St Joe River fishing trip 2014

Spokane Sunset

Spokane Sunset

Picture taken off the back porch of my house the night before the St. Joe river fishing trip with Evan. (First photo taken with new Lumix Panasonic camera.)

Evan "the Bearcat" sitting by the fire

Evan “the Bearcat” sitting by the fire

We arrived late and finally decided on this campsite, one of the few ones left even though it was mid-week.  It was completely isolated so we were by ourselves; unfortunately we set the campsite up after dark.  This proved troublesome when we finally called it a night, as the ground beneath the tent was uneven.  It truly was a ‘climb’ to find a good sleeping position.

 

St. Joe downriver of campsite

St. Joe downriver of campsite

The St. Joe river from campsite

The St. Joe river from campsite

This photo of the river was taken from our campsite.  It is looking upriver, where we predominantly fished in order to avoid campers and other fisherman.

The Bearcat trying to outsmart the fish

The Bearcat trying to outsmart the fish

After walking around a mile upstream from the last campsite along the river we climbed down the trail and found our first hole/structure.   We were fishing for cutthroat trout exclusively on dry-flies.  We could have tried some wet flies or nymphs but it is not as enjoyable and we had plenty of success on dry flies alone.

The first hole

The first hole

This section of water was a good stretch.  Coming around the bend it created a nice bottom structure and holding water for fish to be fat and lazy.  Most trout sat right under color or depth change (light green to dark green) and right off main current/seam line.

First good catch of the day.

First good catch of the day.

Here is me with probably around 12″ cutthroat.  Unfortunately I held it like a retard and didn’t probably display the fish to show off its size and beauty.  Caught this on a green drake size 14 I want to say.  This fly was pretty much exclusively what I fished with on the first day after trying and failing with a purple haze and yellow bellied stimulator.  The drake’s dark green and yellow body matched perfectly with water and was a major success.

FREEDOM!!

FREEDOM!!

The same trout escaping my death grip.   As you can now properly ascertain the fish was of good standing, and demonstrated his strength while harnessing his inner Mel Gibson…

The Bearcat closing in on his prey.

The Bearcat closing in on his prey.

To properly fish it is essential for the Bearcat to literally stand on top of his prey.  He is able to accomplish this feat due to his cat like stealth…

Stopping for lunch

Stopping for lunch

Had some turkey sandwiches on a log viewing this bend with some nice holding water; however we did not have much luck there.

The Bearcat inspecting the water

The Bearcat inspecting the water

Every good fisherman must have a keen sense of what is good water.

New forest friend

New forest friend

Stumbled upon this deer while bushwhacking on a deer trail next to the river, at night on the same day he came and visited our camp.  He was incredibly comfortable around humans.  Also the deer trails along the river were extensive like a highway system (and probably better than most Idaho roads).  We walked along several and one for a good half-a-mile.

Gourmet campfire dinner

Gourmet campfire dinner

We had tacos for dinner on our first full day- marinated carne asada with Spanish rice and beans on corn tortillas.  Maybe some of the best tacos I ever had.

Relaxing by the fire after a long day on the river

Relaxing by the fire after a long day on the river

First fishing hole on second day

First fishing hole on second day

We walked farther up river than the first day to be completely alone where few have fished- hoping to catch some big ones.

Bearcat slaying his prey

The Bearcat slaying his prey

Was actually a good size fish unfortunately was too far away (and lazy) to capture its epicness.

Behold! A majestic waterfall

Behold! A majestic waterfall

Another forest friend

Another forest friend

Spotted an inquisitive prairie dog in a little meadow alongside the river, we had a star down for a good 5 minutes… sadly I lost.

A nest of caterpillars alongside riverbank

A nest of caterpillars alongside riverbank

Another decent catch.

Another decent catch.

 

 

First failed selfie

First failed selfie

After the green drake from the first day was almost completely torn to shreds I went with a yellow sally on the second day.  It’s a medium size fly that also matched perfectly with water color (yellow with a little green) and was similar pattern to insects along river.  The yellow sallie was my winning fly the second day.

The Bearcat slayin' another one

The Bearcat slaying another one

Evan killed it in this stretch of water even though there were about a million mosquitoes eating us alive.

Bearcat's result

The Bearcat’s victim

A nice 12″ male cutthroat in beautiful shape except for the new whole in its jaw…

The Bearcat off in the distance

The Bearcat off in the distance

Second failed selfie

Second failed selfie

Another nice trout around 12″ I caught.  You can still see the yellow sallie in its mouth.  Fish doesn’t look as pleased as I do…

Biggest fish of the day

Biggest fish of the day

Another failed selfie

Another failed selfie

Caught my last and biggest fish of the day at the whole we started at the first day.  Got this bad boy, around 14″, on a Fat Albert- it’s one of my favorite flies because of its success on a variety of rivers, but mainly because of its name.

The hidden trail

The hidden trail

A look of the terrain we had to climb to reach the trail. If you look closely you can see trail about half way up slope where there appears to be soil erosion.

Climbing to the trail

Climbing

A fantastic photo of the Bearcat’s toned buttocks.  This was the beginning and least steep part of climb. Photo doesn’t capture the elevation gain well and steepest parts were impossible to photograph unless I had an extra arm…

Final dinner

Final dinner

Leaving the St. Joe

Leaving the St. Joe

Panoramic shot of the St. Joe and of the greater Idaho/Montana wilderness.

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About gmorkill

Graduate of University of Washington living in Seattle. Come from a very progressive family and hoping to share my thoughts on my interests/hobbies which include sports, politics, movies, music, books, food, etc. Overall I am just learning about myself and the world I encompass, trying to enjoy the moment.

One response to “St Joe River fishing trip 2014”

  1. William Morkill says :

    An excellent start on your blog Garrett. I look forward to many rich sessions in the future reading ‘themorkillperspective.’ I have forwarded the link to some friends…..Peter Morkill, Pete Semogas, Craig (peace corps) Olson.
    You write very well. So please, write often.

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