Blue River Fly Classic

Blue River Fly Classic
A One Pattern Fly Event

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Blue River Brunch

The early morning was an absolute joy today. I went to that place - the one known as fly-fishing. The sky was overcast keeping the sun in check and the temperature was a good five or ten degrees cooler than yesterday morning.

I battled five different species of fish including the green sunfish, redbreast, catfish, drum, and carp. Four flies were lost to the giant queens of Rock Creek but at least they gave their lives on the field of battle and not to the clutches of a tree.

Back home shortly after nine o'clock it was time for something in the Dutch, and today I chose to fix brunch - Blue River Brunch as a matter of fact.

This recipe is so good, you'll want to run out as soon as you read this and get the stuff to make it.

Here's what you'll need:

3 medium Russet potatoes - diced
1 large yellow onion - diced
1 large green bell pepper - diced
1 tablespoon of season salt
1 jar of Pace mild or medium picante
1 8 oz. package of shredded cheese (Cheddar or Monterrey Jack)
4 slices of hickory smoked bacon (cut into 1 inch squares with scissors)
4 jumbo eggs
4 wide mouth mason jar rings

Here's how you do it.

Mix diced potatoes, onion, and bell pepper together and season with season salt. Place mixture in oiled Dutch oven. Add layer of picante sauce on top of mixture. Add shredded cheese to cover all of mixture. Add bacon to cover all of mixture.

Using a ten inch Dutch, place six coals on bottom and fourteen coals on top. You will cook this mixture for forty-five minutes.

Five minutes before the recipe is done, lift lid and place jar rings on top of mixture and gently seat them into mixture. Add one egg to each ring, replace lid and cook another five minutes.

Remove coals and let rest for five minutes before serving.

This is what the mixture will look like before adding coals.

If you need additional servings, simply add to all ingredients and eliminate mason jar lids. Simply set the number of eggs you need directly on top of mixture. The jar rings are required only to make individual servings.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Getting The Details

You get a line and I'll get a pole, Honey,
You get a line and I'll get a pole, Babe,
You get a line and I'll get a pole,
We'll go fishin' in the crawdad hole,
Honey, Baby mine.

Carol walked up carrying two tree limbs about three foot long and said, "These should do." I had the twine in hand and we married the two materials together, and off to the creek we went. We were going crawdad catchin'.

Crawdad catchin' is something neither one of us have done in probably forty years, but both remember what fun it was.

The main reason I wanted to go crawdad catchin' today, besides having fun, is so I could take a picture of the real deal.

It seems like every time I sit down at the tying bench to tie a crawdad pattern, I cannot for the life of me remember exactly what a crawdad looks out. Sure... I know the basic form or outline, but when it comes to the exact layout I get confused.

So today, we caught a number of crawdads and I got one good picture which is going on the wall in the fly-tying room.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

The Olive Damsel Marabou

Thumbing through my season of Rainbows journal from 2001 and 2002, I noticed that I used the olive damsel marabou a lot that trout season and with fairly good success. Why I strayed away from the pattern over the years, I simply don't know. It could very well have been that other patterns such as standards like the pheasant tail or hare's ear were working so good, I simply didn't need to fish the damsel marabou. But, I do remember the pattern brought me a lot of enjoyment... so I started tying some more for this coming season.

The damsel marabou can be tied a variety of ways using a variety of hooks. Probably the most popular hook is a standard streamer hook but for the pattern above I used a 3XL Curved Shank hook. The damsel marabou can be tied with beadchain eyes, mono eyes, or black beadhead. Pheasant tail can be used as a wing case or not and legs can be added or not.

I tied up six of the olive damsels and realized it had been some time since I have been fishing. In a recent conversation with Charlie, I told him I believed the damsel would work on the Rock Creek carp so today would be the testing ground for my theory.

Now, the heat index today was 113, so I waited until late to get on the water, and even at that... I didn't stay long.

