Relearning a old/ new river

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This topic contains 14 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by  Scotty MacFly 4 months, 3 weeks ago.

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  • #6149

    Scotty MacFly
    Participant

    I finally made it out. I decided to try the St. Vrain in downtown Lyons to see what has been changed by the flood of 2013 and see how it has been rebuilt.

    It was in the mid 70’s today, clouds here and there coming through, and it seemed like a great time for some BWO action. So off I went with bamboo in hand and a semi smile on my face. Everyone was out today driving around, especially the Harley riders. Hey, do you guys know what doesn’t mix well? The sound of a creek and a bunch of Harley’s going buy. But there was two young men and a young woman along with a guitar and a dobro and she played the upright bass. They were down by the water playing and there is nothing better than acoustic instruments on the water. I brought my acoustic rod. They were very pleasant people. We admired each others tools of the trade.

    I walked down stream a ways to where the trees made a canopy, and on my way there I couldn’t help notice the change in this creek. The trees where shade was plentiful were gone, but replaced by saplings. Lyons is really trying to bring this area back, and I must applaud them for what they have done. The creek has more structure, but more for kayaks than anything, but still, the fish are there. I got down to where I wanted to start, and tied on spiders because for some strange reason, bwo’s didn’t feel good now. The water was mostly half way to my knee, and clear. I did everything I could with spiders, but not one looker. The areas that used to hold fish are gone, but new areas were there with different details that changed my approach today than the times before. Shoreline vegetation is gone, and replaced with rock. It’s going to be not so much of a change in strategy, but the overgrown grass that was super for casting flying ants near the bank will not be the same. I know it will still work, but not having the natural growth there now will get some getting used to. It used to be thick with trees.

    I made it half way to the truck and though what I should be doing is working my way downstream casting up and across, but too late for that now. I arrived at some man made pools and a fellow fisherman showed up. We talked and he was having great success using nymphs with a indicator. I wasn’t getting anything to rise to my spiders, and did remind myself that no fish were rising at all, anywhere. The gentleman offered me a bead head pheasant tail, but I was having too much fun getting re-acquainted with just casting my bamboo. So I politely said no, and went on doing my thing. By this time I saw a fish quickly rise and dart down as fast as it rose. Hmmm, the game may be about to change.

    The other fisherman was done for the day, and bid me good luck and a fond farewell. It was now 5pm, and I noticed some rises happening just upstream in a long calmer section. The way the fish were rising, they weren’t hitting surface flies, but just under the surface. Ah ha! I retied my spider and casted away, but only in vein. I was doing something wrong, but what? I changed fly size, but no change in the action. I opened my box and just stared for a moment and remembered a fish I caught on the Poudre. It was somewhat doing the same thing these fish were doing. I then took off the spiders and replaced them with a black RS2, size 18. The water was shallow, less than 2ft. deep, and after a few casts I finally got a hit. Lost it right away, but it was there long enough to say that I figured it out. That was good enough for me, so it was now time for me to come home.

    The area I was fishing, it was a gold medal trout stream. Talking to the other fisherman, he told me they released some 20 plus inchers in that section. The trout he was catching were all rainbows about 10 inches long, but they were not stockers at all. Beautiful wild rainbows. Give this area some time and it’ll come back to it’s former glory if it isn’t abused. Problem is, in the summer, it’s filled with people swimming and such. I may have to go farther down or up stream.

    #6150

    Grsdlnr
    Participant

    I brought my acoustic rod

    I like that – bamboo as the angler’s acoustic instrument.

    Good to hear about any creek on the rebound. Well done on getting the hook into one.

    #6151

    Scotty MacFly
    Participant

    I should patent that term, acoustic rod. 💡

    Then when someone says it, they would own me a nickle. 😄

    #6152

    wheezeburnt
    Participant

    “Then when someone says it, they would own me a nickle”
    Man, if I had a nickel for every time I’ve heard that!
    brent

    #6153

    wheezeburnt
    Participant

    Scotty:
    I thought of you today. I was out for a walk in the winter woods with a buddy, and he showed me where a huge slump had come down a hill and completely wiped out a stream two years ago. There were big trees pushed up the far bank from the slide, so there was quite a slump. Anyway, the stream had started to open up from the frozen condition, and we could see that the brave little stream had managed to find its way through that jumble of mud and trees and rocks, and had re-established itself roughly where it was before the slide. Its wonderful to see how nature recovers so quickly. It made me think of what you had written about the St. Vrain. I told my buddy your tale; he said ‘isn’t that the stream that John Geirach wrote about”, and I said that I was pretty sure it was. Anyway, he found your story pretty interesting. Thanks for drawing it to our attention.
    brent

    #6154

    Creek
    Participant

    Slump?

    #6155

    Scotty MacFly
    Participant

    Brent, what book was it the John Geirach mentioned the St. Vrain? My sister in-laws brought me a few books and one of the is written by him.

