Showing posts with label float. Show all posts
Showing posts with label float. Show all posts

Friday, July 27, 2018


Back in June I came across some free time, and decided to get out in the raft for a Twin Cities Metro musky hunt.  The homie Travis met me at the boat launch and right when we were about to launch another small water craft pulled up and it was my other homie Lucas.  He was about to call it a day, but decided to stay out on the water and float around with us and fish.

It was a good day on the water, because, Lucas and I raced our watercraft against one another...and I won.  Lucas does have plans to add flames to his watercraft, which in theory give him a few extra ponies, but I still think I'll be able to take him.  We shall see.  Oh, and Travis caught his personal best northern pike on the fly!!  Well, at the time it was his personal best.  He has since caught bigger, and he's totally getting addicted to the warm water game.

Here's a short video from the day.

Travis Instagram - @The_Ravvit
Lucas Instagram - @Strangeflies
Lucas also does art and here's the link to his website -> CLICK HERE

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Illinois Smallmouth Alliance & DRiFT Present: 2015 Early Show

Show season has begun.  Last month the ISA (Illinois Smallmouth Alliance)and DRIFT (DuPage River Fly Tyers) hosted their annual "Early Show" at the Mayslake Peabody Estate in Oak Brook.

The plan was to meet up and fish Salt Creek near the show with Dave of Chi-Tie / Urban Assault Fly Fishing, and Adam of Adam Alexander Photography at 06:30, but I had one of those mornings.  You know, the one where you just continue to sleep, and wake up at a time, later than the one discussed.

I arrived at the show around 12:30.  Much later than I had anticipated.  I was looking forward to sitting in on a presentation on fly fishing the Driftless Area of Wisconsin presented by my buddy PJ, but unfortunately when I sat down, he began the Q&A, which normally only takes place at the end.

PJ and his wife Donna are two of the most pleasant people you will ever meet.  They both love to fish, and are both very knowledgeable, so, if you're ever looking for a guide for Southwest Wisconsin, shoot him an email.  He even has cool shirts!
Facebook -- PJ's Guide Service
Email/Contact --
One of my few purchases at the show. Artwork by Jonathan Marquardt of Badaxe Design.
Throughout the show, there were casting demonstrations going on outside on the lawn.  Someone mentioned to me that if I haven't casted a double handed/spey/switch rod, that I should go out there and try it out, because, Douglas, the guy teaching it was awesome.  

They were spot on about the instructor.  His instruction was knowledgeable, clear, easy to follow, and funny.  After learning how to spey and switch cast, I now want a two handed rod.  While I only spent about an hour with Douglas learning to cast, I know that I can recommend him as an instructor, because, I know if I ever need to relearn it, I'm going back to him.

Here's a cool guiding service with some really cool dudes from Wisconsin.  It was great talking with them, especially, learning about "Crash Camp."  Check out their site for more information, and some fun facts about the guys.  I got a good laugh from it.

I received this fly from one of the local tyers of DRiFT (DuPage River Fly Tyers).  I was told that it's an excellent pattern for crappie, and I think I should believe him, because, the tyer goes by the name of Crappie John.  Thank you, for the fly, John!

I'm a fan of stickers and cool t-shirts, and when I saw the table for The Driftless Angler, I got exited, because, I have been wanting one of their shirts for a long time now.  Unfortunately, I didn't have much time to talk with the guy working the booth, but I did get the t-shirt I've been wanting.

I also picked up some awesome stickers from them, too.  Looking forward to finding a home for these.

Website -- Driftless Angler
Facebook -- Driftless Angler

When I was finished learning how to cast with a two handed rod.  I went over and talked with Matt Sment about Tenkara, and even learned how to cast one.  Interesting stuff.  I can definitely see myself using one of these rods for bluegill and my small creek fishing for smallies.

Website -- Badger Tenkara
Facebook -- Badger Tenkara

After the show I was walking out with Dave and we stopped by his buddy Abe's (Blackwater Fly Fishing) truck for a beer, and some great conversation.  I didn't get a chance to talk much with them during the show, but the conversation in the parking lot between the guys with Blackwater Fly Fishing, Black Earth Angling, and Tight Lines Fly Fishing Company, I can tell that all of them are pretty cool dudes, who I wouldn't mind going fishing with.

Email/Contact --

Thanks, again, for the beer, Abe!!!!

Blackwater Fly Fishing is sponsored by Stevens Point Brewery, a local brewery of the area they fish in Wisconsin.  How awesome is that!!!  That's the best sponsorship I have heard of.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Float The Fox

Floated the Fox River with my homie UA-Dave (Urban Assault Fly Fishing) and his canoe, in search of anything that would bite.  While driving in the morning my car thermometer was saying it was 32 degrees outside, and it felt every bit of it.  I knew the catching was going to be tough.  Dave ended the day with 1 smallie caught in a great section of water that would more than likely produce a fish every cast, and I finished with 2.

