Montana Fishtales from scumliner media on Vimeo.

A nice edit from John at Scumliner Media.


The Grilled Everything Burger from Claire Thomas on Vimeo.

A public service announcement to help you flex those grilled custom burger muscles for the upcoming weekend.



There’s still time to sign up for the Ultimate Montana Fly Fishing Giveaway, but the clock is ticking – the drawing is tomorrow the 22nd of May. Get in on this one before it’s gone.

Sign up here.



A cell phone snap from Jess (Fire Girl Photography) upon her early morning arrival in Pape’ete, Tahiti, French Polynesia on assignment with Costa and IndyFly. They were enjoying their last bit of hotel and civilization before transporting out to a remote atoll for a week of fisheries work.

Beats the hell out of my view this morning.



When You Catch A Politician Doing Something Right, Say Thank You

One of our mentors once said that when you catch kids, coworkers or employees, or even politicians doing something right, you needed to stop right then, commend and encourage them, and even in the case of politicians – thank them.

Kudos to the TRCP for sending out reminders recently about politicians who stood up for public lands and did the right thing; both gentlemen happen to hail from Montana.

Bully for Bullock

Back on May 4th, Montana’s Gov. Bullock vetoed HB 496 that would have commissioned and funded a study of options to sell and dispose of federal public lands in Montana. More details regarding the Gov.’s veto and commentary as well as a lively discussion in the Missoulian here.

Send the Governor a thank you here.

Zinke Stands for Public Lands

On 30 April, Montana US House Rep. Zinke voted against a budget resolution supporting the outright sale of American’s Federal public lands. Numerous sources have noted he cited that “Montana is not for sale” and “Our public lands support local economies and provide generations of Montanans with world-class opportunities”.

Zinke’s vote, while rightly praised by many as simply doing the right thing was also castigated by rancorous partisans who, in this case, can’t see the forest for the trees; for a fine shameful example of such see this in the Bozeman Daily Chronicle.

Send Rep. Zinke a thank you here.



Lizzy in Houston sent in this cooling cocktail perfect for entertaining a crowd this weekend – The Piñata.

My husband and I (fly fishing Wyoming and Idaho natives) are both grinding through postdoc work at the Med Center in Houston. Thanks for keeping Chi Wulff running, you guys provide a glimpse of home country sanity just about every day when Houston overwhelms us.

We were recently served this cocktail at a party and we both thought of sending it in to y’all (OMG, I’m starting to sound like a Texan). The grilled pineapple is a nice touch and it meets your criteria of being pretty simple and portable to take along in a boat cooler for the day. We like the “make a batch in a pitcher” concept for entertaining too.

My dad is a guide on Henry’s Fork and prefers Jake’s Mojitos (he still talks about the ‘pineapple chalice’), though we’ll be up there the first two weeks of June and plan to see what he thinks about this one…

Cheers, Lizzy, and don’t let Houston get you down. Get out there and chase some redfish and perhaps we’ll see you on the HF in early June. We’ve put this on the books as Lizzy’s Piñata.

1 fresh pineapple, peeled, cored and sliced
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
2 cups loosely packed fresh basil leaves, plus more for garnish
2 cups ounces dark rum (Lizzy uses Zacapa)
1/2 cup simple syrup
Crushed ice

Pineapple prep. Preheat the grill to medium-high and grill the pineapple slices for about 2 minutes per side until lightly charred and beginning to caramelize. Cool, cut 2 slices into quarters and rough chop the rest.

Muddle. Muddle the grilled, chopped pineapple, the lemon juice and 2 cups basil in a large pitcher. Stir in the rum and simple syrup.

Strain and pour. Strain into 8 Old Fashioned glasses filled with crushed ice, garnish with a basil leaf and a pineapple slice quarter.



Pescadora-Rebecca Courtney from Catch 1 Films on Vimeo.


A little peek inside Big Sky Country from Epic Montana. Nifty stuff.

Hat tip Mark Raisler at Headhunters.


Many of you loyal ChiWulff readers may have noticed my absence over the last couple months here on the blog. Last October, I made a quick move to Traverse City, Michigan. I lost my job in Bozeman, the girlfriend moved there and the fishing can be world class. Well…. I find myself this morning waiting on my ride for my second trip, back to back, on the famed Smith River.


You’re not here to read sappy heartbreak stories so I’ll let you guess what happened between the girlfriend and I.


