View Full Version : Doing right despite

08-14-2007, 11:02 AM

I want to commend you for doing the right thing. Based on what I have observed about you, I believe that you would have asked people not to fish in these conditions regardless of impact on your business. Why? - because it is the right and ethical thing to do! And, in the long run, you will see a reward for taking that stand. So many of our business and political leaders just focus on short-term results and rewards. It gives me hope to see the good guys win sometimes. I hope your business continues to grow and prosper. I will certainly do my part to make that happen.

By the way, I am scheduled to go to Montana in early September. I have e-mailed Grizzly Hackle in Missoula a couple of times, and they assure me that cooler weather will change the river conditions before then. I have fished in the northwest many times, but this year seems to be an extraordinarily bad year for them as well. Would you have cancelled if you were going in early September?


08-16-2007, 10:10 PM

Where are you going in Montana? Jack and I are going in early September to the upper Little Blackfoot and then the Slide Inn. We have never been west further than Texas so this will be a real adventure.


08-16-2007, 11:03 PM

Steve and I are leaving for Missoula on 9/5/2007. We will probably fish the Clark Fork or Bitterroot on Thursday and Friday depending on where the guide suggests. Then, we will probably go to some more remote waters, like the upper Blackfoot, Saturday and Sunday. If you have never been in the northwest, you are in for a real treat. I hope the smoke from the fires has diminished somewhat so you can see why they call it Big Sky Country.

Do you have a guide scheduled?

08-17-2007, 07:38 AM

The first place we are going is the Little Blackfoot, where a guy named Dave Ames rents a place for fisherman. No guide, we thought we'd just hike and explore. Mr. Ames says we don't need a guide there. So we will see. It may be a great adventure, or a flop....

At the Slide Inn, which I think is right on the Madison, I will have a guide. I have all this info at home, we are in Townsend this week, so I can't remember the name of the town in Montana where the Ames place is. Maybe Ennis? Anyway, I believe Mr. Ames wrote a book, again I don't have the name with me, something about trout bum.

Can't wait to see Montana! :smile:

08-17-2007, 09:02 AM

You are going to be in fly fishing heaven! You will be right on the Madison in Ennis. The Gallatin, Beaverhead, and Big Hole are not too far away. You could even ventrure down into Yellowstone and fish in the Firehole and Yellowstone.

If it is David Ames, he wrote "True Love and the Woolly Bugger."

You are going to have a great time in a beautiful place.

Be aware of the potential for grizzly bears in the area.

If you are like me, you will want to stay - until winter that is.

Byron Begley
08-17-2007, 11:40 AM

Thanks for the kind words. I believe that in the long run we will benefit by telling the truth and as a business we have always supported The Great Smoky Mountain Fisheries Department, TU and Fly Fishing Federation financially. We feel an obligation to help protect the fishery both professionally and personally. Right now, except for the mail order business which has spiked, we feel like the Maytag Repairman. Not many people coming in. That will change soon.

Usually in September the nights are cool in Montana. We were scheduled to be there the last week of August. My guess is that it will cool down soon. But, one year it was hot in early October. We arrived a week later and there was 12 inches of snow on the ground and the nights dipped down to 5 degrees at Madison Junction. We were camping by the way. I think right now the fishing is fine in the mornings but the last time I looked the rivers were under mandatory closure after 2:00 pm. You can Google Montana River Closures or something like that and get the State of Montana and the Yellowstone Park site. They both have a list of rivers with mandatory restrictions. Also, the fires are causing some areas to be closed. It's a mess out there. Paula and I didn't want to take off work and take a chance. We scheduled a trip to Fall Creek Falls instead in September.

I don't know what to tell you to do. We cancelled so the fishing will probably be great. If we hadn't it would probably be poor. We just didn't want to take a chance.


08-17-2007, 05:33 PM

Thanks for the information. I have been checking the Grizzly Hackle fishing report every day. The fishing restrictions are being lifted on most streams as of 8/18/07. I plan to have a great time out there!

08-17-2007, 08:06 PM
Talked to my best friend whom still lives in Missoula and he said it is still smoky. There is a big fire in the Seeley Lake/Bob Marshall area (thats probably 30-45 minutes outside of Missoula). Fires have been horrible in that area for the last 8-10 years. They had to call in the National Guard last week to help control this fire because it was starting to take out homes and cabins.

08-17-2007, 08:26 PM
Montana Alum,

I am full of envy. Of course, I probably would not be in the middle of a hard winter. I do have a U of M cap. I am a life-long Tennessean, but I love the northwest, especially Montana. We were in Missoula a couple of years ago for a few days and the smoke was terrible. We had to get almost to Glacier before we got out of the smoke.

I hope the fires die down before we get out there. Do you live in Tennessee now?

08-17-2007, 08:42 PM
barbara, if i could meet and fish with one fly fishing figure, it would be dave ames! I LOVE his books, particularly "a good life wasted". you should read it, as its very humorous and entertaining. send him my compliments, and good luck on your trip.

08-17-2007, 09:15 PM
Byron, your stance is admirable, especially in this day and age where people are more interested in profits than the protection of our sport and a very delicate ecosystem. It's easy to miss the streams but an ounce of prevention is always worth a pound of cure. Protecting the future begins today.

08-17-2007, 09:16 PM

Dave Ames may have written many books but that one, a good life wasted, is the one I heard about. I will pick up a copy when I get home. Have you ever met him? I was worried when he said no guide needed. Since we don't know anything about Montana except it's north of Utah somewhere. But I'd like to think there are so many streams with so many trout that even I could catch some without a guide.


08-18-2007, 02:18 AM
no, I've never met him in person, I just really love his books (he's written 3, 2 of which I've read) I always tell everybody to read "a good life wasted", but you know how it is, nobody ever reads books you tell them to. from his writings, he seems like the kind of guy who'd probably tell you no guide needed. read the book and you'll see what kind of a character he must be.

08-18-2007, 10:57 PM

Just read your post on your trip to Colorado. How was the water temp there? Did you take waders or just wet wade? I am going the first week of September. Trying to carry on all the rods and wading boots but probably will have to check the baggage with waders, tackle, etc. Everyone says it could be hot or it could be snowing, so lost luggage could be a real problem. Wish we had 3 weeks so we could drive like you guys did.

Great pictures. Digital? What kind of camera? Thanks.