    This is a wonderful creek, but it can be tricky. There’s the North, Middle, and South St. Vrain. So many different areas to fish that its a wonderful problem to have.

    #6156

    Creek
    Participant

    One of his books on small stream fishing. I have it, but i’m too lazy to find it.

    #6158

    wheezeburnt
    Participant

    Scotty:
    Pretty sure it was in “Sex, Death and Fly Fishing”. Chapter called “I’d fish anyone’s St. Vrain” But he mentions the river intermittently in other books, as well.
    brent

    #6161

    Scotty MacFly
    Participant

    OK, I have his book Dances with Trout. I saw him at our local fly shop. I didn’t approach him for two reasons; the first reason was some people don’t like being treated like a celebrity and just want to live their lives in private without fans bothering them. And he wasn’t doing a presentation or anything, he was buying some tippet and other little things. So he was minding his own business going shopping.
    The second reason was, what if I do approach him and it isn’t John? How embarrassing! LOL.

    But it was. When I was paying for my fly tying stuff Dick, the store clerk introduced John to me. But he didn’t do it like, hey Terryll, this is John G., no, he took the pressure off the stature off John and said, John, this is Terryll who is one of our best customers. The pressure was off John because Dick put me in the spot light. I shook his hand and said nice to meet you and he smiled and replied the same back. We three talked a little about the streams we were planning to fish and that was that. Nice guy. But you could tell that he doesn’t like to be treated differently than a normal every day guy. I bet he has a tough time on the water when another fisherman approaches and recognizes him and wants to talk. Famous people need their privacy to live their life too. So I was glad to treat him just like a fellow fisherman and not make a scene. I’m sure he appreciated it as well.

    #6164

    Grsdlnr
    Participant

    Nice story Scotty. I know a few people who’ve met Gierach at industry shows and describe him as approachable and a pretty cool guy.

    #6165

    Creek
    Participant

    That’s no surprise when you read his books. He sounds like a regular guy who likes talking about fly fishing.

    #6168

    Scotty MacFly
    Participant

    I’m sure at shows anyone can walk up to him, because that’s part of the celebrity thing. And at the shop he was just John, not John the writer.

    I unexpectedly met Don Williams the singer in Denver after his show. I heard he will sign autographs at events, but when the show is over so is his job. But my wife & I were walking by the hotel he was staying at after his show and he pulls up and got out of the car and as we walked by I just said “wonderful show Mr. Williams.” he looked right at me and said thank you. I respect peoples privacy and understand that jobs are jobs, but people need to be themselves. Did I want his autograph? Would have loved it being a huge fan, but I understand and respect his family life too.

    #6171

    Grsdlnr
    Participant

    You handled meeting Williams just right, IMO.

    I’ve met my share of public figures, thanks to both my former career in advertising photography and just living in NYC. Nearly all were OK with a brief “hi and I really appreciate your work” type of greeting. Interrupting them at dinner or when they’re out with friends – no.

    #6173

    Scotty MacFly
    Participant

    Growing up in Canon City was sometimes like growing up in the Hollywood of the Rockies. Having a place called Buckskin Joe, which was a western town built for tourists and making western movies. When “How the West Was Won” was made we had a western wear store in town. My grandma and I were there getting me some jeans for school, I was in 5th grade I believe, and she heard a voice say, “what about these boots John?” it was Brian Keith. The John he was asking was no other than John Wayne. I didn’t really know Brian Keith, but I sure knew John Wayne. Brian was playing in How the West Was Won, but not John.

    My friends and I met Charles Bronson while he was filming “White Buffalo”. The town in the movie was Buckskin Joe, but the buffalo scenes were at Red Canyon Park just north of town. Mr.Bronson was great. He bought us candy and ice cream. Later through the years I found out that Mr. Bronson as a child was so poor, he had to wear his sisters dress sometimes to school. He treated kids with much kindness in his acting years.

    WE saw Jack Elam at Sambos, which was a popular place to eat, like a Village Inn or Perkins. We left him alone to eat his meal.

    But while in Jr. High, they made the movie “The Sacketts”. Sam Elliot, Tom Selleck, and I don’t remember the actor who played Tyrell. But my grandpa and I ran into them as we were fishing the Ark. between Canon City and Salida. They were fly fishing! I didn’t know who they were at that time, but my grandpa recognized Sam Elliot. And what are you supposed to do when a movie star approaches you and asks you what fly to use? You tell him I guess.

    That’s about it for me and celebrities.

    I must say, I had an extra ordinary childhood. It was pretty good being raised by my grand parents.

    • This reply was modified 4 months, 3 weeks ago by  Scotty MacFly.
    • This reply was modified 4 months, 3 weeks ago by  Scotty MacFly.
    • This reply was modified 4 months, 3 weeks ago by  Scotty MacFly.
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