________________________________________

1/1/14

2013 Fishing Year In Review

2013 held some fantastic fishing for me.  It has truly been the best fishing year of my life and 2014 only promises to get better.

Let's take a look at some images of the highlights of this past year, in order.

The first fishing trip of the year was on ice at Starvation Reservoir.  The fishing was slow, but I ended up with a couple of perch and a decent rainbow:

 photo Nikon087_zpsfefde5e8.jpg

Next was a strange cutthroat sighting at the valley floor, just about a mile from Utah Lake:

 photo Nikon088_zps4bbaca52.jpg

In over 7 years fishing that lunch break spot, I had never seen a cutthroat, although I'd run into a total of three rainbows.  It was mostly a brown trout/white bass spot.

 photo Nikon090_zps30326d03.jpg

Another trip led me to my first ice fishing experience at Currant Creek Reservoir, where I've historically done pretty well.  This trip was no exception and I ended up catching a 24" tiger trout in shallow water next to the dam.

 photo Nikon109_zps79555023.jpg

That was great fun.  I got the whole capture on video too.

Next trip was to the Diamond Fork River, a local tributary to the Spanish Fork River.

 photo Nikon144_zps512fc09f.jpg

 photo Nikon147_zpsafc40bda.jpg

A family ice fishing trip to Palisade Reservoir kept us entertained.

 photo Nikon150_zps17c5796d.jpg

 photo Nikon152_zps5401ee33.jpg

And then a family trip to Straight Canyon Creek, near Joe's Valley Reservoir:

 photo Nikon185_zps6366996b.jpg

 photo Nikon197_zps5c74101c.jpg

Something of note, I caught a brookie from a hole in the ice, just a couple hundred yards upstream from JVR in Lowry Water, a major tributary to the reservoir.

 photo Nikon204_zpse29eb82a.jpg

More lunch break action, this time with a small brown from under a giant irrigation grate.  Had to laugh.

 photo Nikon112_zpsdcc88eab.jpg

Then it was time for some ice-out cutts and tigers.

 photo Nikon260_zps1c982365.jpg

 photo Nikon267_zpse3a16b3b.jpg

 photo Nikon269_zps69943045.jpg

 photo Nikon276_zpsc749af04.jpg

 photo Nikon283_zpsb17f6198.jpg

 photo Nikon245_zps61094143.jpg

Back to Starvation for some ice-off action.  The rainbows were big and strong.

 photo Nikon288_zps8cd62c18.jpg

 photo Nikon296_zps7f1b493a.jpg

I also try to make it a point to fish the tail water below, whenever I can.  There are usually a lot of willing mouths and good sized browns.

 photo Nikon323_zpsc8c1f35f.jpg

Driving through the Pinnacles of Strawberry River is always a spectacle:

 photo Nikon335_zpsef956f73.jpg

 photo Nikon341_zpsa7ec8dab.jpg

Then I went to check out a hunch.  A puddle on a map that I've never heard anything about got investigated and some wild Bonneville Cutthroat were the reward.

 photo Nikon366_zpsea6c8b40.jpg

 photo Nikon373_zpsac12cd4d.jpg

While hiking out of there, I fished my way through a network of little beaver ponds and had a blast with the tiny cutts that lived in them.  Fishing beaver ponds is one of my favorite things to do.

 photo Nikon376_zpsde3eb28b.jpg

 photo Nikon382_zps58cd9849.jpg

Downstream from the ponds, I couldn't help but pullover for a few swings at a small tributary to that system.  There are some surprisingly big browns in there.

 photo Nikon406_zps9596cb6b.jpg

Next was a desert trip to the west with my family, where we were able to visit an old historic town, fish for gorgeous little wild rainbows in the desert, and play around on some sand dunes, all in the same day.

 photo Nikon418_zps49f779d1.jpg

 photo Nikon438_zpscec22f78.jpg

I finally investigated some small beaver ponds near a popular fishing spot of mine, but they were fishless.  Pretty though.

 photo CurrantCreek016_zps2f49f158.jpg

Strawberry Reservoir:

 photo StrawberryRiver007_zps934f38e2.jpg

Jordan River quickie after an interview (that I totally nailed).  It was a bit of a surprise to see a huge sucker on my black marabou.  Really, it was surprising to see anything on it.  I hardly ever fish that river.

 photo DeerCreek002_zpsb6679a83.jpg

Another local stream that I have mostly neglected, this year I actually put forth some effort and waded into some really good stretches.  Some pretty nice fish were missed or broke me off.  Beautiful creek on Memorial Weekend.

 photo Memorial009_zpsc45b6cd1.jpg

 photo Memorial013_zps6fbaccb2.jpg

 photo Memorial017_zps26e7b9f0.jpg

Seeing a tiny feeder creek, I just had to follow it for a bit.

 photo Memorial026_zps831514b4.jpg

The summit of Fairview/Huntington Canyon is always good for incredible vistas after a long day of fishing on the Manti.

 photo Memorial044_zps49df7343.jpg

2013 started strong and the good fishing continued into the summer.  One of my favorite lakes gave me a dream day the prior year around the same time, where I experienced non-stop catching of big beautiful spawning cutthroat.  A 2013 trip was made in hopes of finding the same.

