Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Estuary Fishing....

 So carrying on from the previous post I said I would talk a little about estuary fishing and things I look for when I feel it seems right to head to such a location.



Estuaries and tidal lagoons seem to attract a lot of anglers and rightly so as they are prime locations for bass. More often than not, estuaries contain a large amount of juvenile fish species and are great nursery areas, so there is going to be a lot of food available to the bass. Moving water, gullies and wave action are indicative of estuaries and simply scream bass.
During the bass season, conditions sometimes deem the rock marks unfishable, be it very coloured water or flat calm conditions. This is when I turn to estuaries trying to aim for big tides....

Time of year, there is one problem with estuaries and the likes and that is of the build up of weed you can get at these locations, we all know that green weed thats a nightmare to get off your hooks. So generally we get our best fishing early and late season when the weed levels are not as bad. But if weed is a problem simply fishing your plastics weedless will help you deal with the problem.  








Tides,  watch for the biggest tides of the month 4.3, 4.4. 

Flow/Current, the attraction of these areas are the flow and current, which seem to hold the majority of bass. It makes sense as its simply a matter of the bass finding some kind of shelter (gullie, drop off) and picking off the food which is getting washed out by the current.

Importance of keeping in contact, when you are fishing these areas we have found that generally soft plastics are the best methods, xlayers wave worms, tiki stick etc. Making sure your xlayer is keeping in contact with the bottom is crucial, so make sure you can feel it bumping. Playing around with various jig heads. What you want is your soft plastic flowing through the current at a reasonable pace, but not so fast that the fish dont have time to pick it off.  

                                                         
Underwater features, if you can get try to get an aerilised view of the estuary noting any features you can see, these are 99% of the time hotspots in estuaries. Just like looking for structure off the rocks.

Dropping tide theory, well it makes sense, bait move into estuaries on the filling tide to feed etc. And then move back out on the drop bass can make the most of this by just sitting in wait on the ebb tide. We have had most of our best fishing on ebb tides. However a rising tide in a estuary can also produce great results. It all comes down to getting out and trying to understand what is happening at your mark.

Hold on, by far one of the most exciting ways to catch a bass, bouncing soft plastics through a  current  feeling absolutely everything, and then you get that unmistakable take and the line starts to peel of your reel, FISH ON! Fighting bass in a fast current really is a case of holding on.


So these are just some of the things I look for when fishing the estuaries around here. And thankfully it won't be too long before such areas will be firing with bass again....


Tight lines,

James

Scoped Out

STANDING ROOM ONLY
Plethora Of Staff
dyspepsia, eructation, egression.

-------
.. Of the nearly 100 people, (86, by count) in attendance at the Montana Fish Wildlife & Parks scoping meeting last night, we counted 19 staff members from various agencies in attendance.
.. From uniformed and non-uniformed law enforcement personnel to uniformed and non-uniformed researchers, administrators, and employees, it was an overwhelming show of force.
.. The meeting generally followed the form of such events: Introductions, Presentations, Interruptions, Questions, Chaotic Mumblings, Discourteous Inattention, etc. There were a few interesting disjunctions in the verbal brickbats that stood out:
1] "This process started about 1999 when a group of concerned citizens approached the DFWP with their concerns about recreational usage of the Madison River."
vs
   "We are very early in this process. This is the beginning of this action. We want your input"

2] "We have been thinking about this problem for nearly ten years now.
vs
"We have no preconceived ideas how to address this problem and we're going to address the larger picture of the whole river."

3] "We are lucky that we are ahead of the curve in this action and can address problems and areas of conflict before they happen."
vs
" The conflicts between user groups and the conflicts with land owners have brought about this action."

4] "We are just trying to understand what you are saying. You seem to be talking about things that we just don't understand."
vs
"The science is the same and it should be easy to understand."

