Monday, February 2, 2015

Super Sunday

Super Bowl Sunday isn't nearly as much fun when you just want both teams to lose. I thought about staying home and working on rods, but decided that I'd rather get out and use one on such a great Winter day. No one seemed to want to leave the house but me, so I made it a solo trip and headed south. 

First stop was a small stream I've had a hunch about for quite sometime, but I always seemed to be going somewhere else. With the warm temperatures the water was running a bit dirty and no fish were interested in my streamer, but I see some potential here. Especially when Summer brings some hoppers to play. Must've been excited this morning because I left the house without my camera....so I had to use my phone.

Even when you follow up on a hunch and catch nothing you never really scratch it from the list...
Next stop shouldn't even really count as a stop. Last year I ice fished this lake and had to cut through 15"+ of ice. This year the ice is receding and will probably be completely off soon enough. I just took a couple of pics and kept on driving to the stream that I had set out to fish. 

Crazy weather this year
I've fished this stream a couple of times, but never for a full day. Each time while fishing it I swear I could hear the fish laughing at me. I know that there are fish in the stream, but they wouldn't even show enough of themselves to extend the middle fin at me. Today I was determined to change all that. When I got to the river's edge I was excited to see a good midge hatch developing with a few Blue Winged Olives in evidence, but there were absolutely no rising fish. Water clarity wasn't very good, which could've been the reason for no surface activity, or the fish were laughing too hard to eat. 

It's a good looking spot
Decided to move down canyon a bit in hopes that a different section would help me find some active fish. Found a stretch of great looking stream and actually did what I know I'm supposed too! I waited and watched for clues. Soon I found some answers. There were two fish on the opposite bank rising in a shadow. One was definitely a better sized fish than the other, but at this stage in the game I wasn't about to be picky. Their tails would come out of the water, but not their heads......emergers! It was a thought, but both fish refused my midge emerger pattern and stubbornly stopped feeding. (There's that middle fin I was looking for!) While I was waiting for them to come back to the surface I set up a different rig, a parachute zebra midge with a #20 Bead-Head Pheasant Tail dropper about 8" behind. My hope was that if they weren't eating the midges, maybe they'd be zoned in on the mayflies. First cast, fish on! 

Pretty little thing
Definitely the smaller of the two active fish, but it didn't take long till the second fish was spotted and fell for the same nymph pattern.

I love sight fishing
From there it was game on. Once I moved up to a little heavier water I switched out the small parachute pattern for a much larger Royal Wulff pattern that would be easier to see and less likely to sink for no reason. As I'm tying it on the thought occurs to me, "Wouldn't it be funny if they came up for this?" Of course, second cast and fish on. February 1st and I'm catching fish on a size 12 Royal Wulff. I had several fish on both patterns till the deepening shadows told me it was time to head home. Nothing huge, but some great fish to finally take the skunk off this stream for me. 

The kick that says he's ready
Big fish of the day came on the big dry
Made it home in time to see the end of the football game. Crazy finish. Glad I got to see it, but the day on the water was worth missing most of the game. Hope you can get out, be safe, and enjoy nature.

- Kidder

Great day on the water
I am holding the camera level!
Big Rock Candy Mountain