Thursday, November 18, 2010

running down the man

part one lives here

The boy's grin says it all: Let's go get another one Dad.  Which we do, sure enuf. 

With the sun now settling down below the sandstone rim, we work up to the Shangri-La Pool.  One of my favorites, always good for a fish or three.  Introduced my own father to its riches, likewise my brother,  father-in-law and my boy too.  I set the lad up in the premier spot, right where the shallow riffle tails off into a fertile knee-deep run.  I move up to the riffle head, and promptly hook, play, land a 17incher on my own.  

A bit later, with the light, and our day, fading fast, I ask if he wants me to work over that pool of his, see if we can pluck one more fish from the deep before calling it a day.   Thanks Dad~

I'm just about ready to give it up, we're already talking about heading out, when that indicator sinks a bit and I come up tight to yet another Santa Fe-Northern Express.  I quickly hand over the rod, and coach the boy thru the first three surging runs- first down stream, back upstream, then straight at us.   Quick as a wink, we're both facing the setting sun as the fish heads back towards Kiddie Pool and freedom, the line steadily peeling off like they do in those saltwater shows.  Dam, he's cooking!

Out thru the narrows and around the island, he's leaving us way behind.  I take the rod, and running-down-the-man style, bust it up to catch up with our disappearing quarry.

Ten minutes into the fight, and we're finally getting her head up- a gorgeous hen!  My first attempt at netting her, and I can't get her into the net, she spans the opening, won't fit, flops back out. Gonna need a bigger boat net!

Momentary panic as I imagine she's off, but a second scoop has her.

Stem to stern, all (near) 23inches of her.  Holy smokes!  

Been said before, a perfect ending to a perfect day.  

That's the Juan for you.


  1. Royal,

    Excellent read and great photos. Thank you for sharing. One of these days I need to make tracks for the Juan. I always here such great things about it. Thanks again.


  2. you should pen that trip in. The SJ is such a reliable fishery in the 'off' season, that's just when we usually hit it up. October-Dec prior to lake turnover is some of our favorite time, again Feb-April. Baetis kicking up during those times make for active fish. Thanks for stopping by! mike

  3. Just found your blog. Looking forwared to reading fly fishing related post, although what you guys do on bikes is pretty awesome.

    Im over in Montrose, and write for

  4. 'sup BF, and welcome to the par-tay! I'll get some more fly fishing content up in near future, so thx for checking back~ oh and I'm indeed one of your current subscribers, luv your trip reports with the boy. Mike

  5. Nice report Mike! Some real beauties there. Great experience for the boy-- bet he can't wait to get at it again.

  6. thx Scott- yeah, fun watching him grow into our shared hobby. See you've launched Rise Forms this week- congratulations sirrah! Plan on diving into it this weekend, so thx for that!

  7. Wow!!! What a hen! Looking forward to a trip to the Juan (and the Animas) around New Year's. Love it around that time as it is somewhat quiet!

    Blue River Fly Company

  8. Another banner day on the Juan today Jason! Yep, pleased to report the fall crowds are thinning out- and the weather remains absolutely stellar. Fish rising to good midge hatch most the afternoon up from Texas Hole parking lot. Will post up more upon my return. Thx for checking in~ mike