.. We can only observe that it's interesting that after 10 years of surveys, research, and cogitation that;  "the beginning of the process starts now."
.. It's also enlightening to find out that no ideas were generated by MFWP staff about how to address the perceived problems during that ten years.
.. My, my, how sweet it is that we are ahead of the curve and that the conflicts that originated this process are not really conflicts.
.. It seems that this whole exercise is designed to implement regulations about manners and morals. "Social Fishing Regulations" is an interesting bit of terminology that reflects the concerns of some nebulous group of insiders.
.. For instance, it's acknowledged that, save for the Whitefish population, the other fish populations are not being affected by the kinds of actions of user groups being addressed. Even the Whitefish population concerns, cannot be linked to the social behavior of river users.
.. Please note that the MFWP has a mission that seems to guarantee all of us the perfect recreational experience - or so it would seem - LINK.
.. We are naive in these matters, and certainly need to become better informed, but for now we can't see how regulation of river use can reduce littering - unless there is a removal of all river users - seems to be a public education and law enforcement issue.
.. We applaud the mentality that believes regulation of numbers and types of users will remove the idiot tubers, boaters, and fishing guides that run over your fishing line in a gentle shore-side pool - we just don't believe that it will work.
.. We have a hard time believing that any newly promulgated regulations will enhance the recreational experience of vastly  different individual users - unless it favors some users to the detriments of others.
.. We're going to watch this groundbreaking effort in social engineering through fishing regulations. Of course the anthropologists, sociologists, psychologists, and recreational specialists of this world are also waiting for this breakthrough regulatory plan.
.. Sadly, we had an attack of dyspepsia well into the meeting. Nausea accompanied our belching and farting and we had to leave just as the entertainment was reaching a crescendo. You'll have to read about the results of the meeting in the newspapers, or observations by bloggers who understand this stuff more than we do.
.. Here's the link to the MFWP page: LINK.
-------

Monday, February 27, 2012

D Minus One

WHAT'S THE FUSS ABOUT ?
As If You Don't Know
-------
.. Here are the "official" maps of the Madison River that will be discussed tomorrow evening at 6:00 PM in a plush conference room just 200' from our front door. We'll let you know if anything new crops up.


Friday, February 24, 2012

Speed Bump

RAMIFICATIONS TO FOLLOW
Champagne Flowing In Billings
fast & loose lost

-------
.. Yesterday the Supreme Court of the United states handed down a decision in the case of PPL Montana vs. State of Montana.
.. As of this moment Montana probably owns less river bottom than it thought. As of this moment there is great celebration in the PPL offices in Billings, Montana. As of this moment fly fishers and other recreational users of Montana's waters have some worries. As of this moment the courts in Montana have the herculean task of trying to be a bit more considered in their application of laws and precedents. As of this moment it seems that the law of the land has been changed regarding the definition of navigability. As of this moment there may be fewer rivers where access is legal because of the navigability precedent.
.. You can read all about the concerns:
-- MidCurrent - HERE,
-- Moldy Chum - HERE,
-- Chi Wulff - HERE,
-- FOAM - HERE,
-- LOGARCHISM -  HERE,
-- GOOGLE SEARCH -  HERE.
.. The legal stuff is also available:
-- Legal Planet - HERE,
-- Environmental Law Prof Blog - HERE,
-- Thomas Merrill - HERE,
-- Decision (PDF) - HERE.

.. So, Batman, what's it all mean? Well, as in many Supreme Court cases, the high court has criticized the lower courts for playing fast and loose with the law and remanded the case for correction.
.. Interestingly the test of ownership by navigability seems to have been glossed over by much of the post decision analysis. The test of navigability at the time of statehood could be a genuine ball buster if title and ownership questions arise about current water that was not in existence then. At present there is not a set precedent - YET.
.. Finally it also means that fly fishers have just one more thing to worry about on the river and stream access front. Consensus seems to be that the Montana stream access law is not in immanent danger - we'll see: especially if the state does not have title to currently navigable waters that did not exist at time of statehood, (think Mitchell Slough, think the re-arranged Ruby River, etc.)
.. We believe that the real import of this case will be felt for a long time. It takes no real genius to understand that "navigability," will be a concern in legal cases for several more decades and may really mean: PORTAGE THEN - PORTAGE NOW.  Now there's a can of wigglers for ya!
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Thursday, February 23, 2012

