Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Unorthodox Fly Fishing, Outdooress Style!

It's Friday and my plane touches down in Boise, Idaho.  My long awaited journey is about to begin.  Every year, I plan at least one trip with Rebecca Garlock to fly fish hours upon hours.  We start early and end late, and enjoy every minute of it!  So, I was excited to be meeting up with her once again and to becoming even better friends and share our god-given urge to be on the river to experience what some people never see...trophy size, brown and rainbow trout!  The Outdooress and Co-Chief of the Outdoor Blogger Network has an intriguing style to her cast and overall techniques on the water.  It is an amazing sight to behold....honestly.

We met up with Chris Hunt (EatMoreBrookTrout) and full time TU guru and freelance writer from Idaho.  He came over on some business and had time to fish with us on Saturday.  Another friend of Rebecca's, Michael, a local fly fishing expert of the River X, met us there and showed us some new areas that we hadn't fished before.  And they were money!  So, a fun group putting their lines in and making new friendships.  My first walk in had me tingling from head to foot...I was here!!  Excitement was in the air as I stepped into the magical waters...

We did have a lower level of water than we would have liked, but it still worked out fine.  They had just lowered it a few days, the fish weren't quite acclimated yet to their new digs, but we still caught enough fish.   The river was still...but, not for long!  Soon, we had ring after ring...with fish slurping all around us.  I am not a dry fly girl and so I was playing follow the leader and watching their techniques.  There were some nice size fish that day, ranging from probably 14 to 24 inches.  Chris was impressed with this fishery for sure. 

Lunch was know there are always varmints of some sort in my adventures!  As I was sitting on the side of the river enjoying my sandwich...Rebecca quickly yells, "Get up, Emily!  There is a snake behind your chair coming your way!"  Eeek!!  I didn't need to hear that twice!  Really...Some kind of boa or something...I didn't sit back down.  Ha.  As we got back in the vehicles and went up the road after lunch, we gazed down off the side of the cliff and there they were!  The biggest, fattest, browns and rainbows one could hope for.  They were swimming in a large, boulder area of the river and it was just an amazing sight.  We didn't fish there, as there were other fishermen in that spot already...but, we enjoyed being part of the "peanut gallery" as Rebecca calls it! 

This is Fly Fishing doubt about it.  We headed towards another special place with a faster run for me.  Another hour or so, we headed back to the original spot.  After another hour, I was already exhausted and called it a day.  So, when Rebecca was yelling my name to come over to the action at dusk, I was already sleeping in the car... Bummer actually, she got like ten more fish at dusk and the guys had their mouths open,  drooling just a bit at her success...heehee.  End of Day 1...

Sunday was "Girl's Day" !  And I was ready...I had hoped for better results on Saturday, but just didn't have my rhythm or something...Well, it was that something that had Rebecca thinking about all night.  She told me right off the bat that morning, that we were out to catch a lot of fish.  Right on!  Whatever you say RG...I'm listening!  She had a plan.  And now we get to the title of this post..."Unorthodox Fly Fishing, Outdooress Style!"  I was going to follow the "Unorthodox Outdooress" (shall we call her UO??)  How about it Kirk Werner, (UA)?  Well, I didn't really care what she threw at me, as long as it worked!  So, here is the top ten tips for remember, these might not be for everyone...they just were right for me, as my head has been full of instruction from fly shop lessons for the past three years!  Rebecca thought that it was time to take all of the techniques that were intermingled in my head and toss them aside for awhile. So, drumroll, please...

1.    Roll shoulders.
2.    Relax...let your hair down!
3.    Don't cast too stiff.  Go with whatever style feels right. (side casting for me)
4.   Whip it! (halfway between a roll cast/side cast)
5.   Snap it back!  (hey, that's a good one to prevent tangled lines in trees!)
6.   Stop, Pause, Wiggle...(strip, strip, the end of the cast)
7.   Do NOT grab line of a 20+ brown that is at your feet. : (
8.   Snickers and Diet Coke are good mojo for a fishing trip. (I knew that was coming!)
9.   Bullseye fishing for stillwater in the river...cast within one foot from the ring.
                        10. HAVE FUN!

And Bonus Tip...Always put your line in the water as you walk upstream!  Don't reel up.  Fish!

My favorite RG (UO) quote on the trip..."The fish are taunting me!  I must go pursue them!"  And she did.

The hours went by way too fast.  I was finally having fun, without a care in the world and catching one after another...that chica is something else.  What a fishing buddy to have along.  She never gave up on me...and finally we were hearing "Incoming"!!  over and over again...Yes, I stayed out until dusk.

