04/29/10
Insects and other foods the trout may be eating:
1.    Blue-winged Olives
2.    Little Short Horned Sedges
3.    American March Browns
4.    Cinnamon Sedges (Caddisflies) (Abrams Creek)
5.    Green Sedges (Caddisflies)
6.    Little Sister Caddisflies (Abrams Creek)
7.    Pale Evening Duns
8.    Little Yellow Stoneflies -Yellow Sallies
9.    Eastern Green Drakes (Abrams Creek)
10.  Giant Stoneflies
11.  Light Cahills
12.  Sculpin, baitfish and small crayfish (Imitate with streamers)
13.  Midges


Things On My Mind Recently:
I should be writing about fishing the egg laying part of the Little Yellow Stone Fly
hatch for today's article, but my mind is so far from it, I first typed the "Little
Yellowstone fly hatch" this early morning. The reason is that it is difficult for me to
not be thinking about the many, many days I have spent offshore of the Louisiana,
Mississippi and Alabama coastlines and just inshore South Pass Louisiana fishing
for redfish and speckled trout. I keep wondering if others will ever be able to enjoy
that part of the Gulf of Mexico as much as I have for the last forty years.

Almost twenty years ago, I was fishing a marlin tournament as a guest of a man I
won't name, but one that owned the 46 foot Bertram I was on and one that held
much of the stock in Waste Management Co. I remember him, twenty years older
than I at the time, pointing to a rip line of Sargassum grass that was full of flying fish
and baitfish along with dolphin, wahoo and tuna and we hoped, the highly migratory
and elusive blue marlin. He wasn't talking about the fish. He was pointing out all the
trash in the rip line. There were huge Styrofoam containers that apparently came
from ships along with Styrofoam coolers, aluminum cans by the thousands, plastic
sheets of polyethylene, some large enough to cover a house, and every other trash
item know to man. We trolled the rip line for hours. I made a video of all the crap in
the line and the many jumping tuna and dolphin. He told me if that I wanted to be
rich one day, that I should use my engineering background to figure out how to
clean up the trash in the Gulf and Oceans. Ships from all over the World dump huge
amounts of trash in the seas every day, according to him. Of course, there were
and still are many other sources of the trash. The mighty Mississippi River had also
dumped huge amounts of trash into the Gulf. There had been a flood in the
Northern states the Mississippi drains that occurred about a month before that day
and the rip line was also full of lily pads. Yes, acres of floating lily pads that came
from the delta due to the high water. Mixed in the lily pads was a huge amount of
trash.

Just off South Pass, the continental shelf gets very close to land and the rotary
currents carry everything around the shelf offshore all the way to the Florida Keys,
where eventually, the Gulf Stream pick it up and carries it Worldwide.. The closest it
comes to the Northern Gulf is offshore Destin Florida, where the Nipple, we call it (its
female like shape on the chart) is only thirty miles from shore. Before it gets
offshore Destin, it swing close to the Chandelier Islands. This morning my mind
again went back to the many trips, mostly overnight trips, I have made over the
years to the beautiful and remote islands to catch hundreds of speckled trout and
redfish. I remember a TV show I did there where I caught over a hundred lady fish in
a couple of hours, almost one a cast fishing the surf. I remember flying in to Curlew,
the farthest island, on a small airplane and landing on the beach. I thought my life
was over when we landed and again, when we departed that day.

My mind goes back to the hundreds of times I have fished the offshore floating oil
platforms near South Pass and the white and blue marlin I caught the same day off
one of them. I have caught far to many dolphin, wahoo and tuna to remember from
the same rigs. I fished several king mackerel tournaments on the closer in rigs of
the Gulf Coast. I can remember catching several kings over forty pounds off the rigs.

The last two times I fished the rigs was with country music star John Anderson, We
were working on a TV show we produced catching snapper off the oil rigs about
twenty miles offshore Mobile Bay. Several large snapper between five and fifteen
pounds were caught on both trips. John caught a large cobia that last day.

I thought of
Captain Ben Fairey at Orange Beach, a cobia expert who has caught,
tagged and released more cobia than anyone, mostly on the rigs offshore Alabama,
Mississippi and Louisiana. I remember a video I did featuring Ben, as fine of a
fisherman I have ever known. We were cobia fishing the rigs years ago. I noticed
this past year, George Poveromo did the same thing on ESPN. He featured Ben
fishing the rigs for cobia, some twenty years after I did.

There are many, many other trips and times I have taken advantage of the fish the
oil rigs concentrated. There is no question that the rigs are responsible for
increasing the fish population in the Gulf by a huge amount. They greatly improved
the fishing.

I have for at least the past twenty-five years of the forty years I have fished the
Northern Gulf of Mexico, also worried about an oil leak or spill from the rigs or ships
carrying oil in the Gulf. I know I did twenty-five years ago, because the first ever
video I released for sale was "Fishing the Gulf of Mexico". It combined five years of
TV program footage of fishing the Gulf. The reason I am so certain is that I warned
about the possibility of an oil spill in the Gulf in the program. The video, now in DVD
format, still sells today.

I cannot turn on any of my computers without being reminded by Google, Yahoo or
someone, that there are currently about
5000 barrels of oil being dumped into
the Gulf every day
. They first said about a 1,000 and now it's 5000. The truth is,
no one really knows. I do know from the many videos you can see online, the water
is covered with oil and it is leaking about 5,000 feet deep, I think. That same water
goes around the continental shelf to the Gulf Stream in the Atlantic. It is expected to
reach the fragile Louisiana Coast tomorrow and the one-of-a-kind Chandelier
Islands by Sunday.

I am almost sick over it, to say the least.


A Better Thought:
To try to add some light to my dark thoughts above,  I would like to point out that as
of 5:00 PM yesterday, the mountain tops were still covered with snow from the night
before. LeConte was white and my guess is anything over about 4500 or 5000 feet
received quite a bit of snow, or at least enough to make the mountain tops very
white.