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Posts Tagged ‘Joe Creane’

Surfing Browns, Huckleberry Finn & 30 Blank Free Days for Joe Creane…

December 16th, 2011 No comments

After 5 internet free weeks travelling around the South Island with my Dad, I’m back.. Dad flies out today after 30 blank free days on river and lake. The fishing was great because we worked hard for it. New Zealand fishing rewards an angler for effort as much as having the fundamentals correct. Our day’s together were simple. We got up at 7 or 8 and had a quick breakfast. One of us (usually Dad) would make us a sandwich each for lunch. After 8-10 hours on the water we would return to our accommodation and one of us (usually Dad, but this was less one sided than the sandwich making!) would cook dinner. A few beers and then bed.

We changed the format of this trip a little. In the past we would spend a lot of time driving to many different waters. This time we tried to find good locations within easy striking distance of good water and stay put for a while. Mossburn for example, A great location but the holiday park was pretty average at best. I like basic but the cold concrete floor, uncomfortable old school chairs,tiny flickering  tv and a door that sounded worse that a cat being stepped on every time it was opened and closed eventually broke me down. The fishing was great though. Dad had his personal best brown not too far away. He was almost 8lbs. We had about 50 big browns that week.

Another place we spent some time was at Buscot Station Backpackers 9ks North of Omarama. This is one of the best Backpackers I have stayed in anywhere. Tony owns the place and Kev helps out. After a long day on one of many nearby rivers or lakes we would come “home” to Buscot. Dinner was never a problem in the well equipped kitchen. Steak, veg and roast potatoes every night, usually with a bottle of wine and, if we were lucky, Tony playing the Piano. The beds were comfortable and the rooms spotless. We had freshly laid eggs for breakfast every day. Take my advise and stay here! You will not want to leave..

Back to fishing talk.. Still water fishing has been teaching me lots lately. I have been successfully using many methods and developing new ones. Let me elaborate! All the usual methods have been working so I wont bore you with those but one of the new things for me is fishing at close quarters to the fish using spiders. Suddenly for no apparent reason I knew spiders would be deadly even though i never really used them before. I fished them around lake edges instead of my usual #16 unweighted nymph suspended under a dry. Now I had no dry as an indicator so I was watching the fish more closely than ever, sometimes striking only because the fish was in roughly the right place, or it changed direction and slowed down, or stopped, or something obvious like i could see it’s mouth open and close. Then I started to notice mannerisms like one kick of the tail to approach the fly usually ended in a take, Slow constant swimming movements were less sure and sometimes ended in a refusal. This close quarter fishing was fascinating and I wanted to get closer and thus the “Huckleberry Finn” method was born. In my head Huckleberry Finn is an adventurer with rough clothes and a cloth tied at 4 corners draped over a stick to carry his belongings. Sometimes he sits beside a lake under a tree with a bit of string tied to the stick trying to catch a fish. That’s what I found myself doing to get closer than ever to the fish! I used the willows which line many lake edges as cover. This heavy cover makes casting Impossible but it makes it easy to get very close to the fish. Once in position unhitch the fly, reel in until 2 or 3 foot of tippet is under the rod tip and then put the fly right in front of the fish or in his beat and wait for fireworks. The direction of the strike has be considered before the take to avoid smashing your rod off a willow limb. I learned lots from this method and on one great morning I had 11 on the HF while dad also had 11 while blind wolley buggering!

That same day another type of close quarter fishing presented itself to us. With 11 fish each and the wind getting up to about a force 6 we decided to go somewhere more sheltered. I was just about to put the rod in the car when I noticed a fish feeding in the swash of a breaking wave right beside me. I unhitched the fly and slammed it down beside him and he nailed it.. We walked on and realised this was not a once off. There were lots of fish doing this and we started catching them. We finished up with 18 each for the day on 3 completely different methods!

I have seen these “surfers” before but never to this extent, Partly because I didn’t look no doubt. I needed more and luckily this wind got up from the same direction every afternoon and the fish were there on cue. A lot of the fish were on the thin side and very opportunist but there were plenty cracking fish to keep us interested. On the days when the waves were not too big, dries provided great sport. Nymphs and spiders worked equally well but were not as much fun. On one insanely intense afternoon when the wind turned into a gale and one could dam near bodyboard on the swells breaking ashore, the fish were still there being pounded by the waves feeding away. No skinny fish though, All good ones with occasional Rainbows coming in from the back from time to time. It was unreal to see where the browns were effortlessly feeding. We could only see them every so often through the white water breaking onto shingle and large rocks. The fish were hard to spook and casts were short and aggressive into the gale with large weighted flies. The fish just needed to be able to get the fly into its mouth before the wave whipped it away.

I have never heard anybody talk about my Huckleberry Finn method or Surfing Browns so I’m learning those methods from scratch. I reckon the HF would be lethal for willow grubbers!

If you get a chance fish with your Father, Son, Mother, daughter whatever.. It’s Important!

Stuntman Ronan..