The most amazing part of the trip wasn't catching all the teenage browns downstream from their parents.  It was watching the huge 20+ browns spawning just a few feet away from us as we stood on the bank.  These fish are not spooky in the least.  It is also incredible to see a trophy size brown basically swim in front of your feet as you are settling in to cast.  That is why I come back each year.  It was unfortunate that the biggest fish were "occupied", but my Red Chronomid Midge was finding a lot of other suitors! 

And by the end of the day, I was completely in my element.  Relaxed and in the rhythm that Rebecca had hoped for me.  I have been told that next year is Round 2 with the "Unorthodox Outdooress" training, as she will show me how to go after those browns in the slow, still waters and "Pursue them!"  Another adventure in the books.  It was all good.
Thanks to all of those that were part of it! And hats off to Rebecca for another great journey...
Footnote:  I found it interesting that one of my one shots of Rebecca resembled another picture that I have seen on the tell me??!!

Nice Job, Kirk!  (Except for the fish!)


  1. Looks like a great trip. Nice pictures

  2. Awesome post and photos, it looks like a great day on the river. Thanks for sharing.


  3. Nice post! Sounds like a great trip.

  4. Looks like you guys had an awesome time, but no snake pics? You leave me wondering what it was. Seriously, if you see snakes, take pics (from a safe distance of course) and I'll ID them for you. It's a fun game for me.

  5. Awesome post RD!! Glad RG was able to share her knowledge. Having fun is what it's all about. I'm a terrible caster, can't tell you the difference between a stack mend and a... wait I just exhausted my mending vocabulary, and you've seen my flies. I still have fun and manage to catch some fish. Sounds like it was a great time. Keep it up.

  6. G Tech, Darren and Brandon...thanks for coming by. I'm glad you enjoyed the read...

    Jay - It's a girl thing or an RD thing...not wanting to get close enough to take a picture. But, one of the guys did I.D. it...we will have to rely on RG's memory!

    FR- You with an astonishing vocabulary...comes up with a loss for words! I can't believe it... ha. And I'm sure that Chernobyl pattern must be top notch by your catches with it! ; )

  7. Glad you were able to get out and get back at it...sounds like a great time for sure. Well done!

  8. Sanders- Yes, I believe that I rebounded very nicely! So glad!

  9. Some beautiful water there..havn't ever been to that part of the country but seeing those pics makes me want to put it on my list. Good friends and a few fish are a hard combination to beat!

  10. You should probably edit a bit more if you want "River X" to remain a secret. Internet fly fihing types suck in every little detail. Looks like a blast! :)

  11. I had a great time on Sunday RD and I'm glad you had fun, caught fish and learned a few of my secret sauce tricks to enjoying a day on the river.
    Remember on your next trip...roll your shoulders, let your hair shake loose and then whip a fly from point A to point B without a care in the world about how it's 'supposed' to be done.
    Next lesson will be in pursuing those big fish that like to taunt!

    And the snake was a Bull snake.
    Great Post, great weekend!

  12. High Plains ~ You will have to come out West and fish sometime in the future...The rivers are endless to wonderful opportunities!

    Rebecca ~ Looking forward to the taunting fish! Thanks again for a memorable journey out!

  13. Damsel, I can't speak for Jay but since we are both usually outfished by our better halves, I think we would enjoy being around the two of you.

  14. Sounds to me like the UO is a loose cannon...a rule who runs with scissors and colors outside the lines. Be careful around her- you're likely to cast between 9 and 3 as opposed to 10 and 2, or 11 and 1, or whatever the rules call for! Great trip. I need to get there one of these days for obvious reasons...

  15. Howard ~ If luck holds out for us...we will be hopefully fishing next summer together!

    Kirk ~ KABOOM!! I know the risk...yet, somehow it just feels right. "Obvious Reasons" have waited for several years now... : ) Pencil it.

  16. Kirk ~ I never was one for following the rules and staying within the lines may look nice, but it's not very exciting during the process.

    I had fun corrupting Emily's fly fishing and I have to say, I believe she did too...

  17. great post RD! I also believe that rules are made to be bent or broken and if it is uncomfortable or isn't working, then it needs to be done differently.

  18. RG ~ Ha! Corruption at it's best!!

    Will ~ I really can't think of anything more epic, to tell you the truth!

    Luke ~ My buddy...where have you been? Glad to have you back over! I never knew how "not in my zone" I was, until RG changed up a few things!

  19. Great post, as usual. Being warned about the snake, though, takes all the fun out of it. Try climbing up a steep river bank and you're 2 steps away from topping out when a snake darts (slithers rapidly) across the path, losses it's grip and wraps around you waders. BOAHHHH! Truth... happened to me in PA.

  20. Great website Damsel...I love to follow your adventures

  21. Larry ~ You are too kind! I like warnings...especially about snakes!

    Russ ~ I appreciate the compliment...We don't have to look far around here to find some kind of adventure! : )

  22. Just a totally awesome post right here!!!!