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  1. #51
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Southeast Mn Driftless
    Posts
    353

    Default Re: 2020 Driftless Pictures And Reports

    From Sunday's social distancing compliance.

    3_22_20_1.jpg

    3_22_20_3.jpg
    MN Driftless and the West.

  2. #52

    Default Re: 2020 Driftless Pictures And Reports

    I too practiced some social distancing on Sunday. The water color was off just enough to still be good fishing. A little less wind would have been nice, but it was good to be out. A red Zebra midge in #20 was the ticket for me. Stay safe!
    Jeff

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  4. #53

    Default Re: 2020 Driftless Pictures And Reports

    Great to see people finding a healthy way to self isolate.

    I was a little lazy yesterday and when I arrived at the planned stream crossing, someone was already there.

    PSA: The appropriate move, when you see another vehicle parked at a crossing is to move on and find another spot. There are thousands of miles of trout streams in our area. 99% of the people on this forum probably already know and adhere to this etiquette, but it's worth mentioning as it's not necessarily intuitive for everyone, especially newcomers.

    Anyway, I traveled on to a new spot I had been eyeing and it really paid off. Had an excellent midge hatch and even spotted some baetis. Deep nymphing early, then shallower seemed to be more effective before and after the hatch (~1-3pm). During the hatch, I tried out a new yarn emerger I've been playing around with and it turned out to be deadly. That wind was challenging to cast in, but ended up being a stealth advantage if you could time things right...

    A friend of mine won a Sage Dart 376 recently and let me use it this weekend as he was busy with work. I typically prefer a more moderate action, but for windy driftless days on creeks with obstacles, that is a perfect stick. The thing is a light saber! Super light and accurate.

    We'll see if they lock us down in the coming days. It looks like several states, including IL, have already done so. If indeed this was my last trip for a while, it was a nice way to leave things off.

    Sent from my SM-G973U using Tapatalk

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  6. #54
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Location
    L'Étoile du Nord
    Posts
    2,876

    Default Re: 2020 Driftless Pictures And Reports

    I haven't been out, been seeing some really nice and beastly trout caught in the last week or so, A 29" in Minnesota and a few 24-26" browns from Wisconsin. Wisconsin is in lockdown today, Minnesota likely to follow.

    My remodel project is about done, mud, sand and paint, this is scoring me huge bonus points with my wife, got to put some in the bank.

    With fishing being locked down, I did get a zoom account, with those of us shut in, we could tie flies and shoot the bull, zoom is a free app easy to use as in simple and works really great for meetings. When I`m at the vise I could post the meeting number and people could join and leave at will. Trade some patterns, maybe some new flies and ways of doing things. If anybody wants to join me let me know, I bought a host account.

    Oh I changed my name to my initials Stevie B. and I`m a fly man, still the same unknownflyman.

    Stay healthy and safe driftless warriors!

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  8. #55

    Default Re: 2020 Driftless Pictures And Reports

    Well, I'm a total novice, but I made my way to the southern portion of WI Driftless for a day of fishing up from northern IL. Had an absolute blast. I've only been to the Driftless three times now and I fished once east of Madison (which was expectedly not great) and that is about the totality of my fly fishing for trout experience.

    I've been learning more and getting better with each trek (much less snagging this go-round as I've been more observant of my surroundings) and my casting has improved. I took out a my Sage Trout LL 8'6" 4-wt and that thing seemed to cast itself. I still need to work on consistency with my cadence, but it seemed to just effortlessly throw loops out. This was a first for me on many fronts, but I fished the Sage with a 50" furled leader with only 3ft of tippet (either 12" of 3X and then 24" of 4X or the same ratio of 4X-to-5X). I have no idea if this was a proper setup tippet-wise, but trying to get a straight answer for rigging information from Cutthroat Leaders was like pulling teeth (and still unsuccessful). I also used a New Zealand strike indicator for the first time, which I really liked. I tied on a few varieties of beadhead nymphs and then dropped #18 and #20 black zebra midges, which I proudly tied myself and roped in about a half-dozen browns.

    I also brought along a Winstone Pure 8'0" 4-wt just in case I got into any hatches and about halfway through my day, I started seeing pretty aggressive topwater strikes and my heart started pounding and my hands started fumbling. I tied on a 68" furled leader (I think that was the length) and again 3' of tippet and stated with a #18 BWO. I received many strikes, but only pulled in one tiny little brown. I saw a midge and then tied on a griffiths gnat (#20), which I also tied...and it showed! ...and again received several strikes, but couldn't pull in another one. The Pure was a dream to cast. I don't have much experience, so my comparisons are limited, but it just felt right casting dry flies with it.

    At another point I saw a fish make a rather aggressive strike at the surface, but it was a solo strike and so I stuck with my nymph rig, made a perfect cast to the trout, and pulled in my biggest brown of my very short tenure.

    Total blast and I just get more and more obsessed with it as time goes by. Have a great week everyone and stay safe out there.


    IMG_6199.jpg

    Here's one of the few I caught yesterday.

  9. #56
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Location
    L'Étoile du Nord
    Posts
    2,876

    Default Re: 2020 Driftless Pictures And Reports

    Nice looking fish, Technically around these parts you can fish, but only our local areas and I don't have trout within 10 minutes of me. 35 minutes yes.

    I`m not going to travel too far, I just feel this is the responsible thing for me to do where I live. I`m not judging I have friends up north and on the driftless today that traveled. I may swing the Mississippi River which is walking distance, work on my spey casting and maybe swing up a big muskie or something you never know, its C and R only year round locally.

    The trout will be there later, I want to be as well, those of you close to trout rivers, if you can safely get out, I think we would all like to see it.

    Peace and good health, Ill be fly tying tonight If I start a zoom meeting I`ll drop the meeting number.

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  11. #57

    Default Re: 2020 Driftless Pictures And Reports

    seeing all these pictures are really making me miss the driftless. I got to school in eau claire and am within 35 minutes of some of the best fishing the state has to offer. Unfortunately with classes being cancelled and put entirely online because of COVID, I had to make the fiscally smart decision and move back in with my parents in Milwaukee for the time being. In Milwaukee we do have steelhead and lake run browns, but I unfortunately do not think it would be ethical to chase them on my 4 and 5 weight rods so it looks like ill have to wait until this all boils over to get my line wet again :/

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  13. #58
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Southeast Mn Driftless
    Posts
    353

    Default Re: 2020 Driftless Pictures And Reports

    MN Driftless and the West.

  14. #59
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Location
    Iowa, WY roots
    Posts
    171

    Default Re: 2020 Driftless Pictures And Reports

    That looks like a beautiful hole. I can't seem to catch the right time to get out in between all the rain and cold. If's its' warm its raining, if it not's raining it's 30 degrees, and if it looks good I've got work to do!

  15. #60
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Southeast Mn Driftless
    Posts
    353

    Default Re: 2020 Driftless Pictures And Reports

    In all fairness, it's been a weird couple of weeks in the Midwest. 60's Thursday. 28 and snow on the ground Friday. Still snow on the ground Saturday AM, back to 60 by Monday. Timing is of the essence here right now.
    MN Driftless and the West.

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