Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Hey, Steelhead, let me catch you.

Two weekends ago, I went steelheading over in Idaho with Matt Breuer and LG. For the past two weeks, I have been trying to muster up some grand post about how going fish-less (whitefish don't count, this isn't baseball) over the course of two, windy, cold, and rainy days was the cat's meow. It wasn't. It was like self-flagellation in the church of the Clearwater. Eventually, it started to feel kind of good. So, instead of more words, I will sum it up in FISH JERKS style.

What I thought my first steelheading trip would look like - that's how it works. First trip, big wild buck. Amirite?

What my trip actually looked like. Empty handed. For reference, BWO.

I'd do it again.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Baseball - A Fly Fishing game

For those of you who know me personally, you are aware of my love of games. Games of all sorts. I have a child-like love of games. So, when Anthony (of FCFT) and I were walking back to the Bell Crossing access and he proposed that we play a little baseball, my ears perked up and my eyes opened wide. "A game, what game?" My attention was now solely focused on games. Anthony proceeded to explain to me the game of Fly Fishing Baseball. A little hat tip to Brendan Bannigan of the Grizzly Hackle, who taught Anthony this game sometime ago.

Not my fish. Anthony just wanted to take photos. Photo courtesy of Anthony at False Casts and Flat Tires.
Pre-spawn colors...perhaps.
Photo courtesy of Anthony at False Casts and Flat Tires
Like real-life Baseball, Fly Fishing Baseball has nine innings. Each player gets three outs (fish-less drifts per inning) and different fish are worth a different amount of "runs" ((based on species and size).

So, as we walked back to the car, Anthony and I played a time-shortened 7-inning game of Fly Fishing Baseball (FFB). Anthony had home-field advantage and it showed early. In the top of the 1st, I nymphed a long deep run. The fish were stacked up on the softer, inside water on the downstream portion of the run. After two fish-less drifts, my Pat's stone connected with what seemed like a decent fish. I horsed it. With a late hookset, my inning was over.

Wanting to catch fish and putting the game aside, I fished the same portion of the run as Anthony started the bottom of the 1st inning higher up in the run. I promptly stuck a 14" cutbow and my clinch knot failed. That lost fish wouldn't have counted as it was not my time at the plate. But, my recon paid off for Anthony, as I had found the fish for him. In the bottom of the 1st, Anthony landed a rainbow and a cutthroat and quickly took a 6 run lead on YGF.

I followed up with a small whitefish in the 2nd inning and brought the score to 6-1, in favor of Anthony. I spent the rest of the game trying to hit grand slams, as the sun was setting and the deficit was significant. No more scoring happened in the remainder of the 7-inning game. Final Score: Anthony 6 Ivan 1.

Here is my post-game interview:

"The ball just didn’t bounce my way. I don’t want to point fingers, but this loss was my fault. I came out flat. I didn’t get the job done. Anthony just made the plays when it mattered. I had my chances, but I just let them swim away."

A solid whooping.

So, I like games and stats. I have decided to make this a feature of YGF going forward. Games will be played. Standings and statistics will be "recorded." A page will be dedicated to it. I like games.

Looking at the fish I didn't catch in the first game of the season.
Photo courtesy of Anthony at False Casts and Flat Tires
Here are the official Fly Fishing Baseball (FFB) rules that Anthony and I have agreed upon.

Number of Players - Unlimited (more than one is recommended, unless you like playing with yourself)

Equipment - A player may put on whatever setup he wants to start the game but may only change his rig if he breaks it off.

Drift - A drift is defined as the time between the line entering the water and leaving the water, you can mend it as many times as you want and can drift it as far as you like as long as you don't move your feet.

Ball - If you decide you don't like where your rig landed you can immediately pick it back up and recast. This MUST be done within the first two seconds of the line hitting the water. You get four balls per inning.

Strike - Failure to land a fish on a drift results in a strike. If you hook but do not land a fish on your third strike it is considered a foul ball and you get to repeat your last strike.

Using a catcher - You can use a buddy to help you land your fish but he/she is then entitled to half of your points from that fish, rounded down to the nearest whole number.

Landing a fish - Landing a fish does not against your strike total. You are then awarded points based on size and species. See points chart below.