2012 was the year of the cutthroat.  2013 would be the year of the brookie.

 photo Picture006_zpsb1f96610.jpg

 photo Picture007_zpsda9e18b7.jpg

 photo Picture029_zps15fadff6.jpg

 photo Picture031_zps36e21e62.jpg

The cutts were still around as well.  They were picky this time around, but a few were caught.

 photo Picture046_zpsff3d9195.jpg

One, in particular, was beyond nice.

 photo Picture060_zpsdfd52f4a.jpg

 photo Picture064_zps3eecacdb.jpg

 photo Picture068_zps22e823bd.jpg

I was spoiled rotten!  Already a favorite spot of mine, seeing how the brookies had responded to being stocked in recent times made me feel warm and fuzzy all over.

With my big fish bug mostly satisfied for the time being, my focus shifted to the highest mountain range in the state for the next few weeks.  The Uintas are incredibly beautiful and the fishing is usually very good for smaller fish in most places.

 photo summerfest13005_zps43eec42d.jpg

Didn't try these, but I liked how they looked.

 photo summerfest13021_zps381d3b05.jpg

Caught my first fish on a dry (not behind a bubble):

 photo summerfest13030_zpsee133a4e.jpg

 photo summerfest13032_zpsf26ea808.jpg

Took an exploratory hike with my tube, hoping for nice fish.

 photo Hogbottom007_zps795357e4.jpg

 photo Hogbottom012_zps278e88c6.jpg

 photo Hogbottom027_zps874f839a.jpg

No fish!  Another stop was needed at a confirmed winner.

 photo Hogbottom041_zps6f6b5ee3.jpg

 photo Hogbottom051_zps2eab0336.jpg

Fishing the north slope in the Bear River drainage.  Whitney Reservoir:

 photo WhitneyWhitley023_zps34f30126.jpg

Provo River Falls:

 photo WhitneyWhitley050_zps5d83c275.jpg

And then it was time for more big brookies from my happy place.  I dragged my buddy along, who had fished that same lake with me, our first time out there.  A big fan of brookies, he was pleased to nab a 4lber.

 photo Lincoln017_zps625b588b.jpg

I did pretty well too.

 photo Lincoln025_zpsd921e02e.jpg

 photo Lincoln029_zps136efea6.jpg

How about this bulging brookie?

 photo Lincoln032_zps79d6bee2.jpg

And some beautifully painted cutthroat as well:

 photo Lincoln038_zps5fa0d1de.jpg

 photo Lincoln047_zpsea30f86a.jpg

It was another one of those days that will forever stand out to me.

 photo Lincoln048_zpsd38c982e.jpg

A hidden stream running right through the valley provided some mid-week entertainment while I waited to start working at a great new job.

 photo DryCreek007_zpse1075e6b.jpg

Working in Provo, my lunch break fishing obsession can still be nurtured on the river or at another spot I've discovered since starting.

 photo campout002_zps9cc759d5.jpg

More brookie action at a pond I found in 2012, revisited with a friend on a camp out.

 photo campout012_zps2f8b8c08.jpg

 photo campout024_zps5ea863fa.jpg

 photo campout051_zps5001e9b7.jpg

We also visited a nearby stream for pretty cutts.

 photo campout043_zpsf9e013c6.jpg

 photo campout050_zpsb4bebb22.jpg

Currant Creek Reservoir:

 photo SpringdellCurrant052_zps25d9f1bf.jpg

 photo SpringdellCurrant078_zps5fea0c3f.jpg

 photo SpringdellCurrant079_zps393a8fd1.jpg

Strawberry River with my friend Holdsworth (visiting from CA):

 photo Strawriv002_zps843c9b4d.jpg

On the 'toon at a good cutt/tiger hole.