Z Fish Report (2/23/12)


Chris Lawson of Anchorage got this beautiful sail on the
spin rod also shown in the photo. He was with Cheva on
the panga Dos Hermanos II
The blue water has moved out to about 10 miles, and just beyond the 100 fathom line, and, as cooler water pushes down from the north, the temperature has dropped several degrees this last week. This brings in the marlin and tuna, which prefer the cooler water temperatures, but it also brings in cooler water baitfish like squid. The sailfish action is a bit on the slow side, but all the captains are all saying they see lots of them on the surface, and can’t get them to bite.
Steve Lobodici from Ontario Canada fished with Adan
on the panga Giatana II for this nice dorado


It is for sure the inshore species are eating tonnage of squid, because the sierras we were getting ½ mile of the beach were just loaded with them. It is very possible the sailfish have just changed their feeding patterns and instead of feeding on warm water bait like flying fish, they are feeding on the squid in the cooler water below. After they get their fill, they then come to the surface to warm themselves up.
One of the squid the sierras were discorging
 after being caught

One notable day in the blue water was when Karl Peters took his boat, the Aleta Negra, out with Captain Juan Pablo to look for tuna. Using only artificial lures, they raised 2 striped marlin, a couple of sailfish, a dorado and 1 blue marlin. Karl had one spectacular release by catching a striped marlin on a spin outfit with only 20 pound mono line. They didn’t find any tuna, but Karl reported there were lots of birds.

Karl's striped marlin and the spin rod outfit
 

Juan Pablo getting the striped marlin for the photo and release
 The inshore action is still holding up well, with lots of smaller jack crevalle, large sierras, chulas, and black skipjack tuna providing action for the light line and fly fishing anglers. Ed Kunze – IGFA Representative




 

 
 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

It's Coming

WARMER, WETTER, DEEPER.
Snow Piling Up Slowly
we're pleased
West Yellowstone: 11:50 PM, February 20, 2012.
-------
.. Better late than never!! Went to bed with a gentle snow falling. Woke up to 5 inches of warm, soft, glorious powder. More on the way.
-------------------------------------------
Winter Storm Warning
Statement as of 3:47 AM MST on February 21, 2012

... Winter Storm Warning in effect until 5 am MST Thursday for
elevations above 6000 feet...

The National Weather Service in Great Falls has issued a Winter
Storm Warning for elevations above 6000 feet for heavy snow and
blowing snow... which is in effect until 5 am MST Thursday.

* Timing and main impact: widespread snow... heavy at times... will
combine with strong winds at the higher elevations to create
dangerous conditions in the mountains and passes of southwest
Montana.

* Snow accumulations: total snow accumulations of one to two feet
are expected in the mountains. Higher southwest valleys...
including the West Yellowstone area could see 8 to 15 inches of
accumulation.

* Winds and visibility: strong winds in the mountains will cause
blowing snow with visibility reduced below one quarter of a
mile at times.

* Elevations: for elevations above 6000 feet.

* Other impacts: roadways will become snow covered and slick
causing hazardous driving conditions. Mountain recreation will
become dangerous.

* Locations affected include: Battle Ridge Pass... Targhee Pass...
West Yellowstone... Raynolds Pass.

Precautionary/preparedness actions...

A Winter Storm Warning for heavy snow means severe winter weather
conditions are expected or occurring. Significant amounts of snow
are forecast that will make travel dangerous. Only travel in an
emergency. If you must... keep an extra flashlight... food... and
water in your vehicle in case of an emergency.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Thinking about your fishing.....

A question we get asked a lot in the shop is "when is the best time to catch bass on lures".... I wish there was a simple answer!!!

However there are a few things I think are important when it comes to increasing your chances. 

When I started lure fishing I blanked as good anyone (and still do) however I would like to think not as much anymore, and for me it all comes down to thinking about your fishing. 

The word "watercraft" gets thrown around a lot in fishing and all it really is at the end of the day is thinking logically about Where When and How! 

