2011 REPORTS - OUTING'S & EVENTS
CFFC Fly Fishing News
"Trout Bum Tribune"
Stories and photos of CFFC club outings and fly fishing trips
November 3-6, 2011: PA Steelhead Outing
Five CFFC club members, Chet Wisinski, James Smith, Tim Jenkins, Calvin Norton and Chris Roche decided to roll the dice on the weather on an early November long weekend Steelhead trip to western Pennsylvania...turns out we rolled double sevens!!!
PHW Veteran & CFFC Member- James "Turbo" Smith & PA Steelhead Guide Jeff Blood
The 500+ mile drive was very tolerable, however, the initial lodging selection was far less than tolerable. I think the address was 1313 Mockingbird Lane, Girard, PA if I can remember correctly. Let's just say the first choice for lodging found on the internet was an uninhabitable lodging location somewhat reminiscent of a combination of the "Norman Bates" motel/crackhouse/parolee halfway house with cockroaches that could kidnap your small children. Actually there was a small child there missing his drawers- maybe the roaches stole his pants?? Let's put it this way- I've slept out in the woods in prettier Georgia red clay mud while I was in the military. We managed to get a refund and find a great alternate lodging accommodation nearer to Erie, PA.
The smartest decision we made was to hire local guide/Lake Erie tributary fly fishing guru Jeff Blood. This man is the real deal when it comes to finding the best Erie trib active river location, reading the water and sniffing out those giant lake run Steelheads. He is the "Steelhead Whisperer"...fact. His expert advice coupled with his own creative original fly patterns specifically designed to catch Lake Erie tributary Steelheads was an exact recipe for sucessful fishing.
Friday moring we were out at "0"- dark thirty to visit a hot spot in western New York. The sun came up as we geared up, lines were wet in no time flat...Calvin & James musta slept in their waders or something...they were in the water before my truck door opened. First stop was an interesting spot with a shallow run over a rock ledge into a very fast long run into a 300 yard long flat run. Tim Jenkins landed a sweet looking 4 lb'er at this location. Chet hooked up a nice one but got schooled by the Steelie. It was a bit crowded at this location so Chris headed a half mile or so upstream to a nice long flat run. Watched a local PA trout bum hook a 7lb Steelhead, Chris lended a hand netting the locals fish for him and begged him for some intel. He said " use everything in that chest pack, you'll catch some - so I did. Chris managed to net a few small bunker sized 12" to 15" Steelheads in that location.
After a quick riverside lunch and a cold one our guide decided on a less crowded option several miles off the beaten path...actually a few miles down the beaten & muddy path. We beat the bushes and hiked downstream 1/4 to 1/2 mile...found some primo water and spent the rest of the day working it hard. Chris hooked up an absolute pig of a fish with the expert guidance of Jeff Blood. This particular fish stripped off all the 10 wt fly line then quite a bit of backing, when this extremely large Steelhead went airborne 4 or 5 times Jeff's expression...."wow, you got an Erie Chromer, you'll be busy for a while" Chris knew he was in trouble standing on a rock ledge and couldn't move with the fish. It was easily a 15 to 20 lb range Chromer that schooled Chris like a little school girl. These Erie Steelhead fight every bit as much as a 40lb Salt Water Stripped Bass and at less than half the weight.
Sunrise on the Cattaraugus Creek
After a great day of fishing, it was off to an outstanding local restaurant called Crowley's. The Crowley's family owned restaurant has some outstanding Prime Rib and ice cold beer. The owner is an avid sportsman as well, he fly fishes and his wife is an avid fly tyer, nice couple and they are ardent supporters of the fly fishing community. If you are ever in Girard or Erie, PA I highly recommend you stop in for dinner and introduce yourself.
Saturday morning started much the same...."0" dark thirty start, on the river at sun up, 28F degrees was chilly to start, but it warmed up fast to a balmy & sunny 55F. James "Turbo" Smith won the biggest fish award for the weekend with a 8-9 lb hog Steelhead. Tim "The Hammer" Jenkins won the most big fish award landing at least a dozen fish in the 4 lb to 8 lb range. Chris "Bearspray" Roche won the "King of the Dinks" award netting nothing over 15" inches. Chet Wisinski won the "empty net" skunk award....ouch, better luck next year!!
Calvin Norton and his Trophy Rainbow
Tim "The Hammer" Jenkins with a Few Minnows
L to R: Tim Jenkins, Calvin Norton, Chet Wiszinski, James Smith, Chris Roche
September 30, 2011: Project Healing Waters Trophy Water Day Trip
Special thank you to CFFC club members Ben Bishop and Tim Jenkins who graciously volunteered to take a day off work and guide 2 Veterans on private trophy trout water sections of Little Rock Creek and Big Rock Creeks in Mitchell County North Carolina. Thank you to Rivers Edge Outfitters in Spruce Pine, NC for making it possible for PHW Vets to enjoy their trophy waters. Please stop in to REO next time you're in Spruce Pine and say hello.
Below are a few photos from their day trip.
August 7-13, 2011: East Tennessee Private Farm Trip, South Holston River
The weather was sunny, high-80's to mid-90's all week in the Tennessee mountains. Carolina Fly Fishing Club had 6 club members spend the entire week and another 7 club members spend part of the week fly fishing. We invited a special guest from Tampa Bay Fly Fishing club to spend the week as our guest, Capt. Frank Rhodes. Frank had a great time. Reports had the TVA generation schedule Sunday thru Thursday as not very cooperative for wade fishing on the South Holston in the afternoons. Thanks to local guides Randy Ratliff and the kind folks at South Holston Fly Shop the drift fishing reports were very favorable for those that took advantage of float trips. Numerous reports of many nice large Rainbows and Browns being caught on dry flys, streamers and nymphs. Had a report that Steve Hanna wrestled a sweet 4lb Smallmouth Bass from the river with the guidance of Randy Ratliff...way to go Randy, heck of a job putting the gents on fish!!
