Fly Tying Mondays Resume on December 5th.

We will get another season rolling on Monday December 4th at TC Outfitters. From 7 pm to 9 pm.

...new members are always welcome.

A box full of flies!

A box full of flies!
...and fly fishers

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Fabulous Week of Fall Fly Fishing in the Parkland Region of Manitoba


(...click on the pictures to make them larger!)

Everything was set for the annual fall trip to the Parkland Region of Manitoba. Arrow Lake Lodge was booked, the food was organized by Patsy Rowley, the boat was ready to go and the lake fly fishing kit filled. Bill Young and I stumbled into my truck at 6 am and headed east for the long 11 hour drive through eastern Alberta, Saskatchewan and on into the Parkland Region of Manitoba near Russell and Rossburn. We even had a tail wind. This was Bill's first trip to Manitoba in many years. We needed to arrive by late afternoon because we were hauling all the food that Patsy prepped. As we pulled into the Arrow Lake parking lot, much of the crew also arrived and the guys immediately helped unloading the truck. We were going to meet up with our friend Rick and several guys from the Ottawa area as well as Calgary. My buddy Phil Rowley was organizing the trip and at the same time he was filming another episode of the New Fly Fisher.

The drive across the prairies went quite quickly. Bill and I shared the driving and we enjoyed the fall colours and the thousands of snow geese that were migrating south along the fly ways that they have used for 1000s of years. Bill pulled out his selection of tunes that his daughter had loaded on his I-phone. We cranked up the volume and enjoyed jazz and the blues. Nobody leaves Saskatchewan without singing the blues. We even knew how to connect everything! Who knew that we were indeed techies.

I was glad to see the Assiniboine River valley. That meant we were entering Manitoba! After our arrival and getting settled, we had supper and then spent the evening watching the eclipse of the moon. It was a perfectly clear evening so we got to watch the entire eclipse! Now that was cool!


Barry Acton, camera man for the New Fly Fisher, capturing the eclipse.





Bill caught lots of trout on the first day. He picked up what to do right away!


We headed to a favourite spot on Patterson Lake the first day and we were reward with many large rainbows and browns. Bill caught his first trout in Manitoba and I know he was impressed with the girth of the many specimens that he tangled with. As many of my friends know, I love the brown trout in the Parkland lakes. They are a beautiful golden and mustard colour. The bucks have a big kype and they are fat, real fat! The hens are lighter coloured but thick.


The weather was typical for the Parkland Region. Wind and unsettled fall weather made us take time to look at the bathometric maps of the lake so we had a plan about where we would fish! The water temperature was 56F, just perfect!

From previous trips we knew that fishing along the tulles gave us a great opportunity to catch some big trout. We also found that fishing a bit deeper in 8 feet of water was a good strategy!

Ice minnows, Tokaryk Specials, Bruised Leeches, flashbacks and baby damsels gave us the best results. There was not much backswimmers and boatman activity. That was a bit surprising.

Rick, Bill and I fished together out of my 17 foot jon boat for 5 days. We caught anywhere from 20 to 30 trout each day. Most were quite impressive in size.

We did head over to Twin Lakes to fly fish for tiger trout. We encountered several hours of thunderstorms and then very moody tiger trout. We caught some tigers but it was not the day we had hoped for. More about that later.

The drive home was LONG. It rained and luckily we had a tail wind until we got to Alberta. I also had the misfortune of running over not one but two skunks. My truck and boat smell accordingly! Sigh!

It was a pleasure to share a boat with Bill and Rick! Both are accomplished fly fishers and it shows!


A feisty rainbow leaps out of the water after Rick hooks up!


A beautifully coloured hen, brown!


Snow geese flew over the area constantly!


A gigantic male brown that Rick subdued!





A big brown rockets out of the water!


Rick getting the "smaller" Tokaryk Specials ready for the next day at the lake.


We were teasing Rick to get those flies tied. Two for everybody! If you know how fast Rick ties flies. That took most of the evening!


Everybody shared in the food preparation!


Bill filling the net with another massive brown.


The big rainbows were elusive on this trip. We caught lots of 3 to 4 pound rainbows and they were energetic. We did encounter some 5 and 6 pound rainbows.



Perhaps the most impressive moment on the trip were these two bruiser browns caught about 1 minute apart by Bill and Rick!


As you can see, you had to dress warm. The wind chill at times was nasty but were were comfortable.


Casting to the tulles was a great strategy!




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