Central Wisconsin Chapter of Trout Unlimited

Conserving, Protecting and Restoring Coldwater Fisheries

Flies and Fly Tying

The Future of our Sport

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The Future of our Sport
About this Blog/Photo page This page exist for members to tell their stories, ideas, and concerns. The topics should be related to fishing, TU, conservation, etc. Do you have a picture that would interest others? If so, send it along with at least five sentences telling the story behind the photo. Do you have comments on CWTU activities? Write them up and eMail them to me. Do you have ideas that are hard to communicate at meetings, but you would like others to hear---send them to me. Hey! Help me with this site. Contributions should be no longer than 2/3 of one page. I will leave them on for a month or two. I am the gate keeper. If I feel the material is inappropriate it won't get posted. John Gremmer, 920-582-7802 Here is my story: While tying deer hair caddis flies in Michigan over the weekend I ran out of deer hair. I knew of a source close to the cabin, but it was just a matter of convincing them to help me out in a pinch. So I took my Dr. Slicks outside and talked to one of the locals about making a contribution. She enjoyed the corn, but wasn't too keen on a haircut. Bob Smaglik, 2/1/2011 Ira Giese spent the week of December 2010 in Arkansas fishing tailwaters. Here are some of the fruits of his labors. From CWTU Board member Bob Smaglik: I went exploring last week for Brook trout on the spring ponds above Cedar Spring Creek, right where we did stream work last year. It was a beautiful Fall day and I was fortunate to come across a school of at least 100 brookies scurrying past me in the canoe. Largest was 12". What a cool thing to see in nature. Sunken Beetle Strikes Again: It always amazes me how the same flies work year after year. Here is a 13 inch, SW Wisconsin Brown Trout caught on a Sunken Beetle. This is one of those flies that can be fished several ways. You can just lob it upstream and let it bounce back to you, you can swing it, and in the case of this fish you can strip it in. On this particular day the trout liked the stripping method. See the recipe for this fly in on our Fly Tying page. I caught this fish this September while fishing with my friend Rick Fahrenkrug. Yes, I used my Pentax Optio W30 for the photo. Life is good! Photo by John Gremmer, 10/27/2010 From Dave Johnson, Last weekend (Oct. 8-10) my brother Richard(left) and I(right) were fishing on the Pere Marquette River in Michigan. Large salmon were on a shallow rock bar and we were able to see them fighting for position on the bars. Many were hooked and a few were landed. It was some of the best fishing of my life! 10/26/2020 From: CWTU's newsletter editor, David Seligman, seen here fishing in Door County: "Nice hen. Notice what she's filling my pocket with!!!!!" Oct. 2010 I noticed that the CW website was looking for bird photos. These Turkey Vulture chicks were photographed in a barn in Waushara County just east of Wild Rose. There have been two chicks raised in the same spot for three years, at least, from 2008-2010. Photo by Tim Meyer Tim & Tom Meyer (Tim is president of the Clear Waters Chapter in Eau Claire) recently returned from a fly fishing trip to Montana. We fished 5 streams in 5 days from 9/18 to 9/22. Starting in Big Sky on the Gallatin, then on to the Firehole, Madison, Slough Creek in Yellowstone Park. We finished on the Big Spring Creek in Lewistown. Hearing Elk bugling and fishing alongside huge Bison was an awesome experience. Hoppers worked pretty consistantly but there were fantastic BWO hatches on the Slough Creek and Big Spring. No. 20 hooks with 6x tippet worked best for these mid afternoon hatches during bright sunny and windy days. The hatches lasted less than 2 hours but we had fast and furious action during that time. All cutthroats about 14-16 inches on the Slough Creek. We were warned by some hikers that a grizzley bear was spotted nearby. Since we had hiked 2 miles from the car to fish an isolated valley upstream it made for an interesting day! All browns and rainbows on the Big Spring with some reaching 18 inches. These fish were not as fussy and could be caught on hoppers or streamers but again a small BWO pattern worked best. We drove through a snow storm in North Dakota on the way out and flash flooding through Minnesota & Wisconsin on the return trip. Other than that, it was a fantastic trip I would highly recommend. Tom Meyer, 9/27/2020 Ira Giese in England: When I heard that Ira was traveling to England with his family I asked him to find a fly shop and buy me $20 worth of flies. He found a shop and maybe he bought a couple of Hardy reels too! John Hi John, these fish(Dr. Jensen, shown above,sent several pictures of big, beautiful rainbows) are all different fish caught on June 4 at Frog Hollow, Georgia. I used your sunken beetle, size 10, under a strike indicator. The biggest fish broke off on the strike! I saw her lying uptight against the bank, walked way around and upstream before my cast from the shore. Third drift was right in the seam and bam! I can not believe how vicious the takes are on this fly. Great work! I am going fishing with Alistair Thursday, should be great. Doc, 9/5/2010 Scott Bunde, WDNR, forwarded this image of one year old trout that were collected on the West Branche of the White in Waushara County on August 17, 2010. Notice all three types of stream trout here, from the top, Brook, Rainbow, and Brown. This is good news about the productivity and health of one of our area's trout streams. I am just guessing on the one in the middle. John Gremmer, 8/18/2010 Exploring the trout world? CWTU Board Member and Program Chair Bob Smaglik(fourth from left) is seen rafting down the Gallatin River in Montana. Bob's wife, Laurie, is seen sitting behind Bob. John Gremmer, 8/2010 Tom Young's brother George Young builds, designs, and uses these offroad chairs. He is trying to get 2000 hits this year on his website. If he gets them, he will donate a chair to someone who cannot afford it. PS. George already has donated at least six chairs. He is Tom's hero! http://www.axessoutdoors.com/ Emubugger works again: This is a picture of one of the brown trout that Dick Pollock caught on a recent trip to Southwest