Friday, August 26, 2016

MRO Alaska Trip Testimonial

Our good friend and great customer Kevin Lang joined us in Alaska back in July. Here is what he had to say about the trip:

"The opportunity of a lifetime....that's the best way to describe my trip to Naknek river camp in Alaska.

I had waited the better part of two decades to go to Alaska and with lodge prices alone averaging about 8k and sometimes going over 10k it looked impossible.

The entire trip for me- flight, food, reasonable tip and a fly out on a float plane was a tad under 5k.

The Johnson family, who run the camp, are awesome, kind people who care that your experience is great.

All of the guides are first-class and know exactly how to fish for the myriad of types of fish that are there.

I caught 5 new species of fish (Dolly Varden, Grayling, King, Chum and Sockeye salmon) and also caught numbers and size of northern pike and rainbow trout.

I saw Bears and Foxes in the wild, we got to speed around in 90 hp jet boats, and still somehow how hot showers and warm food everyday. Josh and Mad River Outfitters made this trip easy, memorable and fun.

This is an experience every fly angler should have at least once....I know I'll be back.
 -Kevin Lang

2017 Alaska Trip hosted by Jerry Darkes and Josh McQueen already on the books and taking reservations:

Click Here for the details

Click Here for the full Photo Album

Mad River Outfitters
Hosted Fly Fishing Trips to Alaska since 1996

Naknek River Camp with Jerry Darkes and Josh McQueen
July 22nd- 29th, 2017

Fishing Reports- 8/26/16

* Please remember to call us for more up-to-date or detailed information! These reports are not meant to be your one and only, daily source of information. They are typically general, even seasonal type reports and we currently don't have a set schedule as to when we update. Please, just because we don't update as often as we like, it doesn't mean that we don't care.

There are many different approaches you should take in order to get a good game plan for a trip or a day of fishing. Also remember that things change and these reports are what we know at the time of posting only. Keep in mind that we do express opinions and personal preferences from time-to-time which may be different from yours or what you may read elsewhere. Thanks for checking and don't forget to call us if you need any further information or a more up-to-date report. 614-451-0363

* Not much reporting going on during August as you may have noticed. We have actually been "boycotting" in hopes that it would make it rain and everything would get better. Well....we did get some rain, but not much has changed. We thought we'd go ahead and throw a quick report/news out there in hopes that it makes some sort of difference.

* Alaska and Montana trips under our belts. A huge success as always. Should be getting some further reports and testimonials up over the next few weeks. In the meantime....we did get some photos uploaded to the albums:

Click Here to see Alaska photos

Click Here to see Montana photos

Both trips are already set up for next Summer and we are taking reservations. Jerry Darkes and Josh McQueen are hosting Alaska and Brian Flechsig again for Montana.

Click Here to check out the Alaska Trip

Click Here to check out the Montana Trip

** We are also working on a late season "Swingin' for Rainbows" at the Katmai Trophy Lodge in Alaska with host Jeff Liskay. This will be in mid to late September 2017. We should have the details on the website within a few weeks.

Speaking of Jeff Liskay- we will be announcing a "Switch and Spey 101 and 102 Weekend with Jeff coming up on October 22nd and 23rd. Keep your eyes out for that!!!!

Upcoming Trips-

* Soaring Eagle Lodge- San Juan River with host Ryan Ratliff- trip is FULL but 2017 should be announced shortly

* Woodland Plantation- trophy Redfish in New Orleans with host Brian Flechsig- a few spots open yet on this one. Click Here for the details.

Here's a quick promo video we just posted on these fabulous trips:

* Fall Steelhead- Muskegon River Lodge with host Steve Kuieck- 3 spots open on this. Great time of year for swinging flies on two-handed rods. Click Here for the details.

* Coming up on Wednesday, September 14th Brian Flechsig will be the guest speaker at the Buckeye United Fly Fishers monthly meeting. It will be another stop on his "Make Fly Fishing Great Again" Campaign 2016. You can learn more about the club and the meeting HERE.

* Intermediate Fly Fishing School- October 15th and 16th

Sunnybrook is beautiful in the Fall! Why not join us for some fun and greatly improve your angling skills in the process!!

