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3-26-05 - Back on the Pike again. It's not like the fishin is fantastic, but we wanted to avoid the crowds!

3-26-05 - Just puttin' in the time, payin' our dues.

Waters Fished: Pike River, Root River
Fish Caught: 0/2
Outing Date: 3-26-05
Weather: Sunny
Air Temp: 50's
Water Temp: N/A
Water Level: Root 200 CFS, Pike around 40 CFS
Water Color: both somewhat cloudy, visibility 1-2'
Fish Species: Steelhead
Pattern Fished: Eggs Patterns and Spawn
Pattern Color: Threw the gamut.
Fishing Quality: Tough

Back on the Pike yet again...this time with Renee! No excuse for not getting out on a beautiful day that was averaging in the 50's - we got there somewhere between 1:00 and 2:00 PM! Right when we showed up, we ran into not 1 Ken, but 2! Both Kens were out at it again! A fish or two were hooked up with, but nothing fast and furious. Ken F., aka "The Pike Maven", suggested we take a nice long hike to a stretch where he had seen some fish earlier. It's worth a shot. After rigging up and thanking Ken F., our remaining party of 3 headed down for the long hike. Ken S. held back, letting Renee and I head deep into the forest.

Hiking upstream on the Pike.. Some great scenery can be found if you simply get away from the access points. What we'd been looking for all afternoon...steelhead!

After roughly a mile hike, having sighted nothing but occasionally finding an old, abandoned redd, I spotted movement in a tailout as we stood on the high bank. We stopped, backtracked, crossed downstream and got into position. Renee asked me to take first crack...she wanted the camera. What follows is a pretty good pictorial, all Copyright © Renee K. 2005, demonstrating the technique of stalking shallow steelies.

Keep a low profile as you move up from downstream.
(Copyright © Renee K. 2005)
Find your casting platform...get the right spot so that you're clear of the branches and can reach the fish with a roll cast.
(Copyright © Renee K. 2005)
Get the line ready...don't take your eyes off the fish...they may disappear on ya..
(Copyright © Renee K. 2005)
Size up the situation...where is the buck holding?
(Copyright © Renee K. 2005)
Starting making presentations...
(Copyright © Renee K. 2005)
Work those fish...try not to spook them!
(Copyright © Renee K. 2005)
If all goes well the proper presentation may entice an aggressive strike from the male.
(Copyright © Renee K. 2005)
So yeah, I lost the buck...we continued upstream. Suckers have made their way into the Pike.

Suffice it to say that after hooking up with and losing the buck, I was pretty bummed. We waited for a bit, but the fish didn't drop back down to the redd. So instead, we continued on upstream, mostly hiking another half mile, not really finding any signs of fish activity. Upon reaching the upper limit of where I wanted to go, we turned around and hiked back. Ken S. showed up on the opposite bank...said he had seen a few fish downstream in a bend pool but didn't manage to hook up. From what I gathered, he was calling it a day.

I sent Renee on downstream to stalk the redd...hopefully there'd be something to fish for. NOPE! We spent much of the remaining time plying the pool..I hooked up with a steelie briefly, followed by 2 suckers and a small, indeterminent fish that shook off. Renee's line took her for a ride all too briefly.

Renee is becoming quite the flyfisherwoman. It's truly fun to watch Renee fish. Can't wait for her first fly rod steelhead in WILL happen!

As things started to cool, we called it a day on the Pike and started the mile hike back to the car.

One last look at the Pike. Floating spawn on the luck this evening!
(Copyright © Renee K. 2005)

We had all the time we wanted, and I really, really didn't want to end my day 0/2, so we hit the Root. Renee broke off in a tree and wasn't really in the mood to continue so again, she took over camera duty and snapped one last beautiful shot for the day. After hours, we went to the wier just to see what was up...there was a fish or two in the holding tanks but nothing was processed.


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