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Posts Tagged ‘Independence CA’

So we traveled to Bridgeport, CA, from separate locations,  to celebrate Michael’s Birthday…and , obviously – to do some roamin’ around and Fly Fishing. Our family has been coming up to this side of the Sierras since 1952…Aimee and her family have been visitors to Bridgeport since she was a little girl…ALL of us love this place…

Looking up towards Virginia Lakes from just North of Conway Summit…

Friday afternoon, after Michael and I spent the morning on the east Walker River and Ally and Aimee visited Bodie, CA (the Ghost/Mining Town) we headed out for an afternoon of yachting and Fly Fishing on Little Virginia Lake…

Little Virginia Lake…

Captain “Jack Sparrow” (NOT)…

Where to wet a line…???

Ally munches on Chileno Peppers and Beef Jerky…

My two favorite patterns to use on Little Virginia Lake…Pheasant Tail and Partridge and Peacock Herl and Partridge…

Pop lays out his line…

Michael casts from the stern…

A Rainbow planter hops on Michael’s fly…

Aimee checks it out…

Looking back at Virginia Lakes Resort from a waterborne vantage point…

The counter inside the Lodge…me and the kids have sat here a lot of times through the years…

My friend, Carolyn Webb, who runs the resort with her husband John, catches the motley crew…

Back at the campsite, at the Virginia Creek Settlement, Ally contemplates throwing her Father in Green Creek…

Gettin’ the fire going to cook Michael’s hanger staek…

Ally, Pop and Michael…by Aimee…

Aimee and Michael…cute !!!

The HANGER STEAK…

Ally can’t stand it…

…and gets INVOLVED

Ally and I visit Trumbull Lake before we leave Michael and Aimee, who trek to some upper lakes to FF before heading back to the Bay area…

Trumbull Lake…Ally has been fishing here since she was five…

A parting shot of Trumbull Lake…

Back down the Conway Summit grade to Mono Lake and LA…

With a stop at the EASTERN CALIFORNIA MUSEUM in Independence, CA…to check out some old friends…

NEXT: Nectopsyche recipes, an experimental October Caddis…and the mandatory – new Fall Baetis…

PT/TB

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Lots more photos of my trekking around the South/ Western portion of the Great Basin…with the “Evil Spawn”…

Ally finds something black and shiny while groovin’ on Pearl Jam…

Ally, leaning on the ONLY post over 5′ high in Deep Springs Valley…while looking for more black and shiny objects…

Cocktail onions skewered on a BENCHMADE…near Tinemaha Res. on a VERY COLD day…

Air Soft exploration…somewhere DESERTY…right…

BHP Squirt gun replica somewhere in the Sierra Nevada foothills…

Sunrise on the Owens…

Chipmunk rounds like.223 blow around – .308, Lake City Match…just don’t…

Mono Lake, coming down from Bridgeport, CA on black ice

Ally. stumbling around the desert near LP looking for something…Another, cold, windy, wet and overcast day that Dad drags Ally out to look for “stuff” in the Owens Valley…

Michael, strippin’ a streamer on a very cold day on the Owens River…

“Take is slow Son, there are some BIG GUYS in here!”….

South of Bridgeport, CA…first snow of Fall…

Ally in the White Mountains looking South down the Owens Valley…

Hogback Creek…

B.R.A.S.S. – ALLY!!!…

Twilight on the Owens River, below 5 Bridges…

Michael working a pair of nymphs on the Owens River…

More nice water on the Owens River…

Michael takes a break in the Wild Trout section of the Owens River…

The “MOO” with a nice typical Owens River TROUT…

Angelo, getting ready to bury something on the Owens River…

Angelo takes a break…

Mr. BROWN posing for a very brief moment…

NEXT: Michael and Aimee engagement party (beach blow out) 6.6.10…

PT/TB

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In the next week or so (Sat. 10.10 or Sun 10.11), I will post new Baetis/BWO patterns and the story of how my son Michael was introduced to Fly Fishing and how he now outperforms his Pop …(sometimes)…

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Ally and Michael at the Mt. Whitney Fish Hatchery on Oak Creek just North of Independence, CA…

This is where Michael saw his first REALLY big Rainbow, in the brood stock pond behind the kids…This, is a great place to suck ‘em -( the wee ones) -into FF…

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Michael, taking a break on The Owens…

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Michael, sending Slugs and Sabots into a profile target from a Benelli M1 Super 90…

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Ally, climbing on the rocks at Trumbull Lake…

Michael and Ally at Trumbull Lake Campground…this is where they both caught loads of fish when they were starting…

Ally and PT, goofing around in Deep Springs Valley…

Angelo, with his stick,takes it all in….

