5-23-04 - ONE FOR TWO.
Waters Fished: South Bear Creek, MP's Secret Stream,
Pompey Pillar Creek
Fish Caught: 1/2
Outing Date: 5-23-04
Weather: Rained all night, cloudy most of the day with patches of
sun. Windy in the evening with brief sprinkles.
Air Temp: 50s in the am up to upper 60's most of the day.
Water Temp: Didn't bother
Water Level: HIGH
Water Color: MUD
Fish Species: Brown Trout, Rainbow Trout
Pattern Fished: Chicago Leech
Pattern Color: Black w/red tail
Fishing Quality: You need to be dedicated to the sport on a day
It rained all night. Nonstop. But by morning things
had cleared & Rich gave his presentation on flies while I slept...man
they were up again at like 6:00 AM!
Finally time to go fishin' by 7:30 AM....where
to go. Based on all my luck scouting, I suggested our best bet would
be the South Bear. Looking over the bridge, we could actually see
some of the aquatic vegitation...far better than the Waterloo despite
being far from ideal itself. South Bear was a GOOD CALL!
In no time, eager to catch fish, we were all on
the water. Things were still tough...I tried several locations where
I know fish normally hold and received NOTHING for my efforts.
Well it turns out it was a game of patience and
methodic canvasing. In fact, 4 people hit the same spot for a total
of 7 times before anyone turned a fish in that normally productive
tail! Often, like Stew experienced, you'd get a bite, and if you
got the same drift again, you'd get a bite again. Repeated presentations
once you found a willing biter resulted in a fish finally being
After some time it seemed like no one else was
having luck, so we split up. Rich, Bruce and Patty went down to
the confluence of North and South Bear. I took the 4 other guys
to the forest where team BLT (The Red Hats) had done so well back
at the Pet Fly Smackdown.
Initially the 4 guys got set up on the deep pool...I
opted to head downstream and fish for a bit by myself. I picked
a good spot with deep water and started working the pool...at first
I thought it was hopeless.
The answer came when I started swinging the very
tail of the pool...a resounding, unmistakeable strike got my attention
and I all but landed a nice stocker brown! Darn Barbless hooks!
Next swing, another HIT! SWEET, and this time I
thankfully got the little sucker into shore...a small wild South
Bear Brown. This would turn out to be my final hookup for the day!
As lunch approached, I went up to find my now scattered
companions...Jed had the watch so he'd tell us when it was time
to go. I found Mike working the riffles, Jim was back up on the
pool. Stew slid into the hole I was working...didn't turn anything
however. And Jed was off upstream. So I spent some time taking some
pictures, and around 1:30 we finally got back to camp.
At this point most folks ate and took off. We got
camp packed up but I wasn't ready to quit fishing just yet. Perhaps
MP's Secret Stream would turn out to be the saving grace just like
By 3:00 it was a comfortable 68F, but was again RAINING. Got to
the secret stream and at first glance it looked pretty high. Not
until I got down to the spot did I realize just HOW high....2 feet
up from it's normal level, and the vegetation showed damage another
6 feet up on the steep bank. UNREAL...MP's Secret stream had been
up EIGHT FEET.
No place to even stand to fish, and the pool was now a rapid in
it's own right. This quickly ended my hopes for another good day
on the secret stream. To top it off, there's now a tree in the pool...I'm
going to have to relearn the stream!
The drive home was much earlier in the day than
I expected...stopped at Cabela's to pick up some rod building materials
and by the time I was on the road it was still only 4:00 or so.
I ended up deciding to do some scouting around
Dodgeville...just to see what I could find. Maybe I'd get lucky
and hit a stream that was clear and full of trout?
Well, the first one I went looking for was Cave
Hollow Creek - I learned the hard way that there isn't any access.
Still looking around this little area, I went looking for Otter
Creek, or rather what I thought was Otter Creek according to the
map. In any case, I didn't find the creek I was looking for...turns
out Otter isn't going to be that hard to find the next time I go
I DID however find Pompey Pillar Creek. It was
relatively clear (although still muddy) and had been up a good few
feet, but in theory would've been fishable. The problem? No public
access...one side is clearly someone's LAWN while the other is clearly
posted. According to the WDNR Trout Streams Book there is in fact
public access, bu tI didn't find any. Looks like normally this would
be a tiny trout stream anyway.
So I wasted way too much time looking and finding
nothing...by the time I was driving back a dark front was moving
through...almost ran over a snapping turtle that was crossing the
road on the ridge....stopped to take some pictures and move her
to safety. The drive back was actually rather enjoyable, all things
considered, as the most amazing formation of clouds was all around.
Even had to stop to take a 360 panoramic of it, that's how interesting
I thought it was.
Therefore, this is going down as a pretty lame
day for fishin, having gone only 1/2, but hey, I still had fun!