Dirty River Bash A Winner

"I wuv my new wod"

Fun was had by all at the 4th Annual Dirty River Guide Bash held at Livingston’s Rib and Chop House last Tuesday. Some had a little too much fun; we won’t mention any names, but our shop was notably without a storefront manager on Wednesday (there was an alternate story, but…). Sweetwater Travel’s Scott Schumacher was especially pleased with the event; he took home one of the grand prizes – a new Hardy Zenith rod donated by the Yellowstone Angler. Congratulations also to Will Lassiter, who won the Scott S4 rod that we at Sweetwater Fly Shop added to the mix.

Thanks go out to Ryan Sones and the crew at the Rib and Chop House for the venue, piles of crayfish, and copious beer, and to all of the local businesses and artists who donated swag for the raffle!

Chasing Mahseer in India

I’m not a big “bucket list” guy, but last month I had the pleasure of catching a fish that was on my short list of must-catch freshwater fish.  The Mahseer, found throughout Southeast Asia, Malaysia, Indonesia the Indian Peninsula and into Pakistan, is one of the most interesting fish I have ever pursued.  Technically, the Mahseer is a carp and it may seem crazy to go half way around the world to chase a carp, but I found it the most fascinating fishing trip of my life.

Before we were able to wet a line in India, we spent four days touring this amazing country.  With 1.2 billion people occupying India, it was a site to behold.  Watching the way that people interact in the densely populated cities was mind blowing, but equaled by the incredible food and the historical architecture.  I have never been so impressed with a man made monument as I was with the Taj Mahal.

The fishing surpassed my expectations.  We were lucky enough to fish in two very different settings.  The first was the Ramganga River located in the Jim Corbett Tiger Preserve.   It was a smaller river with fair gradient but did have some slow pools where we were able to sight fish the cruising Mahseer.  Although the fishing was tough, the solitude, wildlife and incredible scenery made it a wonderful place to fish.  The second fishery was the Saryu River which boarders neighboring Nepal.  We floated this river and fished it for six days.  The Saryu did not offer the sight fishing that the Jim Corbett Tiger Preserve did but it was a far more productive fishery.  Since the Saryu is not in a Preserve it meanders through villages, terraced fields, Temples, and Ghats.

Getting the Mahseer profile shot we wanted was not easy.  I was dealing with a new camera and not a lot of fish.  In addition, the biggest fish of the trip was caught when I was a few miles upriver.  However, we have some great pictures to share and we hope you enjoy them.

By the way special thanks to Tim Phillips, Greg Strimple, Misty Dillon, and the Himalayan Outback; they are great travel companions, anglers and buddies.

Guide School Chronicles – Part 2

Gotta love Montana Spring fishing! The weather can sometimes make you doubt your sanity. But the fishing doesn’t always suffer as much as your hands and feet do.

Braving the Elements








The Payoff





Film Star

Uber-guide Brant Oswald recently found himself behind the lens as the subject of one of the films entered into the Simms Ice Out Shoot Out. Check out his 5 and a half minutes of stardom. Few can say that they’ve been smacked in the face by the hookset of one of the sport’s masters.

Guide School Chronicles – Part 1

I spent last week hanging out with 11 other guide wannabes at Sweetwater Travel’s guide school. It was an enlightening, and sometimes humbling, experience. The school was held down on the lower Yellowstone River, near Big Timber. It was a blast to hang out with a group of fellow fly fishing crazies; their passion and enthusiasm for fishing was inspiring. So was their passion and enthusiasm for drinking beer. Those youngsters, and even the one student who was older than myself, made me wish I held stock in the major beer manufacturers. To my fellow students, I apologize for being a bit of a curmudgeon. Us old guys get a little cranky when we’re woken from our sweet dreams.

I had a few flashbacks to my summer camp days. Awkward conversations with your roomie. Uncertain relations with the camp counselors (instructors). The exchanges of contact information and promises to keep in touch. The pang of loss when it’s all over. We didn’t make any God’s Eyes, nor did we go horseback riding, but a snowman was constructed.

More to come, and hopefully some pictures…


Griz Peg Rosenbach!!

Congratulations to Timm Rosenbach, formerly guide extraordinaire for Sweetwater Fly Shop, on being named the new offensive coordinator for the University of Montana Grizzlies. We’re gonna miss you buddy!

Be Careful What You Wish For…

This Christmas, we learned the hard way the importance of enunciation. While sitting on Santa’s knee, we asked him for a guide to dancing and a Buff. The Big Guy must have misheard in the worst way. When we looked under the shop Christmas tree on Sunday morning, we found quite the nasty surprise.

May your New Year be filled with feisty fish and happy surprises!

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