7-15-04 - The Devils went down to Georg...er...Arkansas!
Waters Fished: Sangchris Lake
Fish Caught: 0/1
Outing Date: 7-15-04
Air Temp: around 80F
Water Temp: didn't take them
Water Level: who knows!
Water Color: Murky, maybe 1 foot
Fish Species: Um..bullheads?
Pattern Fished: Chicago Leech
Pattern Color: Black Leach,
Fishing Quality: Got the skunk OUTTA the way for the weekend!
So the work day starts like any other Thursday...come in, check the email, handle any issues that have come up. Well, turns out basically I'm leaving so early that all I'll have time to do is the weekly water change on the aquarium!
While arm deep in dirty fish water I get an email from Rich...he won't be able to leave his office until 3:00 PM, which actually works out fine as I'll have PLENTY of time to get over there. 2:00 rolls around and MP is just a close memory to his office mates!
Chicago Traffic sucks...it's probably 2:30 by the time I'm 1/2 way to O'Hare from my office...normally about an 8 minute distance. Somehow, don't ask how, I made it over to FAT's office by 3:00 PM. We grab what we need out of the Bitchin' Camaro, toss it into the Bronco (of despair) and get on the road. If we forgot it, we'll bum it or buy it.
The trip starts off with a little MP selection - "Drivin' South" by the Stone Roses. After that Rich threw something in...a mix of stuff that started out with Kid Rock and then the Ramones and then all of a sudden COUNTRY?! Well, actually I worked in a store a long time ago where we tuned into Country for 6 months straight, so I can dig it. FAT breaks out the Mojo from the kids...we wanted good luck goin' down so FAT's youngest little-fatman, Duke, contributed the Great White Shark of Mojo. Sometime this weekend we're supposed to figure out how to affix it to the driftboat permanently.
Meanwhile I start to get set up for tyin' on the road. I think we need MORE Chicago Leeches...I have them in Black, Gray, Olive, and Gray-Olive (kinda tan)...FATMAN whips out the PURPLE leech yarn, aka. Purple Mohair, and well, I just have to tie some up!
So other than a bunch of tyin' it's a relatively uneventful road trip so far. Driving through Illinois on Rt. 55 is boring to say the least. Lots of country, lots of fly tyin. I'm sure you all have your own road trip games....FAT came up with a great one. Every "FAT" sign we find he'll buy another $5 in Team Ozark Chronicles raffle tickets.
Our plan, since we're meeting up with the Trout Bums, we should live like them, right? Blend in with the culture...right? So FAT already bummed BREAKFAST and LUNCH! Somehow beyond my comprehension, he actually managed to bum dinner for us both at at Hardees from two strangers (OK, maybe they weren't SOO strange....). So dinner at Hardees...and we're back on the road....the fly box is filling up....wait this IS a FISHIN' report, right?
So FAT and I figured that we needed to find SOMEPLACE, anyplace that had water and fish, we'd fish and that would be yet another day fishing in my race towards 130+ days. FAT had the Garmin GPS goin...he was watchin' the maps, looking for that body of water we'd hit.
Finally, as sunset approached, we found a big power plant cooling lake...Lake Sangchris. We got off 55 and headed east....through MILES of corn. Man it looked a lot closer on the map. When we got there, a group of folks was leaving...they had landed a couple catfish of some kind but that was pretty much it. We helped them get their car goin....having problems starting but hey...you can always push start those manuals!
Rich and I got up on the water and spread out...most looked rather shallow. Something was hatching, and something was eating whatever was hatching. Most notable though, were the many small minnows jumping out of the water. Rich thought there were Stripers (among other things) in Sangchris...I could see larger fish hitting something near the surface...maybe those jumpin' minnows?
Well I tossed and lost my first Chicago Leech (gray) and switched to black. I was stripping in close to shore off a point when I got a hard hit, followed by a turning swirl resulting in FISH OFF. DRAT! Never saw it so I don't know what it was!
Turns out Rich wasn't having good luck either. We had both been focusing our attention around the edges of the Lilypads...man it looked so promising. As the bugs came out we decided it was time to pack up and keep driving. At least we got our SKUNK out of the way in advance of the 3-day weekend!
We drove well into night...and it would turn out to be a LONG drive. I want to say we passed through St. Louis around 11:30 PM...the Arch was all lit up, traffic wasn't TOO bad. We had a long way to go before we'd get to Mountain Home in Arkansas