Tuesday, December 20, 2016
Road Work: Driftless Miles
Some things pull on you. That 3 wt rod in the corner of the closet ? "I don't even like little trout," you say; but, the rod pulls on you.
Sport. That's sport playin' with you.
I've got something playin' with me now: the Driftless.
I wanted to go this year but as usual things snowballed into what things always snowball into. I wanted to get out to the Columbia, too; but, that snowballed into the same rolling dungheap of responsibility and obligation.
I've got writing to do. I've got commerce to pursue. I've got scotch to drink around a campfire.
I'm going camping in the Driftless next year.
My reference books are spread all over the desk here as I try and plot a trip. There's a bunch of water I want to see and a dash to Iowa I'll have to make (fishing buddy is from Iowa and those folks have something in them about their state as if they like it or something ...).
Water of interest?
Castle Rock Creek.
Big Green River.
West Fork of the Kickapoo.
N and S Bear Creek.
Now, some of you know the waters in this area. I've made the SW Wisconsin cut here.
The next step?
Finding the small tributary branches with pubic access and the endless "also ran -- but not in the guide book" waters.
I want the chalkstream experience. I'm not sure I'm fully there yet. Gin clear water with lots of limestone and green scuds holds some interest. I'll tie a batch of simple soft hackles and a couple dozen soft hackle dries and head over for some trout hunting.
Camping, of course. It'll be a trout trip on the cheap which is ultimately the sort of trout guy I am. It's a good trip when I pay for gas and roust the rest of the needs out of my fridge and pantry.
I think this might be the sort of water -- certainly the sort of trout density -- that helps the Amber Liquid guys. It'd be nice to fish an open stream where an overhead cast can be made from something other than up-and-down the streambed standing mid-current. Michigan is very brushy.
We need a scouting trip before personal recommendations and I'm throwing myself on that job. I'm throwing myself on the sausage cooking over the fire, too.
SO, the Driftless is an itch I've got to scratch.
Trip planning is about one-sixtieth the fun. It's right there with finding an unopened pack of smoked sausage in the bottom of the fridge you smuggle out to take camping.
It's fun; but, not as fun as the dinner to come.