Strikes, Outs, and Innings -  A strike is equal to an out. Three outs per inning, nine innings per game. Theoretically each player would get a minimum of twenty seven drifts plus whatever extra drifts they get for landing a fish.

Playing the game

A player must declare that he is stepping to the plate, this begins his three strike inning. He must take all three strikes from the same general location, i.e run, riffle, pool.

Players must maintain the same player order that was established prior to the game starting. Any fish caught out of order are not counted towards the players score.

Games cannot be carried over from day to day. If the game has to be cut short the person with the most points is the winner. If the players are tied go to a tiebreaker, biggest fish wins.

Scoring - (Subject to change)

Whitefish = 1 run
Squawfish/Pikeminnow = 2 runs
Sucker = 2 runs
Pike = 2 runs
Bass = 2 runs
Trout = 3 runs
Trout over 16" = 4 runs
Trout over 18" = 5 runs
Pike over 30" = 5 runs
Bass over 18" = 5 runs
Carp = 5 runs
Trout over 20" = 10 runs
Bull Trout = 15 runs
Trout over 24" = 50 runs
Bull Trout over 30" = 100 runs

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Eat More Brook Trout's 20 Questions - the YGF edition

I haven't had the chance to meet Chris Hunt of Eat More Brook Trout in person yet, but I look forward to it. Chris is the National Communications Director at Trout Unlimited, a published author (Shin Deep), blogger extraordinaire at Eat More Brook Trout, and an avid angler (among, I am sure, many other things). One of EMBT's regular features is 20 Questions. In the last installment of 20 questions, Chris interviewed Tom Chandler. You know...that Tom Chandler. Following a fly fishing blogging legend, no pressure.

Then, Chris drops this complementary set of sentences in the intro, "I've become increasingly enamored with his use of the GoPro videocamera–he's extended the boundaries of small-scale fly fishing filmmaking, and with each effort, I've seen a notable evolution, both in terms of quality and creativity." You know, no pressure. (I kid Chris, thank you very much for your kind words.)

I am honored to have taken part in the EMBT 20 Questions series. I hope to get out on the water with Chris in the very near future. Check out the YGF Edition of the EMBT 20 Questions here.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

No Sports Allowed

Some bulldog from Colorado sent me care package filled with N.S.A. goodness. What a good dog. I didn't know bulldog's knew how to fetch. I thought they just rode skateboards. This bulldog sent me N.S.A. volumes 1 and 2 for my viewing pleasure. He knows that I watch a lot of fly fishing porn video as it is and more is definitely better.

While this winter has been pretty mild and the winter fishing has been pretty solid, I long for the long summer days filled with trout smashing big terrestrials and honkers of articulated streamers with reckless abandon. Streamer fishing in the winter just isn't the same. The glory of summer fishing is clearly demonstrated in N.S.A. Volumes 1 and 2. Those guys are streamer fishing, dry fly throwing fiends, all of them, every last one of them.

Both Volumes of No Sports Allowed are compilations of shorts. The shorts are filled with friends, Diet Cokes, big fish, and non-stop fishing action showing everything Idaho has to offer. From steelheading to spring creeks to narrow willow guarded streams to the big, relatively unexplored waters, everything southeastern Idaho has to offer. I am pretty sure that is everything. Someone, correct me. There is a great sense of family and friendship through both Volumes. Just fishing friends doing what fishing friends do. As a fisherman with friends, N.S.A is easy to relate to in that sense. Nothing fancy, just good times on the water with friends. No exotic locales, no celebrities. Just big fish, characters, and a nice Idaho backdrop. I like that style.

I should note that I fear for the trout of southeastern Idaho when some of the N.S.A. kids grow up. They could probably outfish me now...in 2012.

Many of you, might be fans of the Beard. What beard? The Beard...Marc Crapo's Beard. Volume 1 features a lot of The Beard before he was the Beard. Perhaps, in Volume 1, Crapo could best be described as the Goatee in Volume 1. But, in Volume 2, the Beard shows up in full force.

After watching both Volumes, I found myself yearning to get back out on the water. Longing for the long summer days on the water catching gobs of trout with friends. The N.S.A. series is a great addition to my growing collection of fish porn.