Wisconsin. He caught it on one of the emubuggers, with a purple bead, that he tied. The day started out slow because of the water quality and conditions following the recent rains and flash flooding. After moving to a different stream, with better water quality, the fish cooperated with a lot of fish being caught and released. Photo and comments by Bob Haase , 6/27/2010 CWTU River Keepers Lucas Schulz and Dick Pollock are shown water monitoring on the Wedde Creek. Both are members of our river keepers team and Lucas is a student at UW- Oshkosh. They are collecting aquatic macro invertebrates for their monthly report. Bob Haase is the team leader and other members are Jim Humphrey, Carrie Gizelbach, and Chuck Lear. Photo by Bob Haase, 6/25/10 John, Great day yesterday for canoeing down river and fishing. All three caught on large orange popper lure in 2-3' of water along shore. Thanks for the tip...we're already trying to find a day to go back. Next trip we'll spend more time fishing. Yesterday was probably more canoeing than fishing, but we were successful with both! Brian & Brett(bottom) Nason Note: Brian and Brett took my FVTC Introduction to Fly Fishing and Fly Fishing Class last Winter. The water is high and it looks like Brett's Smallie is a little bigger. 6/22/2010 Big Brown: Tom Poullette forwarded this photo of his friend Collin Weekly and the beautiful Brown Trout that he recently caught on a Wisconsin stream. Tom Poullette, 6/16/2010 CWTU. 2010, Fly Fishing School: Attached is proof that beginners can get it done. The subject is Jeff Chitko, and he had never touched a fly rod until he showed up at the school. He caught four, too bad I didn't get shots of the big one (about 7 inches). Mike Stapleton, 2010 Hex Carpet: David Seligman sent me this photo of a "super Hex carpet hatch" that he experienced around the first of June in Central Wisconsin. You will have to "beat" the name of the stream out of him. Go get them! June 3, 2010 CWTU Board Member and newsletter editor, David Seligman, teaches a future fly fisher the art of fly tying at the Beaver Dam Outdoor Expo. Bob Haase organizes this program for the Wisconsin State Council of Trout Unlimited. This image ran in the Journal-Sentinel Online along with a brief story. 6/2/2010 The Brookie News Editor, David Seligman, snapped this photo of Jim Chitko, Appleton, displaying a fish he caught while being guided by David. Jim is a member of the 2010 Introduction to Fly Fishing and Fly Tying course offered by Fox Valley Technical College and taught by John Gremmer and Bob Smaglik. David, earlier in the evening gave a fine presentation on fishing streamers(Tracy Moran presented a nymphing demonstration) and was one of the many volunteers who helped make this May 18 on-the-stream class a huge success. Every student caught at least one fish. Photo by David Seligman, 5/21/2010 Lynn Ann Sauby, Menasha, captured this image of the 2010 FVTC Introduction to Fly Fishing and Fly Tying Class during their May 18 on-the-stream session. Students and CWTU volunteers are showing class members macroinvertebrates that trout love to eat. The class was taught by John Gremmer and Bob Smaglik, it meets eight times for three hour sessions. Photo by Lynn Ann Sauby, 5/21/2010 CWTU President John Tucker Fishes Mexico: A baby Tarpon from Isla Blanca, MX, April 13, 2010. They sure don't fight like babies. This one was about 5 pounds, but felt a lot bigger. Caught 3, lost 2. Also caught a small Baracuda. All made more exciting by having a large Croc that was following the boat. I could have put a fly between his eyes, but decided that wasn't a good idea. Fortunately he was after baby geese and not us. April 20, 2010 Hi Guys, I met Cliff at Spring Creek on Monday afternoon for a couple hours of Flyfishing and to try out my new Olympus Camera.. I would have taken an underwater shot, but there's no way I was going to hold my hand underwater !!!! Maybe next time..... This brown took a size 26, midge emerger, on a barely 40 degree day... Pretty amazing.... We also saw a couple olives floating on the surface, that were completely ignored by the trout.... Hold on.....Spring is just around the corner.... Cheers, Art Kempf, State College, PA, Feb. 22, 2010 Master Fly Tier and long-time CWTU member Rich Mlodzik instructing CWTU's Master's Fly Tying Series in January of 2010. Rich presented three of his favorite flies to the group. Photo by John Gremmer, Feb. 11, 2010 From Ray White in the Seattle area: John, You've asked for a best bird photo several times. "Best" causes difficulty re birds and photos. It's like trying to decide what's best, not just apples and oranges but---the tastiest orange you ever had, your fondest creek, and grandpa's old hammer that's form-fittingest in your hand. Well, I'm sending a selection of "-ests," none of them "best." (I selected two to post here--the red-bellied woodpecker and the short eared owl. John) Ray says: "Red-bellied Woodpecker - My favoritest photo, so far. After years of trying to get a satisfactory shot of this home species (many at my place on the Mecan), I finally connected with this one in late afternoon light, October 2008 in a friend's idyllic woods near Wedde Creek. The oaks harbored at least five kinds of woodpecker that day." Ray White is a former WDNR fisheries biologist, he got his doctorate at Michigan State and taught at Michigan State and Montana State University, he has his own trout stream restoration consultant business, and he spends lots of time photographing birds around the world. Ray has a cabin on the Mecan River, in the Richford area, and is a frequent visitor to our area. Below picture: Ray says, "Short-eared Owl. The spookiest shot. It prowled over a coastal wetland north of Seattle in February 2008. I have a special memory of watching these daytime hunters in April 1951 from a Prairie Chicken blind on Buena Vista Marsh in Portage County, Wisconsin." To see more of Ray's bird photography and go to his website----CLICK HERE! Gents, Dick Krause showed me an original Arling Erickson catalog last year. He was kind enough to subsequently let me make a photocopy, and a scan of that copy is attached to this email I believe we should publish it on the CWTU website; it is a fascinating document from our not-too-distant past. Perhaps we should also include it as an addendum to the next