Until recently I fished alone.
I am fairly zealous whens it comes to fishing- and unfortunately not many people can match that intense drive to FISH. There's nothing wrong with not wanting to fish for 10 hours straight in the cold and rain; it's just that for me, it's totally worth it to land a nice fish. So finding someone willing to brave nasty conditions for even one fish is hard to come by.
Recently I got a message on YouTube from a subscriber wanting to get together and do some fly fishing. I didn't really give it much thought until I got another message saying the same thing and I realized that he was serious. It didn't really know what to expect, but I took a leap and drove to Escanaba to fly fish with Jim from Into the Wild Fly Fishing Guide Service. It turned out that he is even more fervent about fishing than I am and unlike me he is a fishing purist (using ONLY fly fishing gear) which I totally admire.
He wanted to show me the ropes of fly fishing and in the first day he put me on some nice smallies. Apart from the nice fish he showed me how to cast, where to cast, and a few fly fishing tips that still eluded me. It was a great time fishing and at the end of the night he let me go with some of his home-made hand-tied frog topwater flies and sculpin streamer patterns. As soon as I have a chance I am going to fling those flies into the Paint, Brule, Net, Michigamme, and Hemlock rivers to whack some bronze beauties.
After the night fishing - I thought it would be awesome to invite him up towards Crystal Falls to float a section of unnamed river to catch some muskie on the fly. Up until a week ago Jim had never caught a muskie on a fly rod so I wanted to pay him back by getting him a muskie on the fly for all his effort teaching me the ropes of fly fishing. We gathered up our kayaks, gear, lunch (Peanut butter and jelly), and other random supplies and hit the river for 10.5 hours of fishing.
Unfortunately the weather was not with us- we faced winds, rain, and a deep cold that breached our waders. But, in spite of the conditions against us, we managed to see 8 or 9 muskies and we landed 2 of those fish. We each had one muskie and one nice picture to prove the event took place. Jim took some nice photos and edited them to look stellar.
Later this year we are going to target some salmon or possibly some steelhead. But, I am sure we will be hitting the water again in the kayaks, our 40+ inch muskie is still out there waiting to smash a fly.
Thanks so much to Jim for reaching out to me and going fishing as I had an absolute blast!
Check out Jim and his business at Into The Wild Fly Fishing Guide Service on FaceBook, YouTube, or his website
C'est la vie.