 photo Aug242013Boating005_zps4bc1708d.jpg

 photo Aug242013Boating010_zps054c2aea.jpg

 photo Aug242013Boating011_zpsdafd5f13.jpg

Belly:

 photo Aug242013Boating018_zpsad375431.jpg

More exploring:

 photo splorin012_zpsa4130ef4.jpg

 photo splorin070_zps2c14e059.jpg

Another local creek that I really enjoy:

 photo berrydry034_zps4f7348ed.jpg

 photo berrydry038_zps7e34dd8a.jpg

 photo berrydry058_zps174b32e6.jpg

Rex Reservoir from the tube:

 photo Rex9-28-13026_zpsb006ec65.jpg

Lunch break visitor:

 photo local002_zpsad0da3b0.jpg

On the way back from Currant Creek Reservoir (Co-Op Road):

 photo Sunday029_zpscdd52129.jpg

Another local stream got a visit in the fall and a lot of browns were met.  Some were pretty nice.

 photo 6W001_zps794de5c9.jpg

 photo 6W007_zpse83c19fc.jpg

 photo 6W014_zpsbc622a8f.jpg

 photo 6W019_zpsd879bc24.jpg

 photo 6W025_zpse690405c.jpg

Mas de La Agua Encantada:

 photo CampingFLP015_zps83b0b5aa.jpg

A tiny frozen creek with wild cuttroat:

 photo CampingFLP039_zpsb43f98e3.jpg

Lost Creek:

 photo CampingFLP057_zps87f253d5.jpg

Cowboy Country:

 photo Cuttsntigers008_zpsb70a6ee0.jpg

 Joe's Valley Reservoir glassy water:

 photo November13013_zps8269b3d2.jpg

Bluegill and Largemouth from the new lunch spot:

 photo PRIV-LUNCHY005_zpsf7381079.jpg

 photo PRIV-LUNCHY020_zps276001fc.jpg

Strawberry Reservoir:

 photo BIRCHBERRY002_zps270c0980.jpg

My 3rd 24" tiger trout of the year - all from different lakes.

 photo BIRCHBERRY016_zps3ac7225b.jpg

Another nice one, over 20", but soooooo colorful.

 photo BIRCHBERRY031_zpsadb5e56e.jpg

Early ice:

 photo BIRCHBERRY033_zpsc2b3ac21.jpg

Red Ledge, from Currant Creek Dam:

 photo BIGDUMP092_zps347a26bb.jpg

Lunch carp - surprisingly took a crayfish plastic on a jig head.

 photo BIGDUMP066_zps40c4179b.jpg

The Provo River in the canyon treated me well throughout the transition from fall to winter.  Nothing too special, but it's nice to have such a place so close to home.

 photo BIGDUMP104_zpsfefe145a.jpg

 photo BIGDUMP109_zps1f492bce.jpg

Deer Creek Reservoir started getting some ice over this past weekend.

 photo BIGDUMP130_zps9b56fcd2.jpg

And for the last trip of 2013, as I've done before, ice fishing at Strawberry Reservoir on New Year's Eve.

 photo BerryNewYear13004_zpsb094a684.jpg

It was a good trip and I was really glad to bid farewell to 2013 with some nice fish.

This one was over the slot and came home with me for New Year's dinner.

 photo BerryNewYear13007_zpsd514e73a.jpg

Seven fish were caught over 4 hours on the ice, 3 of which were over 20".

A 20" cutthroat from Strawberry Reservoir had the honor of being my last catch of 2013.

 photo BerryNewYear13010_zps10a93886.jpg

The slot buster was filleted, rinsed in egg wash, and rolled in Parmesan.  Fresh cutts from Strawberry are incredibly delicious.  It's always a treat when I can take one home.

 photo BerryNewYear13012_zps2f066fc9.jpg

Whew!  What a year!  Thank you all for following the posts I made throughout.  Several landmarks were reached with the blog including reaching 100 followers, over 75,000 pageviews (almost 80k now), and enough of you visited to compel Google to send me a check!

Thanks for that!  Here's to a very productive and successful 2014 to all of you.  Thanks for reading and...

Happy Fishing, Humans.

6 comments:

  1. Looks like an epic year! Hope 2014's even better, keep the posts coming.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Tim. I'll try to make it even better this year.

      Delete
  2. Justin
    I hope you have this review in an album, it is worth collection status. Really enjoyed viewing the images. thanks for sharing

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Bill! It's been fun collecting the images, that's for sure.

      Delete
  3. Justin,
    Looks like you had a great year. Thanks for sharing all of your adventures with us, can't wait to see what you do in 2014! You have some great pictures in there, I could look at those fish for hours.
    Travis

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Looking forward to it. Thanks for stopping by!

      Delete

Like it? Hate it? Drop a line.

Some Background...

WHY FISH?

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.