Brookie News? Just look at those Leonard and Orvis rods! I love what Arling wrote about the fly patterns - not much has really changed in the marketing. The most important words of all are the very last sentence on the very last page - read and enjoy! Tight Lines! Alistair CLICK HERE to see Arling Erickson's vintage catalog. Central Wisconsin Trout Unlimited fly tying legend Gene West in his tying room. Gene can tie anything, but people are most impressed with his Hex patterns. Gene tied up some Hex patterns, including the Hart Washer, an original Arling Erickson creation, for our recent "Night Of The Hex" program. Gene is experiencing some health problems and we wish him the best. Thanks go to Ira Giese for contacting Gene and displaying his flies at the event. Photo by Ira Giese, comments by John Gremmer "Hart Washer" Gene West tied this version of the Arling Erickson original Hex pattern. Arling named it after his friend, and often fishing partner, former Green Bay Packer, Super Bowl Champ, Doug Hart. Doug is still fishing and guiding. More on the "Hart Washer" from Ira Giese: John, here is what Arling Erickson wrote in the Brookie News about the Hart Washer in approx 1975. "This fly is an offshoot of the Wulff series of high-floating dry flies. Named after Doug Hart and tied with the Green Bay Packers' color scheme, it is a top producer in the Hexagenia hatch, when the waves from the lunkers are washing the bank. Hence the name , Hart Washer. We were looking for a fly with high visibility and the ability to stay afloat in the darkness, and yet have the character of a dry fly. In this pattern we have all the above qualities." Tom Young, Waupaca, took this picture recently of a nice Brown at the end of his tippet. Tom has been a featured presenter at TroutFest for years. This year at TroutFest '10 he will present a program on Mayflies. To see more of Tom's images, and to possible purchase some, check out http://fineartamerica.com/profiles/thomas-young.html/. John Gremmer, 12/28/09 Hey John, I would like to submit this image for the CWTU site. This is one of the most productive patterns I've used for the month of November on the Lake Michigan tributaries. Hence the name, November Spey. This color combination just seams to catch fish in Nov. One of my go to units. Of special note is the silver doctor light blue hackle. Dave Nickels, 12/23/09 John Tucker lands a big one! Hey! Our president can fish! A nice steelhead caught on a Lake Superior tributary. John Gremmer, 12/22/09 Ira Giese's grandson(three years old), Connor was out ice fishing recently and he was able to reel in about ten bluegills. He actually stayed out there for almost two and a half hours. About 90 minutes longer than his Dad thought he would make it! He had a lot of fun, hopefully we will get out a few more times winter. It is great to see Dad's taking their kids out early and getting them involved in the outdoors. It leads to a lifetime of fun and adventure. To Connor's father Chris---keep up the good work! John Gremmer, 12/22/09 From Tom Poullette in Florida: "With all my SKILL at use, I subdued this ?????? Lane Snapper!! 84* here today! John Gremmer, 12/19/09 CWTU's Roger Jacobsen, Oshkosh, catches trout in Florida too! A sea trout! Tom Poullette, 12/19/09 Coho On The Fly: Dave Nickels, Two Rivers, holds a beautiful Coho that he caught recently with one of his special tributary fly creations. Dave invited me over to the Lake Michigan shore for a day of fishing. Dave hooked up with three other big fish and landed a large Steelhead with his spey rod. John Gremmer, 12/4/09 Blind Squirrel: As the saying goes, "Even a blind squirrel finds a nut once-in-awhile"! A surprise invitation to Bob Haase and myself, from Sheyboygan River guide John Matenaer, to fish the River Wildlife area near Kohler, led to a day of learning and great angling. John was able to offer suggestions on how I could improve my technique. Getting my drag set straight, getting the drift right on the streamer's swing, getting rid of slack line, not clamping my finger down on the line and the cork handle after I had a fish on, were just some of the things I learned or relearned. Once again, it was driven home, how valuable it is to have someone who really knows how to fish a specific venue---show you how its done. I hope to repay John for his hospitality by taking him down the Menominee River next Summer in my drift boat. Oh! Yes! About the fish---a beautiful German Brown Trout. I'll let Haase tell his own story. John Gremmer, 12/4/09 Jason Weekly, Collins' brother(see four pictures down), shows off a 32 inch, 12 pound Steelhead caught on a Michigan tributary on a recent trip. Both Collins and Jason guide at our annual CWTU fly fishing school. Tom Poullette, 12/4/09 CWTU Board member and newsletter editor, David Seligman, holds a giant lake run, Brown Trout, that he caught swinging flies on a Wisconsin, Lake Michigan tributary. David was fishing with a friend, who had caught a Coho, a Steelhead, and a Brown before David hooked this one. John Gremmer, 11/19/09 CWTU BANQUET, OCTOBER 15, 2009: Sue and Russ Bouck receive the Chapter's most prestigious award, the "Brookie Award". Thanks go to Banquet Chair David Seligman, Bob Haase, Linn Beck, and many others to numerous to mention for all their efforts. The biggest thanks go to those who took time to support our mission by attending the banquet. THANK YOU!!!! Big Fish in Michigan: Steve Weekly's son Collins--CWTU member--Michigan-yesterday--isn't that an ugly fly!! Tom Poullette, 11/14/09 DAN Colligan with just one of many real beauties he captured in IDAHO. If there were 26 hours in a day----he'd fish them!!!!!!!!!! Tom Poullette, 10/21/09 CWTU's Fly Fishing School Chair, Dan harmon III working one of the many braids on the Henry's Fork. Dan, along with Tom Poullette, Jerry Strom, and Dick Krause spent time together this Fall in this area. Tom Poullette, 10/21/09 Nice hooked jaw male--Caught on Henry's Fork by Tom Poullette, on a size18 scud pattern, borrowed from Dick krause. According to Tom, Dick is the nymph expert of the bunch(Jerry Strom, Dan Harmon III, Tom Poullette, and Dick). Tom Poullette, 10/21/09 David Seligman, Editor of CWTU's newsletter, The Brookie News, is shown on the left hooked up to a nice Brown Trout on Montana's Bighorn River. To the right you see David