Check out the trailer for N.S.A. Volume 2:

NSA vol. 2 how we do... from Marc Crapo on Vimeo.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

King of the Herd

New and completely fake terms are being coined. That monster group of whitefish you see huddled around a big trout. That's a herd. And that big trout flanked by those pesky whitefish is the King of the Herd. A day of fishing with the False Casts Flat Tires (FCFT) crew on the Bitterroot. It was generally slow with the exception of the 22" cutbow that Zach hooked and Anthony miraculously netted. We found some pike in some shallow backwater. All of us stung one, none of us caught one. That goal will have to wait. Watch it in HD on vimeo.

Music: Soul Position "Run (Instrumental)"

King of the Herd from Yukon Goes Fishing on Vimeo.

Monday, February 13, 2012

2012 F3T in Missoula - a Review

When the Fly Fishing Film Tour (or F3T) sent me a goody basket filled with bourbon whiskey, stickers, a trucker hat, and a promotional DVD earlier this year, I got super excited. I wanted to hold off on watching the promotional DVD, but my excitement got the best of me...later that night...after some damn good whiskey. I only watched it once. Then, I put it away. Hid it in the mess that is my desk. I wanted to see it in person. I wanted to forget what I saw...in the best way possible. I wanted to experience it for the first time....a second time. I am glad I did.

Last year, Missoula set the F3T attendance record of 950. Check out my review of last year's show. This year, our town topped that with a record of 1100 attendees. The night started at the Grizzly Hackle for some beers and BBQ. I met up with Matt Breuer, the guys from FCFT (Zach, Stan, and Anthony...and Zach’s girlfriend Manda), and follower of the blog and retired USFS hydrologist Sully. After the pre-party and some good conversation, we headed over to the Wilma and snagged some good seats.

Here are my apparently long winded thoughts on this year’s films:

Riding High: A Season on the Fly - For the second straight year, the guys at Waterline Media opened up the Missoula F3T show. And for the second straight year, they produced an absolute monster of film. It follows the migration of tarpon from the lower Keys to the Panhandle and some of the anglers that chase them. With 90 days on the water and 15 TB of footage, every second of the film was stellar. Great opener to the show. Top 2, if not top 1 (aka favorite), film in the tour this year. The images, editing, and music was spot on.

Side Note: Someone needs to get that dog under control. Real fishing dogs maintain some level of self restraint (see anything Wilma does in any of my videos).

Sipping Dry - I have been looking forward to seeing Sharptail Media film on the big screen for 2 months (when the trailer was released). I was excited to see a film about the mighty mighty Missouri and it’s world renowned dry fly fishing. A river that I have fished numerous times and am always trying to figure out how to make the 2 hour trip from Missoula back there. I have something to admit, I haven’t fished the Mo during any semblance of a hatch. Shame shame shame on me. Perkins captured the spirit of Craig well and “that release shot” was stunning on the big screen. Besides the on point visuals of sipping 20+ inchers, Mark Raisler (S.O.L) and John Arnold (scumliner) from Headhunters were the stood out in the film (I might be a little biased). Line after line after line about the hatches, trout bums, and trout of the Missouri. You can’t beat Mark’s line - “Be careful who you bring here. Don’t bring your young children here or your teenagers here because you might alter their life and they are not going to become a doctor or an attorney, if they get hooked on this deal. It’s game over.” Top 3.

If I am being honest, the trailer might have been too good. It might have given away too much. Maybe I watched it too many times. The lines didn’t have the same pop they had the first, second, third, and fourth times around. I think it’s because I watched it too many times.

Geofish: A Mayan Prophecy - Another “backcountry” adventure from the MOTIV guys. Last year, it was vegetable oil cars. This year, it’s drug roads and landlocked tarpon. I didn’t know land locked tarpon existed. Tarpon that have never swam in saltwater. A novel concept. This flick was more a story of the journey to a unique fishery than the unique fishery itself. Solid film.

