Saturday, October 29, 2011

An unexpected trip

Wasn't expecting to get out on the water this weekend until Sunday for a planned trip on the San Marcos river. Found out after dinner last night that my wife and daughter had plans for today and wouldn't be returning until late in the afternoon. Decision time, veg out and watch football all day or load up the kayak and head out for some fishing on the Guad. Guess what won out.....
Put in and instead of floating downstream I chose to hunt some fish upstream in an area that I haven't fished yet due to no portage around the dam. Fished my way upstream for a ways then had to get out and tow the kayak behind me as I waded my way to the dam. Caught a few bluegill and a few bass along the way. Upon reaching the dam I decided to just pull the kayak over it and get on my way. The area above the dam was nice with a lot of limestone shelves and deeper water. Water was pretty clear and I could see a lot of larger fish but they were not interested in my offerings. Ended up catching around twenty fish today and get to go out again tomorrow. I like this weekend.
Just another great day on the water....
Gear used today was a TFO BVK 7wt and a Matthews Custom 4wt.
Caught fish on wooly boogers and a panfish treat from DragonFly Angler flies.
Enjoy the pictures and thanks for reading...

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Camping from a Kayak

I get asked quite often.....what do you take with you when camping from a kayak. It's not an easy question because there are a lot of variables that come into play.
How comfortable do you want to be, how long will you be out, what is the weather like, will you be preparing food or cooking at your campsite.

Here is a list of items that I usually take out for an overnight river trip.

1) Tent, one person for yourself or two person if doubling up. I will also take a hammock instead if I know that the area will have available trees.Be sure your tent or hammock has a rain fly.

2) Sleeping Pad, these can be found at many sporting good stores and vary in price. If i'm out for multiple days i'll take a blow up matress that you can inflate with a battery operated pump.

3) Sleeping bag, these vary in sizes and would only be used in colder weather.

4) Folding chair, get a small one but do get one. You will thank me later. The Coosa kayak that I have has a removeable seat that doubles as a chair so that helps.

5) Cooler, this is very important if you plan on having ice so food doesn't spoil while out in the heat for multiple days. I prefer the K2 Cooler, multiple days in 100 degree heat and still have ice when I arrive home.

6) Water filter, unless you pack water in you will need either a filter pump or a filtered water bottle.

7) Stove,I pack a Talon backpacking stove which I use if it's raining. Otherwise matchlight charcoal put into ziplock bags sure make the steaks taste great cooked over a small grate.

8) Extra paddle, you just never know.

9) First Aid kit, small one for minor emergencies.

These items are needed as well.
Toilet paper (biodegradeable), Lighter, Fire Starter, Rope, Utensils, Cooking set, Change of clothes, Camp sandles, Hygiene kit, Flashlight, Knife, Hatchet.
To some this will seem like a lot of gear. It is not all used on every trip but it is all gear that is used.

Most of these items should come from stores that cater to camping and backpacking or hiking. There are many products out there that are designed to lighten your load. You should also pack some kind of emergency meal just incase, never know when you might have to spend an extra night. I won't get into the argument about carrying a firearm that occurs whenever it's brought up but I do carry while on the water.

Here are some websites to assist you with finding gear to use.

Feel free to comment if you have other additions and thoughts....

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Fall on the Colorado

As the title reflects, not only was this trip the beginning of fall here on the Colorado river in Texas. It was also starting the beginning of the water level falling on the river due to the river authority stopping their daily release upstream.
It was nice to get away and fish with some good friends as well as a new friend that I made over the weekend. It's amazing the nice people that you meet on trips like these.
The cooler weather helped out and the drop in water put the fish in a more typical river pattern. Fishing was always better where you found current and the slack water meant you needed to fish tight to cover, whether it was wood or grass. The majority of the fish were caught on streamers by DragonFly Angler flies. With the water clear you could see the results of a good spawn as every grass bed you approached there were small bass darting to get out of the way. We fished and paddled around nine miles on Saturday reaching the island with enough time to set up camp and cook dinner over a small propane stove. Still no fires allowed with the drought but with stomachs full from Paul's red beans and rice we settled around the rivers edge with enough stars that a light wasn't needed.
Sunday began with some breakfast then a nice cool wade to get the body going. Caught a few wading then set out in the kayak to the delight of fish after fish accepting the wooly bugger that I chose to throw today. I fished with a 7wt BVK and everything you have heard is true. This rod will flat out lay a fly while casting into the wind.
It's good to be back home but I can hear the river calling........