By the way, I filmed the HF method in action but my piece of shit laptop can barely play it let alone edit it. If there is a philanthropist flyfisherman among you please sponsor me a mac. It’s never easy being self sponsored!

 

The Journey Continues…

November 17th, 2011 No comments

It’s hard to find the time to write this now that full on fishing has commenced. I’m wrecked after a very tough gorge.. ready for bed wrecked and tomorrow will be all go once again. Dad arrived on Tuesday and we fished yesterday and today. Yesterday was on an easy river with lots of 2-3lb rainbows and browns. A good place to get the NZ fundamentals sharpened up. Dad did that successfully. Today was more like a military training exercise through a gorge. There was a lot more water in it than 5 weeks ago and that made it seriously hard going. Scrambling through dense bush, deep crossings and rock climbing was the order of the day. As the day progressed more emphases was put on getting out of the gorge than fishing and some opportunities were missed as a result. We had a couple hard earned fish.

Chris Dore, Greg Milo Elliot and myself spent a day chasing rainbows and browns. I did no good but the lads had a couple each. I lost a very big brown on a streamer and Chris missed a big fella on a dry… Twice!

I met up with Camo Guy a few days ago as planned. We fished on one of my favourite waters. Guy fished for half the day a took pictures for the other half, unfortunately I don’t have his photo’s! I do have my own though. I had a spectacular day! I made very few mistakes and caught lots of big fish.

I picked up John O Malley’s Nissan Terrano from Mossburn and drove it to Fairlie to meet Dad on Tuesday.  There seems to be a problem with fuel consumption. 400ks cost 130nzd. I might have solved the problem simply by putting the correct air pressure in the tires! I’ll know for sure when I take it for another decent drive in 5 weeks..

Kevin Alexander and Myself took our boat “Daltona” out for a spin last night. She is still going like a rocket and a pleasure to fish from.

Dad and I are going to fish a lake tomorrow before heading to Buscot Backpackers tomorrow night. Guy will be there too. We may drink some wine and eat crackers with fancy blue cheese.

Ronan.. (stuntman)

 

It’s All About to Happen!

November 12th, 2011 No comments

I’ve been tied up with some non fishing stuff lately but that’s over now! Fishing every day starts tomorrow. Chris and I are going to chase a few rainbows. Hopefully they’ll be well recovered after spawning. My Dad, Joe, arrives on Tuesday and I can tell you he’s not coming to see the sights. We will be on the water every day and a few nights too. I’ll be catching up with Camo Guy pretty soon. He’s been catching some big searun browns. I’ve caught very few searuns in NZ so it’s time I changed that. For the next 2 months I’ll be travelling the length and breadth of the South Island fishing both known and new waters. I’ll also be meeting old friends and hopefully making some new one’s. Exciting times!

On another note, If anyone is planning a trip to NZ this season and needs a 4×4 then contact me. I know of a proper NZ machine for rent at a very reasonable rate.

Tight lines all.. Stuntman Ronan..

Lough Carra, Co. Mayo, Ireland..

June 1st, 2011 No comments

It’s a long time since I fished Lough Carra but it’s just as I remember it. It’s a large lake made up of lots of smaller inter-connected bodies of water. Its mostly shallow with a white marl bottom giving the water an unusual, unique green glow. The lake is known to fish well in high winds and Dad and I certainly had that on our day on the lake. It blew a gale for most of the day making fishing quite difficult but we had a good few chances and managed 2 fish a piece. The last time I fished Carra was about 15 years ago and I remember doing well on a claret and mallard on the tail under Dad’s advise. Once again the fly worked accounting for 2 of our 4 fish. There should be mayfly up on the lake at the moment but pollution has massively reduced fly populations. The trout appeared to be quite opportunistic feeders as a multitude of flies moved fish. I’ll get out on Carra again before the season is over.

Later..   Ronan..

 

 

 

 

 

Paddy’s Day and the 3 Generations.

March 17th, 2011 No comments

This day last year paul and I were getting ready to leave NZ to head for the Northern Territory in Australia. We arrived in Darwin on Paddy’s Day, Traditionally a fishing day for me but the Guinness got the better of us on that occasion. We were on the water the next morning… afternoon maybe, we don’t wear watches!

Tomorrow is Paddy’s Day once again and also my 20th fly fishing anniversary. I remember that first day very clearly. I was with my Dad and my Grandad on Lough Corrib. I fished hard all day with freezing hands while putting up with some abuse such as “you’ve been watching me casting for fuckin long enough now to know how to do it” and “It looks more like whipping a bull than casting”. It was half in gest… I think! I kept trying and persistence paid off with a 1.5lb brown on a Black Zulu.  All 3 generations were delighted and I never looked back. Dad (Joe Creane) and I fish together in NZ every year. I wish my Grandfather, Paddy, could have been there with us, however I’m thankful for all the great days the 3 of us had on the water together,  Without them I would not be able to think like a trout!

Tomorrow Dad and I are going to take on Lough Mask…

Ronan..