Tuesday, September 01, 2015

Late Summer Fishing

The fish were where we thought they were.  There are only a few developments/notes worth mentioning; even they are debatable as to substance.

Morning on good water.  Air temps very high (this was early August).  First hour or so, got blanked.  Snagged a couple in the belly which told me that I was not committing the mortal sin of not getting down; rather, the fish were not seeing and/or not eating what I had to offer.  There is no real panic though.  They don't go anywhere; they don't disappear like fish can do in Lake Michigan.  They are in deep holes like this one.  To approach it, put your leader up through the tip top of the fly rod such that you are dropping a rig straight down; manipulate it so the current allows it to sink deep; mend and move so it delays and then set the hook when the fish indicate.  Don't cast.  Stand in the riffle and operate. The trout were in very specific locations in that little hydro-cushion.  Down deep.

I abandon and revisit water over time; came back to this reach this year; great stream miles.

Friend handed a Tenkara rod free and clear.  Thanks.  At the last hole, I took it out of my pack and rigged it up.  My report is that as you'd figure, it's great for high-sticking.  I found that one can execute a little back-forth slap cast pretty well.  Roll cast can be accomplished although it's marginal because there is no fly line.  Presentation was no issue.  Fighting fish just fine.  Landing them I found to be tricky, as I was not aware of the technique (which I now understand is commonly applied) in which one flexes the rod to a near-circle thus allowing the leader to be pinched near the cork grip; reach down with off hand and grab trout.  I can see how that would work pretty well.  I still need to think on the plus/minus of this rod vs a standard fly rod.  Other than the obvious draws regarding alternative means, other cultures, historical significance.  It is limiting in terms of diversity of presentation/approach.  More time to figure on it.

Applied a couple nymphs that are probably ten years old; tied on long hooks with descent dubbing from Hareline (a coppery wire-like dubbing).  Doesn't matter what nymphs are employed; that may be the point.

Some time in wooded corridors; some time walking over giant particle size colluvium.  Ended the morning at the big hole up there in the background; out in the open amidst the cliff faces.

Note about coolers.  Many are generally flawed in that the lid is garbage and there is too much headspace between the cargo and the plastic above.  I don't spend much time thinking about coolers but my suspicion is that the $300 versions cannot have insulation that is markedly better; rather, I wonder if they are simply designed better; fit tighter, etc.  To transform my shitty coolers into good coolers, I pack camp towels or wet clothing or discarded rags etc. into the top to make for tight insulation.  Thereby nullifying the design flaw.

This is what I found on this day, after placing this ice around 500 AM; fishing all morning and then leaving the cooler in the back of my hot ass car all afternoon and into evening while we all floated down the river on tubes.  Ice cubes still holding shape; ice block in the jug greater than 75% frozen.  Fish underneath stone cold.  Which I think is good.  And required of me was only combining things that I had on hand.

Found a DNR tag up along the dorsal of one trout fated to be harvested, filleted, eaten, buried in the garden.  I've taken to filleting trout because my kids like it a lot better.


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