Monthly Archives: June 2013

Comments Off on Possible Fishing Changes Statewide Meetings…

These are important.. We need to be part of the process rather than the peanut gallery after the fact.

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New Mexico Department of Game and Fish
Media contact: Dan Williams, (505) 476-8004
Public contact: (505) 476-8000
dan.williams@state.nm.us

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, JUNE 28, 2013:
Meetings will address proposed fishing rule changes
SANTA FE – The New Mexico Department of Game and Fish is accepting comments and will conduct public meetings from July 1-9 in Albuquerque, Las Cruces, Roswell and Raton to discuss several proposed changes to state fishing regulations.
Proposed changes include:
  • Close McKenna Creek and the portion of Iron Creek from the fish barrier upstream to headwaters to all fishing. This proposed change also would remove the Special Trout Water designation on Iron Creek. Both of these creeks contain genetically pure populations of Gila trout that are vital to the long-term sustainability of the species, and the closure will conserve these populations during post-fire recovery of the watersheds.
  • Allow licensed anglers and individuals younger than age 12 to take game fish by bow and arrow (bow fishing). All daily bag, possession and size limits would apply. Bow fishing for game species would not be allowed within Special Trout Waters. This proposal would expand recreational angling opportunity.
  • Update all regulations to replace outdated language referring to individuals with disabilities.
  • Reduce the statewide striped bass daily bag limit from 2 to 1. This proposed change would not affect the unlimited daily bag and possession limit of striped bass in San Juan County. Based upon surveys, the Elephant Butte Lake striped bass population has shown a decreasing trend. A reduced harvest would help sustain this population.
  • Remove the “Youth Only” designation and allow licensed anglers ages 12 years or older (including adults) to fish at Young Pond in Las Cruces. Because of extreme drought conditions, angling opportunity has become very limited in Dona Ana County. Allowing all licensed anglers to fish at Young Pond will expand angling opportunity. Young Pond currently is restricted to anglers younger than 12 years of age.
  • Reduce the channel catfish daily bag limit from 15 to 2 on the following waters: Ned Houk, Harry McAdams, Young Pond, Roswell Kids Pond, Perch Lake and Blue Hole Park Pond. Most of these waters are stocked with catchable channel catfish and a reduced daily bag limit would prolong the availability of catfish to anglers.
Department staff will be at the following meetings to discuss and accept public comments about the proposed changes:
  • Albuquerque: July 1, 6:30-8:30 p.m., New Mexico Game and Fish Office, 3841 Midway Place NE.
  • Las Cruces: July 1, 6-8 p.m., New Mexico Game and Fish Office, 2715 Northrise Drive.
  • Roswell: July 9, 6-8 p.m., New Mexico Game and Fish Office, 1912 West Second Street.
  • Raton: July 9, 6-8 p.m., New Mexico Game and Fish Office, 215 York Canyon Road.
Comments about the proposed changes also can be expressed by contacting Fisheries Management Division by telephone at (505) 476-8055 or by email at nmdept.ofgameandfish@state.nm.us.

Youth Elk Tags — The List

Comments Off on Youth Elk Tags — The List

Hey Everyone..

This is the list of the Youth Incentive Elk Tags..

http://www.wildlife.state.nm.us/publications/press_releases/documents/2013/062713youthelklicenses.html

 

Good Luck.

J-

Category: General

Comments Off on Gila River Smallies on a Fly Rod.. GOOD TIMES..

WOW… What a great trip…  Follow me on a Fly Fishing Smallie Trip in the Gila… I also come across a bunch of elk..

 

Comments Off on Bait Dunkers and Hardware Chuckers

Bait Dunkers and Hardware Chuckers

OK, OK, OK… Mercy, I will admit guilt.  Years ago when I moved from Santa Fe to Silver City I figured my Fly Fishing days were pretty much over.  Long gone were the days of fishing midges on the “Juan” or fishing the awesome stone fly hatches on the Pecos or even ripping wooly buggers thru the now fish-less McAllister Lake.   At the time I thought that the SW part of the State was just a bunch of “Put and Take” fisheries that were hammered by “Bait Dunkers and Hardware Chuckers”, my visit to my local sporting good store seemed to support that idea.  The shelves were stocked with enough bait to choke a shark and enough hardware to fix a engine that had thrown a rod.  I didn’t see any size 20 RS-2 or even a size 10 Red Humpy.  I would also say that 20% of the hardware I saw was bigger than half of the fish I had caught in the Jemez.  Hmm…  Nothing says culture shock like a cold-water fisherman in a warm-water fishery.

