Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Local stream

With an hour to kill before meeting up with my daughter, I grabbed my rod and went to a small local stream that has wild brookies and browns.  If it weren't for the highway, specifically a tunnel the stream has to flow through, this stream may well have been a candidate for sea-run brookies and browns.  Once again the parachute Adams proved to be highly effective, snookering the beautiful brookie pictured below.  The stream runs tea-colored and it is reflected in the fish's coloration.  The small brown fell for a tan Usual.  I had another good-sized fish on, but lost it while trying to position myself to bring it to hand.  Next time maybe.

24 hours later, another nice brookie and it's pool.  This one fell for a sunken dun-colored Usual as I was drawing it upstream to recast. 

Monday, April 29, 2013

New blue line

Many weeks ago I identified a small stream that looked worthy of fishing.  I scouted the stream three times, once by myself, once with my wife in the snow and once with my daughter after the majority of the snow had melted.  While I saw only a couple of fish, I was hopeful that when the spring arrived the stream would prove to be the home of wild brookies or browns.  Today, after way too many weeks of waiting for my non-Class 1 season to begin, I finally fished the stream.  The first few hundred feet of the stream provided limited evidence of any inhabitants.  While initially discouraged, I moved farther upstream and was rewarded with a nice brookie in one of the stream's first impressive pools (first fish pictured below).  Upstream from this pool I was treated to numerous strikes on both wet and dry flies.  It took a while to settle in on the pattern that seemed to be the most irresistible, a size 16 parachute Adams.  While the fish were not big (the first being the biggest of the day), they were plentiful enough to keep me hiking deeper and deeper into the woods.  It will be interesting to see if there are a few larger brookies lurking in the depths of the deepest pools.

Monday, April 15, 2013


I returned to the Class 1 stream today with the goal of fooling (and hopefully catching) what I believe is a nice size fish that lurks in a challenging but beautiful pool  (first picture below).  During my last visit I had the pleasure of enticing this fish to hit a wet fly three times, but each time the hook failed to do its job.  Suffice is to say that today the fish in this pool once again proved to be elusive.  On my way downstream a fish rose to a wet fly, but vanished into the depths.  Returning upstream I couldn't resist giving it one more attempt.  This time I allowed the wet fly to drift farther downstream (a few feet beyond the end of the log on the right) and as I slowly stripped it back was rewarded with a strong strike and brief tussle.  Clearly this fish is smarter than I am.  I am definitely not done with this pool.  Adding to my frustration, while I was attempting to coax this fish into striking one more time a furry creature came swimming upstream (beaver or otter) and vanished into the brush behind the large tree on the right side of the pool.  If I didn't put this fish down, then surely the hairy monster did. 

My luck was a little better in other areas of the stream. A few rainbows fell for the bead-head GRHE wet fly, obviously not wild but trout none the less.  More importantly, a few nice wild brookies and a brown came to hand after attacking both bead-head GRHE and BWO wet flies.  Seeing those gems more than made up for my bad luck with the pool above.

Walking through a field on my way upstream I spotted a large bird sitting on the ground.  As I approached it took to the air with it's prey grasped in its talons and flew to the bank at the far side of the stream.  When I say bank, I really mean the water's edge, as it literally dropped into the edge of the stream and spread its wings.  It stood on its prey in the water while I approached and then took off upstream, still grasping its meal.  What a sight.  Now I have to identify it.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Local stream

I went to a local stream this afternoon, one that is supposed to harbor wild brookies.  Since this stream flows into the sound it has been suggested that it may have salters as well.  The section I went to is in close proximity to I95 and is far from attractive.  The substrate is rock with a ton of sand, which may be somewhat evident in the first picture below.  After catching a chub on a cheapo Royal Coachman tied parachute style (that lost its hackle), I switched to the Bomber and was rewarded with a nice brookie, lying in wait just above the woody debris in the run pictured below.  I left and went to the northern side of the highway to see if there was any life in a relatively deep pool right near the road.  Three small brookies fell for the Bomber, none of which were as large as the one pictured.  It is amazing what these fish are capable of living in.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

April Class 1 visit

I went to a Class 1 stream today with BRK TRT (aka Alan) to do some rehab of my surgically repaired thumb (bone chips, spur, etc.).  While Alan is almost entirely a good influence, his purchase of a small rod and light reel recently unduly influenced me.  Not to be left out, I also purchased a small rod and light reel, in my case an L.L. Bean Streamlight Ultra 5'9" 3-wt and an Orvis BBSII, both on sale for very reasonable prices.  I had only had one opportunity to use the new stuff prior to my thumb repair so I was chomping on the bit to get out and break it in.  Although the stitches have not yet been removed, I had been instructed to work on flexing my thumb so I reasoned that gripping a fly rod may qualify.

Except for the wind, the weather was nice.  The fish, on the other hand, were not very cooperative in spite of ample evidence of insect life associated with the stream.  I was able to finally hook and land a small brown on a Hemingway caddis, thus christening the rod/reel/line.

On the way back upstream I was the recipient of Alan's very positive influence.  Based on the insects that he had observed, he suggested trying a soft-hackle pheasant tail.  I promptly tied on a bead head version and swung the fly under and along the debris at the base of the pool pictured below.  On the second attempt, after being more daring with how deep into the mess I was willing to swing it, a beautiful brown emerged from the timber and pounced on the fly.  Alan is always telling me that while the fish aren't visible, they are there.  I now believe him even more after watching the fish leave my hand and rather than dart away disappear right below me into the rocky substrate of the stream.  It found a nook that from above didn't seem possible for a fish this size to disappear in.  As they say, you learn something new every day.