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4-15-03 - Upstream at Horlick, anglers were concentrating immediately below the dam.
Chromeseeker does it again, consistently outfishing me even though we do exactly the same thing ;)


Rivers Fished: Root River
Fish Caught: 1 (not by me)
Outing Date: 4-15-03
Weather: Partly Cloudy
Air Temp: 70's
Water Temp: 54F
Water Level: Root - about 100 cfs
Water Color: Root River -> green and cloudy
Fish Species: Steelhead & Suckers
Pattern Fished: Estaz Egg in Green and Orange, Double Egg & Sperm Fly, MP's Black Laced Spey (in Green), white marabou spey, Krystal Egg Sucking Leach
Pattern Color: varied
Fishing Quality: Fair

Talk about sprint fishing; got off of work at 5:20 pm and made a mad dash for WI! On my way up I gave Chromeseeker a quick call...guess what? He was on his way to WI too! Well, he was only 20 minutes ahead of me on the expressway. We BOTH got trapped in bad traffic due to a jackknifed semi!

Talk about a long drive?! In that amount of time I was able to talk to Gumbo, who had been out earlier in the day, and a few more calls back and forth between CS and myself. We decided to split up and fish different sections of the river to maximize our potential. The WDNR Root River Weir Report stated that 833 steelhead were now upstream of Lincoln Park.

Chromeseeker took downstream of the weir at Lincoln Park, and I originally planned to fish Quarry Park. But upon arriving, I realized that they closed the park at sunset, which was 7:32 pm...and I would be STUCK INSIDE!!! SO I had to make the call..I went to Horlick Dam.

Let me tell you now that I have never gotten suited up so fast! Arrived at 7:15 and less than 2 minutes later I was in the water. I would literally have only 45 minutes of legal fishing time! Took a couple casts to cover my entryway and then walked in; the water was FRIGGIN HOT at 54F! 4 or 5 anglers were working the area immediately below the dam...rather than crowd them in I started working my way downstream.

Upon entering the area under the bridge, I started to notice fish slapping the surface. At first I thought it was only one fish, but then 2 or 3 would go almost simultaneously in different areas, so I had indeed found a pod! I tried numerous offerings, but was constantly snagging up and having to retie. I slowly and methodically covered every inch of water underneath the bridge, taking one step downstream occasionally.

By the time I got to just about the downstream end of the bridge, I got my hit on a Double Egg & Sperm Fly (tied by Apidose Flytying ). Just a brief hookup that was off almost as quickly as it started. But it was enough to get my blood pumping. I had briefly talked to Chromseeker who was going to come up to the dam, but I hadn't seen him.

At 7:54 I got a call from CS; he had just landed a fish! As he put it "I got him just below the dam...come up here!", I go sloshing upstream quickly, as I only had 8 minutes left to fish! I can't see CS anywhere, and I don't have time to go looking for him. I worked the area just below the first riffles at the dam..and hooked up with a LARGE ROCK! I have to say though, I was trembling with the adrenaline rush...took a minute to figure out this one was a snag 'cause the rod was throbbing and pumping and quivering....once I realized that was 'cause my HANDS were trembling in excitement I took a deep breath, regained concentration and deduced that I was just snagged up again.

I literally walked out at 8:02 PM and headed downstream to see CS. Turns out the "dam" he was referring to was the weir in Lincoln Park! Got to see his gorgeous semi-silver fish! A pretty nice-sized male, I'm guessing about 8 lbs (had a HUGE belly). CS got his steelie on a small double egg pattern as well. He had also had fun playing with the suckers that were EVERYWHERE in Lincoln.

After some chatting and such, we headed back. I knew this was going to be one of those days that I would kick myself for NOT getting out...45 minutes wasn't enough but it helped tide me over for this Friday's outing with Gumbo & Tadpole! It's called "Good Friday"....maybe that will be an indication of things to come...!


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