Rock Marks

For me favourable weather conditions are the first thing I look for. When it comes to weather patterns what I like to see is High pressure with either a Southerly or South Westerly wind direction these are the prevailing winds for Ireland and generally bring damp mild weather, anything from a force 2 upwards will create a "fizz" or life on water and that is what you want, this fizz as we like to call it increases oxygen levels in the water, and probably encourages the bass to actively forage along the rocky shore. 

Tides are for me the next most important (blog post to follow) but generally if you want to increase your chances aim for spring tides 3 days either side of new and full moons will produce the best fishing. On our stretch of coast 3.9 to 4.2 produce the best results for us (the smaller set of springs during the month). 


Clarity, this is a much talked about topic when it comes to lure fishing, and it can be one people can get over bothered with if you know what I mean. Crystal clear water and very murky water certainly make it harder but definitely not impossible. What I love to see when I arrive at a rock mark is a small tinge in the water not quite crystal clear but certainly not overly coloured either. The Copper Coast as it is so shallow can get coloured very easily but by simply adapting (thinking about your fishing)  you will increase your chances no end (vibrating lures, soft plastics etc.). 

Marks, if you email us we will send you a link to all our marks highlighted on google maps....yea right. This for me is what it is all about. Getting out and discovering the coastline making a decision based on what you are looking at, at your chosen mark. Anywhere where there is shallow rough ground along the copper coast you are likely to pick up bass and when we say this to people they don't believe us, but we are not lying. 

What you are looking for is structure and tide movement. How many of us look at a rock and think there has to be a fish sitting around that, look for clues as to where the fish might be. What a predator wants is cover and ambush points so in your mind try to figure out where these points might be at the mark you are fishing. To increase your chances even more visit your mark at low water, look for gullies, holes, weed cover, bolders anything you think a fish might use as potential cover because 9 times out of 10 they will when the tide pushes in...

These are just a few simple rules I follow when I am fishing off rocks.





Thinking about your where you are (fishing some bassy looking ground) when your best chance will be (i.e over high water or filling tide when all those ambush points are covered or getting covered) and how (what lure will get down to where the fish might be and what best represents what they might be feeding on) will make a big difference. Don't just go out there and flog lifeless water. 

However the bass will always find a way to through what you think you know right back in your face when everything seems just right.... and I guess that is the joys of it. 

Some things I look for when estuary fishing or fishing moving water will be in the next blog post....

Tight lines,

James.  

Sunday, February 19, 2012

What I done.

I cooked a burger of epicness.

Angus beef ground with garlic, worcestershire sauce, salt, pepper, and sriracha; then topped with battered, fried onions, Anaheim chilis, Havarti cheese and Roma tomatoes and sided with a Dave's Signature Spicy Pickle is how it's done.

Then I bought a plane ticket to Michigan to hang out for a few days of epicness.

Let's get weird!
Let's get weird!
Let's get weird!



-Alex who has all kinds of awesome going on.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

ewww ewww ewwwww.

I imagine this is what Simon Graham does on his days off... but with Jager.



Yes?