Click Here to learn more and to register

* Thanks as always for supporting an independent, family owned small business. Please keep in mind that ALL Competitors Coupons are always welcome (yes...bring us your Orvis Coupons) and that we will NEVER be undersold.

Mad River Outfitters- Welcome to "Thinking Outside of the Big Box".


* No question the warmwater fishing has been the focus of most around here the past 3 or 4 weeks. Some good to excellent reports of smallmouth and carp fishing. With the waters being so low and clear the sight fishing for both has really been hot in certain places.

* The rains the past week did bring some waters up a bit but not really as much as you would have expected. As we write this things are pretty much right back down to low and clear and we could use another big shot of water.

* Locally most anglers are doing very well on the Scioto. A bit better there than the Olentangy. Other hotspots we have been hearing have been the Hocking, the Great Miami and the Little Miami. 

Young Ethan Hall has been doing well locally on streamers! The kid is a MONSTER!

"Had a chance to get out this afternoon and fished for a couple hours. Only moved a few fish in this last 15-20 mins or so.  Caught this nice bucket mouth on a white poppers sold at the one and only MRO."- Clay Sommerfelt

Mad River

Mystery Bug Update: Although it took him a while, (he lives in Costa Rica now), Dr. Brian Armitage, along with a few cohorts, have finally decided that the bug hatching in July was Ephemera Simulans. Yep...nothing more than a Brown Drake. Not sure why, or how, as we usually see those the 1st week of June, but that's the official diagnosis.We will be very interested to see what happens next Summer.

Meanwhile, as you would expect, the Mad has been pretty slow. The water is just horribly low and it has been since late May. The rain bursts we have gotten here in town haven't done much to affect the river at all. It's slow going.

Those that have been fishing have been fishing very early in the morning or late in the evening. A few guys that know what to do have been producing some nice fish, but most reports we are getting have the fishing as slow. We haven't had any guides out on the water due to the conditions but hoping to change that here if the weather cooperates.

The early guys have been catching fish on Tricos and midges. Super small stuff. There have been some Tricos around but they do seem to be winding down as they usually do this time of year. Still worth having in the box a few #20-22 but you need to be on the water just as the sun is coming up, and fish 7X! A few folks reporting decent fishing on ants and beetles but this activity seems to be a bit slower than normal years. 

The evening bug activity has been pretty good actually. The White Miller Caddis and the Ephron White mayflies have been out in good numbers. Most of this acitivity has been it the lower parts of the river but should be moving upstream over the next couple of weeks. Have a size 14 green soft hackle for the caddis and a big #12-14 White Dry for the Ephrons. Also some #16-20 tan caddis around in the evenings and some fish have been eating the pupa on the surface.

Let us know how you are doing!

Clearfork River

Like a broken record. Low and Clear.

Trout fishing has been tough this Summer and it's been awhile since we have had a good report from up North.

Did have a few folks on the Upper stretch last week and they did see some fish rising to caddis in the evenings but they didn't catch much. If you are going to trout fish, for sure you want to focus on early in the mornings or late in the evenings. You may be better off throwing standard nymphs than focusing on dry fly fishing right now.

The lower stretch is pretty much a smallmouth and carp fishery right now. From the covered bridge down to the campground is worth fishing with streamers and crayfish but you probably won't catch a trout....although we'd LOVE to be proved wrong.

So...same report.....we need water!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Clear Creek

Probably don't even need to tell you.....Clear Creek is super low and super clear. Same story....same report.

With the temps the way they have been, it's probably best to leave the trout be for now and head down to the Hocking for some smallmouth action. If you do it early or late and try not to stress the fish too much. Terrestrials and caddis would be the way to go on the surface.

A couple of regulars who fish Clear Creek alot have been down on the Hocking and doing quite well on smallmouth. White streamers seem to be the ticket during the day and Boogle Poppers in the evenings. With the water so low the Hocking can be pretty fun this time of year.

Hopefully we'll get some relief here and get back at it in September but we'll need some water before we do!!!

Erie Steelhead

Believe it or not....some folks already talking steelhead!!!! 

Obviously nothing to report yet...but it won't be long now!

Guide trips already starting to book for peak season.

Check out the details and give a shout to get a date on the books.

