Sunday, November 27, 2011

A small favor...

Head on over to the all new "365 Fish" forum!

It's a new forum dedicated to..  you guessed it FISHING!  Doesn't matter if you're a shark fisherman from portugal or a spring creek trout fisherman from the driftless of wisconsin, everyone is welcome!

It's off to a good start and should be a great source on any species that swims!
The more people who join and share their knowledge the better.
Drop in a line and get hooked at 365 Fish!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

#3 and it's another one for the wall!

I did it again! I lucked out and took another mature whitetail buck!

I had 3 buck tags (earn-a-buck) and i filled all three!

I decided to hunt only one sit this weekend, as last weekend I shot a very nice buck that "made" my season. I started to get all my gear on and realized i somehow lost my release for my bow, i looked around but never found it. I figured I could shoot "fingers" good enough from bowfishing that I felt comfortable to about 20 or 25 yards. I started the walk out to my stand at about 1:20pm. I was hunting a food plot and as i reached the field i notice two does were feeding. I sat down and waited for them to clear the field before climbing into my stand. After getting into my stand at about 2:30pm i caught movement to my right, in the brush on the edge of the food plot and a small spike appeared. He casually walked past and then it wasn't until about 3:50 that i saw the next deer. It was off in the woods to my left about 120 yards. I grunted and snort-wheezed to try to lure the deer closer. I could tell that it had antlers but it disappeared into thick sumacs before i got a good look. I was hoping he was going to come out to my left near two large trees at the far edge of the food plot, but after 15 minutes i figure he must have just continued on his way through the woods. Then i hear a small crunch of a leaf behind me to my left. I turn around to see a very nice buck walking right towards me. I grab my bow and get ready, he stops at a scrape about 15 yards from my stand and freshens it up a bit, but then it seemed like he caught wind of me. I was shaking like a leaf at this point and i knew that if he presented me with a shot I was going to take it. After about 5 minutes, that seemed like an hour, he started to walk off to my right and i drew back and let the arrow fly when he stopped at 21 yards. The arrow hit back very far, and I immediately regretted trying to shoot fingers. It looked to be a gut shot so I got down from the stand, checked the time, it was 4:06pm, and went to inspect my arrow. I couldn't find my arrow, but the blood trail looked better than expected, a decent amount and very bright red. I waited about 30 minutes, and started tracking with an arrow nocked in case he jumped up. I would take a step or two, stop, listen, scan for movement, repeat. After about 100 yards of tracking a deer took off from about 40 yards to my right, i was scared i had just jumped the wounded buck, I kept following the trail and it kept going straight, not towards the deer I just jumped. Another 40 yards of tracking and the blood seems to start to run out. I take a few more steps and then stop, listen, scan for movement and then I see him. He expired about 175 yards from where I shot him. The shot was even worse than i had thought, and I got incredibly lucky and must have cut an artery.
I learned a good lesson today, don't shoot without a release without practice. Even though I found him today I'll never try that again, and I already put an extra release in my glove box of my car.

He's 16" inside, the G2's are about 11" each, and G3's about 9"
I really like tall relatively narrow racks, and this buck fits that perfectly!

Tall 8 point
more pictures soon

Friday, November 11, 2011

1st Harbor fishing trip!

