By , October 27, 2009 9:27 pm

Laguna Niguel Lake

Laguna Niguel Lake   

2009 Annual Float Tube Event
Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Spots are limited to only 75 float tubers
Pre-Paid Event / $50.00 per person
6am -5pm

The Annual Float Tube Event is a catch and release event only. Anglers will use artificial lures and flies only.

No bait of any kind.

The lake will be closed to the public. No boats or shore anglers. This is a wonderful opportunity to experience our beautiful Rainbow Trout at Orange County’s finest fishery.

For reservations or info please email LnLake@cox.net or call 949-201-9884


By , October 23, 2009 9:56 am

Google Map of Echo Park Spend enough time around virtually any urban lake in SoCal and you will eventually meet some of the more colorful characters that make the urban environment so…eclectic.

Usually, the universal head nod along with a quick, cordial, but not too dopey smile will dispel any hostile intentions. Every once in a while though, quick thinking and fast action distilled from years of being in places one ought not to be is the only recourse to ensure a happy ending…at least for one of the parties concerned.

Several years ago, I had a job with a certain governmental agency that required me to visit most of the urban waters in SoCal, collect water samples for basic water chemistry data and make observations on the numbers and species of fish being caught and taken.

I was given a stack of official looking tally sheets on an official looking aluminum clipboard, the keys to an official looking white pick-up truck, an official looking khaki colored uniform, complete with official looking patches and the official admonition to be discreet.

So naturally, SoCal being the melting pot that it is, as soon as I pulled up to any lake about 50% of the folks would give me one look and immediately pack up and leave. Another 30% would kick over their buckets, spilling the contents back into the lake and pull the hoods of their sweatshirts up over their heads to hide their faces and the remaining people would pretend to ignore me or glare threatening in my general direction. As far as being discreet, I might as well have put on a fuzzy pink bunny suit and skipped around tossing jelly beans, except one citizen at one lake already had that gig covered.

One morning, Echo Park Lake showed up on my list of lakes to visit for the day. Now, I had grown up not too far from Echo Park and always thought it was a funky, quaint kinda place, and as I had not been there for a couple of years, I was looking forward to visiting it as part of my assignment. As I collected my gear and grabbed a final cup of coffee, my supervisor called me into his cubicle. “I see Echo Park is on your list today,” he said. “Make sure you park the truck parallel to the shoreline and collect your samples from behind the truck. Have a good day and be safe.”

I arrived at Echo Park around lunchtime. Since it was a week day, the lake was fairly empty of fisherfolk but there were a few homeless folks lounging about, as well as a couple of people walking their dogs but no gang bangers or obvious druggies – all in all nothing out of the ordinary.

After cruising around the park once, I found a service driveway and drove across the grass until the truck was only a few feet from the water, parallel to the shore as my boss had instructed. I grabbed the testing kit from the passenger seat and began getting my samples.

About ten minutes into the test, an angry voice came from the other side of the truck.

“What are you doing?”

“I’m collecting samples and testing the water quality of the lake.” I replied, without turning around.

“No you’re not.” Said the voice from much closer.

Startled by the sudden proximity of the voice, I spun around only to come face to face with a thin, raggedly dressed man wearing an honest-to-goodness aluminum foil hat.

It's A Conspiracy

His skin was yellowed and his eyes looked ready to pop right out of his head, “You’re one of them. You came to poison us poor folks so you can claim this land for yourselves.”

“No, I’m testing the water to make sure it is safe for the fish that are stocked here,” I said, rising to my feet.

“It’s a conspiracy,” He said, “You put something in the water from one of those tubes in your hand, didn’t you?”

He started intently at the test tubes in my hands. I could see this was rapidly deteriorating into an ugly confrontation — Like I said, years of experience being in places one ought not to be in…

“I’m testing the water to make sure it is safe,” I said again slowly and deliberately, emphasizing the word “safe”.

“It’s poison. You got poison,” He hissed while smacking the side of his head.

That’s when the fast action part kicked in. Mind you, it was not elegant or completely manly, but it did turn out to be effective.

I dropped one of the test tubes.

As luck would have it, it hit the ground and shattered with a crisp, tinkling sound. I faked a gasp, opened my eyes wide and in the most panicked tone I could muster, shouted, “Holy crap! Run! Run right now!”

Unfortunately, Mr. Foil Hat, screamed like a little girl and did the duck and cover thing right there next to the truck. He may have done something else right there next to the truck too, but I didn’t wait to find out. I yelled again, “Get up, you idiot! Run! Run as fast as you can!”