The olive damsel would hook-up with three carp but all three were lost. Two were lost to break-offs, and the other to a bad tie I made. Anyhow... I guess the carp like the damsel. What give me the idea of using this pattern on carp is my water garden. It's absolutely loaded with damsel's and they are really odd looking creatures. I netted a number of them so I could get a closer look and make notes of some details.

Figure Scotty could use some of these patterns at the One Stop so it's back to the vise for now.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Dutch Oven Boneless Chops with Blueberry Sauce

Here's a Dutch oven recipe for that other white meat... pork. And this recipe adds a little twist to the usual pork serving.

You will need:

(To Serve Two)

Four boneless pork chops
Lawry's season salt, pepper
1 can of OregoN's Blueberries in sauce
1/8 cup of sugar
1/4 tsp. of cinnamon
1/3 tsp. of ginger

Here's how you do it.

Season your chops with the Lawry's season salt and pepper on both sides.

Start your coals for your heat source.

While the coals are heating up, get out your favorite outdoor serving ware. In this case I chose my Rainbow Trout collection from Cabela's.

Sit your Dutch directly over an open campfire or bed of coals and add the chops. Brown on both sides. After browning remove to another plate.

Add blueberries and remaining ingredients and return Dutch to bed of coals.

With a wooden spatula, stir blueberry mixture to dissolve sugar and mix ingredients. Stir slowly bringing the mixture to a bubbling simmer. Let simmer three minutes and return chops.

After adding chops remove Dutch from bed of coals and place 16 coals on top lid and cook for fifteen to twenty minutes.

As sides, consider fresh garden new potates with green beans topped with roasted slivered almonds along with fresh sweet corn.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Storing Up At Bass Pro

It couldn't have worked out better. Long before even considering today was Father's Day, a trip to Bass Pro had already been planned. With the summer-like temperatures quickly coming on, it's time for me to go into fly-tying season. Fly-tying season for me usually begins around this time of year and will last until the middle of September or so. Long story short was I was really in need of some vital stuff to tie the flies.

Last night while participating in an event at the Chickasaw National Recreation Area, my daughter Kempy walked up and handed me a card and said, "Happy Father's Day!" Inside the card was, of all things, a Bass Pro gift card. Hot diggity dog... daughter must be psychic.

Checking with Charlie Wright I found that he also needed a few things as did another friend, so today's trip was going to certainly be a worthwhile undertaking.

I've mentioned before the picture in the men's outhouse at Bass Pro. Today, I decided to take a picture of the picture. As you can see, there are two anglers on what is labeled Sulphur Creek in 1902. Sulphur Creek is now what we call Travetine Creek. From the looks of the stringers, this little creek was evidently one heck of a fishery at one time. Too bad progress has diminish the fishing at this fine little waterway.

There were a lot of folk at Bass Pro today, and I guess they had the same idea as I did... which was to spend Father's day blowing money.

At the fly shop I struck a conversation with a gentleman who was looking for material to tie up a special midge pattern he ties. He mentioned that it was a killer on Blue river and of course the conversation took off from there. I think the gentleman was from Duncan, Oklahoma and much like a number of us, he prefers the wilderness areas at Blue. It was neat talking with him.

I'll start my fly-tying season tomorrow and hope to have somewhere between three or four hundred flies done by trout season. Last year I didn't have time to supply Scotty at the One Stop, but this year I plan on correcting that issue.

Only 102 days left to trout season at the beautiful river Blue.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Purple Skies And Fish

There's something special about being on the water in the late afternoon and evening hours. There's something extra special about being on the water in the late afternoon and evening hours.... with a friend. And then, there's something remarkable about watching the blue skies of late afternoon slowly give way to evening's purple sage background hovering above the western horizon.

It's during this time that some of us, like me, garnish a certain sense of euphoria. Such was the case this past Thursday while fishing with my friend Curt Tully.

As I stared at the purple sage skies, I found myself asking if there is anything, besides fishing, I really want to do. I already know the answer to the question, but finding a solution continues to elude me.

