6-10-06 - Iowa Family Fly School, Day 1
Waters Fished: Sugar Lake
Fish Caught: Numerous
Outing Date: 6-10-06
Air Temp: 60's
Water Temp: N/A
Water Level: Up
Water Color: Waterloo was MUDDY; South Bear was slightly stained
Fish Species: Rainbow Trout, Brown Trout
Pattern Fished: Various Beadhead Nymphs
Pattern Color: Larger Mayfly Nymphs worked best
This weekend in Iowa was definitely a special one
in my book - Pretty much Renee's entire immediate family, except
her brother who's in Oregon, came out to Iowa to learn how to fly
fish! Craig & Pat along with their newest addition (Aspen the
puppy!) came down from Northern Minnesota, while Kali came all the
way up from Bloomington, IN!
After all that driving, we didn't even *consider* an early (sunrise) start on Saturday! After a good breakfast at the Sportsmen's Motel we headed out for some casting lessons. Kali picked it up pretty quickly, and by the time we left all three new fly fishers had the basics they needed to get through a day or two on the water!
Of course, since it's right there, we headed on down to the Secret Spot on the Waterloo. We geared up, took a couple pictures and headed down to the stream. As soon as I got my first good glance at the water I turned around and started walking back up to the cars...it was completely "chocolate milk". Rain had muddied things up to the point where it wasn't worth fishing!
Plan "B" - while heading out we came across another husband & wife team of anglers thinking about the Waterloo..I suggested they follow us over to South Bear Creek.
It was a good move - the lower stretches were pretty crowded but we found a spot where we could stretch our legs. The water wasn't crystal clear, but it was pretty darn close!
Rather than simply run to the best spots, we started out right along a bluff and slowly worked our way from pool to pool and covered every little fish-holding nook and cranny along the way - you have to do that when there's five people fishing together!
I soon picked up a fish while showing Pat where she needed to cast - the first success of the morning boosted everyone's morale (aka. they weren't on the water with "no hope" of catching a fish).
Slowly everyone dispersed along this section of South Bear, each working different spots and shuffling positions on the larger pools. Craig started lagging behind, fishing a bend that definitely held fish. He came downstream a bit later eager to show off his "catch of the day". Apparently it didn't put up much of a fight.
Soon thereafter Renee pulled a nice Rainbow Trout out of one of my favorite holes on South Bear Creek. Then a rainbow trout for me...next after that came a nice little "inland golden bonefish"...aka "sucker"! Pat wasn't about to get shown up and she too, after losing a couple, got into the swing of things and landed her first trout. Renee and Kali moved downstream and I picked up another Rainbow while fishing with Pat. Soon thereafter some shouts from downstream had me running - Renee had landed another rainbow.
While walking back and forth between Pat and Craig, we heard loud shouts coming from downstream...Kali and Renee were obviously excited. I ran down to find Renee helping Kali land a fish! When I finally got up to the net, my jaw dropped. Kali had landed the kind of Iowa trout that spoils most future fish - a nice big 15"+ Wild Brown trout, all on a 7' 3wt. so I'm sure it was a fantastic battle!
Renee, Pat and I pressed onward downstream coming to another pool - a few fish were rising in the foam line. Within a few casts Pat had two hits, Renee had one, and I also had a tug. This was far too good to pass up - Pat and Renee waited while I ran upstream to get Craig (and hopefully get him on some trout).
Craig came down and of course the action had died down. I could identify two active risers so I gave Craig a dry and wished him luck. Renee moved downstream a bit, and soon Kali came back downstream and after a break made her way downstream as well. Alice finally got a rest for a change!
It was around 4:30 when Kali started shouting from the next bend downstream. We made our way through tall grass and found her with another rainbow on the end of her line! After snapping some pics, back in the water it went.
I had just made it back upstream to Craig and Pat when Kali AGAIN started hollering! So back through the tall grass I went to find Kali with ANOTHER rainbow! She tried and tried to hold it but I think she kept giving it just too much of a squeeze as it kept shooting forward out of her hands like a wet bar of soap! I finally get a grip on it long enough for a picture and got it back in the water!
Well, Kali decided that while she LOVED the fishing, she really disliked the CATCHING aspect of it! We had all had a good day and were pretty much hot, tired and hungry! As we started back to the cars, it started to rain again..perfect timing!
That evening we had Casey's Pizza and celebrated Renee's Birthday and Father's day...watch the two puppies play and just overall had a great time. It didn't let up raining even when we went to bed - at this point I was pretty sure that tomorrow would be a complete bust.