I grabbed my gear and tossed it in the cab of the truck. Tinfoil guy jumped up and started running. I leapt into the bed of the truck (for effect) and across to the driver’s side, all the while yelling at the guy to keep running.

For good measure, I fired up the truck and did a little peel out in the grass. Jiffy Pop Boy was about fifty yards ahead of me at this point, moving along at a fair clip but in a manner that told me I had probably guessed right about what else he had done while curled up in a fetal position next to the rear tire, so I started driving across the park in his general direction while honking the horn and yelling out my window for him to keep running until I finally made it to the street.

Last I saw of him, he was headed down Glendale Blvd. towards downtown L.A.

When I got back to the office, the first thing I did was hunt down my boss and ask, “why did you tell me to park my truck next to the water at Echo Park?”

“Oh, so the crazy guys will think you’re a city worker fixing a broken sprinkler and leave you alone.”


By , October 21, 2009 9:43 pm

East Fork Flowing Good I have had few moments in the time that I have been Fly Fishing where it seems like everything just comes together perfectly. I am notorious for losing a fly in a tree, breaking off a fish, or even snapping the photo on my camera just as the fish decides to make a last ditch effort to get away. Having said that my last trip up to the San Gabriel Mountains was just the opposite. My knots held up fine, none of the fish broke off, and I don’t think that I have been much closer to an honest sense of peace in my life. When you go up to the San Gabriel and you catch about 30 fish within a matter of a couple hours, let me tell you things are just going your way. I could barely even move, the fish were stacked up in holes, and they were almost all willing to bite. In my mind this had a lot to do with the recent rain, most likely stacking the fish and making easy pickings for my fly. I remember hearing a joke one time that they should rename fishing “tricking and killing”, well I can go for the “tricking” part but I rarely do any killing (especially not for Trout) except for the rare occasion at a water source over populated with a few tasty bluegills. Remember all forks of the San Gabriel River are no longer being stocked, so if you decide to fish up there make sure it’s catch and release only. I have no problem kicking over a Bait Fisherman’s holding bucket if he is taking wild fish. Let’s respect this beautiful resource so that we can all fish it for a long time to come!!!

Beautiful ColorsOkay Size for the Lower East Fork


By , October 15, 2009 6:00 am

Pacific Design Center Silver Screen Theater
8687 Melrose Ave (at San Vicente Boulevard)
West Hollywood, CA 90069 (310) 657-0800
Recommended to purchase tickets in advance
for “Bass: The Movie” as seats are limited!!
October 17, 2009 at 3:15 pm
Premiere will feature speakers, drawings, gear
demo and a Hollywood casting contest!
Portion of proceeds to goes California Delta conservation organizations.
20 LOS ANGELES, California—September 9, 2009—HowardFilms announces the premiere of Bass: The Movie at the Pacific Design Center in Hollywood, California, October 17th, 2009. The event will start at 3:15 pm PST, with featured speakers one hour before and the hour after the film showing.

Director Jamie Howard brings bass fishing to the big screen for the first time with Bass: The Movie – a road trip through California in search of fishing secrets and a world record. The self proclaimed Bass Happening will feature the film as its axis and include boats, gear, fishing pros, speakers and prize drawings. In a state known for many things but bass fishing, this unusual journey within a few miles of the Pacific Ocean, pits fly rod fisherman and conventional rod fisherman on the same boat to share approaches and cultures side by side. On the conventional rod side, the film begins with interviews with ESPN Bass Elite Series pros including, Mike Iaconelli, Kevin VanDam, and Kelly Jordon. Then follows (by air, 20 land and sea) California Delta legend and guide Bobby Barrack, California fly rod pro and Delta guide Kevin Doran, world-record holder Raymond Easley, fly rod world-record holder Larry Kurosaki, bass pro and guide Marc Mitrany, and fly rod pro John Sherman. Sherman, an accomplished angler, whose caught trophy fish all over the world, was still new to the bass world. So he sets off to visit all these men, in search of bass secrets and a trophy bass.

The film’s initial revelation is that the state of California is a haven for the world’s biggest bass with numerous fisheries unlike any other: The endless maze and tidal waters of the California Delta’s levee system, contrast with the clear waters of southern California reservoirs. Another revelation is the backdrop of the Delta is listed by American Rivers as #1 on their list of 2009’s most endangered rivers in North America. Note: A portion of all proceeds will go to calsport.org.

