream just below the shore ice.  Sometimes they're more active than they were today and will snap at flies placed just on the edges of that ice.


Rather than belabor the fact that I got skunked today, let's just take one last look at our new puppy who has become a very attractive young lady - - although calling her a "lady" just yet stretches the truth quite a bit.



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