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8-5-03 - Bart got out there first, at least 30 minutes before I arrived. Hadn't seen anything yet.
A nice shot of Horlick, you can clearly see the Day's Inn which is built right up against the dam.
WOWZA, Bob hooks up big time...it's huge...a tree fish, 43' ;) My tree fish was only 27' :(
Look at that, upper Quarry, totally tree lined and gorgeous. I could spend a day just walking down the river.

8-05-03 - The Root is goreous in the summer!

Waters Fished: Root River, Lake Michigan (Kenosha Harbor)
Fish Caught: 0
Outing Date: 8-05-03
Weather: Cloudy
Air Temp: around 80F
Water Temp: Root - > felt about 70F, Lake Michigan in the 60's
Water Level: 180 cfs on the Root, normal on Lake Michigan
Water Color: Root -> Muddy, 6" max vis., Lake Michigan usual blue..kinda murky
Fish Species: Rainbow Trout, Chinook Salmon, Brown Trout
Pattern Fished: Whitlock Hare Sculpin (Purple)
Pattern Color: Purple & White
Fishing Quality: You mean there's actually fish???

It's been raining over the entire weekend, and now the Root River has jumped from a flow of 10 cfs to 180! Oak Creek had a nice little jump too, but nothing like the Root. Skaminia have been in Indiana for a month now, Racine's should at least be in the harbors right? Reports pointed out that Chinooks were staged outside of the harbor, and that with the recent jump in flow a few early salmon were spotted in the Root!

Now I'm not going to argue about rumors or my idiocy, you and I both know that after a long season of warm unfishable waters you'll take any excuse to hit the rivers, and a bit of rain and some info was all it took to get Bart, Bob (Gumbo) and myself out to the Root after Tuesday's work. I admit now the reports coming in weren't anything like "there's a huge pod of salmon / steelhead at XYZ", more like "Hey, I saw A SALMON", but at least it's from someone who actually KNOWS what a salmon looks like! So three guys chasing a handful of fish that could be anywhere in a 5 mile river...of course the odds were against us ;)

The Battle Plan was simple, meet at Horlick and work down. Bart got there first and amply covered the Dam area. Bob and I got there a bit later, and started working downstream in the "juicy" holes. Man, what fun! Me and two of my favorite fishin' buddies had the Root all to ourselves.

Things went pretty slow, occasional snags on the bottom, Gumbo and I traded rods for a bit so he could check out the new 9' 6" that Justin at Alaskan Rod Crafters had built for me. All the while we didn't sight anything, although it would have been VERY EASY for a fish to disappear into the YOOHOO colored water.

Well below the bridge I sighted my first "something", a tail and dorsal fin briefly broke the surface. I didn't move from that spot..it was a nice pool with shallow riffles above and below...if the fish left the pool we'd know. Bart showed up and I called him down...and then I saw a large golden fish surface at the back of the pool? On that one, I'd have to say it was either a Brown, Carp, or MUSKRAT ;)

So Bart didn't believe there was anything there are first, until he saw something break the surface too. I spotted another break, and then a practically full-boddied LIFT out of the water...I'm pretty sure it was a Chinook but it all happened so fast.

Bob showed up and now there were three of us working the pool. We'd either hook up or spend the last bit of light trying. We went the later route (aka. "trying" but not "hooking"). Clearer water is all we really would have needed to know what was up.

At dusk we decided to try to hit Racine Harbor, but after 30 minutes of driving around through town (Bob describes it as a warzone 'cause it's all TORN UP) we gave up; Bob called it a night and Bart & I headed to Kenosha Harbor. Meanwhile FAT had been out on the boat and limited in just a few hours!

Bart's Dad had been at Kenosha Harbor and landed a nice 8 lb brown! Another gentleman had 5 Rainbows all strung up, all 12-15" or so. It was about 9:30 and I wasn't screwing around; Bart handed me a spinning rod + spoon and we cast. We cast all the way up until after midnight, at which point we were both pretty tired; no one had caught anything while we were there!

So overall, a fun, if not very productive outing. This is a good time to start scouting about 'cause the rivers are just gorgeous right now!

  MP 

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