Salmon fishing & fly tying on the Miramichi...

Thursday, 19 July 2012

July trip update, final installment..

So after our adventure to Squirrel Falls we were back to the Oxbow on Tuesday for what turned out to be my favorite part of the trip. We got to hang out with and fish with some pretty darned cool people including Walt, a professional spey casting instructor from Mass. and Gary Tanner from and more recently

(in case you haven't caught on yet -- I love this place ;-))

We ended up fishing the Northwest and Little Southwest over the next couple days. Things seemed to be getting more favorible for fishing and with a bit of pool hopping we got into a few fish.

A Northwest grisle hooked on a blue bomber just as the noseeums were getting horrific:

Steph was busy guiding in the Classic so Paul and I were left to bum around and chase fish. Then we heard that a couple fellows might need 'guides' for the final morning of the Classic and once we heard who, we were only too happy to step up and lend a hand -- after all, these two characters needed no guiding!

Here's one of them with Paul - Vince Swayze (this man kept us in stitches most of the time)

And then there was this fella, spoiling the view =)
(Gary Tanner)

Gary & Paul fishing the lower pool:

I managed a grilse at the next pool down but other than that it was pretty quiet fishwise.

I really enjoyed the short time I got to spend with Gary and Vince, I hope to do it again someday, fall fishing perhaps??

After the morning of fishing we had to be back to the hatchery in South Esk (i think?) for a BBQ to finish out the classic. What a treat that was! We had a little tour and got to see how slick a young black bear could swipe a few trout from the u-fish trout pond! It was entertaining as hell!

Trout pond:

Hatchery tour:

Smolt wheels at the hatchery:

So after the BBQ and the conclusion of the Classic we were back to the Oxbow and then I was off to meet up with Bill at the Den on Thursday for the night as we were heading to the North Pole for 48 hours on Friday.

This is what we were greeted by on the road into the camp - it was cut a few years ago but it's effect is maddening when you see it again and then feel how warm the water is in the North Pole.

When they were first cutting this a few years back I stopped and talked to the contractor doing the cutting... he said the softwood was over 80 years old and it's diameter wasn't much larger than a coffee cup... he said "it's not doing any good anyways, hardly growing - it might as well be put to use as pulpwood" ... I had to leave at this point as his ignorant point of view almost put me over the boiling point... you have to understand what this picture doesn't show is how close this cleacut is to the rivers.... springs that have been there for years no longer flow.... when it rains, we have a fast dirty and warm raises and the rivers then drop off quickly again.... the rains seem to have no ability to sustain the rivers... she's a sad state of affairs up there...

Now that that part is off my chest -- back to the trip!

Random river pics:

Table Rock and whats that?? A sasquatch??? (down river)

Can you see the fish?

No? How about now?
(2 generations)

trekking through the woods:

Typical North Pole trout

My favorite view:

The fishing was tough, water was low and warm but the Pole was absolutely beautiful. The fish would only take very lightly - if at all but we did manage to get into a few. If only I hooked half as many as I pricked I would have been into some good numbers - same for Paul. In the end we all managed to get into fish but the low, warm water and hot weather was really working against us. We had a great time, the trout fishing was phenominal and we caught many but Paul was into some real monsters. You just got to love 100% live release!

In the end, I cut my trip shory by 5 days as I came home Monday due to the hot weather and low water. If we don't get substantial rain soon, we will all be looking forward to September. Thanks again Paul & Steph - it was tough fishing but it was a week to remember!