4-09-05 - Jim Breaks in the Forester!
Waters Fished: Pike River, Oak Creek, Root River
Fish Caught: 1 personally
Outing Date: 4-09-05
Weather: Beautiful, Sunny
Air Temp: 60s?
Water Temp: Pike - 48F. Oak Creek - 54F. Root - 53F
Water Level: Pike - 40 CFS and falling, Root - 290 CFS and falling,
Oak - 20 CFS and falling
Water Color: Pike - Visibility 1',
Fish Species: Steelhead
Pattern Fished: Egg Patterns
Pattern Color: You name it.
Fishing Quality: Excellent
You may remember my fellow Smokin' Tahoe teammate
and co-founder, Jim K. Well, work has been kickin' his butt this
year, and I don't think he had made it out yet to fish!
That all changed on this particular Saturday. Jim
picked up one of the used Pennington Bamboo Rods I had for sale,
specifically the 7' 6/7wt. Forester that I had used to hook into
a brown a couple months back. I had a Hardy Reel I had picked up
for these rods, and well, Jim now has that Princess on the Forester.
It's a CLASSIC combo.
Jim got out long before I did (in relative terms)
and by the time I had arrived at the Pike, he already had 2 fish
under his belt with this 20 year veteran rod. If that's not a compliment
to Jim and the rod, I don't know what could be. I was itchin' for
a pic of Jim with a fish and the rod, but it turned out to be my
turn first when I connected with an average steelie, still chrome!
It was looking pretty bleak for a while, but Jim
stuck with it, putting several flies into the trees with daring
casts. He was convinced there were some steelhead holding in the
deeper slot oposite us.
Well, his hunch definitely panned out with a HUGE
hookup. Bamboo rods don't have nearly the backbone that a graphite
rod sports, so this fish took a bit of time to bring in. Technically,
Jim was *almost* undergunned.
There was NO WAY this fish was gonna get away...Jim
took his time and the effort paid off with a fat, chrome hen on
the bamboo. Turns out that she was a Kamloops Strain (Looper)! That's
3 for Jim!
We had pretty much fished out this spot...the steelhead
that hadn't moved up or down were nervous and skittish. Jim and
I moved upstream to water that he hadn't fished before.
Well, the sucker bite was great...probably the
perfect size fish for Jim's new rod. There simply weren't any steelhead
around though. What next? How about Oak Creek?
When we arrived, it was apparent that we were way
too late. Kids were EVERYWHERE, snagging suckers, running through
the creeks, in general just making a mess of the stream. I attribute
this to the "Kids Fishing Derby" that was being held directly
upstream on the Oak Creek Mill Pond. Jim saw this and said "I've
had a great day, I'm done". Who can blame him?!
Meanwhile, I was curious to see what I'd find.
Walking downstream to get away from the madness I saw a few fresh
redds but for the most part, SUCKERS were everywhere. I did manage
a few fair suckers from a deep bend, but for the most part, this
wasn't how I wanted to spend my day. I already had steel under my
belt, so I wasn't THAT hard up. Why not check on the Root?
Well, while it wasn't quite the zoo it can be,
it was rather crowded. Upper Quarry had 30+ anglers desperately
trying for steel in mid afternoon...hardly "ideal" conditions.
I sat and watched for a half hour and saw no one hook up with anything
other than a sucker.
As Renee and I sat on the Porch at Lake Como we
witnessed a great sunset. Kinda reminded me that after seeing everything
I saw today...I should already be IN BED!