Sunday, May 25, 2008

The bit with these fish:

I got a green light to fish for a short while on Sunday AM. Trout were destined to be a crowded situation I figured, and I knew some tough ruffian fish were hanging around near my house.

First thing - stop by and get some coffee - add shot of espresso for cannon ball effect. Done.

Second - walk on a wall, drinking coffee and dapping/jigging a RLHE. Watch an excited kid catch a smallie and a redhorse (tourists).

Third - accidentally catch a smallie on the RLHE. They fight hard, and I forget that until I get to BWCA each year. Even a little guy like this one pulled on the 7 wt a bit.

Fourth - get pissed off because I can't jig anything up, so change tactics and go to naked nymphing. Lots of good practice roll casting from a high point of vantage. Watch the end of fly line and if it slows or turns, pick up rod. Done. I knew I was probably missing fish left and right. Finally though, picked up and felt pull of a fish... but found only a lethargic quillback. Very cool fish - actually pretty big relative to the others I've seen/caught. Maybe my biggest ever. Right in the mouth. Released.

Fifth - walk downstream to flat pool. Fish jumping, rolling and contorting bodies everywhere. Regular pattern - every 30-40 seconds 1-3 fish would make noise. Couldn't catch those MFs. I tried ~12 flies. Swung flies, and even presented a dry fly. Get this - first cast with an EHC - let it sit thinking they might figure it was a seed of some sort (water was very flat and still) - went to pick it up and the fly dipped just under water... and found a fish on. Ha. I figured there was no way a guy could snag a fish on an EHC... so I thought I had my first ever dry fly carp on. Yeah man. Brought in a quillback though, and found it hooked in the pelvic fin.

Finally - got tired of snagging fish and retrieving flies with no fish on them so I waded out to an island that would give me a better casting angle. Wet waded. First cast - saw end of line slow - pick up the bit - this carp on. Immediately took off like a MF. He didn't take any backing out, but ~half of my spool was showing backing when he ran to the furthest point. Brought him back to me... and like a pendulum he ran right on by and bolted downstream this time... only problem was that I was standing at the head of a big riffle and the MF shot down that riffle 100000 mph. Pretty funny - I was just loving it... I dropped the net and disconnected my pack... took off downstream. There was no putting the brakes on either - I was fishing 3x and the water was very fast. Down to next pool - played and played for ~45 minutes (a bystander said it was more like 5-6 though)... had to keep him around because the next chute spelled certain death via woody debris. Anyway, landed fish and went home. Made for a nice couple hours. Spent the rest of the weekend working on my compost bin/system and gardening with my wife and kids. Good example of how a little fishing can seta good mood for remainder of weekend. Eliminates cranky-fisherman-syndrome.


Blogger John Montana said...

i'm jealous. i was hoping to get out today, but no go. i will probably head out next weekend for the last time before you show up in OR.

What's the scoop on these fish?

2:05 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

sweet. nice chunky carp.

2:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

These are very homely fish. You know our favorite sturgeon habitat guy is in St. Paul, right??

9:54 AM  
Blogger Wendy Berrell said...

HZ: You've been conditioned to think those are homely fish!

I have run into Mr. Sturgeon a few times... He is now officially coworker, which is cool.

Scoop on fish is forthcoming.

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How about I kick you in the "nuts" instead? Okay?

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