-A

Two Down

TWO TO GO
The Charade Begins
join in if you choose
Courtesy Photo: THE MOOSE - 96
-------
.. It's apparent that quite a few folks are interested in the possible proposed actions for regulating recreation on the Madison River.
.. Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks has already determined that:
.. Two public meetings have been held, (Ennis & Bozeman.). Two more are scheduled, (February 28, 2012 at 6:00 PM in West Yellowstone, MT at the Holiday Inn ==> 315 Yellowstone Avenue,  AND  March 1, 2012 at 6:00 PM in Whitehall, MT at the Whitehall High School ==> 1 Yellowstone Trail.)
..This is not a surprise move. This has been in the works for at least five years. The action has come to this point after careful preparation and savvy maneuvering by a few influential citizens and the staff of MFWP. You can read the first shots fired across the river:
1.) 2008 Madison River Resident Angler Survey, (PDF.)
2.) 2008 Madison River Landowner Survey, (PDF.)
3.) 2009 Madison River Onsite Survey, (PDF.)
4.) 2010 Madison River Angling Pressure Estimates, (PDF.)
.. While apparently laudable in it's conception and execution to date, one dares not ask about the impetus for the current action.
.. We make the following observations, & bring some questions to the fore:
A,] We are well along in the regulatory decision process. This is near the end not the beginning,
B,] Regulatory agencies stay in business by making and enforcing regulations,
C,] Verbal input at public meetings is interesting and entertaining: if you are serious about having your concerns addressed write them down and give them to the public employees running the meeting. Get their names and contact information. Keep in contact with them about your concerns being included for consideration.
D,] Just what is the meaning of: ". . . affected the quality of recreational experience . . ."? Is this a scientific investigation? Is this a resource impact issue? Are regulations aimed at protecting a resource that is within the province of the MFWP? Is individual recreation a Montana resource?
E,] Informal meetings, closed-door meetings, personal and group lobbying, and continued contact with public employees, (including elected officials,) have always been more effective than the "show-and-tell" gatherings around the region.
E,] Circumvention of regulations and regulatory processes is an American pastime. Folks and groups with the money, time and inclination are far more successful at this than folks without money, or time, or involved commitment.
F,] Regulatory agencies and their regulators have a mind set that leans towards restriction rather than enablement. ((For instance: restricting usage of a boat ramp rather than expanding the facility to satisfy demand.))
G.] Although apparently transparent the decision-making process is a slippery and secretive endeavor. It takes place in the minds of humans - 'nuff said !!
H.] It's well worth reading the MFWP "Administrative Rules for River Recreation Management" (PDF.) It is also well worth your time, (if you choose to participate in any meaningful way in the decision-making process,) to make your concerns address this document. Your case will be far stronger and decisions that are exceptions to these rules will need to be very well justified.
I,] Please be assured that new regulations will be promulgated. Know that the instigators of this action have been working for half a decade on getting their concerns addressed.
J,] If you desire participation in this arena remember that you are playing catch up, and you are out-gunned by money, influence, and connections. You can have your say - - it's just very tough !
K.] If you can't attend a meeting, (more importantly even if you do,) fill out the online questionnaire. Find it HERE.  Everyone interested should fill out the questionnaire. It's not good enough for your fishing buddy to voice both his and your concerns. It's not good enough to attend a meeting and not fill out the questionnaire.
.. The showcase element of this decision-making process is the "MADISON RIVER CITIZEN ADVISORY COMMITTEE, (MCAC.)" This is an interesting bit of window dressing and as noted by the MFWP:
The MCAC serves in an advisory capacity. While the role of the committee is critically important, there is no guarantee that the Final Plan will follow the committee’s recommendations. The FWP Commission is the final decision-maker and shall consider the recommendations of the MCAC, the best available information, the environmental analysis, and input from the public and staff.
.. Should we add influential and monied interests as well? Do you know who is on the FWP Commission? When was the last time you spoke with them and voiced a concern about the Madison River?
.. Should you be intrigued with the workings of this current process you can apply to be on the MCAC. (Application HERE.) Then, again, how much time are you willing to spend to have your recommendations considered and not followed?

P.S. Don't tell anyone about this post
-------
.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Z Fish Report (2/16/12)

Douglas Schrieiber on the super panga Huntress with his
released sailfish. The released blue marlin was too big to get a photo 
The 80° blue water is still only a mile or so off the beach, and the offshore fishing has picked considerably from what we were experiencing this last few weeks. This trend should continue, and even improve, as we head into the new moon period next week.
Andy Grupp of Fort Francis Ontario with a nice
dorado while fishing with Santiago and
Francisco on the super panga Gitana.
Adan, on the panga Gitana II has really been showing his skills this last 8 or 10 days. With the average of 1 to 2 sailfish a boat each day in the fleet, Adan’s catch and release of sailfish has been averaging between 3 and 5 fish a day.
Len Grupp, with a huge sail (released) while fishing with
Santiago and Francisco on the super panga Gitana. 