carefully releasing the fish. David fished the Bighorn River along with a party of CWTU members including Jim Murphy, Bob Haase, Ira Giese, Art Kempf, and John Gremmer during August of 2009. Bob Haase, 9/25/09 CWTU Member Jim Murphy displays a very nice Rainbow Trout he caught while kayak fishing on the Bighorn River at Ft. Smith, Montana. Jim said his best fly was a yellow bellied hopper that he tied on site. Bob Haase, 9/25/09 Ira Giese, CWTU Membership Chair and Master's Fly Tying Series Coordinator, holds the last fish of the day. In the background you can see the landing that came after a 9 mile float. The fish measured 19 inches and was quickly released. Ira caught the fish using a hopper pattern as he was floating towards the landing. Photo by John Gremmer, 9/25/09 Cedar Springs Trout: These trout were collected during the September 21, 2009, CWTU Workday at the Cedar Springs Creek. Scott Bundee, WDNR did the shocking and the workcrew was delighted at the sight of all the fish. David Seligman, 9/25/09 Start them off young: I just love this picture of Tom Lohuis and his son John out fishing on the Kenai River. John's grandfather, Art Lohuis, a long-time guide in the Jackson Hole, Wyoming area and a fellow retired educator, forwarded the picture. The picture was taken September 18, 2009. It is great to see three generations out enjoying the outdoors together. The fish was a 24 inch, Dolly Varden. The fly was an egg pattern with a size 10 barbless hook. Thanks for sending the picture Art! John Gremmer, 9/25/09 I stitched three photos together to create this panorama of the Tongue River, in Wyoming, downstream from the Bear Lodge, at Burgess Junction. Art Kempf and I spent a day here. One of the most beautiful places I have ever been. We walked as far as you can see to the left and then more. There were lots of fish and they were eating. The wind was blowing hoppers across the meadow towards us---they were bouncing off us. Many landed in the river. The biggest fish was 14 inches, but most of them ran about 12. All on hopper patterns. We saw a few hikers and one other fisherman with a plastic bag full of eaters. The ride in was eventful, the road was four wheel drive only, with lots of ruts and large oil pan destroying stones sticking up, we had to open and close five gates, and we saw a herd of five bull moose. It's about a mile from the truck to this spot where I took the three images. The Tongue splits into two branches off to the right and they come together in the middle of the picture. The little white speck to the right of the big rocks on the left is Art---just barely perceptible. Its true that the biggest fish are upstream from the lodge, but maybe size isn't everything. John Gremmer, 9/20/09 Moose Dreams, It was about 7:00 pm and I had just made my way through the willow brush to my truck after fishing the Tongue River in Wyoming. The altitude was about 8500 feet and the Tongue is in the Bighorn Mountains---on National Forest Land. I sat down on the tailgate and started to take my boots off when I looked up and saw two moose come out of the brush in front of me and start feeding in a pond. I got a chance to take about 35 images. The bull hung around even though he knew I was a short distance away. The cow wandered off. Before I left for out West I bought a used 70-300 mm lens at the Camera Corner in Green Bay for $80---my expensive lens were in the bag and as things always work out----I had the $80 lens on the camera and that is what I used. It worked out quite well actually. The next day Art Kempf and I were driving(crawling actually) along a four-wheel drive road back into a valley to fish when we came upon five bull moose, with gigantic antlers, very close to the truck. They were contentedly eating willow brush---this seems to be their favorite food. I took another 35 or more pictures. I like the circles in this picture and look what he has done to the texture of the water around his mouth. He even has catch light in his eye. Members of our party often came face to face with moose while fishing the Tongue. They're awful big and they start your heart racing. This is quite a thrill for a Wisconsin boy John Gremmer, 9/7/09 Trout Dreams, There are two schools of thought when it comes to photography today. One side believes they should use all the technology available to be creative and make interesting images and the other side believes in realism and not tampering with what comes out of the camera. The first group has caused people to wonder about the authenticity of photos(with over saturation of colors, high dynamic range photos, super sharpening, and composites) and to say they have been "Photoshopped." The second group may be clinging to realism because they can't master the new technology. There are still people who claim that film is better----of course, it has been proven that digital is far superior. I like to dabble in both areas, but I have a strong lean towards creativity. Bring on the technology! The below self portrait has not been photoshopped. My shadow, my hand holding a fly rod, a fish located in my head's shadow----title, "Trout Dreams." (Fish have always been in my mind---it started when I was young and casting Daredevils(sp?) for Northerns in the Peshtigo River.) The picture was taken after a 1500 ft. climb straight down into the valley of the Tongue River in Wyoming's Bighorn Mountains. We started at 9500 feet and ended at 8000(Not bad for two 66 year old geezers!). The fish were crazy for grasshopper patterns and were very easy to catch. This one is a Rainbow Trout. The standard "grip and grin" pictures of fishermen holding big are tedious---here I am trying for a fresh new approach. My right hand holds the camera. Is it "art" or is it a "snapshot?" John Gremmer, 9/9/09 Don Larmouth: Many of you have enjoyed the programs that Don Larmouth has presented to our chapter on subjects such as lake fishing for trout and salt water fishing. Don has not let some recent health problems get him down. CLICK HERE to read a letter that Don sent me recently. This is why I love him. John Gremmer Funny looking trout: Jeff Wegand can be identified as a CWTU member by his "Brookie" hat. During the Summer, between nights of Hex fishing, Jeff likes to fish for bass and gills. Jeff, his wife, and two children, live in Berlin. Bill Millonig's 