Since i've moved to montana i have been hopeful to see a bear, which i have never seen in the wild. i keep hearing about how black and grizzlies are everywhere here but i hadn't seen any. maybe i was expecting them to be all over like deer.....who knows. so i've been saying the whole time i've been here that there are no bears in montana, it's all propaganda bullshit. yes i am only kidding when i say that. well today we are driving down the highway on our way to the river and my eyes are ever glancing the woods as they always do and we drive by a house and then i see him/her. in these peoples driveway right off the highway is a cinnamon black bear. so as quickly as i can i do a u-turn and slowly drive to that drive way, all the while reaching back behind my seat searching for my camera. the bear had moved away from the road some and i didn't have time replace my kit lense for a better one so since the bear wasn't interested in a photo op, i had to do the best i could with what i was given time for. shitty! cause you can hardly tell there's a bear there. in the pics, it's right next to a flat bed trailer. after that excitement we drove/tried to get to, several lakes. a couple we could but only one gave us any bendo. one of the lakes was full of small eager cutties. there were some bigger ones that we saw but couldn't entice.
We are still in the searching/scouting phase of everything. we finally made it into one of the lakes we've tried to reach but hadn't due to to much snow. started getting ready and realized i forgot my wading boots. i like to waders my waders and boots in case i need to wade into shallow shelves to be able to reach the deeper stuff. i had to stick with my blue jeans and lugz, that's right.....lugz, yes i'm gansta like that. we ended up driving to a couple of different lakes, all really shallow shorelines and marshy edges. we then drove to holland lake which is a much bigger lake then what we had checked out already. i saw a sign that said canoe rental so we ponied up the 25 bones and off we went. i couldn't believe that neither of us were getting into any fish. for the longest time we didn't see any sign of fish. there was a really nice looking waterfall at the back of the lake that im wanted to get up to for some photos. the trail along the lake was constant with people coming and going from the falls. as we got close to where the water from the falls dumps into the lake we started seeing a few risers. tirko had one fish follow his egg sucking leech almost to the canoe but didn't commit. we beached the canoe out the mouth of the stream and chose to get out to piss and stretch out my damn back. on my 3rd cast through the creek current in the lake i got absolutely hammered. the fly line ripped out of my fingers so i didn't get a good hook set but as it turned out that spring creek special was lodged nicely through it's maxillary and the fish wasn't going to nowhere. i measured the fish at 21", which made my day. we saw another nice fish come out of the water in the current but we did not touch another fish. i got lucky with that one.
We had talked to a local the other day, who apparently was born, raised and lived all his life here. a person like that who also worked years for the BLM, you would think would know excatly what he is talking about. well he told us that beescove creek was bout 3 miles upstream from the little diversion dam. we parked at the trailhead a 1k+ above the dam so we figured no more then 3 miles. as it turned out it was over 6 miles to the creek, which above the creek is where we could legally start fishing. we hiked up in our waders and by the time we got there we were wore the hell out. the river was high from the mouth up but we were hoping that by the time we got there and cruised by all the lower feeder streams that the water was going to be smaller. no such luck! the water was still high and fast and at this point not worth the effort. it was 2:15 at this point so we decided to chalk this day up as a loss. at exactly 5:15 we were finally back at the jeep, blistered and beaten. it's not that 12 miles is so bad, but when you walk it in waders it's just not much of a good time. there are a lot of bicyclists that use this trail so before i make that jaunt again this summer, i will own a bike and will just pedal my way up. by the way this was tirko's dumbass idea. my idea was to go back to a lake and fish our way around it.
According to the news the other day some whack job from new york wrote a book and in his book he said the world was going to come to an end today at about 6pm. well lucky enough, we survived it. what a relief! anyway me and tirko went to a couple of spots that we had in mind. we started off in a nice little meadow stream that just didn't cut it, when then drove in search of a lake that we couldn't find, then made our way to browns lake that didn't cut the mustard for us either. close to shore we did however see a nice kokanee and a tank of a rainbow, unfortunately dead, but at least now we know the size of fish in there. it was then onto another stream/lake combo. the stream coming out was turbulent and we couldn't find access to the stream coming in. the lake however was the ticket. YAHTZEE! i caught one super swell 'bow' of about 14". as we neared the last few hours of the day tirko talked me into trying to find a lake that we couldn't get into last weekend due to snow. we made it a lot farther today but came to a spot that looked like we could get through, but as i was trying to navigate the edge of the road and the deeper snow on the road, my jeep started to fishtail and the soft muddy shoulder had sucked me in. as i surveyed the situation, i couldn't help but think how screwed i was going to be. i couldn't back up cause i would've gone right over the edge and because of the angle of the road and the soft shoulder i was really anticipating hitting the gas and having my jeep just slide off the edge and me tumbling onto my roof. i was shitting bricks! with a little bit of digging and some manipulation of the ground i said the hell with it and gave it a go, after all i didn't want to just leave my jeep there, walk back to the road and hope we could get an hour ride back to town. as i gave it hell the soft edge gave a little then held on and with tirko yelling for me not to stop i finally made it out and onto solid road. getting back out wasn't easy either but it went better then getting in. we fished a total of 6 different peices of water today, some not for very long due to access issues, but between 2 of us we caught the 1 fish. the scenery was perfect, the weather was perfect, but the catching really sucked.
Me and tirko finally got into an apartment this afternoon and after we unloaded my jeep into it we had a couple of hours to hit the lake.the wind was pretty brutal but we did our best. we were pursuing pike but ended up with 1 brown, 1 squawfish and 1 pike. tirko is more of a gear chucker, which is what he took the pike and squawfish on and we brought home the brown and pike for future dinners.
So to celebrate all the mothers out there, i went to the lake, actually several lakes in a chain. right now even the lakes are tough to fish from shore cause of high water levels. none of the lakes, at least where i fished them from gave me much of a shore to work with so it made casting a bit tough. none of the lakes i spent a whole lot of time in since there were several i wanted to fish. lake #1(cutts and bulls) produced several pan sized cutties and i did hook into something that was considerable bigger that played tug o' war with me until it rudely gave me back my hook. never got a look at it. lake #2(rainbows, cutts, bulls, bass and pike) didn't produce a dam thing. lake #3(browns, bulls, whitefish, bass and pike) coughed up a pike and a brown. neither were overally big, but if i had had a place to cook that pike i certainly would've kept it, of course i would've had to check the reg's to see if i could've legally. lake #4(rainbows and pike) didn't produce a dam thing either. i did see some big 'bows' cruising though but could'nt get no interest. the pike was a nice surprise and all three species were taken on a small brown beadhead(orange) bugger.
I finally had a chance to see what this area has to offer. most of the popular and close rivers are high, off color and still rising. one of the fly shops suggested heading about an hour away to a river that is dam controlled and not affected by run-off so much. the river was still high but at least clarity was good, it was pretty tough to wade. i fished it in a couple of different sections, between lakes but it wasn't till i stopped along the side of the road and made a few casts in the lake did i finally get my first notion of a fish. landed a solid brown on a small black egg sucking leech. one major difference between here and utah is the constant signs regarding bears. i guess i will have to start getting used to these guys. i also will have to start packing some heat for the just in case situations.