PT/TB :popcorn:

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As I mentioned in my previous post about the Mt, Whitney fish hatchery, my first visit to the Owens Valley came in 1951 when my Dad, Brother and I drove up in my Dad’s 1949 powder blue, Buick convertible to visit with my Mother while she was shooting a film on location outside of Lone Pine, CA. In those days, it took 6-6 1/2 hours to drive up through Palmdale and Lancaster to Mojave and on to Lone Pine from Los Angeles – there were no four lane highways.

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The Owens Valley begins just North of Little Lake, CA. The Owens River once flowed out of Owens Lake, many millions of years ago, down through Little Lake and into a series of great lakes in the Southern California desert. Remnants of this once roaring river may be seen at Fossil Falls just East of a large, dormant volcano that marks the Southern boundary of the valley. Little Lake has an astounding number of petroglyphs on it’s Eastern shore – carved into the volcanic rock that borders the lake.

ARTICLE FROM THE NY TIMES 5.07.2010

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Little Lake petroglyphs…

and, information on those who created them…

Rock Art

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Thousands of years ago, an Indian tribe known as the “Sheep People” lived in this area and directly to the East in the Argus and Coso Mountain ranges ( now part of the China Lake Naval Weapons Center). When the bow and arrow arrived in this spot, it is believed that these people decimated the resident Desert Big horn Sheep population and later migrated to the North and East to establish the tribes of the Great Basin and Northern Plains. The entire area has a profound mystical quality to which I have been drawn my whole life.

Here is an excellent site for learning more about the early inhabitants of the area:

Petroglyphs.US

and, another:

Hwy. 395

and, another:

North American Rock Art

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Fossil Falls…

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Cinder Cone, Location of Fossil Falls…

This is where a natural dam was broken by an overflowing Owens Lake over 250,000 years ago, creating Fossil Falls and a series of major lakes in the Southern Great Basin…

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My TROOP at Fossil Falls, 1992…

A friend of my Dad’s, Ralph Dadasman, constructed three, nine foot fiberglass fly rods for my Dad , my Brother and I. Ralph was very active in a fishing club in Long Beach, CA. I first had an opportunity to watch a fly angler in action when we visited with Ralph and his family in June Lake,CA in the summer of 1953. It was these rods that the three of us used in Lone Pine, CA in Lone Pine, Shepperds, Symmes, North Oak, Oak and Independence Creeks. We would rig these rods with floating lines on old Pfleuger reels, to a six to eight inch long, 1-2lb. test leader and depending on the stream flow, 2-4 BB shot. We used gold and bronze #16 and # 18 Mustad treble hooks – fishing downstream. We crawled on our knees and sometimes stomachs, to inch our rod tips through the thick underbrush, lowering the tip over the water and stripping line off the reel once the leader and shot caught in the current. Bait consisted of worms, salmon eggs or grass hoppers and crickets. This is where I first learned the deadly effectiveness of drowned hopper and cricket patterns.

My Dad would go through this ritual of rigging next to his ’52 blue, woody, Ford Station Wagon then, the three of us would trudge streamward. My Father alway wore his trusted Russell Birdshooters for snake protection ( rattlesnakes were everywhere) and would have his hand- crafted, woven creel/basket, lined with wet Mule Ears, carried on a leather strap slung over his shoulder. The creeks were filled with Rainbow, Brown and the occasional Brook Trout. For some inexplicable reason, my Pop would refer to the Browns as “Natives” although having been introduced from Europe, there was nothing “native” about them. The DFG planted Rainbows. The Browns, after being originally introduced, were left to spawn. Note: ( My Dad bought his boots at Kerrs in Beverly Hills on Wilshire Blvd.- one of the finest rod and gun stores that ever existed.)

In the course of a day, each of us usually caught our limit of 25 fish- getting soaking wet in the process. On one particular trip to Lone Pine Creek, my Dad fell in a deep, sandy hole in the cold, rushing early summer water. I had never seen him so scared. He panicked and screamed for me to help him. I was about eight. It took me about five minutes to lock my small body around a tiny tree trunk which extended over the stream, reach out with a skinny arm that he could grasp and hold on for dear life while he pulled himself up my arm and out of the creek.

