High Park Fire

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Just a few images with my new camera body.

Upgraded my Canon T2i to an incredible Canon 5d mark ii.  Wow, just wow.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

My interview on CNN's IReport.

I had the honor of speaking to Brooke on CNN yesterday about the images I posted of the High Park Fire here in Ft.Collins Colorado.

My voice really does sound raspy from the smoke.  I know many people with respiratory issues are having a hard time as well.


Monday, June 11, 2012

Monday, May 21, 2012

It started out so promising...but!

The day started out so wonderful.  I slept in a bit, took the dog for a walk and the weather was just fantastic.  Over 80 degrees and partly cloudy.  I walked my favorite pond and landed some nice carp.  Even witnessed a new behavior for carp that I had never seen.

 I found 3 pods of carp actively pushing mud and brush.  There would be about 4 to 7 fish along with a largemouth bass or two on the outside of the mudding. These guys were really pushing mud and making a fool of themselves.  It was very impressive.  I wonder what was so darn good down there?  It had to be some really good type of food source for them to be so aggressive and carefree about their behavior.

 I found it easy to just cast past the mud ball and slowly stip my Minnow colored Zimmerman Backstabber that Erin suggested the other day.  Love love that color pattern by the way Erin, thank you.

I moved to my favorite flats to see what was going on.  Carp everywhere and mudding and shouldering.   I did manage this nice guy right off the bat.

I rounded the corner to rest the flats for a bit  and I hooked into a MONSTER!!!  It was a big brown sugar colored monster of a shadow and after two tugs on my fly rod...snap!  The biggest carp I have ever hooked up with and my CPX Redington 8wt snaps at the second section.  Crap! I lost the fish and broke my favorite fly rod at the same time.

 Well I called Redington and received instructions on how to send the rod in for get a new rod.  In my mind I have a horror story of this taking months to replace and I would be out my favorite rod for my trip to Beaver Island with Kevin, but the nice lady on phone said it really only takes about 5 days once the rod is at the shop.  I ran home, filled out the form and mailed the rod.  The only thing I have a beef with Redington is the 30 dollar shipping and handling fee, but thats not horrible I guess in the long run.  

I will report how the rest of the experience goes with returning a rod to a manufacturer.  My question to you out there in the blog-o-sphere, have you ever experienced a broken rod and had to return one for replacement?  I would love to hear your thoughts and experiences.

 I promised myself I would not second guess my actions that caused the rod to broke.  It broke and I was the guy at the other end and I accept that.  No excuses.


Saturday, May 19, 2012

Carp on the White Zimmermans Backstabber

Cottonwood fluff  is all around now.  You know, the white fuzzy stuff floating in the air, floating on the surface of your favorite bass pond, and most of all, getting your reels guncked up with white cotton.  Most bass fisherman hate this time of year due to that fact.  However there is one individual that loves the stuff.  Carp!

They just love skimming the surface vacuuming  up the white fuzz. Its not uncommon to witness pods of carp just wallowing and sucking up cottonwood, their funny toothless mouths wide open, hoovering up the white fuzz.  Of course this is the time also to start throwing Cottonwood top water flies if you dare.  I like to tie up a foam parachute with white hackle for my Cottonwood flies.  The fly floats high and I can see the white parachute better than just an all white hackle.   You can see an image of that fly  here.  I have to honest and say, its freaking hard to catch them on a Cottonwood dry fly and when I have no luck doing that, I switch to my backup plan.  A white Zimmerman Backstabber.

This guy turned and followed the fly to the bottom of the pond before sucking in the fly.  That's the thing with this type of fly. The initial splash will often times get their attention and the action of the marabou really makes them want to bite. I have seen carp take the Backstabber as it falls through the water column. 
After a bit your fly kinda of gets beat up. But even then the fly continues to produce.  

I did run into this guy while out hunting carp.  A nice 5 foot or so Bull snake just hunting along the shore with me.  


Wednesday, May 16, 2012

A couple of firsts while Carp hunting.

While hunting carp at Riverbend ponds this evening I had an situation that I have heard horror stories about.  I had cast straight out to a small feeding common when he took the fly and ran straight instead of turning.  Two head shakes and my fly broke free and came screaming back to me...right into my sunglasses!  I have heard stories of guys getting hooks right into the eye but I never thought it would happen to me.  Wow, scary.   So lesson learned.  Always wear your sunglasses or some type of eye protection while fishing.  You never know when your cool little fly will come back to bite you in the ass!

But the day was not a loss.  I hooked into 6 carp and landed 4.  The second fish of the day was my largest yet on a fly rod.  He took a Zimmermans Backstabber in white.   I really don't know how big he was but it was a great 5 minute fight with several line screaming runs.  On the bummer side, he seems to somehow damaged my new Orvis Mid Access Reel.  I will be send that into Orvis for some service.

The carp in my area seem to be in summer time patterns.  They are close to the shore and in schools of 5 to 8 fish.  That makes it easy to spot them and pick out stragglers from the school.  Cottonwood are fuzzing up the surface of the pond.  That means its almost top water time for Carp!

 This little guy hung around for a quick photo.
This was the view from Riverbend ponds with the Hewlett Gulch fire.  Smoke came billowing down from the canyon into Fort Collins.  Local authorities are issuing warning for those with respiratory issues.   Hope no one gets hurt fighting this fire.