So I did what any Trout Fisherman would do, I cried and I started chasing Coues Deer with my bow. Quick and Painless.

Recently, our son has become old enough to be focused enough to have just enough ability to just have enough of a chance of catching a fish. So, I swallowed my pride and came up with a plan to take B fishing. I first had to dust off all my old spinning tackle and piece together enough terminal tackle to have a chance catching a stocker trout at Lake Roberts.  It took a couple of hours of digging thru old guide boxes and even a few bags of tackle that I have no idea where they came from but I was able to pull it off.

My plan was to toss some power bait and pray that Jesus really was a fisherman and that he would have mercy on my soul and help us catch a fish for B.

So one day after school we loaded up the rig and headed to the lake.  As usual it was crazy windy and feeding was probably the last thing on the fishes mind; they were probably laying low trying to stay out of the choppy water but you can’t fish from the couch, so there we were.  B and I tossed out one line so he could see how we would be fishing and AFTER I moved my truck to a safe distance we worked on his casting on the shore.  I had rigged up a Zebco 202 with the biggest weight I could find and attached a strike indicator to the end of the line.  That strike indicator had last seen service on the “Juan”, oh how times have changed.

Letting him become familiar with the setup I let him chuck and I ducked.  It worked out OK and he seemed to be enjoying himself so I just let him try and hit spots in the parking lot.  You know the kind of targets; Coke cans, Copenhagen cans, Americans and even a few Mexicans.  After awhile his child attention span kicked in and he wanted to try something different so we moved to a point on the lake, recast our rods and proceeded to try and find something to eat.  After all eating and snacking is an important part to fishing, right?

One of his favorite meals in the mountains are MRE’s I am not real sure why other than the little heater really entertains him.  So we warmed up is Beef Stew something or another and he proceed to “CHOW DOWN”.   While he ate the main meal I slurped down the little drink packet that was in the MRE package.  I am not sure what flavor it is but it taste like a cross between ants and bug killer.. GOOD STUFF.  It also tastes the same whether you add 8 oz of water or 32 oz.  I am not sure how that happens and I am probably better off not knowing.

After our meals, the wind died down and my praying started.  When I fish I really don’t feel the pressure but when I am trying to help others catch fish it is an entirely different story.  We didn’t need a smart fish or a good looking fish or even a big fish, I just need ANY fish to swallow his bait.  I don’t care if it was a one-eyed, no-fin Mexican Mud Fish…. I just needed something to keep this kid engaged.

There is a saying fishing the evening is always better than fishing in the morning because fishing will start out good in morning but it will slowly get slower and slower… BUT when you fish the evening the fishing will always get better and better until you can’t see any longer.  I tend to believe that,  I also don’t like to wake up early to go fishing so that allows me to sleep a little longer.  As the sun start to get low on the horizon the swallows started to buzz around and I start to see a few boils in the lake.  At first I confuse them with the diving of Mud Hens but sure enough trout were starting to move.  B was off collecting bottle caps and I told him to stay close just in case…. “FISH ON, B YOU HAVE A FISH”….

I don’t think I had ever seen that kid run so fast, well there was that time with the snake that we were going to make a hat band out of but that is a different story.

If you have ever tried to help a first time fisherman, this is the hard part.  You have taught them how to rig, how to cast and how to reel but short of attaching the fishing line to our little dog Bean there is no way of showing someone how to fight a fish.  At first B had the rod upside down and was reeling with the wrong hand but we got that worked out and he started reeling that thing in like a champ.  As he pulled the fish to the surface, he did the almost predictable rookie landing technique, once he saw the fish he stopped reeling, and he started back-peddling.  Before I knew it he was just about in the drivers seat of the truck and still moving.  I was able to somehow to communicate to him to stop running and start reeling again.

What happened next is pretty much a blur but I know that it included; fins, elbows, knees,a punch to the gills and a “tap out” with a fin but after everything was said and done we had the fish attached to one side of the stringer and B attached to the other side.

Here is a quick video of B’s reaction… “Yeah,Baby”

The lesson learned is that it really doesn’t matter if you are using bait, hardware or flies at the end of the day it is about getting outdoors and enjoying experiences with the ones you love.   To a kid it doesn’t matter if it is 20-20, a 20 inch trout on a size 20 fly, all they care about is being outside and being on the water.  Was I wrong to try and classify levels of fisherman and fish?  Absolutely, I am man enough to know when I wrong….

Tight Lines and Stiff Rods

J-

Category: General