Today I woke up nice and early to head over to Kenosha to try my hand at harbor fishing.  The alarm went off at 4am and within 20 minutes i was on my way!  I was planning on meeting a few people over there, both of which have some experience in the harbors so I was eager to learn how to fish for the monster brown trout that are in the harbors right now.
It's a bit of a drive to Kenosha from madison, about 2hrs 20min, so I got there at about 6:45am.  I saw Damien and his father and pulled in near where they were fishing.  I open the door to get out and get my stuff ready and as I'm opening the door Damien hooks up!  Talk about perfect timing!  He ended up bringing in a nice fat brown trout!  Huge for my standards, but an average lake michigan fish.  We continue to fish, primarily using spawn sacs and within 45 minutes of getting there I hook my first Lake Michigan brown!  After a good fight Damien netted the fish, another "average" brown, which was my personal best brown trout, and first lake michigan brown trout!  After that we missed a few more hits, but not a whole lot of action for an hour or so.  I decided to try out a few different crank baits, but for some reason wasn't expecting any hits.  I kept casting though, and kept switching up my retrieves and all of a sudden it felt like i hit a stump!  Fish on!  I ended up catching my 2nd Lake Michigan brown, which happens to be my new personal best brown trout!  Several more misses on spawn sacs over the next few hours then Damien hooks up again and brings in another brown.  A little while after he caught his, I had a take close to shore on the spawn,  i set the hook only to miss the fish.  I quickly threw the bait right back in where I just missed the fish and I saw my spawn slowly sinking, then it disappears and in it's place is a nice trout!  I set the hook and ended up landing my 3rd harbor fish ever! another healthy brown!  I had to get back to madison and ended up leaving at about 1pm.  I had a ton of fun fishing the harbor and I know I'll definitely be back soon!  Thanks again Damien for showing me the ropes and hooking me up with some spawn sacs!

The first fish of the day! you can see the eggs pouring out of her.

My first harbor trout!

My 2nd harbor trout and new personal best

Damien's 2nd fish of the day

the 5th brown of the day! my 3rd Lake Michigan trout!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

The Big Buck

So November 4th is my birthday (the big 18, I know I'm old...)  and it's also usually prime time whitetail deer rut!  I woke up bright and early on saturday to get in stand for an almost birthday hunt.  I sat for a good hour until i finally saw a deer.  A small spike with only one side of his rack, he ended up walking within 3 yards of my stand.  He walked off having no idea i was there!  In three years maybe he'll be big enough!  then at 8:00 am I caught movement about 80 yards to my right.  I turned and immediately saw that the deer had antlers and i started to get my hopes up thinking that maybe this is one of the big bucks we have picture of from our trail cameras.   As he came closer I didn't really recognize him, but I did see that he was probably a shooter!   As he came closer i figured that he was about 21" inside spread but not very tall, but being that wide I figure he would score pretty well and i knew i wanted to shoot him!

He came out of the brush at about 19 yards and walked on the way past my stand broadside and i took the shot at 18 yards.  I got a complete pass thru and had a very good shot!  He ran about 20 yards and i watched him drop.

After getting him back to the house I grabbed the measuring tape and the inside spread was 23 7/8" which is almost 3 inches bigger than I had thought!!!  After doing a rough score on him I got 151 1/2" and a typical score of 140!  Which makes him qualify for Pope & Young record books.
He is the 2nd Pope & Young I've shot and is my biggest buck so far!

Now for some trib fishing!  Hopefully I can keep the luck that I've been having and catch a few nice lake run trout!

Monday, October 17, 2011

1st and 2nd salmon trips

Well I finally made it over to the Lake michigan tributaries!  First trip was two weekends ago and my dad an I ended up meeting a few guys (Blake, Neal, and Paul)  over in Milwaukee.  The kings were in real thick we all caught fish.  Neal actually got a nice little steelhead too!  A little better report of the weekend can be found over on the Illinois Wisconsin blog.  I'm having trouble downloading pictures from the weekend, but Blake has a few.

This past weekend (10/16) I met up with Neal and Blake in Sheboygan on the Sheboygan River.  There wasn't quite as much of a crowd compared to milwaukee, but there was no shortage of fish!  The coho's were in and a few late run kings were in as well.  I ended up catching 3 fair hooked coho's, my first three on a fly rod!

My father and his first fair hooked king of the day!

A nice red coho!

My first coho on a fly!

Blake Hamilton and a nice sheboygan river king!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Check out this Forum!

Blake from over at the Illinois Wisconsin Fishing Blog actually started a forum!  So far it's just getting started, but it's already got some great information on anything fishing in wisconsin or illinois.