On days that the fishing was slow or we had a taste for something else, we would get up before sunrise, have a hearty breakfast at Ralph Lyons’, Mt. Whitney Cafe and head out into the desert to look for arrowheads. This practice, which I continue to this day, was a direct result of my Father being befriended by some local Paiute women ( they worked as waitresses in local cafes) who drew incredibly accurate maps of locations were these artifacts might be found. Over the years, we found arrowheads, trading beads, scrappers, awls and a host of other tools and pottery. Based on this information, I have found other spots throughout the Owens Valley, Deep Springs Valley, Saline Valley and Eureka Valley which have yielded excellent results. How and where to do this will remain a closely guarded family secret. I have taught my kids the hydrological and geographical features which lend themselves to such discovery. On occasion, I have stumbled onto a few spots while out hunting or target shooting – well off the beaten path and requiring 4 Wheel Drive. The reason we got up so early and looked so late…. The sun at a proper angle glints off exposed obsidian…

 

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Locals gather at Sunset, along the fingers of The Owens…found many walking these…at Sunset…

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The above were found by me and the kids..please see my post ARROWHEADS AND SACRED PLACES for more detail…

A little dry lake bed out in the Owens Valley (4.14.2011) where Ally, Josh and I found the following…some pottery shards and small obsidian points…

I remember in the Winter of ’81 when I had gone to the Owens Valley by myself to hunt for yip dogs ( I gave up hunting in 1987 at the request of my son Michael) .

OWENS LAKE SUNSET -1-Owens Lake…where Los Angeles stole it’s water from …

FAL 50.63 FN “PARA”, scoped (Nimrod 6×42), loaded with 125gr., .308 SP, the best non-HB Varmint Rifle ever made…

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Something else in the Southern Sierras…

I made my first pre-dawn stand just North of the Alabama Hills along Hogback Creek. As part of my preparation before calling, I had affixed tie on pads soaked in fox urine to the bottom of my boots. I moved to a spot West of my stand and placed a film canister containing skunk screen. I walked to a spot about 300 meters away from, and directly East of the first canister to place a second near a low lying area along the creek ( don’t ask, if you don’t understand why I’m doing this) when I noticed a chunk of dark obsidian in the middle of a cow’s hoof print. I reached down and extracted a 4 inch long, perfect spear point – unbroken. This has happened more than once…

2nd best Varmint Rifle: Valmet Mdl. 76, scoped (Redfield 2×7), load .223, 55gr. BTHP…

http://www.sfgate.com/blogs/images/sfgate/opinionshop/2007/07/16/coyote06_PH04498x333.JPG

The Esteemable Yip Dog….

It never ceases to amaze me how many people who whiz up 395 to ski Mammoth and June Lake have no earthly idea of the richness of this vast valley…

Beret Flash – 10th. SFG, 1st. Special Forces (ABN)…another part of my story…

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Some Friends…

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Lookin’ for a Yeti…

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Two hitchhikers in the Saline Valley…arrow-3

Those guys were lookin’ for these things….

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S&W Mdl. 57…

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Owens Valley at sunset, 1987…

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Michael starts with a .22 – Ruger Bull Barrel…1985…

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Road Rig…1987…tim-add-owens-valley-85

Sunset, high in the Eastern Sierras – 1987…

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Michael, sighting in, 1987…

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Down Range

A Northern portion of the Owens Valley…

PT/TB


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The Mt. Whitney fish hatchery is one of those places that I return to again and again. I first visited it in 1951 with my twin brother Greg when my Mother was filming the “Lusty Men” in and around the Owens Valley. We stayed in Lone Pine and a room cost $6.00 in that far off time. I watched my Dad kill a rattlesnake on the bank of Shepherds Creek the same day I went to the hatchery.

Mt. Whitney Fish Hatchery, around 1930…it was built in 1917…

The Mt. Whitney Fish Hatchery…Today…

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Ally at a holding pen, 1995

It is a place of respite and solitude in the summer’s scorching heat. I have seen Kamloops trout fry and Tiger trout reared in its’ tanks. All my kids have trekked there to toss small brown feed pellets to the hefty brooders in the front pond. Although these were not wild trout being reared, they provided hours of fun and enjoyment when we were young boys. The limit was 25 fish per person and I still remember my brother and I struggling to hold up a day’s catch on a stringer at the Frontier Motel.

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Michael, checking out the Brook Trout, 1986

I resolved many years ago to only kill a few trout. I chose to do this knowing that enjoyment is in the pursuit not the head count and maybe, because the following had something to do with it.

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Dad and Michael, brood pond, Mt. Whitney Fish Hatchery, 1986…oh, PINKY too…

Ally and Michael,on yet, another visit to the hatchery…

A large Rainbow rises for the 5 cent “pellet” fly in the brood stock pond…

Ally getting ready to cast a load of pellets into the pond…

MT WHITNEY FH -5-Brood stock Rainbows in the pond…


Here - is some good news about the hatchery after a devastating flood in 2008…

Testament

UPDATE 4.24.10

PT/TB

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