I’ve been back in Bozeman for a touch over two weeks now and it’s been a whirlwind of an adventure:

  • Flew in on Wednesday the 6th. Fished the Lower with Jake and Ken
  • Thursday: Upper Madison with Ethan and Ken
  • Friday: Some sort of a “rest day”
  • Saturday/Sunday: Camping on the Mo with Jake
  • Monday: Henry’s Fork with Ken
  • Tuesday: Left for 6 nights on the Smith
  • This Wednesday (20th): Leaving for another 5 nights on the Smith

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I’ve spent more time on a sleeping pad than a bed. Am I complaining? Hell no!

Leaving Montana certainly made me realize lots of things. I don’t need to list them all out to know that it feels good to be back home.








Montana Fly Fishing Video – Female Fishing Etiquette from Joe Cummings on Vimeo.

Another nifty edit from Missoula’s Joe Cummings.


MATT MEOLA – HOME from Matt Meola on Vimeo.

A funky time lapse and surf combo from Maui for your Tuesday afternoon distraction and viewing pleasure.

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I am a catch and release guy.  Almost 100% of the time.  Certainly in the rivers.  But every now and then, I get the urge to go out and catch dinner.  Fortunately we have the perfect place for that right around Bozeman.  The local reservoir is not only the town’s water supply but it stocked with Yellowstone Cutthroat on a regular basis.  Yellowstone Cutts are damn tasty and there is no way I would ever kill and eat one out of the river.  But stockers out of a lake?  Hell yeah.

We got to talking about it at work yesterday and Ethan and I decided we needed to make it happen.  So despite the wind in town when the shop closed, we headed up into the mountains.  This was the first time I’d been up there this year and every time I’m amazed at how beautiful it all is.  Even with low hanging clouds and obscured vistas, it is a beautiful place.


The foul weather kept a lot of people out, but there were still a few anglers where we wanted to fish.  I don’t think they took to kindly to us both catching fish within 10 minutes of getting there, while they didn’t catch a thing the whole time we were there.  Of course we gave them lots of room, but they could still see what was going on.  Not wanting to cause a scene, Ethan and I both calmly and quietly dealt with our catch and moved on to the next ones.  Between us we caught six and kept three.  Not too bad for the first after work outing of the year and almost freezing our fingers off.

It’s an interesting thing, to bonk a fish over the head and know you’re going to eat it.  Every now and then I think it’s probably a healthy thing for an angler to do that.  Population control can be a very useful tactic in most waters, and it brings you back to the roots of fishing.  Fishing for dinner was going on long before fishing for sport.  But I digress…


Fresh trout from a cold ass lake in the mountains, wrapped up in tin foil with lemon and butter and tossed on the grill to steam is a delicacy that is pretty damn hard to beat.  Fish doesn’t get much more fresh than that and you really appreciate the meal more knowing you personally bonked a fish to make it happen.  Wash it down with a cold, cheap beer and you’ve got quite a meal.

Bon Appetit.


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Joe Brooks and Curt Gowdy, the first American Sportsman Show, casting into the wind from joebrooks documentary on Vimeo.

A video clip from the very first American Sportsman TV show, 1963 pilot program. It was filmed as a fishing competition between two Argentines, Tito Hosman and Erick Gornick versus two Americans, Joe Brooks and Curt Gowdy on Lago General Paz, Argentina. During a horrific wind storm the fisherman were unable to compete, so Joe gives a casting demonstration… into the wind.


Opening weekend has passed here in Montana.  All the small streams are open, as well as the few places that do close for a few months.  Such as the stretch on the Upper Madison from Quake to McAtee, one of my all times favorites.  I wasn’t able to get out on Opening Day but given my extreme dislike of fishing with crowds I don’t really see that as a major loss.  Now, Opening Week is here.

The first couple of weeks after everything opens up are always pretty damn good.  The fish still haven’t seen a lot of pressure and are relatively dumb.  Much more dumb than after having a drift boat with clients from Texas float by every five minutes for two months like in the summer.  The bulk of the summer crowds aren’t here yet so after the crush of Opening Day you can still find some peace and quiet.  Also, by about now everything is so green and beautiful in Montana.  Who wouldn’t want to be out on the river?


Another nice thing about Opening Week is everyone wants to go fish the waters that have been closed.  Which means that the places that have been open are suddenly much less crowded.  Ahhhh…

In the shop we’ve had a lot of people talking up hitting the Madison this week, but hardly anyone has mentioned the small water around town that is now open.  The occasional bro is interested in Hyalite Creek, but a lot of them had no clue it was even closed.  The lack of interest in the small stuff always makes me smile a little bit inside.  I mean, what?  There’s no fish in the small water in Montana.  They’re all only in the big, famous rivers that all the magazines write about….

In a place already loaded with opportunity, there’s now even more.  Cheers to that.



Big Ouananiche! from HOOKÉ on Vimeo.

Landlocked salmon the fly in Quebec; nifty vid.