42 inch Musky, caught on a small green popper, after it swallowed the 15 inch smallmouth that was originally hooked on the popper. The fish was safely released. It was a team effort, with Ira Giese in charge of boat control, and Bill the commander-in-chief, with the fish on his fly rod! They were fishing on a Wisconsin River. (The blue board is 32 inches, and we had another tape measure to measure the additional 10 inches.) Photo by Ira Giese, 6/09 Pictured is Jeff Knetter, who came back from Idaho to vacation with his family in WI. He spent one day fishing with me, talking about waterfowl, and our Large Munsterlander dogs! Jeff is the head waterfowl biologist for the Idaho Dept of Fish & Game. Photo and caption by Ira Giese, 6/25/09 OK! Once again Mother Nature has amazed me. Last night I was standing in the middle of the biological phenomenon known as the "Hex Hatch". "Billions and Billions" were all around and on me. A person fearful of bugs would certainly be driven over the edge. I took my Pentax Optio W30 and pointed it skyward with the flash activated(after all it Êwas 10:30 p.m.) and snapped this picture. There's a lot here to see. The food was there for the fish, but they weren't hungry. The fish won this round. On the way across the river, near the bank, in the shallow water, I witnessed another phenomenon---crayfish harvesting hex spinners. They stood on their tip toes and used their claws to snag them for snack time. We really do live in an incredible area of the World. Photo and comments by John Gremmer, 6/18/09 Lynn Ann Sauby, artist, educator, hunter, and fervent fly fisher tackles a large Brown Trout during the 2009 Hex emergence. Lynn Ann and others were sitting on the bank waiting for the bugs to appear when she spotted a rising fish. A cast, a battle, a landing, and rejoicing for another gift from our central Wisconsin trout streams. John Nebel, Stream Dreams Outfitters, captured the moment at the day's last light. Photo by John Nebel, 6/09 Brian Tesch, Winchester, gets down low to battle it out with a nice Brown Trout. Brian and John Gremmer were killing time waiting for the "Hex hatch" to start and a few fish started rising early. Brian was using a dun pattern of his own design. Photo by John Gremmer, 6/22/09 Brian Tesch's flybox: Brian opened his Hex flybox and I was impressed with the nice variety of his hand tied flies. He was ready for a night on the water. Photo by John Gremmer, 6/23/09 Before the hatch: Why is it that deer are less afraid of you when you are waist deep in a trout stream? Brian Tesch and I were waiting for the Hexes to drop in and this deer walked into the middle of the stream and started sticking her head underwater to eat the elodea plants. We talked in normal voice levels and it didn't seem to spook her. Did it ever occur to you that catching fish is often the secondary reward? Yes, it was a foggy night and yes, the Hexes did come and we did get the secondary reward. Photo by John Gremmer, 6/22/09 Wired for the Hex Hatch: Nothing stops guide, artist, Stream Dreams Outfitter, John Nebel, Menasha, from fishing Central Wisconsin's Hex Hatch. John's doctors have ordered his heart to be monitored, but John doesn't let it cramp his style. But, will all that white flesh scare the fish? Or, is this how John keeps people out of his favorite Hex hole? John Gremmer, 6/23/09 Brian Tesch, Winchester, the father of this website, used one of his own patterns to land this nice Brown while fishing the Hex hatch on June 22. The hatch was sparse, but enough fish were feeding to make it interesting. Photo by John Gremmer Good Eat'n! As he did last year, my grandson Tom did it again and he ate both of them as the Judge looked on. There was only one other trout caught on this year's opener and that was his dad's. Tom Poullette, 6/18/09 CWTU member Tracy Moran teaches a kid how to tie flies at the June 10, 2009 Heckrodt Wetland Reserve Kid's Fishing Day at Jefferson Park in Menasha. Rick Fahrenkrug, Al Lee, and John Gremmer also assisted with the tying instruction. This is what you missed! If you didn't attend the June meeting at John Tucker''s cottage on the Pine River in Saxeville you missed this wonderful picnic buffet prepared by his family. Thanks go to John and his family for hosting a Summer meeting for the second time. Photo by John Gremmer, 6/18/09 CWTU/Elliot Donnelly Chapter of Trout Unlimited Workday guides Tom Poullette, Dick Kraus, and Dan Harmon III enjoy the morning at the worksite before heading out with EDTU members for area streams. Photo by Jerry Strom, 4/18/09 May 16, 2009, CWTU/Elliot Donnelly Chapter of Trout Unlimited Workday on Lawrence Creek. Members of both chapters worked very hard placing recycled Christmas trees along Lawrence Creek to control the channel. A noon lunch was served and many participants enjoyed an afternoon of fishing. Many thanks to our Illinois friends for their efforts. From the left: Bill Wobbekind, EDTU, Alistair Stewart, CWTU, Art Kempf, Spring Creek Chapter TU, State College, PA, Dan Postelnick EDTU, and with back to camera, Larry Erenberg, CWTU. Photo by Jerry Strom. CWTU's Mark Brosseau hands an ice cube tray full of macroinvertebrates to students at CWTU's 2009 Annual Fly Fishing School. Photo by Jerry Strom, 5/28/09 CWTU's Dan Harmon(left), Director of CWTU's Annual Fly Fishing School, prepares students for their on-stream fly presentation and entomology lessons. Photo by Jerry Strom, 5/30/09 CWTU's Alistair Stewart(left) provides casting instruction to Chad Tucker at CWTU's 2009 Fly Fishing School. In the background other students receive instruction from other instructors. Photo by Jerry Strom, 5/30/09 Watch your step! You never know what you might step on while walking along a trout stream. Earlier in the day, while walking along the stream, I almost lost a toe to a tub sized snapping turtle, later while casting I looked down and there was this motionless fawn. Another step and I would have been on him/her. After a quick shot with my Pentax Optio W30, I was on my way. Mother would be back! John Gremmer, 5/24/09 After a day of slinging two nymphs and a strike indicator upstream, it was a relief to see some rises. I tied on a size 19 foam flying ant and a tiger grabs it. Yes, a rare tiger trout---a cross between a Brown and a Brookie. John Gremmer, 5/24/09 CWTU Water Monitoring