Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Four things to do this spring when the Cannon system floods: (1) catch buffalo fish using a bamboo fly rod, (2) grab suckers from backwaters with your bare hands as the water rages on by, (3) shoot carp with a compound bow [I don't personally recommend this one unless you plan to smoke the carp], (4) catch giant buffalo from water that looks like it'd never give you a fish in a million years.

Walleye and northern get a rest after today... but a buddy of mine braved the marginal ice and got out a couple nights ago. Prior to catching the walters he broke his jig stick playing the pike ... but he kept at it, to a good end. Looks like a nice Cannon River watershed meal!

My One Wish: That Wendell Berry would take over control of the USA.

"The people will eat what the corporations decide for them to eat. They will be detached and remote from the sources of their life, joined to them only by corporate tolerance. They will have become consumers purely - consumptive machines - which is to say, the slaves of producers. What these model farms very powerfully suggest then, is that the concept of total control may be impossible to confine within the boundaries of the specialist enterprise - that it is impossible to mechanize production without mechanizing consumption, impossible to make machines of soil, plants and animals without making machines also of people." - Wendell Berry, The Unsettling of America, pages 74-75

Dry Fly Tying

My first real attempts at creating dry flies... All pictured here are #16-18. The two in the front turned out to be the best: the all-dun colored #16 and the #18 Adams. These all use at least one hackle from the load of materials recently acquired from out west.

These flies are okay - not great, but would probably catch fish. I figure any botched dry fly can be flopped over to a warmwater box and used to catch panfish.

I'm really enjoying learning this new dimension of tying. I've spent the past years tying nymphs and streamers - interesting contrast here. I tried a humpy and found it to be very difficult compared to this traditional style... Everything kept spinning on the hook, and it was very bulky - not easy to tie.

Monday, February 27, 2006

Ice at water's edge...

I try to capture a few shots that really characterize winter fishing, but I can't quite get it right.

Check out the waves in the rod.

James has taken to sitting in this relaxed style now and then... he crawls up onto the couch and reclines - pretty funny.

Project Management for toddlers... Applause when the task is complete. The kid loves to stack blocks, and he is pretty deliberate about how he goes about it. He also really likes to stack those nesting tree boxes seen at right in this picture. He picks through them until he finds one that is smaller than the last he's stacked.
Got out for 1:45 yesterday. Conditions were perfect, except for a slightly stronger-than-desirable wind from the south. Landed this nice brown around 2:45 PM. However, after a long streak of not losing too many fish, I jumped back to my old ways yesterday: I lost two very, VERY large fish after playing each (could have been same fish I guess) just long enough to see them. The good thing is, I know exactly where they are and they've been there the past two times I've visited this site... I'll come back later this week with bigger hooks (was using #18) and take another shot. I have to say - winter fishing is great!

Friday, February 24, 2006

Just got a visitor from Estonia! Here are georeferences for recent visits to this site.

Portrait of SE MN small stream fishing. Had to be pretty sneaky on this approach... as you can see here - water was very clear, and the ~50 or so trout next to that log were very wary.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Bedrock & Bronzeback

Two signatures of the BWCA. Dad and company are heading up in June... I'll wait until September. This fish came up to hit a foam surface popper in 10 feet of water... pretty darn dramatic atmosphere and strike - enough so that the sights and sounds of the incident are burned into my brain.

James sees his dad wearing this hat now and then... the little guy is always trying to smash it onto his head, but he usually has trouble finding the hole. Then one day a couple weeks ago he came truckin' down the hallway with the hat on - pulled low over his eyes. Mom and Dad added the sunglasses to further the effect.

Friday, February 17, 2006

Here are some recent visitors to this page... who are you folks? Post a comment - say hello!
Osterholz, Bremen
United States
Minneapolis, Minnesota
United States
Atlanta, Georgia
United States
Washington, District of Columbia
United States
Mankato, Minnesota
United States
Portland, Oregon
United States
Minneapolis, Minnesota
United States
Fort Leavenworth, Kansas
United States
Hastings, Minnesota
United States
Portland, Oregon
United States
Remer, Minnesota
United States
Redmond, Washington
United States
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Toronto, Ontario
United States
Portland, Oregon
United States
Redmond, Washington
United States
Remer, Minnesota
United States
Minneapolis, Minnesota
United States
Minneapolis, Minnesota
United States
Redmond, Washington
I recently had the privilege of meeting this beautiful brown trout. I had scouted the area some weeks ago, and had seen five nice fish spooking about as I tromped with heavy feet... Came back days later and had only 45 minutes to fish. However, with the pink squirrel you only need that long. This is not designated trout water. In fact, most of the stretch in this area could not be considered quality trout habitat... not many good holes, and a lot of sandy bottom... not many undercut banks or woody debris in which to hide. There is one deep little trough though - I guess that's all it takes. It felt great to catch this fish. It measured ~16 inches, and was caught on a #18 ps. The last picture is of the silt trail it kicked up as it sped back to the shady run.