For Curt, it was more of a sense of Deja Vu and that's easy to understand since he has spent many an enjoyable hour on this particular water over the last several years.

The fish were more than willing from the beginning. Curt would find the first bass using a lizard pattern. It was a healthy young bass full of vim and vigor.

The bass would seem to favor Curt's offerings and the crystal chenille bugger I was using had attracted a rather large fan-base of panfish. With every cast there was a strike, a bump, or a grab at the tail of the bugger. The panfish were also quite healthy and beautifully colored like this brilliant Redbreast.

We eventually drifted to the other side of the pond, leaving the panfish behind, and I found my first bass using a black popper. Again, another extremely healthy fish with lots of fight and spirit.

The summer-like temperatures here of late has caused the moss to flourish and even Curt, being as familiar with this water as he is, was surprised at the crawl of the moss. Stripping my bugger or Clouser threw the moss was pretty much an exercise in futility, so I went straight top-water for awhile.

Meanwhile, Curt continue to dredge and bounce his lizard pattern off of the bottom and kept catching bass including this dandy four pound plus specimen.

It's darn hard to try and take a picture holding the camera with one hand and the fish with the other, and as you can see... this fish was nowhere in frame.

The stars came upon us quicker than we thought and the fishing started slowing down somewhat. But, it was a great afternoon and evening to be on the water. Curt mentioned fishing Arbuckle Lake next, and of course I'm good to go.

Many thanks to Curt for taking me a-fishin'.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Campfire And Cast Iron

Next to fly-fishing, cast iron cooking around a campfire is my second passion as far as my outdoor life.

Unfortunately, this time of year on the prairie ocean there is heat and humidity so I have to curtail my outdoor activities and plan them later toward the evening hours.

Tonight I fixed dutch oven chicken with rice and California asparagus. It's a beautiful dish and quite tasty also. Here's the recipe.

You will need:

10 drumsticks
2 1/2 cups of instant rice
1 cup of chicken bouillon
1 1/2 cups of water
salt, garlic salt, pepper
1 bunch of asparagus tips (fresh)
parsley coarsely chopped (enough to sprinkle drumsticks)

Here's how you do it:

Have coals hot and ready
Place rice in bottom of dutch oven. Add liquid. Place drumsticks in circular fashion around dutch oven. Lay asparagus spears in center of drumsticks. Sprinkle chicken with parsley springs.

Cook for forty five minutes at 350 degrees (12 coals on top, seven on bottom). Place top coals around rim of lid leaving center void of coals.

Here's the recipe ready for the coals.

Be sure and have your coals white hot.

Here's the finished product. Serve and enjoy.

Picked this cast iron skillet up at a garage sale yesterday. Plan on refurbishing it and then seasoning it once again.

Adios To The Oklahoma Trout Stamp

This past week Governor Henry, of Oklahoma, signed legislation that does away with the trout stamp requirement in Oklahoma. The need for a trout stamp has been in place for a good number of years and now the loss of revenue will be made up with increases of non-resident fishing licenses.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Kids Fishing Derby A Big Hit

The Kid's Fishing Derby, hosted by the Tishomingo National Fish Hatchery along with the Johnston County Chamber of Commerce, turned out to be one huge ball of fun this past weekend. Gosh... never seen so many kids at once having fun catching fish.

This was the 16th annual derby for the young at heart, and everyone did a great job. I was on hand to bait hooks if needed, and I heard a couple of members of Trout Unlimited were also on hand to assist.

Lots of nice, and I do mean nice, sized catfish were being caught by the smallest anglers, and all the kids seem to have a great time.

Golden Carp Award

That Charlie... he is keeping it going on with the Carp Crusades. Charlie, along with his talented and creative wife Cheri, decided to create and present me with an award for battling fifty carp in the crusades. When Charlie brought it by the store, I was absolutely tickled silly.

Thanks Charlie and Cheri... I do appreciate the award and thanks for keeping it all fun.