It was a fun float on an unfamiliar section of the river, we both caught fish, and we found a great bar with awesome food and drink to end the day.

Here's a short video of the outing.

+Howard Levett  - I came across something in the middle of the river that you would enjoy seeing.

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

High Water Floating

Recently, I was invited out to float the Fox River with Kurt from a Tight Loop magazine and Sean from Rushing Waters. I was pretty excited and nervous at the same time. I was excited, because, I have never fished from a drift boat before, and I was just thinking of all of the knowledge I could gain from these two experienced fly anglers. I was nervous, because, having never been in a drift boat before meant, I didn't know how to row a drift boat, and I was well aware of the new guy rule when it came to rowing. I should also mention, I was scared of everyone seeing my non-tight looped casting abilities.

The weather looked picture perfect, but man, was that wind howling! There were some storms that passed a few days prior to our float, so, the water levels were up about 2 feet, if I remember correctly. We were all in search of smallies, the occasional pike, and maybe even a surprise musky...but we weren't holding our breath.

With the high water there were quite a few flooded areas. This is where the carp were all feasting and soaking up the sun, and we even spotted a few pike in spawning mode. We switched our tactics and tried sight fishing for these golden behemoths, but were not able to find any takers.

The fishing was tough, and 1 smallie was boated all day by Kurt. He hooked up with it on a very nice cast underneath a bridge. The smallie was right where it should have been.

All in all it was a great time. There were a bunch of laughs, a few beers, ciders, and doughnuts. Another "THANK YOU" goes out to Kurt and Sean! Thank you, for not making me row on such a windy day, giving me the front of the boat, and teaching me proper drift boat etiquette on poach casting. Haha

I owe you guys big, next time!

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Snow Pike

Not wanting to pack up our fishing gear for the winter just yet. My buddy Dave (Urban Assault Fly Fishing) and I decided to take a float down the Des Plaines River just outside of Chicago, and fish for some feisty Northern Pike.

The day started out a lovely 23 degree's. We were well aware that it was going to be cold, and that we had snow in the forecast, but that did detour us one bit. We spent the first 1/2 of the day casting with no luck. After a few offering changes, Dave, was able to hook up with his first DPR Pike.

An average sized DPR Pike for Dave in the midst of some snowfall (Photo by: Myself)
As the day went on, the snow began to fall steadily, and the temperature was up and down ranging from cold to really cold. Dave continued to hook up and find these feisty pike, and totaled 3 on the day. I on the other hand, was not able to hook up with any. I did, however, have 2 really nice blow ups.

Anchored down in front of a warm water discharge. (Photo by: Dave)
Although, I was not able to hook up with any pike, I would still consider this a great outing. Floating down the Des Plaines River whiled it snowed, chucking big buck tail streamers for northern pike - Hell yeah, I'd do it again!

One of the 2 low head dams we had to portage. (Photo by: Myself)

Broke the oar in half breaking through an iced over section of river. Hand Paddle!! (Photo by: Dave)

Snow, ice, and a frozen buck tail streamer. (Photo by: Myself)

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Kayaking for Pike

Had a friend invite me out to float the DPR (Des Plaines River) for some northern pike action. I was excited! I usually fish from the banks of the river with my bait caster, because, wading is prohibited in Cook County, and it would be near impossible to cast a decent sized fly with it being so wooded.

Got my chance to fly fish the DPR! For the past few weeks I have been tying some big flies for musky. The night before my float I thought about the lures I fish with success on the DPR....a fire tiger Rapala husky jerk. So, naturally I had to tie something that resembled that color scheme and lure. Here's what I came up with. I only tied one, and that proved to be enough.

4/0 TMC 600S hook, buck tail, flash, flashabou, grizzly hackle, clear cure goo eyes, and head. Very proud of this one. Came out exactly how I pictured it in my head.

Long float story short. The pike loved the fly! The first one was a little hammer handle. It was just a little bit bigger than the fly, and I hooked up with it on an errant cast while I was untangling line from my rod. The second pike I caught was 24/25 inches, and healthy! Missed the fly 2 times, and hooked up with him on the 3rd. I was pumped! Unfortunately, I was unable to get a picture of that one, because, it flopped out of my grip and back into the water. Ended the day with 3 pike, sore knees, and back. lol I need my own kayak. One with some leg room!
I could get used to this....but with a much roomier 'yak.
FishDank and his brother in-law
The first pike.
The 3rd pike.

Hopefully, I'll be posting about a successful trip for musky next week!