Saturday, July 27, 2013

Seeking out colder tribs

It's been rough not being able to fish like I usually do (a few different rivers in the same day - a lot of walking from good water to the next)  I hadn't really planned on fishing last weekend but had a big urge to the night before.  I asked Katlyn if she wanted to go with me and she reluctantly agreed.

I rigged up my spinning gear for her to use if she wanted once we got there.  Our first stop (my fav little trout spot) was inaccessible.  The person who's yard I have to walk through (with his permission of course) looked like he was having a birthday party for someone.  We didn't want to be intrusive, so we were on to the next trib.

Good thing, because we had a quick downpour in the car on the way to the next spot.  I was excited though, it was good for bug activity.  There had been a small amount of rain a few days prior to Saturday, so the tribs were looking perfect.  They weren't low and clear like they usually are this time of the year.  They were up just enough and had just enough stain.  The next trib looked perfect...and I just had a feeling.

We parked the car and walked through the woods to the first decent run on the trib.  I got her set up first with my spinning rod and a pinched barb.  It didn't take her long at all to find fish!!  Within minutes she'd reeled in a beautiful wild brown, about 10".  Less than 3 drifts later, another beautiful wild brown, this time a healthy 14"with color you could spot from a mile away.  After a little while without a bite, she wasn't interested and it was my turn!!

I opted for a euro-style rig, and had 3 small flies (14 bh pheasant, 14 bh prince, 16 brassie)  Didn't take long at all for me to find a fish.  Another sweet-looking brown, and then a rainbow, and another brown!!  I couldn't believe how many fish we'd got into in just this one area.  The rain had really helped, I watched a few fish rise to emergers while tying one on.  To my left was a very deep swirl-hole that looked difficult to fish.  I knew there had to be fish against a rock wall that the current went by - and sure enough there was.  First drift produced this gorgeous wild rainbow with some pretty bad wounds on the other side of its back! (bird of prey?)

The fish was actually a much darker maroon color than in the picture, it was awesome!

I released him and waited a few minutes before I drifted the same water.  It didn't take long to hook up again, this time with a rainbow a little bit bigger.  Of course I'd left my net at home, so by the time I'd limped down the rocky bank to cradle the fish out of the water, he'd shaken off....ugh!

I stood in front of the first water we fished when we got there, tying on a different fly.  While wetting a knot in my mouth, I scoped out a patch of water that the sun was just starting to hit.  I could barely see the pebbly bottom.  All of a sudden, out of the clear green-tinted depths of the water....a huge rainbow (20+")came up from the bottom to grab an emerger.  It stopped me in my tracks, and I finishing tying my fly quickly and started drifting through the same area I just saw him.  Of course this guy would be hard to catch, but I was determined to get him on the end of my line.....

The sun had made it's way above the tree that was giving us shade, and it was getting hot!  Katlyn opted to take off to the car for the AC while she waited for me.  I fished the same stretch of water I spotted the big bow hard, but had no love at all.  I decided to fish the deep swirl again before I took off, and quickly hooked up and landed another colored up brown.  Not too long after, I hooked into yet another big rainbow!  I landed him after a fierce, aerial filled fight on my 3 wt but had no camera on me! (Katlyn took my phone to the car...bummer)  It wasn't the 20"er I spotted, but another big bow compared to the size of the water I was fishing.  Awesome fight on a 6'6" 3 wt for sure!!  I couldn't believe how many fish I'd hooked into in just that one spot on the river.  It really was a bummer I wasn't able to walk any further to fish more water on this trib...but I took what I could get, and it was an awesome day.  Catching wild fish in a beautiful setting with the girl of your dreams.  You couldn't ask for any better.

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