Training Session along Bird Creek in Waushara County on April 25, 2009. Lin Beck, Water Monitoring Chair, pokes throught a collection of macroinvertebrates in the white tub while others enjoy the moment. John Gremmer, 5/24/09 CWTU 2009 Casting Clinic: Here are some Casting Clinic participants(from left to right)---Tim Landwehr, Tight Lines Fly Fishing Companty, De Pere, Steve Fisher, Russ Bouck, Casting Clinic Co-Chair, John Gremmer, Dan Harmon, CWTU Fly Fishing School Chair, John Nebel, Stream Dreams Outfitter, Menasha. Photo by Jerry Strom, 4/28/09 To see more photos of the casting clinic CLICK HERE! Golden Stonefly on Waupaca River: Guide Tom Young helped me locate this Golden Stonefly on a rock along the Waupaca River recently. We saw the nymph crawl out of the water and up the rock. The whole emergence process takes about 25 minutes. I snapped shot after shot during the process---from nymph to fully pumped-up winged adult. The picture shows the adult standing over the husk of its former self---his wings have not been completely pumped up yet. I was as thrilled with this accomplishment as I have been with any event in my fish catching life. I used my Pentax K10D, dSLR, Sigma 180mm macro, tripod, and a cable release---editing was done in Aperture 2. John Gremmer, 4/19/09 From Ira Giese fishing in SW WI: You have to love the combination of Brook Trout and the Little Black Caddis!! Ira, 4/18/09 From David Seligman, Ripon: 33" rainbow, 4/17/09, on a Wisconsin Lake Michigan tributary, with a Scott 908/3 rod, Blue Sky furled leader w/ 2x tippet, on a size 4 beadhead Emu Bugger tied with bugger chenille, black marabou tail with strands of crystal flash. Didn't weigh him but he went easily ten pounds. Caught several smaller ones on that day, some of them still chrome, fresh from the lake. The river was full of suckers stacked up like cordwood, but you can sight-fish to the steelhead when they flash on the gravel. In the morning they were mostly taking egg fly droppers, but by noon the big bucks were aggressively chasing streamers swung in front of them. This guy took it right in the corner of the lip, "by the book," though a couple of fish, including too many suckers, foul-hooked when they turned on the fly. It was my third time out this spring, each of them quite successful. All in all, a good Spring on the tribs. Ira Giese has shaken the winter blues and started the fishing season. He says it was wonderful to be out again. He fished Tues-Thursday in SW WI. Obviously, he noted, the fishing was best in the middle part of the day. This Brown was 15 inches, and fell for a Mueller Glass Beadhead marabou leech. (Nice fish Ira! Of course I'm jealous!) John Gremmer, 3/21/09 Cody Pinkston(front and center), Ripon, enjoys his first Master's Fly Tying Series session on January 22, 2009, at Winneconne High.School. John Bethke, of Pink Squirrel fame, was the master tier for the evening. Besides showing how to tie his Pink Squirrel, Bethke demostrated how to tie his leech and Clouser patterns. This year's series has been organized by Ira Giese and will meet four more times. Photo by Ira Giese, posted by John Gremmer, 1/25/09 This is what Ted Leeson says fights like a zuchinni with fins!!! Ira (On Monday, January 19, Ira Giese and friends fished for Whitefish through the ice on Green Bay with some success.) Ira says, "Most people caught a few, but it was not fast fishing. They are in the Bay because their original food source is diminishing, and they are searching for new forage. Numbers are still okay, but they now take 7 years to reach 17 inches, whereas when they had good forage, it took only 4 years. I believe they need to be 17 inches to be harvested by commercial fishermen. I deep fried some fillets last night. They were truly gourmet!! Ted Leeson would be proud!! " Ira John Gremmer, 1/23/09 Hi All, Here's a couple of leader formulae from George Daniels (TCO Shop Pro, State College, PA) that he personally utilizes for nymph fishing, especially for clear/low water conditions. He gave a presentation on fishing techniques when using the first leader (Stren Gold) described (his personal favorite). He recommends treating the curly Stren section with musilich (sp???) to help with floatation of this highly visible strike indicator. It's important to utilize a pretty long untreated leader tippet section that will sink with the nymph. You should utilize a 1/4-3/8 dowel for winding the Stren in a tight coil. Also be careful on storage of the curly line section on your rod/reel. Avoid storage under tension to maintain the coil. Also, be aware that the coil will straighten out with usage ( especially if you are catching lots of big fish !!!!), so plan on replacement fairly often. George mentioned that a few days of usage is all that can be expected....(He catches a lot of fish). I haven't made or utilized this leader, so can't say anything about my personal experience. It was developed by the French competitive trout fishermen ( But I'm still willing to try it out). Since I hate using float indicators (Heck ,I don't even like fishing nymphs), of any kind, I'm making some up with the hope that maybe it will be more like dry fly fishing..!!!! .. CLICK HERE TO SEE THE DIRECTIONS FOR MAKING THE LEADER! Cheers & Happy New Year, Art Kempf, State College, PA Ira Giese, CWTU Board member, was on a three day, sea duck hunt, off the coast of Rhode Island, during December 08, not too far from Martha's Vineyard and Cape Cod in Mass. His main objective was a few mounting specimens of species rarely seen anywhere other than the coasts. The Commen Eider and Surf Scoter were the two main species I wanted for my wall. The weather, in our guide's description, was "snotty". But, what do you expect for the Eastern coast in mid-December? John Gremmer, 12/27/08 Ira Giese, CWTU Membership Chair and Master's Fly Tying Series Chair, took this picture of a Surf Scoter that he bagged off the coast of Rhode Island this December. Giese, an accomplished taxidermist, will soon have a mount of this bird on his wall. John Gremmer, 12/27/08 CWTU Founding Father and Packer backer, Tom Poullette(above), holds up a nice Redfish he caught in the 10,000 Islands area of Florida. He was fishing with Oshkosh, CWTU member, Roger Jacobson(see below photo). John Gremmer, 12/25/08 CWTU member Roger Jacobson, Oshkosh, fishing