Thursday, April 02, 2009

If I live to be ~75, I'll have ~43 more Aprils left. That means that this April 2009 represents ~2.3% of what I've got left as far as what is often referred to as one of the couple best fishing months of the calendar year. Look at it like that, and you figure you'd better get to it. Off to a good start, I can say now.

I took the last few hours of the work day off and went fishing. I have put aside business and gone a-fishing, I think Izaak Walton said. Something along those lines. I've been burning pretty hard at work lately, and I'll continue to do so in the coming weeks... so recharge time will need to be interspersed.

Never had I fished this particular stream before today. I picked a crossing on the map and drove to it - no particular rationale there. I know all these streams are troutier than hell. Started out nymphing... but knowing that BWO were said to be around right now, I felt like I was biding my time - looking for something else while flipping that rig around. Landed a couple fish right away, but then kind of gave up on that and started trekking upstream. A lot of tough water - dead clear and "open top" pools that were hard to approach. I saw some sporadic rises here and there but nothing that made me want to re-rig. Finally I came to this sweet looking corner hole and found it to be just lighting up with rises - one after another. Fish porpoising is what it was. I tied on a #18 BWO, unsure if this particular pattern would be a good match... turned out to be laser-on. Any decent presentation put in a feeding lane was crushed. It was on from ~ 14:50-15:25 and it was constant action. Not sure how many fish I caught at that corner, but it was on the order of 12-15. All on one dry fly. The 2 wt was bouncing. I was grinning. To boot - nearly all of the fish were 11-12" range. A couple were bigger, with max being around 15" maybe - happened to be the last fish I caught there. Because the fly is so small and dark, I never actually saw it when it was on the water... and thus never saw it enter a fish mouth... just watching for splashes anywhere near where I figured it was drifting. An expert caster may have caught 2x as many fish as I did. I couldn't tell exactly how all my drifts were managing, but I know a good percent of them were ass.

I kind of just walked into the whole deal. In a way I was searching for it, but I feel fortunate to have found it. There are a lot of great things a guy can do in the world of fishing... but I'd say that standing in a coldwater stream, casting a #18 dry to willing fish for half an hour is pretty near the top of the list. Still riding the high in fact.

Had green light to stay out "all night," but this particular event was very fulfilling, and thus after it was through, I bolted home in time to tuck the boys away to bed.

Here's a little photo journal.

The Terrain

No Guard Rails 'round here. That's a steep drop.

Mixed land use. Goat prairie.

The Water

This is the corner.

Note fish. I didn't catch these. I did coax a nice rainbow out from under that deep and dark log-hole, but she refused at the last second.

The Fly

The Fish

Some Oddities & Notes

As I was fishing to those risers, I noticed something smelled like death. I kept getting whiffs here and there, and mentally noting that there must be something way upstream, or a dead giraffe in the adjacent field maybe... Half an hour later when the fish stopped eating, I looked six feet up and to the left and saw this deer carcass. It'd been at my feet the entire time. I guess a guy gets locked on now and then.

I came to some still-water risers and I went to put that well-worn BWO back in the box - change it out for a sparkle dun maybe... Only to find that the fugging fly box was NOT IN POCKET. DUDE! WHAT?!?! Gone, man. I kept fishing, but turned around and started swinging softies as I back-tracked (picked up two small browns on WS). I figured the chance of finding it was right around 1/10 or so. My thought was that it was probably in a place at which I spent prolonged period of time, and/or had a bit of a struggle - climbing, jumping, sliding, etc. Could have easily fallen in the water and floated down to the Gulf of Mexico. Plus - it's GREEN I realized... Which made me wonder: why in the hell is that fly box GREEN anyway? So fish can't see it? Those damn things shold be flourescent. I was planning out what flies I should tie up first to replace that whole freaking stock... when ye ol' box materialized out of the leaf litter and burdock there before my eyes. Couldn't believe it. In some non-descript little piece of trail (see in pic). Thanks box for coming back to me.

Every time I use these hip boots my entire left leg gets soaked. I can almost put my finger through that hole. I honestly don't mind though. Don't notice things like that - especially on a day like today.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

beauty. streams looked fairly clear. love the brownie.

everything's blown out up here; fresh melt from the new snow won't help. I'll have to "recharge" before it gets worse. My April is shrinking with every passing snow we get.

10:38 PM  
Blogger Wendy Berrell said...

Still riding this high man. Thinking about those takes... visions of trout porpoising everywhere. Can't believe that came along the way it did.

11:19 PM  
Blogger amanda said...

Enjoyable post. Cool photo effects, you take excellent fish photographs. Thanks for sharing that gorgeous scenery, too.
Looks like spring down your way!
Snow covered winter wonderland in our parts. Well, not sure "wonderland" is appropriate being it's April. :)

11:52 AM  
Blogger peggy said...

the focus being, you have more aprils left to experience, than what you have already enjoyed:)

1:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Awesome! You had the day I did only the day prior. I didn't get to fish the BWO action, just waded through it collecting bugs, I was running out of time and decided to not switch to a dry.

I dig your writing, smooth not causing me to stumble. I'm glad that box came back to you, I'm hoding my breath as I read faster and faster...haha I've dropped mine before too.

1:56 AM  
Blogger Wendy Berrell said...

Good to hear from you folks. If I can convey even 10% of the quality of experience from this little outing... that'd be pretty good. My mind has been jogging back to it every few hours.

11:43 PM  
Blogger Royce Gracie said...

exploring new territory produced results. we have to keep that in mind though we already have our "spots". looks like alot of fun man.

12:07 PM  
Blogger Wendy Berrell said...

That's part of the beauty of this place: you can fish new water every day if you want.

10:39 PM  
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9:08 PM  

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