Hatch - Gin Clear Media’s submission for the 2012 F3T. This was the first fly fishing film to be filmed on a RED camera. A pretty big deal. The camera work was next level greatness. Some of the more ridiculously filmed dry fly takes I have seen. In many ways, it felt like I was watching a nature documentary that David Attenborough should be narrating. The cut was much shorter than the cut from the Promo DVD. It was a slower moving film that I think was hurt by the fact that there were so many more high action (read: adrenaline pumping) films preceding it.

Clearly B.C. - Fall Bullies - Many people may have seen this film by Todd Moen in the recent Catch Magazine. I liked it the first time. The second time, I started to lose interest. The visuals were great, but it lacked the story that the others had. The big fish were there, but something was missing in comparison to the others. It certainly didn’t help squash my desire to catch a monster bull trout. Alberta/B.C. here I come.

Reverb - Last year, RT’s submission was Zero 2 Hero. The Musky Movie. Big fish. Fish of 10,000 casts. Great characters and a great closing scene with a monster fish. This year's RT film is about a group of elder punk rockers who spend their off time on the water’s of the Driftless Region fly fishing for it’s trout. I personally didn’t connect with this film. But, I know that many people will. The visuals and graphics were spot on as always with RT’s productions. But, the fishing didn’t excite me and I didn’t connect with the characters. I don’t pay a great deal to sponsors unless shots of their products are displayed prominently in the films. Which leads me to the question: Is Orvis punk rock? (I hope that question doesn’t prevent my edits from making the Friday Film Fest)

Doc of Drakes - I am going to come out right and say it. Best film of the tour. Even though I saw it more than my fair share of times when it was part of the Drake 5 minute film festival. A great story and one great fish cannot be beaten. While the visuals don’t compete with the likes of Riding High and Hatch, the story of a 83 year-old doctor with Parkinson’s fishing the March Brown hatch with a dedicated and patient guide and the massive reward for that patience could not be beat. The crowd was engaged through the whole short. Obviously rooting for Doc to find success, the entire theater unleashed a deafening roar when Doc caught his Silver Creek monster. Cheers to Bryan Huskey.

Here's how the crowd reacted to the Doc of Drakes:

The Arctic - RA Beattie is a kung fu fly fishing video master. The Arctic is another great one. Monster Arctic Char and Lake Trout. Stunning visuals. A damn good soundtrack (which he always seems to keep under lock and key). Some Gierach sprinkled in. Sometimes, RA's stuff can seem like a SIMMS ad. There were a couple shots that were overly SIMMS-ed out. Top 3. Can I have four videos in the top 3? Answer: Yes. I am the boss of this review.

Fly: a Legacy - I will be honest, in a crowd filled with roudy fly fishing Missoulians and having chosen a seat super close to the speakers, I can’t give a fair review of Ronnie Goodwin’s submission. It was story heavy and fish light. I couldn’t hear the narration and as a result, I can’t give it a fair review. I will say this, the young man’s casting face was quite amusing. It was a combination of squinting and constipation.

Right on It: The Get Lost Project - Bonefishing in Bahamas. This film had it’s moments, namely the first half. I didn’t get the second half. It became more like a weird friendship music video. Kudos go to the pair of big bones that they showed in the first half. You (the bonefish) were big and you deserve credit for being such successful eaters of food.

The Kodiak Project: Fly Fishing in the Land of the Giants - Beautifully shot, this film is more character driven and focuses on the eclectic group of fly fishing personalities that come together to fish for steelhead in Kodiak Island. Steelhead fishing is supposed to a trial of patience and determination, right? Apparently, not on the Kodiak. Three steelhead in twelve casts. I want that.

I will admit that Conway Bowman’s inclusion in the film irked me a bit. My introduction to Conway Bowman came at last year’s F3T. In Speed, Muscle, Teeth, Conway exclaimed something to the effect of (WARNING: a good dose of paraphrasing follows) fly fishing for trout, steelhead, bonefish, tarpon, pike, bass, or any other species of fish is utter crap compared to fly fishing for mako sharks. It was some outlandish comment denigrating most fly fisherman’s targeted species of choice. So, when I heard him heaping praise on the steelhead of the Kodiak, it felt phony and forced. Everytime he opens his mouth about fishing for any other species than makos, I check out and stop listening. I am sure he is a nice enough guy, but the outlandish statement from Speed, Muscle, Teeth has sullied me on him and his opinions.