in the 10,000 Island area of Florida, had a terrific December day with Tom Poullette. They landed about 11 species of fish. The one above being a Black Drum. Tom Poullette, 12/24/08 Bob Arwine is a long time friend of CWTU. He has taught at our Casting Clinics and tied at TroutFest many times. Last year Bob moved to California and he's still pitching flies. Bob had this to say(He wrote this to Jim Hauer of Blue Sky Furled Leaders.), "this Fall the striper fishing was ok. The attached photo is of a 15 pound 10 1/4 oz. striper caught using an expedition leader. My brother in law Larry Sommerfeld is VERY impressed with this leader as it has the ability to turn over the "half-a-chicken" size flys we most often use in the San Joaquin Delta." John Gremmer, 12/18/08 Why is it that my personal "Fish Of The Year" always ends up being a carp? On the Lake Michigan side of the UP, the shores are mostly rocky, and the carp are extremely wary. Think educated Bonefish! This one took a full sized Muppet, which is a three inch fly (created by Tim Landwehr for Smallie fishing), and headed for Door County. He weighed 28 lbs. on my Boca Grip. The extended tussle ended with it being gently released into the clear water. I just wish his eyeballs weren't rolled back into his head. (Recorded with Pentax Option W30.) I can fish trout all day long with great delight, but once in awhile a really big fish satisfies my "big fish jones." A few years back I landed a gigantic Mirror Carp that was golden yellow in color and I suspect weighed more than this one. There is no competition where I fish for these fish---you can stalk fish for miles, which makes for a great sporting experience. I might write a book about carp fishing and the cabin----"The Carp Swim In Front Of It." Sorry Norman! John Gremmer, 12/7/08 CWTU member Bob Keehan's son Tom, who is an attorney in the State of Washington, holds a beautiful Steelhead he caught recently out there. Tom had this to say: We ended the day with 3 steelhead, they are hatchery fish called "brats" locally and are a blast to reel in. We caught them all on plugs. There were many guides on the river that day and a fish counter at the boat launch- we caught the most fish of all the boats! Bob Keehan, 12/7/08 Smaglik on the Wolf River: Bob Smaglik and I drove through a heavy fog to get up to the Wolf River in November to fish and snap pictures. The fog stayed around till midday and the picture taking turned out to be better than the fish catching. But, you can't beat the scenery. My friend Dave Nickels of Manitowoc used his Photoshop skills to bring out the full potential of the above shot. John Gremmer, 11/14/08 Hi Gatekeeper John, Here is a picture for website. Gary Herlache hooked into a large Chinook, one of several, on the Sheboygan River. The river was just loaded with big, active fish. He even had on the line a bonus mini smallmouth. Large fish, beautiful scenery, and fantastic weather have made this fall an excellent time to get outside and fish. Invite a friend, hope for some substantial rain and head on out. Bob Smaglik, 10/20/08 Teton River: CWTU member Tom Poullette holds a nice trout that he caught on the Teton River this October. Poullette was fishing with a group of CWTU friends. Jerry Strom, 10/11/08 Watchdog Committee in action: CWTU members Ray Piehl and Tom Poullette keep their eyes on the Henry's Fork waiting for the hatch to start. Jerry Strom, 10/11/08 Dan Colligan, Wautoma, longtime CWTU activist, displays a beautiful Brown that he caught on a guided trip on the Bighorn River in 2008. Tom Poullette, 10/9/08 Bob Haase, former CWTU President, holds an 18 inch Cutthroat Trout that he caught on the North Tongue River at Burgess Junction, WY. Haase was on a two week western fishing trip with 5 other CWTU members. John Gremmer, 9/20/08 Art Kempf, former CWTU member now living in State College, PA, displays a Brown that he recently caught on an Angel Fly on the lower Tongue River near Dayton, WY. Kempf was with a group of 6 CWTU members on a two week western fishing trip. John Gremmer, 9/20/08 CWTU member Jim Murphy holds a beautiful Brown that he caught on the Bighorn River near Ft. Smith in Montana. Murphy was on his first Bighorn trip. He navigated the river on his mini-pontoon float boat. John Gremmer, 9/20/08 Ira Giese, Wautoma, CWTU's Membership Chair, ties his I-Hop grasshopper imitation, at Cottonwood, Camp in Ft. Smith, Montana. Giese was preparing I-Hops(short for Ira's hopper) for the next day's float on the Bighorn River. John Gremmer, 9/20/08 David Seligman, Ripon, CWTU Vice-President and Program Director, nets a beautiful Brown Trout while wade fishing on the Bighorn River near Ft. Smith, Montana. John Gremmer, 9/20/08 Tom Poullette sent this picture of his friend Dan Weiskopf holding a beautiful Rainbow that he caught near Oro on Henry's Fork. He used a nymph rig and it hit the #18 flav. Tom Poullette, 9/19/08 Ira Giese and Doug Clark, Wautoma, inch Ira's boat(he built the boat in his back shed last Winter) down a rapids while fishing on a Northeastern Wisconsin River. As the second photo proves, Ira says, "Not every trip through the rapids goes as planned!" 8/19/08 Here is a young man, Doug Clark, from Wautoma, who wanted to catch his first smallmouth on the fly rod. He accomplished that mission, and went on to catch many more. He even gets credit for tying some feathers on the tail of his store-bought popper. Next year he will have some poppers totally of his own creation. He says he is hooked on the fly rod and those feisty smallmouth! Ira Giese, 8/19/08 Rawhide cadets learning about jetting piers into Lawrence Creek and completing structures designed to narrow a stream and provide cover for fish on July 29, 2008. This is another group that deserves a lot of credit for the work they do! Jim Humphrey, 8/19/08 GILLS can be fun---very tasty also!!! Tom Poullette, 7/28/08 Grandson Tom--he thinks the best part of trout fishing is--eating them!! Tom Poullette, 7/28/08 CWTU Board member John Tucker in his tying room at his cottage on the Pine River in Saxeville. I took this picture the evening John had hosted our July 21st meeting at his cottage. John provided a sumptuous buffet that featured bar-b-qued chicken, brats, and burgers. The brownies where unbelieveable. Thanks go to John and his family for all the effort and