|Cold water, hot and humid air, and this was at noon today!|
I was a bit shocked and disappointed that I saw another car parked at “my spot” this morning, but I ended up having a good conversation with another fly guy who makes and sells his own bamboo rods, knows some of the same guys at TCO, and gave me some intel on his home waters, the Tully (not where I was today). We worked out a plan not to overlap too much on a small but prime stretch of stream, and we spoke again briefly when he was leaving for the morning, so his presence in the end had little ill effect on my short trip. I took a leisurely ride in farm land, I got rained on, even finished my coffee sitting in the ‘Ru in waders waiting out a heavier shower, got bit by a couple early mosquitos, but I caught fish, from one of those gold ones to wild browns to points in between, including some overeager chubs and even a rock bass.
|A couple wild ones in the mix, but nothing like my last visit to the same creek.|
I like this stretch for that reason. The last time I was here, the wild browns were out in force (for here), but even though they were a bit quiet today, I managed a couple, along with some beautiful holdover rainbows that acted wild. I saw an isolated sulfur take wing, and there were caddis and spotted sedges in the trees, but even though it was a blue winged olive kind of day, no hatches besides midges made the fish take notice. Even then, it was the chubs rising to midges in the backwaters, not trout chasing sedges and mayflies in the riffles.
|My one for the year.|
I fished right near the bridge for the first 30 minutes just to give the other guy some time to fish a stretch above me before I hopscotched him for my favorite hole. There were two big palominos in this hole, so I decided to add a goldfish to my bucket list this year. I average about one per season, so I met my quota. He didn’t even realize he was caught until his second effort, which gave me a bit of a battle as he fled from the net on the first pass. I also caught a bunch of chubs and one very nice rainbow here before moving on to better water. Again today, I was using my 10 foot 5 weight, which made me a little over-gunned for a small creek, but I tangled with about 10 fish, so it didn’t hamper my day, and it may pay dividends later in the month.
|Pretty fish, war wounds and all.|
A couple of the browns I caught today, if not for some tell-tale signs like bad (or no) fins or merged, oddly geometric spots, looked nearly wild with good colors, even parr-ish marks. The jury is still out on one of them. When I got to my honey hole around noon, I may have tangled with either a large rainbow or a wild brown based on the quality of the short fight that I lost, but otherwise, it just produced a few very nice rainbows in great shape.
|He thought he was wild, at least.|
I started out with a jigged Frenchie anchor and a caddis pupa as my dropper, and I caught a few fish this way, but with all the midges around, I switched to the rig that worked so well on Tuesday, two midges on droppers with a split shot anchor, a basic drop shot rig. When fish weren’t actively feeding in the riffles above my favorite hole, I dropped back into the deep water and dredged up at least three fish on this rig and got bounced one other time.
|He's been around a while, though likely not since hatching...|
The water was still stained enough that the other fly guy had moved fish on a streamer on his way back to the parking spots, but I resisted the urge on the way back down myself. It was humid and buggy, though not the right kind, and I had caught some fish, maybe 7 or 8, so I was ready to make a bee line for the Subaru and get some rest at home before high-fiving the boy and my mom and heading for class. This was not an exceptional afternoon, but it was still a solid outing pretty close to home.
|Skinny but colorful one.|
|Colorful, pale bow to end the afternoon.|