Life goes on in the land of Craig. I’ve had an awesome last couple of weeks and have had no internet to post about it. Now I do, so here you go:
On Fourth of July weekend I had a great time at my friend Cameron’s house in Poulsbo, Washington, as his family put on a party to remember. Tons of people, great food (an underground pig roast), great friends, and watching fireworks over the Puget sound. It was an awesome time for all.
On the fourth, Cam, Riley and I embarked on our three day mission to hike the brothers, a set of peaks on the Olympic Peninsula in Washington. We had an amazing time on what was the most technical climb we had ever done. We had our run in with some curious mountain goats, 60 degree snow and ice slopes, and a crazy last rock scramble to the summit. The rewarding views from the summit were worth it all.
The evil goat
Approaching the summit
Quite the view
After our adventure I headed north to the cascades to visit Kelsey. We took a nice drive on the scenic mountain loop highway and even fished a little bit for some summer run steelhead. Of course, we didn’t hook any of the elusive fish. I did have one steelhead smolt chase my fly though. I had a nice couple of days visiting Kels and hanging out with her family. Then it was time for me to head back east to Montana.
The mountain loop highway
Some amazing dry fly fishing greeted me upon my return, and the Mo began to show how good it really is. Up until that point I had not experienced how great the dry fly fishing could be. Over the past couple of weeks I have fished a lot, including one night of the craziest caddis hatch I have ever been in. There were so many caddis on the water that it was very tough to actually dry fly fish. I resorted to swinging a caddis emerger pattern. The caddis madness continues on the Mo and I have been landing some very nice fish and Cody has as well.
I am currently in Missoula relaxing after a day of helping Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks for my internship. Yesterday, fisheries biologist Will Schreck, 90 day biotech Jerrod, and I, hiked into a remote section of a small stream to sample it by electro-shocking. The hike was pretty strenuous and we spent the majority of it trying to climb down a steep wooded canyon, jumping over hundreds of fallen logs. The goal was to sample the stream to see if any bull trout were present.
I had never done electro-shocking before and let me say, it is not an easy gig. My job was to net the fish and I figured having all of this time in a drift boat netting fish would help…. Not at all! I learned quickly that you have to have a very quick and aggressive approach or the fish simply get away. We shocked about a 100 yard stretch of stream and collected about 20 fish, mostly brook trout. The few cutthroats that we caught were released and the brookies were dumped for grizzly food because they are a non native species. We did not find any bull trout.
After hiking all the way out to the truck, we headed north to a logging road that was being decommissioned. The road was close to a brook trout and pure cutthroat stream so we took some grass seed and spread it along the hillside that had just been ripped apart. The reason for the decommissioning is to provide a natural slope to prevent sediments from running down into the creek. It was a very similar job to what I had done the first time I went out with MFWP.
After the seeding was over we headed back to Missoula, stopping for ice cream as a treat for our hard work. At the gas station we ran into one of the wildlife biologists for the area. He said that a grizzly was spotted right in the area we were doing work in and that we are going to eventually run into it; Pretty exciting and scary at the same time. I had a lot of fun yesterday and it was a great experience to work with Will and Jerrod.
Now it’s back to work! The weather has been very hot lately and hopefully it will cool down a little. The fish are taking a lot of pressure lately and the high water temps during the heat of the day are not helping anything either. The water has been low and if the water temps get any higher, the river may very likely be shut down to fishing after noon.
That’s all for now. I will hopefully be back in Missoula sometime next week. Have a great week!