Plus, a few blue marlin have been caught and released. Douglas Schrieiber of Wisconsin fished with Francisco on the super panga Huntress this last Monday releasing one blue marlin, a sailfish, and had three more strikes on sails south/east of Zihuatanejo at the 18 mile mark.
One of Adan's released sailfih with his Danish client.

Inshore is still very good for jack crevalle, sierras, and black skipjacks up near Troncones and on above to Saladita.

Yesterday (Wed.) I took fly fishing client Chris Lawson of Anchorage, and his family down to my “sweet spot” below Puerto Vicente Guerrero. The target was big jack crevalle, but a low pressure system moved in, shutting off the bite. We were surrounded by hundreds of big jacks at one point, and couldn’t buy a strike. Still, we managed 16 fish of 5 different species. We got a few black skipjacks, 8 huge sierras, 5 chulas, a 13 pound jack, and an estimated 8 pound pargo.
Lisa Lawson
Chris Lawson with his fly caught pargo off my "sweet spot"
The rock pinacle comes close to the surface  

On the way back to their rented house on Playa Blanca, we stopped at the restaurant Chula Vida, which has a sushi special on Wednesdays. I talked to the cook, dropped off the fish, making arrangements for them to have their fish cooked up that evening. They had sushi, the pargo cooked up on the coals “a la talla”, with fish tacos and ceviche for lunch today. In fact, we all took chulas and sierras home and ate well last night, including the maid at the Casa Verde where the Lawson family is staying on Playa Blanca. She got a 7 pound sierra.
Caleb Lawson with a very nice sierra

Today, Thursday, we went back down to the “sweet spot”, with Tim Cross of Wisconsin. It was an almost exact replica of yesterday, but today we got over 20 fish. Again, the jacks didn’t eat, but only because they were stuffed full of small squid and sardines. However, we will eat well again tonight.
Santiago also took his Danish clients on the long run
down to Vicente Guerrero. It paid off, with fourty pound
 roosterfish and this  fifty pound rooster.

Ed Kunze – IGFA Representative

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Zonk Gataride....

The Zonk Gataride is one of those lures that everyone seems to ask about when they come into the shop, it certainly is a much talked about lure (and rightly so). The Gataride is by far my number one bass lure and 9 times out of ten the first lure I pick out of my box when I arrive at a mark.


With regard the divide over the Gataride, we all know it has a fragile bib and smash it into structure and you can kiss you Gataride goodbye. It simply wasn't designed to be fished over the rough ground we fish it, but that sure as hell isn't going to stop me using it because it works so well and simply catches me a lot of fish.  
To be honest I learnt the hard way how to fish these lures on my marks, but get to know your area and you won't break or snag your precious Gataride.

I generally retrieve my Gataride quite slow (when fishing shallow ground) with the rod tip in the air, this way if you feel the lure bump into a rock you simply stop retrieving and the lure floats up and away from the rock out of harm's way and you can start retrieving again. If you crank the Gataride over shallow ground you will be looking for trouble. Even with a slow retrieve the Gataride still picks out the fish, a quick crank and pause letting it float back to the surface is lethal with this lure.  

The much talked about hinged lip is what gives the Gataride its superb action which the bass just can't seem to ignore. It is also a definite to have in the box if you are fishing in rough conditions as this very stable lure will bite down perfectly to where the fish are feeding.    


There are two types of lips on the Zonk Gataride Yoro-Yoro and Hi-Pitch.


The Yoro Yoro is designed to run slightly shallower than the Hi-Pitch. So if you are fishing shallow ground I would recommend starting with the Yoro Yoro as you will not get snagged up as easily. They both catch, but in my opinion the Hi-Pitch just seems to have a little extra erratic action than the Yoro Yoro does not. And that is why the majority of the Gatarides in my box are Hi-Pitch.

The Gataride also accounted for a lot of fish in the dead of night for me last season, the great thing with the Gataride is that it will work well even on a very slow retrieve (what you need at night).

Tight lines,

James.    

