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7-19-03 - First things first; the dike or dam or whatever you want to call it that keeps water IN the pond has broken not once but TWICE in the last couple weeks. The pond's level has been fluctuating; since there is no surface runoff the pond is getting awfully SCUZZY on top.
My pet brookie that lives in the Springhouse! Look'll find him!
WOW, a nice PS Brookie. A fish like that means it is now OK to leave...that's probably all you're going to get!
Another shot of Brookie #2! This is a Paradise Spring's Trophy! Time to have a replica made (at least it'd be cheap...that brookie can't be more than 10")
Alex J. shot this - a good guide for scale of a "Trophy" brookie at Paradise. Look at that friggin color!
Mark S., a WFF member - on his second trip to PS this is his first trout ever taken here. About a 16-17" brown - boy is he SPOILED! :) I hope he doesn't expect these ALL THE TIME now - I think the look on his face says he knows this is a GIFT FISH!
What? A third fish?! Nice Brown, new all time high record for me at Paradise Springs!
OK, this is an unreal day. #4. MONSTER brown. I was shouting like a baby for help when I got this one from the pier; fortunately Mark was nearby, provided a netting and shot this pic for me! THANKS MARK!
all right, according to the calculations this is about a 16" brown! NICE!
#5!?!?!? - OK, I cut myself off. If I went much higher I won't EVER have hope of breaking THIS record!


Waters Fished: Paradise Springs
Fish Caught: 5/9
Outing Date: 7-19-03
Weather: Clear + Sunny
Air Temp: about 80F
Water Temp: cold as always, around 60F
Water Level: Down 2 feet +
Water Color: Clear but the surface is completely scummed up.
Fish Species: Brown Trout, Brook Trout
Pattern Fished: Griffith's Gnat
Pattern Color: Refer to the pattern
Fishing Quality: UNREAL! This day was a gift from GOD!

OK, how much can I really say about Paradise Springs that I haven't already said. It is "TROUT HELL", the trout are ultra smart. Met Mark S. today; he referred to them as "Trout with PHD's!"

So how many times have I gone to Paradise Springs? According to my records 7 times before this outing. How many times have I been skunked in those 7? Try 4! What was my all time HIGH for spending the majority of a day there? 2 FISH. How many people get skunked here? LOTS! How often? More often than not!

So this was a FREAK DAY! In the last two weeks the water level has been all over the place due to the dam/dike/retention wall thingy having problems HOLDING WATER! They've fixed it once, almost got it back to normal, and then it broke again. I met the guy who's in charge of it today...he actually thinks there's a leak where the old generator used to be (there actually was a HOTEL here at one point in history).

The only thing I can say that I did any differently was that I got to fishing other areas of the pond that are normally less accessible; since the water is lower a lot of the holding structure (including some now clearly visible fish cribs) are all exposed. Perhaps it has caused the fish to be more concentrated. Or perhaps the reduced surface area and bottom area of the pond has caused a shift in the amount of available food? Whatever the reason, the fish were just more willing to bite than I've ever seen them.

Granted, I came prepared. Being my 8th trip I knew what I had to do to get even one bite. Always running 7x, always going super small. That's all I'll say. The fish are ultra smart, very have to be GOOD to get fish here. I have come to claim that Paradise Springs is arguably one of the most challenging trout fisheries in the state of Wisconsin, especially because it deceptively appears to be EASY.

Mark S. was a new acquaintance Alex and I made at the springs today; he got to take advantage of the killer bite today; I think in total he landed 6. Of course his first was his largest, a photo-op brown probably 16" or so. I told him that was nothing, wait till you see a brookie. When he landed one well...phrases like "Crikey" and "Fire Engine Read" and such could be heard from across the pond!

Yeah, so Paradise Springs Brookies are simply gorgeous. Of special note, the second one I landed almost didn't recover; while trying to revive I noticed his gills were entirely INFESTED with Gill Flukes. They were everywhere. Fish like that in aquariums are basically DEAD. I don't know how he managed to survive as long as he did with that infestation; he didn't seem to fully recover so alas that may be one fish that was really better off NOT being released. Unfortunately I'm NOT a Game Warden nor a DNR Biologist so that sick fish had to go back in the water. Not much I could do.

So basically 2 brookies and 3 browns for the day. Missed several hits in there, a total of 5/9 but there were possibly 3 more hits that I'm not counting..not 100% they were fish hits. Alex actually did well too, landing one in the brief time he fished.

That's pretty much all I can say about the fishing today. Got there around 1:00, left around 5:30, so only 4.5 hours of fishing to get 5 fish. UNREAL GIFT FROM GOD type of day. I actually cut myself off when I flubbed a cast...5 is enough of a record that it's going to be tough to beat but I MAY be able to do it...if I had gone to like 10...well...forget it!

Some other tidbits; I do know of one poacher being called in...hope he got a huge ticket. When I arrived today there were also 3 other anglers out but they soon gave up...was happy to see them all on the FLY...I can share the waters here with fly guys ANYTIME. Or at least be using artificials like the regs stipulate!

Well, enjoy the pics...the continue on down below for quite a while!


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