Hats of to CFFC board member Dan Grose for his usual bird-dogging for the local Johnson City eatery and watering hole...Cootie Brown's...great food, cold beer.
The latter part of the week on Friday and over the weekend the generation schedule cooperated for some nice wade fly fishing. Several club members attended the South Holston Fly Fishing Festival in Bristol, VA on Saturday on really enjoyed listening to Kelly Galloups seminar on streamer fishing techniques. Special thanks to Kelly Galloup for taking the time to come all the way from his Slide Inn on the banks of the Madison River in Cameron, Montana.
What a great way to end an outstanding week trip. As usual, good fishing, great cameraderie with a great group of gents.
June 14, 2011: Lake Norman CFFC Club Meeting & Cookout
Perfect weather, sunny mid-80's. A great turnout of about 50 club members, family & friends at Ramsey Creek Park in Cornelius for our club meeting & cookout. Special thanks to Bob Thomas for his expertise grilling up some of the finest bratwurst, dogs & angus burgers know to mankind.
Jack Cummings and Richard Griggs provided expert casting instruction and a variety different weight fly rods & variety of fly lines for casting demo for club members to experiment with. Some of our club anglers tried their hands at Gary Jones casting course...and it appears we need some practice with our casting accuracy! Kudos to Jack Cummings, the Peddler was able to raffle off some fantastic fly fishing gear. Ben "Raffles" Bishop did a fine job winning 24 out of the 25 prizes, way to go "Raffles"!!! Well really only 6 out of 25. Chris Roche won the Gary Jones custom built 5wt Bamboo fly rod, he can't wait to try "Mountain Magic" out on a small stream.
Great group of folks, great fun....outing rated 9.99 out of 10
April 7-10, 2011: Project Healing Waters & U.S.M.C. Wounded Warrior Bn. South Holston
CFFC along with private donors that made it all possible & our volunteer guides helped put our wounded Veterans onto the wild Brown trout & Rainbow trout on the South Holston tailwater in Bluff City, Tennessee.
Special thanks to Dr. Carmen Russionello and his staff at U.S.M.C. Wounded Warrior Battalion East at Camp Lejeune, NC for his dedication and care of our wounded U.S. servicemen returning home from Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom. Way to go Dr. R!
Marvin Cash was instrumental in helping organize the Project Healing Waters Charlotte group and procuring donated boots & waders from Jesse Brown's Outdoors in Charlotte....thank you Jesse Brown's! Steve Patterson & Chris Roche pulled it all together, forming a great weekend outing for both Project Healing Waters & U.S.M.C. Wounded Warrior Battalion.
Weekend jumped off to a slow start on Thursday afternoon, TVA generation schedules for South Holston made the wade fly fishing a challenge, we all hit the weir dams at post generation for some small trout hitting bugs mid-day. Friday's generation schedule forced the group to hit Beaverdam Creek in Shady Valley TN for some nice wild water & stocked trout mix. Several of our Vets caught plenty of nice Bow's and Browns. Dr. R with the guidance of Marvin hooked up a beauty of a Brown in slack water just under the rhododendrons with a BWO dry...nice top water take! Late afternoon offered a cookout riverside on the Beaverdam with a camp fire, camaraderie and laughs abound. We all ate chow while watching Tim Jenkins guide Marine Sgt. Daniel Printz in a nice honey hole, fun to watch it live...eat & drink. Better than watching Fly Rod Chronicles on TV.
Saturday & Sunday was right on point on the SoHo, thanks to a few well place phone calls to the powers that be at the TVA....Thank you TVA for adjusting the hydro-release schedule for us! All our Marine Corps guests, Dr. Carmen Russionello, Matthew Fish, SSgt. Armand Mayfield, Cpl. Eugene Harrison, Sgt. Daniel Printz hooked up numerous feisty trout. Our Charlotte Project Healing Waters Veterans fished like old pro's with the tutelage of Marvin Cash...Calvin Norton, James Smith and Dick Barringer stuck the trout left & right on their tiny zebra midges & emergers. Sunshine, cold water & wild trout equaled smiles all around. Saturday night was capped of with a Prime Rib Dinner for the Vets and a somber riverside Memorial service for David Erik Radke. Thank you Ben Bishop!
Thank you volunteer guides, Tim Jenkins, Jack Cummings, Ben Bishop, Steve Patterson, Chris Roche, Rick Goforth, Paul Andrews for dedicating your time and efforts to help with this very worth cause. Great weekend...10.5 out of 10.
Trip Slide Show: http://youtu.be/5VrJQfqiPVs
Front Row Pictured Left to Right: Matt Fish, Paul Andrews, Eugene Harrison, Ben Bishop, Marvin Cash, Calvin Norton
Back Row Pictured Left to Right: Rick Goforth, Armand Mayfield, Dan Printz, Jack Cummings, James Smith, Steve Patterson
Pictured Left to Right: Eugene Harrison, Armand Mayfield, Ben Bishop, Dan Printz, Dr. R, Matt Fish, Tim Jenkins, Chris Roche
2011 PHW & U.S.M.C. WWB South Holston Outing is Dedicated In Memory of David Erik Radke