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Z Fish Report (2/09/12)

Tim Torgrimson and his,wife Deborah
 of Minn. with a great double on dorado
while fishing with Adan on the Gitana
Even though the blue water is practically on the beach, the colder water is pushing down from the north, and the sailfish are moving on to warmer waters to the south. The cooler water brings tuna and marlin, of which we have gotten a few of this week, but only because the boat was in the right place at the right time. There are also a few very large dorado out there.

The best action, as it has been the last few weeks, has been the inshore for light line and fly rod anglers. There is tonnage of the hard fighting black skipjack tuna to keep a kid’s interest and his rod bent all the time, the excellent eating sierras, and the big jack crevalle.

Ed Kunze - IGFA Representative

Monday, February 6, 2012

YUM !!

BIT OF A GOURMAND ?
Certainly Not A Gourmet !
pleasure derived from eating

-------
.. There was a football game: somebody won. There was an ice fishing tournament: somebody won. There was a neighborhood BBQ: we all pigged out.
.. Super Sunday in the neighborhood means a BBQ - weather be damned. It was 15° F and dead still. Last night it got to -11° F. The high pressure has settled in and the snow is afraid of the cold.
.. Depending on the annual host; it's steaks, hamburgers, hot dogs, chicken, pork chops, or "all-day-brisket." This year it was chicken. Simple fare and plenty of it.
.. It's an easy recipe: drench, (you can think marinade,) the chicken halves in several gallons of "Yellowstone Brown Ale BBQ Sauce," overnight in the refrigerator. Then jab it with a fork and let it sit at room temperature for 3 or 4 hours. Keep it moist and keep turning it. Giant punch bowls serve for the containers. Then just BBQ the chicken over coals for about 45 minutes to one hour per side, (low heat in a covered grill is preferred.)
.. Serve with home-made potato or macaroni salad and freshly sliced tomatoes. Grind some dill seeds and sprinkle to taste over everything. Everybody should get at least 1½ chickens; fingers is O.K.
.. The key ingredient is the sauce. You can cook it up yourself if you can't find it in your local super market. It contains Moose Drool Brown Ale, Garlic, Onions, Sugar, Brown Sugar, Tomatoes. Everything is run through a blender, (or food processor,) and salt and peppered to taste. Simmer for a few hours to thicken. Make it thick and let it sit for a week before using.
-------
.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Choices

SUPER SUNDAY ?
How About Ice Fishing ?
commercials - shamercials
FLAT OUT FAST  !!!
-------
.. Too much happening to blink at 120 cycles. We'll catch the second half - maybe.
.. The pubs and theater will be full; so too the neighbor's couches.
.. Spent last evening with the kids and snow program at the hockey rink.
Thanks Dad.
.. The evening was another in the series of  "S'mores & More" events: great fun.
.. Fearless 4-yearolds vs. timid adults always results in cathartic confrontations.
.. We're constantly confounded by visitors and the belief that winter is something to be feared.
.. With open arms our neighbors embrace the opportunities of the season. No great fear here.
.. Not even fishing is ignored. The "post card" images of idyllic pools and inviting riffles are lost in the frenzy of preparations for a daily outing on the ice: with augers, coolers, tackle, warmers, (for the hands, feet, and innards,) and all the necessary impedimenta for a grand time.
.. The NAIFC regional Ice Fishing Tournement kicks off on Hebgen Lake in about an hour. Temperatures have warmed up to about -13° F: the sun is bright and the breeze is below 5mph - PERFECT !
.. We may fish. We may officiate. We may just watch. It's a big deal around here. There's a $21,000 pay out.
.. It's a simple thing: you get five hours to catch and keep five fish; top weight wins. Only Rainbow Trout count.
.. Every entry, (2-person team,) is carefully searched at the start, (there's plenty of places to hide a big fish in the gear, clothing, snowmobile, etc.) the gun sounds and if everything goes well you can be at home for the kick-off.  OR NOT !
.. We tried laying on the beach for a year or two. Sum Fun !
-------
Scrumptious.
Just Push A Bit Harder.
Skates Or Shoes - Your Choice.
YIKES,  IT EXPLODES !
.