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10-03-04 - About what I expected for the number of folks to find at the falls on a Sunday afternoon.

This unexpected, surprise smallmouth hit a big baby blue egg!

End of legal fishin' time over the Milwaukee...many folks apparently do not understand that regulation.

10-03-04 - More snaggers than salmon?

Waters Fished: Milwaukee River
Fish Caught: 0/8 fair on salmon + 5 foul + 2 unknown + 1 SMALLMOUTH BASS!
Outing Date: 10-03-04
Weather: Beautiful
Air Temp: 60's.
Water Temp: N/A
Water Level: About 150 CFS
Water Color: cloudy, maybe 1-2' vis.
Fish Species: Chinook Salmon, Smallmouth Bass
Pattern Fished: EGGS EGGS EGGS
Pattern Color: Blue produced the bass; most salmon hit red or chartreuse
Fishing Quality: Good

I can make this one real short and sweet. I SLEPT IN. I NEEDED IT ;)

I got out the door probably around 2:00 PM, on the water at Estabrook around 3:00 or so. Fish weren't readily apparent at first...hooking up with a fair fish deep in the confluence of two flows convinced me that I was gonna have an OK day.

Actually, I had a good day except the fact that I couldn't keep my FAIRS or my FOULS hooked up. In fact, the only thing I landed was a SMALLMOUTH, which came from a current seam in more or less riffle water.

As darkness approached, the fish came up from the depths and started trying to jump the falls. Not only did the fish make their appearance, but the snaggers did too.

First there was the guy who literally "snuggled up next to me" and started casting SPOONS in the RIFFLES and across into the pool. How he didn't snag my line is a mystery. How I didn't NAIL HIM on a backcast (he was literally standing in my downstream casting lane) is ALL restrained skill. I know I put more than a few inches from his face. OH how I would've liked to actually drive one home; sure you can call me a snagger snagger if I ever do. Slowly this guy edged me out of the very drift I had been trying to fish. The guys who had been a respectful distance to my left kinda gave me the look like "what's this guy on????!"

Granted, this guy didn't land a thing, only hooked one, and here I am legitly fishin' the flies and totally hooking up on a regular basis. Personally, I LIKE those days, when the guys out with their huge hardware can't even get the "illegal bite" and you're right next to them, every so often a fish rising from the deep violently thrashing it's head and throwing the #10 egg hook.

OK, the worst snaggers for the day were the folks who didn't even have waders and literally stood at the edge of the falls. I think it was pretty close to the end of legal fishi'n time, if not in fact the end. I had put my rod "away" (flies affixed to the hookkeeper). There sits a hen, pushed up against the base of the rocks, her dorsal clearly out of the water and literally at the feet of these "anglers". I turn my head, take a couple pictures, and then turn back. There is now a female salmon on the shore, this guy standing on it's head to hold it down...a spoon is removed from the dorsal fin, the guy BASHES IT over the head with a fist sized rock and then throws it into a 5 gallon bucket which is laying down on the rocks.

All I can say was that it was after 7:00 PM when I left Estabrook; there were still PLENTY of folks fishin' down there. Oh and yes, it' is a rant, 'cause if I hadn't dropped my cell phone netting Renee's first king yesterday it would've worked, but even THAT wouldn't have done me any good because the DNR TIPLINE (800-TIP-WDNR I think) doesn't accept OUT OF STATE CALLS!

Man, I'd rather fish more crowded waters with a bunch of ethical anglers than fish with only one other guy on the water IF that guy is snaggin.


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