- Jay Walden
January 20, 2019
Sex, drugs, and Rock and Roll.... John Jenrette used to be my neighbor. Actually, he was already my girlfriend's neighbor, when I moved in with her in Ft. Lauderdale, where she had gone to work for a modeling agency, which is entirely different from being a model-citizen; although the two are not necessarily mutually exclusive in all cases. I'm not sure who lived there first, but given our shared penchant for attractive blondes, I wouldn't be surprised to find out that his choice of domicile was by design. If you're a little older like I am, then you might remember John, he was the South Carolina Congressman that accepted a $50,000 bribe during the Abscam sting, from an undercover FBI agent posing as an Arab sheikh, while making the comment that, "I've got larceny in my blood." He also gained a bit of notoriety, by who he was married to—his second wife, Rita— his first wife Sally having sued for divorce and won, citing 23 documented affairs by John, to which he replied, "Whew! Is that all she knew about?" Anyway, Rita was the blonde bombshell that became famous for the interview she gave to Playboy Magazine about their marriage following John's conviction and subsequent 13 month federal prison sentence, where she detailed a late-night rendezvous behind a pillar on the Capitol steps, with her then husband, during a break in an all-night session of the House. Say what you will about John, unlike today's Congress, at least he got something accomplished on Capitol Hill. Not long afterward, she did an accompanying semi-nude pictorial for the same magazine, which is probably better remembered by most red-blooded American males, despite the salacious nature of the previous interview. Rita testified in John's defense at his trial, but her revelation about the 25 grand in cash she found in her husband's closet probably didn't help his cause much. Later after their divorce, she went on to become a published author, actress, on-air journalist, and a real estate magnate, eventually remarrying to Prince Nicolo Boncompagni Ludovisi of Piombino, which technically, now makes her a princess. All's well that ends well, as they say— at least for some folks. The last time I saw John, I drove him to the airport in Miami, it was winter, and it was raining— we didn't talk much, this was right before his trial— I assume he probably had a lot on his mind. I wasn't aware of it at the time, but I think both John and I had a Voodoo put on us by those two blondes that we both ended up parting ways with. We've both had our share of trouble since, John probably more so, since he ended back up in the slammer for 30 days and a mandatory stint in rehab after shoplifting a pair of shoes from a Marshall's department store back in 1989. My departure ended a little less dramatic, only resulting in wandering aimlessly lost for a while, until the void was filled with a wanderlust for the wide-open spaces of the West and my now, present-day, trout bum status. Occasionally, I still stay up late, have a drink, and play my music a little too loud, but that's about it these days. I'll turn 61 this week and I like the slower pace of things where I live in New Mexico . I read recently that Mr. Jenrette has remarried, written a book, and moved back to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, a place where I spent a lot of my teenage years. It's nice there— hopefully, a good place for all to end well.
Okay, here's the skinny on San Juan fishing. The flow here is presently at 284 cfs and the water visibility is around a foot to maybe eighteen inches and most likely will stay that way for a while. Surprisingly, the fishing has been pretty good, the weather, not so much. On the bright side, this looks like the last week of really cold temperatures and we should be back into the 40s going into February, which can't come soon enough. As far as flies go, I've been doing all of my fishing with streamers, small ones, like size 12 in olive and white. Hey works for me, don't see why it wouldn't work for you, right? My modus operandi has been the dead swing followed by slow retrieves, basically tossing it across or slightly upstream with about enough weight to get it mid-level in the water column and staying tight enough on the line, to feel the take. Occasionally, I give the white one a little action on the drift to mimic a bait-fish, which has been pretty effective. Sometimes they like the olive, sometimes they like the white, so if one doesn't work, I just swap them out. The important thing is to cover a lot of water if you're going the streamer route. With the water clarity being what it is, these fish don't seem to want to chase the streamer very far, so you gotta keep putting it in front as many fish as possible, which means moving around a bit. Nymphing can also be effective right now, provided you use something bigger and brighter, especially for your lead fly. Eggs, red larva, desert storms, princess nymphs, and o.j.s would be my first choices. You can also trail one of these behind a leech pattern, under an indicator and do a slow retrieve at the end of your drift and get some pretty good results. My best fishing has been between the hours of 11:00 am and 4:00 pm. I have stayed later on some days, but that last hour hasn't been very productive and I think that has to do a lot with the water temperature and the decreased bug activity— anyway, it starts getting cold about then, so it's probably best to skip the 4:00 to 5:00 hour, until we start getting some warmer afternoons. There are a few rising fish during the mid-day hours, but most of them appear to be taking emergers just under the surface, rather than taking adult midges off the top. You could probably take some fish on emerger patterns during this time and possibly a few on dries, but the dry fly thing looks like it would be a lot of work for only a few fish, so I'm sticking with what works for a while longer. Hope you can make it out. If you would like more information or need to book a guide, give us a call at 505-632-2194.