Also, keep your eyes out next week for our announcement on the Switch and Spey 101 and 102 event with Jeff Liskay. Will be October 22nd and 23rd and Sponsored by Patagonia, Scientific Anglers and Scott Fly Rods.

Mad River Outfitters
Fly Shop, Guides, Schools and more!

813 Bethel Rd.
Columbus, Ohio 43214


Friday, August 5, 2016

A Day Off

The Slide Inn 2016

In the early days of our Slide Inn trips, way back some 12 odd years or so, we originally fished four days straight and stayed five nights. On more occasions than one, I was told by folks that they were completely exhausted by the end of the trip, and could have used a break. We also advertised that we were 35 minutes from Yellowstone Park yet nobody ever got to get to there cause we were working their asses off on the Madison or Yellowstone.

Alas! About 10 years ago or so we added a "day off" and extended our stay to six nights and 4 days of guided fishing. I'm glad we did......

I've been able to spend some of my days off in fantastic fashion here in the "Epicenter of Western Fly Fishing". Last year with Tyler Treece on the Henry's Fork. Two years ago with Derek DeYoung and his wife Janell at their home in Livingston. Three years ago with my wonderful lady Cristina in the park. Five years ago with my Dad......and the list goes on. So many memories...

My memories of Yellowstone go way....way back. I made my first trip here with my family when I was 17 years had been a dream since I was a youngster. The years after saw my return to Yellowstone each Summer until I was late in my twenties....usually with friends or fellow anglers, most notably being the legendary trips that I made with my Uncle Bill. I then began running trips to the area through Mad River Outfitters somewhere around the mid-nineties. Once my old friend Kelly Galloup purchased the Slide Inn around 2001 or so, I had found a permanent "home away from home". So many memories.....

So on Tuesday night, I was faced with a "day off". The rest of the group was headed to Yellowstone to sight see, and maybe fish a little. My roommate Eric was hot to

I told him about a Lake in the Park called Grebe Lake which is inhabited by Rainbows, but also contains a population of Grayling. I believe one of the few places in the lower 48.  Also told him some funny stories about the time my Uncle and I fished and camped there some 26 years ago.

"How far?", he eventually asked. "About 6.5 miles round trip", I replied and he said, "Let's do it".

And off we went, to the park, at about 5:30 on Wednesday morning.

I'll make a long story short. It was a highly memorable day, one that I can add to the many memories.

We covered over 14 miles on our own two feet. We fished three distinctly different watersheds in different areas of the Park. We saw a grizzly, a bull Elk up way too close. We caught cutthroat, rainbows and yes.....our goal for the day....we caught a grayling.

We hiked into areas on the Lamar I had never seen. We hiked to the mouth where she dumps into the Yellowstone and hiked up. Then fished just below the Slough Creek campground for a mile or so "bend walk" that was absolutely gorgeous. We caught some nice cutthroat there on hoppers. Maybe one of my favorite things to do on Earth.

We then ended the day at the famous Buffalo Ford on the Yellowstone. A place of many wonderful, and habit forming angling experiences in my lifetime. A lovely place, and I will probably always go back, but let's just say I haven't seen a fish there in many years now. Sad, but the topic of another time.

The highlight of the day though, was surely the way the day started. A 3.2 mile hike back to Grebe Lake which was totally exhilarating. It was just as gorgeous, or even more so, than I remembered.

Despite hurricane force winds, we did manage to fish for about two hours, making our way along the South shore of the lake. I did wind up catching a rainbow on a Goddard Caddis not too long into the morning. It was a fantastic little specimen. Gave us hope!

About an hour passed. We changed a few flies and fought the wind, trying a few different spots along the way. We were thinking about making the trip out, and I had just changed to a hopper to see what might happen. And it did! We got our grayling! Mind you a very small grayling, but a grayling. Not all goals need to be huge.

Grebe Lake Grayling

Hope you enjoy the pics and short video. I could go on but need to be up at 5 and ready to go at 5:30. We'll be posting more once we get back to civilization.

Consider joining me here at the Slide Inn sometime. We do it every year and always will. Come enjoy a "day off".

Brian Flechsig

August 4th, 2016

Grebe Lake in Yellowstone National Park

Grebe Lake Rainbow

Lamar River Cutthroat

Mad River Outfitters
Annual trip to Kelly Galloup's Slide Inn