Modern bass fishing has grown into a multi-billion20dollar sport since it’s simple roots, and the chase for George Perry’s 75 year-old record has helped stoke that fire. A record anyone with a fishing rod is eligible to match. California is considered one of the most likely places to find it. Though the record has been challenged several times in the years since Perry’s catch, it has remained the benchmark. It is one of the longest standing records in the sport of fishing. The film is not solely concerned with besting it, but rather exploring the ways the men who have made this bass their life go about their hunt, by fly rod or by conventional – in search of the big one. The movie will be released to public on 2-disc DVD set (includes legend Bill Dance retrospective interview) October 31, 2009.

Additional Information:
In 2009, ESPN Outdoors previewed Bass: The Movie with a weekly series of 2 . minute shorts on the project to expose viewers a new world of bass fishing in California through a cinematic perspective. It was one of the most-viewed projects by HowardFilms to date. The full-length film is not owned by ESPN.

Jamie Howard has won numerous awards for his films, including Chasing Silver (chasing tarpon in the Florida Keys) and In Search of a Rising Tide (bonefishing in the Bahamas) and helped promote the genre of the fishing film. Howard is a graduate of The University of Virginia, and worked in advertising as a writer and commercial director in New York City and Los Angeles.

Bob Marriott’s Flyfishing Store
2700 W. Orangethorpe Ave., Fullerton, CA 92833
•   www.bobmarriotts.com ; •   (800) 535-6633   •


By , October 14, 2009 10:19 am

SoCal isn’t usually the first place that pops into the head of most people when they are thinking about places rich in history. Strolling Main Street at Disneyland and gazing upon Clark Gable’s star on Hollywood Blvd. don’t exactly stand on the same footing as visiting Monticello or paying respects to the fallen at Gettysburg.

And while most tourists can be forgiven a lack of knowledge about the subtle yet fascinating history of the region, I have no idea what to say to the local natives who claim the movies Chinatown and L.A. Confidential as primary reference sources on the history of Los Angeles and it environs.

No wonder we have an actor for Governor.

Despite all that, there is a ton of history layin’ ‘round here that not only makes living in SoCal a great adventure but serves to make things like the urban fishing experience much more enjoyable, in my humble opinion.

Take Lincoln Park for example. Now, every major city in the U.S. and many not so major ones as well, have a Lincoln Park. What makes the one in L.A. unique is…well, that is in L.A.

But seriously, Lincoln Park and its lake were once one of the open-air gems in a quartet of parks situated roughly in the four cardinal directions from the city center. Established in the final years of the 19th century, it was originally called East Los Angeles Park then Eastside Park then Eastlake Park and then, after firmly establishing its direction from downtown in the hearts and minds of the citizens, Lincoln Park in honor of … the High School down the road.

In its heyday, Lincoln Park was THE place to stroll on a warm Sunday afternoon and possibly take your sweetie out for a pleasant rowboat ride on the small lake. If rowing was not your thing then a meander through the alligator farm might have been in order. Over a hundred large gators were on display as well as a wide variety of alligator related trinkets – some things in L.A. never change. It is recorded in several historical articles that escaped alligators would frequently make the lake in Lincoln Park their temporary home until they could be rounded up and returned to the farm, none the worse for the wear.

If large, bellowing reptiles were not your cup of tea, then you could check out the ostriches at the adjacent ostrich farm where, aside from the obligatory gift shop selling ostrich plumes for your hat, you could watch ostrich races or have a photo taken of you sitting in a small cart being pulled by – what else – ostriches.

In case that wasn’t enough distraction to hinder your back cast and confound your choice of flies (just what does one use to entice a gator to strike?) William Selig of early movie studio fame went on to establish a zoo on the north edge of the park and in a most Disney-esque fashion had high hopes of turning East Los Angeles into an entertainment destination par excellance.

He never got beyond a couple of Ferris wheels as far as amusement parks go but his property adjacent to the park eventually became a huge movie studio and the zoo grew to became one of the biggest zoos and most famous botanical gardens in the world with over 700 animals including many “celebrity” animals from Selig’s movies

Other historical documents tell of a mock Indian Village in the park where real Native Americans demonstrated traditional arts and crafts and of various fairs and of a variety of other amusements for the general public.

One of my favorites was a series of stepping stones that allowed one to seemingly walk on water across a corner of the lake. That might have been handy in those days prior to reliable waders

Sadly, the magnificent zoo, alligator farm, studio buildings and Ferris Wheels have vanished from the landscape of Lincoln Park as have the stately greenhouses, the rowboats and the wooden carousel. Laundromats and donut shops stand in the places where beautiful entry gates topped with sculptures of elephants and big cats used to tower.

Today there remains a closed and shuttered boathouse and the occasional portion of an odd pathway or awkwardly positioned streetlamp as well as similar out of place fragments of stone walls or curbs which serve as clues to a mostly forgotten yet glorious past.