Another highlight was the aural piles of boos and jeers that the Missoula crowd unleashed towards the screen when Bozeman and the Yellowstone were featured. Ahh, friendly rivalries amongst fly fishing towns in Montana.

Final Thoughts (not Jerry Springer style), the 2012 F3T was just as good as the 2011 F3T. More freshwater this year around with some salty goodness spritzed in. A good, rowdy time was seemingly had by all. If the tour swings through your town (or semi adjacent towns), go. You won’t regret it. Check the schedule.

Did I mention that they gave out some nice prizes including some Patagonia Aluminum Bar Rock Grip boots, a Redington youth fly rod outfit, and a Sage One rod. The winner of the wading boots, who didn't have the appearance of a fly fisherman (more like a significant other who got dragged to the show), promptly muttered "what are these?" The winner of the Sage One rod acted as if Bob Barker was on the stage and she was about to spin the Big Wheel. I am pretty sure it was the price is right in her mind. Surprised she didn't have ironed on letters saying something very punny about old man Bob.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Redington Sonic-Pro Wader - A YGF Review

As some of you may know, I have had some issues in the past with leaky waders. I can be tough on waders. The only things I shy away when wading or walking the banks is barbed wire, knives, AK-47s, and Revolutionary era cannons.

In the past, I have been rewarded for my aggressive wading and “pre-wading?” with leaks. Massive leaks. Massive leaks around the seams connecting the stocking foot and the waders...and the seams around the knees...and the seams on the inside of my legs. Those leaks lead to a great deal of discomfort while fishing in the cold Montana winters. Massive leaks leave your feet in a neoprene fish bowl of sorts and shorten your winter, fall, and early spring days on the water. Plus, there is that pesky hypothermia hanging aboot. Conclusion: Leaky waders are the worst...the living worst.

Recently, Redington offered me the opportunity to test out a pair of their Sonic-Pro waders. Considering my recent history with waders, I jumped at the chance to review their critically acclaimed waders.

The Sonic Pro waders come in three different styles: the Sonic-Pro Zip Fronts, the Sonic-Pro Stocking Foot, and the Sonic-Pro Wader Pants. I chose the Sonic-Pro Stocking Foot waders. After having the Sonic-Pros in my possession for about a month, here is my review.

This could go really quickly. Do they keep me dry? Yes. Are they comfortable? Yes. Do they have plentiful amounts of dry storage? Yes. Would I recommend them to someone looking for new waders? Yes. End of review. If I ended it now, the review would be short on valuable details and opinions. So, prepare for the opining and provision of facts.

The Sonic-Pro Stocking Foot waders are constructed of 100% nylon DWR coated wader fabric. 5-layer fabric on the lower leg and seat for durability and 3-layer fabric on the remaining portion of the wader. The seams are welded with sound (using Ultra Sonic welded construction) and have been double taped for added durability. The stocking feet are made of high-density neoprene. The waders have a zippered, brushed micro-fleece hand warming pocket and a laser cut exterior pocket with a YKK water resistant zipper. Additional storage is provided by a flip-out interior welded storage pocket with a mesh pocket, hemostat holder, and hypalon dock. A 2-inch stretch wading belt is secured by three belt loops. (and finally) The waders have gravel guards with a plastic anti-fouling lace hook.

Opinions and Thoughts:
The three-layer/five-layer waterproof construction is pretty standard in comparable waders in other brands. However, the seams of those comparable waders use needle and thread, not sound to secure the seams. The use of the ultra-sonic welding technology reduces the weight of waders and theoretically the durability.

The waders feel sturdy and heavy duty, but aren’t heavy in weight by any means. From personal experience, I can speak to the durability of sonically welded seams. I own a pair of sonic seamed waders and after a year of hard use, no leaks. Which, is more than I can say for the traditionally constructed waders of my past.