Monday, February 13, 2006

This weekend the kid just decided to take off. He was very good at walking long distances between people... with a helpful "launch" from an adult hand... but on Sunday he started taking off from stationary objects, and walking long distances. For his grand finale he walked ~30-40 feet, including several pauses during which he balanced and stood still... he even turned a few corners and went into three different rooms before terminating at a piece of furniture. After each walk, we all clapped and he cracked a big grin and applauded along with us. It has been great to watch him work toward this... I am predicting an exponential learning curve from here on out. His next step will be endurance - he gets tired of walking after 5-10 minutes... he just folds down into a squat and goes back to crawling.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Mom's birthday yesterday!

She (Mom) was the best Maria... but the star of last night's production was okay too.

Happy Birthday!

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Quotes From Berry

"What I stand for is what I stand on."
"Rats and roaches live by competition under the laws of supply and demand; it is the privilege of human beings to live under the laws of justice and mercy."
"Laugh. Laughter is immeasurable. Be joyful though you have considered all the facts."
"Eating is an agricultural act."
"Every day do something that won't compute. Love the Lord. Love the world. Work for nothing...Love someone who doesn't deserve it...Plant sequoias...Practice resurrection."
"There is no sense and no sanity in objecting to the desecration of the American flag when we tolerate, encourage, and as a daily business promote the desecration of the Country for which it stands."
"The line that connects the bombing of civilian populations to the mountain removed by strip mining ... to the tortured prisoner seems to run pretty straight. We're living, it seems, in the culmination of a long warfare -- warfare against human beings, other creatures and the Earth itself."
Wendell Berry on his works and books

"I do have an interest in this book, which is for sale. (If you have bought it, dear reader, I thank you. If you have borrowed it, I honor your frugality. If you have stolen it, may it add to your confusion.) Most of the sale price pays the publisher for paper, ink, and other materials, for editorial advice, copyediting, design, advertising (I hope), and marketing. I get between 10 and 15 percent (depending on sales) for arranging the words on the pages.As I understand it, I am being paid only for my work in arranging the words; my property is that arrangement. The thoughts in this book, on the contrary, are not mine. They came freely to me, and I give them freely away. I have no "intellectual property," and I think that all claimants to such property are thieves."
Wendell Berry


Monday, February 06, 2006

Wendell's got it pegged folks...

The terms exploitation and nurture, on the other hand, describe a division not only between persons but also within persons.... Let me outline as briefly as I can what seem to me the characteristics of these opposite kinds of mind. I conceive a strip-miner to be a model exploiter, and for a model nurturer, I take the old-fashioned idea or ideal of a farmer.
The exploiter is a specialist, an expert; the nurturer is not. The standard of the exploiter is efficiency; the standard of the nurturer is care. The exploiter’s goal is money, profit; the nurturer’s goal is health—his land’s health, his own, his family’s, his community’s, his country’s…. The exploiter wishes to earn as much as possible by as little work as possible; the nurturer expects, certainly, to have a decent living from his work, but his characteristic wish is to work as well as possible…. The exploiter typically serves an institution or organization; the nurturer serves land, household, community, place. The exploiter thinks in terms of numbers, quantities, “hard facts”; the nurturer in terms of character, condition, quality, kind.
—Wendell Berry, “The Unsettling of America” in The Art of the Commonplace: The Agrarian Essays of Wendell Berry (2002), p. 39

See any ghosts?
Down the Carp Road
A Love Affair With Cyprinus carpio

This guy has abandoned all reason and trout in favor of a newfound pursuit of the Golden Bulls. Read about the Nobility of Fishes at Roughfish.com:


The fish pictured below is a buffalofish, caught with a nymph.