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Fall Tour

I had some meetings to attend “out west” a couple of weeks ago.  That gave me a chance to re-visit some places I do not get to nearly enough.  Fall is one of the prettiest times to be there.  I had to stop and catch my breath when I finally saw the end of the road.

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The view was just as pretty looking back from whence I had just come.

fallpineridge

Here is one of the cathedrals I visited.

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And looking deep into those holy waters, here is what I found:  A couple of these,

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and a bunch of these.

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On the way home, I stopped by another of my favorite places, saw a couple more beauties, not as large as I would have wished, but at least I did not get “skunked”.

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BALONEY!  Enough of the pretty pictures.  I will always tell you that a bunch of sunset and scenery pictures mean no fish were caught.  They were.  In fact I was tempted to play hooky from the meetings and spend even more time on the water!

If you need more proof and some help with the fish identifications. . . . I found some Brook Trout, not a lot, but a few.

brookie

I did find a lot of Brown Trout and some very nice-sized ones too.  A lot of those fish were holding in shallow riffles, but man were they spooky.  I will always tell you that small stream Trout are relatively easy to catch as long as they are not spooked.  On the other hand, spooked fish are impossible to catch.  When I am fishing a small stream I approach it like I am still-hunting deer–full camo, sneak, crawl, peek, long casts.  Whatever you do, do not spook fish!

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There ya go, wanna know what I caught ’em on?  They are right in the pictures.

To my fly-fishing friends:  I started with the fly-rod, I had every intention to catch fish on flies.  I know I could have, but the water was small, and the time was short.  My attempts to get into position to present flies resulted in lots of really nice fish running for cover.  After about a half-hour of that, I walked back to my vehicle and retrieved my spinning rod.  Sorry, I hope you are not disappointed in me, but my philosophy on the water has always been to use the best tool for the job whether that is fly gear, spinning gear or bait-casting gear.  If I had more time, I would have been able to make the fly rod work.

I will also tell you exactly where I caught those fish.  You can find it in here, Trout Fishing in Nebraska’s Streams.  By the way, we have lots of “hard copies” of that publication, if you want a couple copies in your hands, e-mail me your U.S. Postal mailing address and I will get them in the mail for you (daryl.bauer@nebraska.gov).

More specifically, I was fishing here:

sign

Look close at the top of the sign.  Yes, that was snow.  There was a bit of it the morning I fished.

Did you know we have a wilderness area in Nebraska?  Yep, and there are Trout there.  No roads, no power lines, no angler access improvements, no fish-cleaning stations, but one of the best places I know to fish.  If you go, don’t you dare leave anything there but your boot prints, know the regulations, including some special fishing regulations, know that there might be a mountain lion lurking in those buttes (hope I get to see one some day!), and know that I have found rattlesnakes nearby.  If you go, treat it like the special place it is.

On the way home I spent a few hours again fishing Lake Ogallala.  I have blogged about fishing those waters many times.  The Rainbow Trout swimming there can be trophy-sized, but all I could manage this trip were a couple of small ones.  That was OK, I will be back.  Knowing those big Trout are there will keep me trying to figure out how to catch them!

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You all know I LOVE ice-fishing, but this time of year I wish autumn would last for another three months!  We are in the middle of the best open-water fishing of the year, and I cannot wait to be there again!

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About daryl bauer

Daryl is a lifelong resident of Nebraska (except for a couple of years spent going to graduate school in South Dakota). He has been employed as a fisheries biologist for the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission for 25 years, and his current tour of duty is as the fisheries outreach program manager. Daryl loves to share his educational knowledge and is an avid multi-species angler. He holds more than 120 Nebraska Master Angler Awards for 14 different species and holds more than 30 In-Fisherman Master Angler Awards for eight different species. He loves to talk fishing and answer questions about fishing in Nebraska, be sure to check out his blog at outdoornebraska.org.

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