The Sonic-Pros fit extremely well. They fit true to size. The legs aren’t baggy. No front pooch is formed when you secure the wading belt. They keep a slim profile. All that being said, they aren’t too tight. They are comfortable. My legs aren’t Justin Beibering or hipster jeaning (I am pretty sure those are both verbs). A proper fit is important for wading. Extra bulk and fabric can impede someone while wading. I felt confident while wading some of the deeper, more powerful runs of the Bitterroot. My movement was not impeded or altered. Additionally, there was very minimal of the dreaded leg rub, which I can only imagine will increase the lifetime of the interior leg seams.

Bonus Points: I didn’t look like I have a kangaroo pouch for a stomach when wearing them. Vain, yes. But, I don’t want to look like I got a couple joeys underneath my waders. I gots ta look good for the camera.

just one joey
These waders have pockets galore. Which, for a disorganized fisherman like myself, is much appreciated. The exterior pocket is spacious. Big enough to hold a small fly box, bags of split shot, a couple indicators, and several spools of tippet (note: split shot and indicators are winter tools...it could also hold any number of much cooler spring, summer, and fall items during those seasons). The hand-warming pockets are clutch, especially with air and water temperatures hovering in the low thirties during the winter. If I were to have my druthers, the fleece would be a little thicker. But, they did the job. For those anglers who use a lanyard or a smaller chest pack, the flip-out interior pocket could serve as a suitable replacement. Overall, my fishing experience was stream-lined with the ample storage provided by the wader’s pockets.

Specialized and ample storage
The stretch wading belt is perfect. All of my previous waders have had “static?” wading belts. What a difference the stretch makes. Mostly in comfort, but also in terms of function. It reduces the amount of bunching and the amount of time spent looking like Nuke LaLoosh adjusting his garter belt on the mound. With three belt loops positioned on the around the back and sides of the waders, the belt is easy to grab and adjust.

The gravel guards are tight, as they should be. The looser they are, the more likely gravel and sand will work it’s way into your wading boots. There is one feature on the waders that I have mixed feelings about. Depends on how you look at it, but the moulded lace hook that attaches to the boot is hard to attach to my laces. In comparison, the lace hooks of waders of my past were to easy to attach and easily came undone. When loose, the lace hooks (of wader’s past) provided the perfect place for fly line to get hung up in, which certainly impedes effective fishing. With the lace hooks on the Sonic Pro, once secured, they do not become undone. Additionally, if you don’t secure them, they don’t eat vagrant fly line like it’s their job. So, maybe it is more of a positive than a negative.

After four winter trips on the Bitterroot, I have been very pleased with the Sonic-Pro Stocking Foot waders. A durable, light fully featured pair of waders for a very reasonable $279.95. Certainly not cheap, but compared to other waders in it's class, that price point should be considered quite a deal. I would definitely recommend them to someone looking for a great pair of waders. They get the imaginary YGF seal of approval.

Want to see the waders in action. Check out my most recent videos, Cutties are for Suckers and Hog Calling.

Here are some stills of the waders. Many thanks to Zach from False Casts and Flat Tires for all of the images. Notice the amazing model and his amazing Phillies hat and his amazing fishing skills. That guy is so amazing. Amirite?

GoPro'n it in my Sonic Pros
No Joeys to be seen
waders on.

fishy waders and a fishy fish

DISCLAIMER: The Redington Sonic-Pro Stocking Foot Waders tested in this product review were provided to me at no cost, but hold a retail value of $279.95. I currently hold no association with Redington whatsoever. As with this review and all future reviews, I will do my best to offer up my honest and unbiased opinion, good or bad.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Calling Hogs

Spent this past Saturday on the Bitterroot with Matt Breuer and Blakely. Floating in the Breuer's skiff, we enjoyed the slightly seasonally warm temperatures, and to a lesser degree, the biting winds. While the float was a little hurried, we were able to stick some fish, including two solid rainbows who were both caught on streamers. Icing on the cake. As always, watch it in HD on vimeo.

Music: Diplo "Sarah"

Calling Hogs from Yukon Goes Fishing on Vimeo.

In other news, I now have a friend with a boat. It's nice.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Dreams and Goals of 2012

Well 2011 is done and gone....and so is the first month of 2012. It was a pretty successful year for YGF in  many ways. Let us review the successes and failures of 2011 and look forward to 2012.

Dreams and Goals of 2011

Among all the successes of 2011. There is one glaring failure.

