Beautiful Browns on the Strawberry River

It's been a busy couple of weeks and with the Olympics on top of it, it's been hard to find enough time to drop any reports!

The fishing wasn't very productive last week, when a friend and I took his boat to Willard Bay Reservoir.  We had a great time, but the fish completely ignored me.  He was able to catch a small channel cat and a medium sized walleye.

A couple of other fish gave him some strong runs and ended up getting off the line, but we believed them to be wipers.  Pity we didn't get to meet them.

On my way home, I took a drive up Weber Canyon and attempted to redeem myself on the river.  The hole that I chose looked really fishy, so it was no surprise to nail a decent brown on the first cast.

A few casts later, after peripherally seeing a really big brown rise, I realized that my jig was right by the edge of the eddy the big one rose from.

Letting it sink a bit, the line suddenly shot off and started zipping from my reel for about 3 seconds, then snapped.  I'll never know just how big it was, but it convinced me to stay for awhile.

That was all the river would give me though.  It was slightly disappointing, but at least I didn't get skunked on the day.


This weekend, the family and I decided to go and fish a small lake in the Uintas.  Yet another gnarly road took us to our destination and it seemed as though the fishing lull had carried over from the week before.

Several fish took to the surface and we tried for a couple of hours with little more than a couple of quick bumps.  One stayed on for awhile, but escaped at my feet.

The kids were getting impatient and my wife started feeling sick, along with a bad headache.  This really cut our trip short and it killed me to have to leave so soon.  It was a pretty lake and the fish seemed to displace a lot of water, when they would rise.

Right as I was about to leave, I finally got one to hang onto the hook.  It was a bit smaller than what I was hoping for, but a fish in hand is better than nothing.

On the ride home, my wife actually needed me to pull over for a minute.  Poor girl had the funk.  She ended up feeling a lot better once she got home, took a nap, and ate some pizza.

She felt good enough to show me her sweet side and told me I could go fishing the next morning.  What a lady!


Waking up on the recliner at about 3:30am, it was clear that there was no going back to sleep for me.  This is when I came up with the day's plan:

Float Strawberry and drag kokanee gear, while fishing for trout with my other rod.  Though unlikely, a koke from the tube would be awesome.

The fishing there was slow.  Dismally slow.  I kicked quite the distance and only got one bite, which I landed. It was a small rainbow and quickly released.

The kokanee didn't want anything to do with my pink UV Assassin behind a neon pink/chrome dodger. They probably weren't in the area I was fishing.  My gear wouldn't stay very deep, even at a slow kick.  I didn't really expect to catch any, but wanted to try.

Nothing on the fly rod either.

Once I finally parked my tube for a pit stop, a couple of cutts in the slot showed up, but that was it.

Back they went.

My focus started to shift, thinking a trip downstream would be nice, so I made the long kick back to my put-in and drove down to the river.  The river has been a spot I've fished for about 10 years now and I just knew it would treat me right.

Hiking to a long stretch that I like, a black marabou jig and a gold blue fox accompanied me on two rods.  The first quarter mile of river I walked didn't yield a single hit, so I started to wonder if the black cloud of slow fishing still loomed above me.

A few fish at the top of a deep run finally started showing up.  The Blue Fox was first to get bit, even by a couple of brookies.  A few smaller browns also came in, only one deserving a photo.

It felt great to catch several fish from that pocket and the river started to work its magic on me, like it had so many times before.

It even started raining for a short while, but it wasn't a bother.  My "healing" had begun and for the next two hours or so, the river cleansed my spirit.

The browns in the river tend to have really rich hues and it's always so satisfying to pull in some good ones, which can be found in all the right spots.

The first big one came when I approached a rocky stretch with some good sized boulders popping out of the water.  My jig landed right where it needed to and a great fight ensued.  It took awhile to fight it in and the strong brown really made a production of it.

What a blast!

That thug made my day, which had already taken a turn for the better.

Soon after, a gorgeous brookie took the jig.  Its halos were practically glowing blue.  Pretty chubby too.

While walking to the last hole I fished, another nice fish spooked, showing me where he liked to hide.  I made a mental note to check it again on my way back...

Once at my final spot, many strikes were missed, but a few smaller brookies were caught, along with a couple of browns.  One of them was really pretty and also provided some strong tugging:

Thrilled with the way my day unfolded, I started to make my way back to the truck.  As I passed the hideout of the fish I spooked earlier, I tossed my Blue Fox (now silver) behind where I saw him and buzzed it through the hole.

Bam!  Got him!

Such quality fish in the river.  What a great place.

It was such a relief to catch fish with regularity again.  Those slow streaks can be really brutal for me and it carries into other aspects of my life.  It's good to be "back", so to speak.

Happy Fishing, Humans.

Some Background...


Why not go jogging, hit the gym, start a garden or whatever it is that normal humans do? What's so fascinating about these slimy little creatures that live in the water?

Fishing is a bit more to me than a hobby or a sport. It's an essential part of life that helps me connect with the Earth in ways similar to the long-practiced traditions of mankind. Wherever man has had a water source, there has been fishing.

It's only natural.

Happy Fishing, Humans.