expense that they put in for this event. John Gremmer, 7/23/08 Ted Eischeid on the Bois Brule: On June 25, Ted had a great day on the Bois Brule River. He caught Browns and Rainbows. He had to change his dry fly approach four times before starting to have success. He fished solo and enjoyed being alone with the fish. Ted is a CWTU member and teaches in the Fond du Lac area. A few years back Ted attended one of my Introductory to Fly Fishing and Fly Tying Classes. John Gremmer, 7/23/08 Pennsylvania Brown: Last week I fished the Trico hatch(size 26) on Spring Creek near State College, Pennsylvania, with my friend Art Kempf. Trico males with black bodies start emerging in the night, females with white bodies follow after sunrise. They swarm above the riffles for an hour or so, and then start dropping to the surface. Sometimes the fish only eat females, sometimes just males. Sometimes duns, sometimes spinners. The picture below is of a 14 inch Brown that took a size 26 spinner with antron wings. Second picture is of Tricos that I pulled out of a spider web. John Gremmer, 7/20/08 John, I wanted to send you some pictures of a fly that was coming off last night at dusk. I was on the Willow looking for the Hex hatch and these were coming off late evening into dark in pretty good numbers. Do you know what these are? This is the first I have run into these. They were very slow fliers and were dipping to the water depositing eggs and then taking off again. Scott Bahn, 6/23/08 ( Tom Young and David Seligman identified the fly as a light Cahill. Seligman went one step further classifying it as a Stenonema canadensis. Anyone want to contest this?) John Gremmer, 7/15/08 Art Kempf, State College, PA, a former CWTU member, has had a June to remember with a 17 year Cicada hatch in his area. He described it as a three week, all day, Hex hatch. The big bugs brought up the big Browns, with many 20 inchers caught and released. Now he has to wait 17 years for the next Cicada hatch. Bob Smaglick kindly swapped this hat, which is now mine, for one I had with a rainbow trout embroidered on it. When he gave me the "Brookie hat" I so desired, he told me that it came with good trout karma; he'd recently caught a 19" brown trout wearing it. I decided to go in search of the Brookie used as a model for the embroidery, and after some searching, I found him last week. Isn't he a magnificent, wild and primal predator? See his teeth? (Note from website guy: Alistair Stewart caught this Brookie on a recent trip to Labrador.) Alistair Stewart, 7/12/2008 Tom Young, Waupaca, took this picture of a Hexigenia limbata(Hex) last month on a stream near his home. Young is an accomplished guide and photographer who often shares his knowledge at CWTU events. CWTU area streams are know for their prolific Hex hatches. Jerry Gorman, representing TU, shows a prospective fly tier how its done at the Wisconsin Outdoor Expo in Beaver Dam. Jerry is a CWTU water monitor and is active in number of our programs. Thanks Jerry! Submitted by Bob Haase(6/12/08) David Seligman and I were fishing in Southwest Wisconsin during cold front conditions. The temperature had dropped almost 20 degrees, not much of a hatch and the fishing was slow. David had just fished a pool with no results and I told him the fish were looking for a "sunken beetle" so I tied one on and fished the same pool. The first cast resulted in the fish pictured and this was followed by more fish that wanted the beetle. David switched to the sunken beetle and we contiued to catch fish on the beetles until a tree grabbed the last one we had. Bob Haase, 6/9/08 Lynn Ann Sauby found this mayfly on her garage door in the center of Menasha. She and John Nebel went through books and identified it as a Stenonema/gray fox. What trout wouldn't want a bite out of this? (photo by Lynn Ann Sauby, 6/9/08) There is still hope!! Lousy back---knees even worse---my first steelhead--size 16 hare's ear nymph. Tom Poullette(5/22/08) A gravel road leads up this coulee. Gravity drags the branch down. Most of the land is owned by three families. Roger Widner did the improvements. All private property, but a knock on the door and the answer is YES. Many trout were caught and released. Later we talked to the owners about gardening, music, bird watching, and fishing. They said, "you are welcome back anytime." Next time I will bring them some plants from our garden. The owner likes to garden! I like to fish! Life is good! (About the photo: Taken with my Pentax W30 point and shoot digital.) John Gremmer(5/20/08) Friday May 9th 2008 was warmer in the evening in Waushara County than promised by the weather service. The challenge of The Sand Counties' streams during these periods is what keeps drawing me back to try and find a few victories. A Brown Trout was spotted rising to emergers tight to a shaded far bank during a period of very modest and mixed hatch; in situations like this I try to delicately paint a light line on the water, with a long fine leader from far away. The trout on May 9, 2008 didn't care about any of that - he declared victory by refusing to engage with any of my attempts at deception, thus ensuring I'll be back. Alistair Stewart(5/12/08) I spy with my little eye something beginning with B.W.O. In the late afternoon, the riffles and back eddies of the Boulder River, around Big Timber, Montana, became baetis soup during the last week in April 2008. Browns, 'bows, cutts, and cuttbows fed heartily, and moved their appetites from adults to emergers as the afternoon progressed into early evening. My companions and I had very fine sport with numerous fish averaging 14-16", and a few of 19". There were bigger fish visible, but all were too crafty for deception by our humble fishing party. The day after this photo was taken, the lunchtime weather went from high 40's and sun to low 30's and a sideways blizzard in 20 Montana minutes. Alistair Stewart(5/5/08) CWTU member Robert Gill's grandchildren cleaning trout on opening day. Colin, Ethan, Grandpa others had great fishing in Oshkosh's South Park Lagoons. Robert Gill(5/4/08) Jim Murphy, CWTU member, takes time at the February 26, 2008, CWTU TroutFest, to teach a young man how to tie a fly. One of our chapter's goals is to introduce young people to trout and trout fishing.
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