1. Finish my thesis. I did not complete goal 1. So, that goes back on the list for 2012. It makes it back on the list five times as it is goals 1 through 5. It is in progress and it is getting closer every day.

2. Catch a fish in each month of the year - accomplished. I like this goal. It represents a level of dedication throughout the year. In 2010, I caught a fish every month of the year. A couple of whitefish represented January 2010's success. In 2011, all trout --- all the time. This one goes back on the D & G 2012 list.

3. Catch a 20" cutthroat, 24" rainbow, and 24" brown trout. - only got one of these done. The 24" brown. I could be over-estimating it's size, but for the sake of ego rubbing let's say that this fish was 24" of brown trout.

4. Catch 3 or more trout of 20" in a day of fishing - a man can dream right. Well, I dreamt about this, but nothing came of it. Maybe it will happen this year.

5. Catch 20"+ brown trout out of the (name redacted) ponds - see goal 3.

6. Catch a 22"+ rainbow or brown trout out of Warm Springs Ponds. - I failed miserably at this. I had a whopper on at one point. But, it quickly wriggled free. Bucko certainly caught a 22"+ rainbow out of the ponds.

7. Go fishing in Wyoming. I should have described this in greater detail. Go fishing in Wyoming outside of Yellowstone Park. I did neither. I was set to hit the Wind River Range with Bucko this summer, but a familial visit conflicted with the scheduled visit. This year...this year.

8. Fish for bullies and cutties on the South Fork of the Flathead. Didn't do it.

9. Catch a fish on a mouse pattern. Failed. But, I was recently provided with some of the goods to make this year a mousing success.

10. Go night fishing and then do more night fishing. Success. Not a rousing success, but a success. Need to grow a pair and get an alarm clock that works and do some serious night fishing this year.

11. Catch fish on the following waters.  There were a lot of bodies of waters on this list. I fished some and didn't fish others. There is a lot of water in Montana, I surprisingly didn't fish it all.

12. Make more videos. Make better videos. Make videos with less shaky elements. Make it on to Moldy Chum and the like (Fish Porn, Le Mouching, Global Fly Fisher). This year was a good year for YGF. I was lucky enough to have my videos featured on Moldy Chum, Headhunters Fly Shop, Fish Porn, Le Mouching, Global Fly Fisher, Orvis News, Chi Wulff, The Fiberglass Manifesto and 45 other sites this year. Humbling to say the least.

13. Catch fish on sub-surface/"nymphed" grasshoppers. I fished streamers a lot this year. So much so, that nymphing and dry fly fishing took a backseat. The kind of backseat that the old Taurus' and Volvo's had. I didn't fish this way often. But, it was successful once with a reasonably sized brown trout on the Big Hole.

14. Catch a northern pike on the fly. Tried and failed. Instead, Bucko and I managed to catch some nice rainbows in the seemingly pike-y sloughs and backwaters.

Here is the Dreams and Goals of 2012 for YGF. This one is more species focused rather than location based.

1. - 5. Finish thesis.

6. Catch a trout in every month of the year (Jan, Feb, Mar, Apr, May, June, July, Aug, Sept, Oct, Nov, Dec). I can already cross out January. Boo sha.

7. Catch a fish on a mouse pattern. This mouse pattern.

8. Catch a carp on the fly.

9. Catch bass on the fly.

10. Catch redfish on the fly.

11. Catch a northern pike on the fly

12. Catch a steelhead on the fly

13. Learn to spey cast with a reasonable amount of success

14. Hit a legit hatch on the Missouri and promptly get humbled fishing dries to big fish.

15. Catch a fish on a fly (dry fly, nymph, streamer) I tie.

16. Tie an articulated streamer and catch a 20" fish with said streamer.

17. Tie a custom articulate streamer pattern. Give it a bland and boring name.

18. Make a video that gets more than 9,999 views.

19. Catch 3 or more trout of 20" in a day of fishing

20. Catch a 20" cutthroat, 24" rainbow, and 24" brown trout.

21. Fish some top secret water in Wyoming

22. Fish in Alberta.

There it is. The 2012 Dreams and Goals list. I may add a couple things to this list in the next coming days. Any suggestions?

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