Wednesday, July 26, 2000

During our great vacation to Banff, Canada, Sue and I did a half-day guided float trip on the upper Bow River.

We basically floated from below the town of Canmore to Dead Man's Flats campground. Unlike in the U.S., we pulled off the side of the highway and launched out boat below the bridge.

This time of year isn't known as a particularily good time of year to fish the Upper Bow. The flies aren't hatching quite as strongly and the sunny weather tends to keep the browns down deep.

It was a picture perfect day, great for floating but terrible for fishing. Sue fished a bit and I fished almost continuously. To say the least, the fishing was difficult. We had to really search for any rising fish, and any little thing would spook them. I used big brown Stoneflies, Elk Hair Caddis, Green Drakes, PMD, parachute Adams and others.

Midway through the day I caught a couple small browns. As our day approached its end, I figured that would be it. I had fished hard, I had made the good casts, the fish just weren't cooperating.

Our guide, Mike from Alpine Anglers, encouraged me to try one last likely run. He said some big fish were in there even though we didn't see any. I casted my plain old parachute Adams into the riffles again and again, carefully avoiding any drag. Finally, the big brown of the day hit. Since it took off downstream, it took some serious playing to get it to the boat. As Mike was about to net it, the fish swam through a hole in his net and the fight was on again. This time, though, my line was also through his net. A resourceful Canadian, Mike fixed the situation with patience and persistence. You can see the result below.

On another day and another place, Sue and I hiked along Lake Louise when I spotted this Splake slowly cruising the shoreline for bugs.


Image courtesy Virtual Fly Shop

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