Check it out and sign up!  It's only going to get better!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

The end

After a long, successful summer of trout fishing, I had to get out one last time before it closed. It was nice and sunny so I hopped in my car and headed out to Black Earth Creek, since it's so close to home. In the short drive out i experienced bluebird skies, complete downpours, a rainbow, and then a light mist for the rest of the day, with some rain showers mixed in. Keep in mind this was just a 15 minute drive, and i only fished for about an hour and a half! 

Fishing was slow, and i threw everything i had at them. Eventually i decided to put on a big, bass/northern streamer, about 4ish inches in length. I casted that around for quite a while and then rolled a nice fish, probably about 18 inches. I switched to a small black wooly bugger and casted to where the fish missed my streamer. I had about given up when i saw a rise. I casted towards where the fish rose, but was about 5 feet short. I started to strip in the bugger, and had a hard hit! I set the hook and a nice fish shot out of the water. After about a minute, and 4 more big jumps a nice brown came to hand. I thought it was a rainbow based on how it was fighting, but a fat 16 inch brown is nothing to complain about. 

A great way to end the season, now hopefully i can get out to the tribs pretty soon!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

A couple of Bucks $$$

Well a male brown, and a male white tailed deer. (and a catfish from the summer)

I'll start out with the deer.  September 17th was the bow season opener for wisconsin, and I saw a few deer, one which happened to walk literally under my stand.  (i'll get the video up sometime)  Then september 18th was a little better!  The morning hunt was ok, had a red fox come within 10 feet of me, while i was on the ground, but that was about it for the morning hunt.  After some lunch I was gearing up to head back out, then it happened, the rain came...  I waited a few hours only to realize that it wasn't going to stop, so i went out in the rain.  After only about 10 minutes in the stand I saw a nice buck about 60 yards out.  I watched him for a while, and after about 10 minutes he bedded down just 31 yards away.  I wasn't really sure if i wanted to shoot him at this point so i just watched.  He laid there for about an hour and then stood up and walked towards me.  Another buck came out of the brush right behind him, followed by the doe.  The other deer were a good deal smaller that the buck i had been watching, so I decided that if "my" buck cam within 15 yards i'd shoot.  Long story short he came within 15 yards and I drew back my bow. I ended up taking the shot when he was 21 yards away.  He only ran 50 yards after the shot!

He's a 9 point (main frame 8, with a split brow tine)
He's not my biggest deer, but with a P&Y score of 110 3/8"  I can't complain.

Three days after i shot him I got out for a little trout fishing on Black Earth Creek.  I ended up catching a 19 inch brown!  I'm pretty sure it's actually the same fish in one of my previous posts! He was sitting in the same spot above a deep pool, and hit the same fly! a foam ant.  It's pretty cool to know where he lives!  I also saw 3 more fish around 18 inches or larger.  I had a pig of a rainbow follow up my wooly bugger and smash it, only to have the line snap on the hook set.  Hopefully i'll get back out there sometime this week before the season closes!

Released to fight another day!
A healthy Brown!

And just found this picture of a 13lbs channel cat that I caught earlier this summer!
Not sure why there is so much blood, he was hooked in the corner of his mouth,
and as far as we could tell there was no gill damage.
He swam away strong, so hopefully it was nothing too serious.

Next post will hopefully be talking about my limit of duck's that i'm gonna shoot this weekend! and a little trout fishing!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Smallies and walleyes!

Another up north adventure! 
I don't even know where to start.  I went back up to northern wisconsin, originally hoping to get a musky on the fly.  Friday night we got up just before dark and i went down casting a big streamer, probably about 8 inches long!  I had a follow and i even had a fish on, although the one i had on was more likely a small mouth or norther, maybe a small musky though.  The next day we went back and i started off throwing the streamer again.  I had somehting miss the fly, but i didn't know what since i was actually looking the wrong way....  I casted back and got a hit, i saw the side of the fish and it was a musky, not a big one, but probably around 30 inches.  He hit hard, and i set the hook hard, only to have my fly shoot out of the water back at me.  After that fish i didn't see another musky all day.  
I decided i might as well catch some fish that day and I switched to my spinning rod and some night crawlers and creek caught chubs.  I had now put the canoe in and started catch fish!  Started off with a few smallies.  Then a walleye, then a few more smallies, then a really nice walleye, that probably went about 25 inches.  I was fishing by myself at this point so I did the best that i could to take a picture.  I continued to catch smallies and walleyes throughout the day and also caught another big walleye that went 21 inches.  The limit on the water i was fishing is 3 walleye, only one over 14 so i ended up taking home two about 12 inches and the 21 inch also, and they sure did taste great!  Overall i caught about 15 smallies, 7 or 8 walleye and a few rockbass.   Not a bad day if you ask me!!!

