I had some free time after work to check the water clarity for the weekend, so I packed up the RAV and took off after work. It was crowded at the usual spots, which I expected. The water level and clarity was picture-perfect. I knew fish would not be in the usual spots, so I began walking. I ended up on a section of river that gets mostly ignored due to shallow and swift water. I saw a few Hendricksons on the river when I pulled in to park, but they had tapered off by the time I was geared up and trekking into the woods. I started off throwing eggs through the swift pools without even a bump. I switched over and swung some big streamers in hopes of an aggressive take. I had this aching feeling that I was drifting and swinging by fish, so I decided to go with a nondescript Hendrickson nymph. High-sticking to a swing is the way to go during the Hendrickson hatch, which is what my plan was.
Before I could even start the slow swing, my line went tight. No, not bottom....unless the bottom was moving?
What happened next was pure mayhem. After tying on a Hendrickson, I had 3 fish in my net in 3 drifts. What?!
Well, that was a pleasant surprise! I decided to book it downstream to a few more runs before it got dark out. I went as far down as I could without running out of light before getting back to the car. I couldn't believe what had unfolded...I landed 6 steelies and hooked into 11. I had a few steelies actually chasing my flies in shallow water during the swing. I was loving it!!!
I was catching fish in water that people wouldn't even considering fishing, it was just amazing. If only I had more time!
I don't think I've ever had such hot steelhead action in such a short time-frame. Thank you, Mr. Hendrickson.