The shallow, comma shaped lake is still there and many a local youth still gets his or hers first taste of fishing from that lake. As with nearly every SoCal urban lake, there are plenty of Panfish, the occasional Bass, Catfish and a few skulking Carp to entice the novice to keep trying.

Valley Blvd. literally forms the south shore of the lake which means incredibly easy access for the lazy angler and certainly makes the timing of your backcast critical if you fly fish – I don’t like busting off a fly on a wayward branch I failed to notice so I certainly don’t want to hang up my size 8 Carp fly on the antenna of a passing Chevy.

I don’t fish Lincoln Park much anymore. We reside in the O.C. now and the traffic makes it difficult to hop over there quickly. But Lincoln Park still holds a warm spot on my heart. Back in my college days I always had a fishing rig in my car and Lincoln park was on the way home.

Nothing eases the ache of a blown essay or missed math equation like an hour on the water and as I struggled through school, there were many occasions I needed that hour on the water.

The best part was, if you positioned yourself just right, with your back to the Blvd., you could almost imagine that the rumble of the trucks from the nearby 5 freeway were the bellowing of giant alligators or the twilght calls of Selig’s big cats.

Eastside park, Eastlake Park or Lincoln Park. Call it what you will but for my two cents worth it’s all part of that addiction I call urban fly fishin’.


By , October 11, 2009 6:00 am


Southern fish experiencing identity crises

By Celia Rivenbark

Next time Bubba and Billy Bob  go fishing, they might discover the fish more or less moseys onto the hook, languishes on the line and then passively lays there in the cooler smoothing its scales instead of flailing.

Scientists have discovered estrogen in the water is making fish, particularly large-mouthed bass in the South, less aggressive. Turns out 70 to 90 percent of the bass in ponds across the Southeast have both male and female sex characteristics.

Which goes a long way toward explaining why some of the time they want to pound beers with the guys at BW3′s and the rest of the time they get giddy about the semi-annual shoe sale at Dillard’s .

This new revelation could result in a recall of that horrid wall plaque with the singing bass on it. Instead of singing “Take Me to the River” perhaps some show tunes would be in order. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

The bigger worry here is where all this estrogen is coming from and why is it so much more prevalent in the Southeast? In Alaska’s   Yukon River , for instance, fish are completely free of the intersex condition, preferring to wear lumberjack plaid shirts for the boys and something slightly slutty from  Forever 21  for the girls. Well, almost.

Scientists say this gender-bending may hamper the ability of fish to reproduce. With so many male fish taking on female characteristics, the fish are in a sort of sexual limbo, sadly disinterested in procreation.

Oh, if only deer, squirrels and Kardashians would acquire this particular affliction. I’m just kidding. I don’t really have anything against squirrels. Or deer.

Scientists also say there is no harm to the consumer in eating intersex fish. It’s not as if you’re eating those 24-eyed fish swimming around the nuke pond on “The Simpsons.” The absolute worst thing that would happen is that, if you’re a boy, well, your “bidness” will fall off. So what?

Having spent my formative years fishing in country ponds and catching more than a few large- and small-mouthed bass myself, I think this is going to make for some depressing trips in the future. The fun is in the fight! If the fish simply yawns in my direction and suggests a light breading of panko crumbs with a modest pinot on the side, there’s no real sport in that.

Of course this is serious business and I’m sure more than a few of you will write to say this is an ecological nightmare and they wish my “bidness” would fall off, too. In the meantime, stop flushing your birth control pills (?!) and give our Southern bass a chance to get their groove back. Are we good?

Taken From: http://www.jewishworldreview.com/1009/rivenbark.php3



By , October 10, 2009 6:00 am

North Fork Holding PoolIt has been a while since I have caught a Trout, and the other day I was just itching to get out and see what the San Gabriel River was looking like in light of our recent fires. The opportunity presented itself when my younger brother Steven asked me to take him hiking. So, we got up early and headed out to the West Fork, it was closed for maintainance due to the fire coming all the way down to the reservoir and so we had to improvise.  We decided to do alittle adventuring around the West and North Forks. I did not see as many Trout as would have liked to, but they are there and it looks like less people are fishing it, due to the fact that it is not going to be stocked for a while. I managed a few 4-7 inchers on the East Fork, but just could not get a good hook set on any of the fish on the North Fork. I know I could have caught more fish with a nymph, but there is just something about fishing a mountain stream with a dry. I hope to make it back up to the San Gabriel Mountains a lot this fall and winter season, and get a lot of good pics to post on the site.

The Younger Bro

First one in a long time

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