average smallie

a colorful one

theres another one

If you look closely you can see a jig coming out of the corner of this one's mouth.  I  was my jug that had broken off from earlier!  I had this fish on twice! He won the first time and i won the second time!
The big walleye,  It's always interesting trying to land big fish without a net.

back to fight another day

talk about a healthy smallie!

they have plenty of food here

some of these fish have really nice markings

a little walleye from later in the day

the 21 incher that came home for the next days breakfast.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Best brown of my season so far! (yeah, it's been a good week)

Once again the title says it all!  On friday afternoon i caught the biggest brown of the season!

I had a dinner to go to so i wasn't going to be able to night fish so i decided that i should fish while i can and I ended up on the stream at about 3pm.  It was sunny and pretty warm and the water was clear.  I started out with streamers and moved a real nice rainbow, probably about the same size as the one i caught earlier in the week, and i also had a real nice brown chase after a small wooly bugger.  The brown seemed very interested so i kept switching flies and casting back to where he was holding.  I didn't see him again until i switched to a foam ant.   I casted above where he came out after my wooly bugger and as it drifted the water boiled underneath the fly, unfortunately no take.  I quickly tied on a grifiths gnat trailer and continued to cast to where i thought the fish was.  The fish was holding in a patch of weeds near the far side of the creek under a bridge.  I made a great cast all the way to the other wall of the bridge and as it drifted I was thinking that if that cast wasn't going to catch him, nothing would.  It drifted past the hole and nothing.   about 4 feet past where i thought the fish somehthing went for my ant,  I set the hook and judging by the take I was a little disappointed since it wasn't the fish i was looking for.   All of a sudden the fish shot upstream taking drag off my 6 wt.   thats when i knew it was the big fish i saw earlier.  I was pretty excited to have tricked him and after a nice fight i got him in the net.  This is my biggest brown in wisconsin waters.  The fish made a tiny splash at the fly almost like a 6inch trout would do, i guess it just shows that you can't tell the size of the fish from the bite.

as big as the net!

he was a colorful one 
starting to get that mean look

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Best trout of my season... so far

Title says it all!  Tonight, well I guess technically yesterday I  landed the biggest trout of my season so far.  I got out to the river at about 6:50pm and the midges were hatching.  To start things off I lost two fish and then (unfortunately) another fisherman shows up and instead of walking to the next hole he decides to fish it as well.  I'm sitting there casting size 20-24 midges at the rising trout and this guy is throwing his spinner practically on top of my flies!  The fish didn't like it too much either and the risers seemed to get spooked.  I still managed to get a few chubs to rise and take my fly.  Right as is was getting dark out the other man left leaving me alone for the night bite.  I started out throwing wooly buggers and clousers with a few hits, but no hook-ups.  Then from out of the depths right in front of me a huge trout appears and basically rubbed it's nose on my wooly bugger, and then sank back down.  I quickly changed colors from black to white and kept bringing it past where the fish was holding.  After changing from streamer to streamer I finally moved the fish again and once again he sank back down after "nosing" my fly.  A while later at about 9:40pm I noticed something moving under the surface in front of me.  I turned on my head lamp and saw the fish again, it looked like it was feeding on something about 6 inches below the surface, so i quickly tied on a san juan worm and an emerger/attractor sort of nymph that I tie,  i've had some pretty good luck on them earlier in the season,  I decided I would cast to the fish if i saw it again and sure enough about two minutes later i saw it.  I casted about 5 feet in front of the fish and let it dead drift.  Nothing.  I start to swing the nymph up preparing for a re-cast and right before my bottom fly hits the surface I get a hit!  The fish started thrashing about on the surface and then took several powerful runs.  Did I mention I was using a 1wt. with 5x tippet?  I thought that there was no way that I was going to get the fish in.  The fish seemed to use most of it's energy on the first two runs and after a couple more short runs I netted the beauty.  I had a little trouble with the net because the fish was just as big as the entire net!  I do wish i could say that my net was 28 inches long, or 25, or even 23. But at 19.5 inches I'm excited to say that this is the biggest trout I've caught this season, and the largest trout I've ever caught in Wisconsin.

that little rod makes the fish look huge!

The pictures don't do the fish justice as far as colors go.

swam away to fight another day!
The fly that made it happen.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Guest appearance!

By Blake Hamilton of Illinois Wisconsin Fishing.
We ended up meeting at salmo pond in Cross Plains, Wisconsin to start the day at 6am and continued west in search of trout.  We ended up fishing two streams and at the first Blake H. caught a nice brown on one of the first casts of the day, before we even made it to a good hole.  Unfortunately the early success wasn't indicative of how the day would go.  We still caught some fish, maybe 10 each? but we didn't do all that well for the streams that we fished.   We didn't catch anything too big, the biggest being probably around 11-12 inches, but we did have a few nice fish on, Including the biggest brook trout I've ever personally seen.  I was pulling a wooly bugger in and right in front of my I saw the fish hit and I set the hook with my 1 wt.  The fish turned and thats when I knew that I had a big fish on, I got a pretty good look at it in the short time i had it on and i believe it was a 16-17 inch brookie.   The fish spit the hook and sank back down into the depths and I was pretty disappointed, but it happens, and maybe i'll get him next time!  All in all it was nice to gain a new fishing buddy and maybe next time we'll have a little better luck!

Blake H. with the first brown of the day

a nice brown, about 10 inches (the cork/reel seat on my 1wt. in exactly 9in.)

A decent brown caught out of a fast run (Blake H. didn't think I was serious when I said there was usually a fish to be caught because the water was so fast)

I have also been getting out night fishing on 8/13 and 8/15 and ended up with 1 brown on the 13th and two on the 15th  I lost several more fish and actually saw a large brown pushing 20inches cruising in front of me last night.  Lately the fishing at night has been very good, and the bugs have been pretty bad, My ankles look a little bit like ground beef, but it's worth it.  I really like night fishing and advise everyone to try it out, it's pretty cool to catch a fish in complete darkness and i find it amazing the the fish can feed in the dark as well.  Hopefully i'll be getting out again very soon.
Until next time -Tight lines

11 inches, a small fish for the night bite

a 13 incher that was rising right at dusk, I fooled him!

another brown just over 13 inches
For reference: the cork and reelseat on this rod is about 11.5inches

Friday, August 12, 2011

Playing catch up!

Well I've been slacking in the posting department,  not too much in the fishing department though!

Long story short- Night fishing, Wooly Buggers, HOPPERS, and a couple nice nights of midge hatches!

15 inch brown at night

16 1/4 inch brown at night

the first brook trout i had ever caught out of that stream

Old Mill in Hyde, Wi

A fun one for a one weight!


This guy wiggled out of my hands before i could snag a picture!  Caught this guy the cast before the one above.
On a beetle, he was about 13 inches.

Another hopper fish!

Terrestrials are workin!

A nice 14 inch that took several HUGE jumps! alot of fun on the 1wt.

another pic of the fish above

A 16.5inch brown, the biggest out of this stream so far, caught just casts after the brown above

Same 16.5 inch,  I had to run down stream to land this guy with the 1wt!

He was starting to get some good colors

A beautiful brown

There has been some great fishing going on recently, hope everyone is making some time to get out there!  Right now I'm really looking forward to the trout and salmon in the tribs, this will be my first year targeting them and I couldn't be more excited!!!

Also has anyone fished Mill Creek over in Hyde?  It seems like a nice "big" river, but in the half hour I had to fish i didn't even see one..