Monday, June 10, 2013

Turning 40 Brought Me Back To My Roots

Well I knew I had to guide at the end of last week for several days, and then a small change of plans came up. I had an afternoon steelhead trip (last trip of a few) that I rescheduled due to the extremely low summer steelhead counts; so that freed up an afternoon for Nikki and I to go camping. Luckily, at last glance those summer steelhead numbers have been turning around with the last few days having good fish passage. Lets hope that trend continues climbing up.
Life is feeling pretty rough right at this moment....Celebrating 40 years of good living!
My 40th birthday was this past Sunday June 9th; so I wanted to be with my favorite fishing partner in the world at my favorite old time creek. Nikki and I were headed to my favorite creek to fish and have a nice relaxing time; so a camping trip was in order, and we decided to hit the place that I basically learned how to fly fish at. It is a medium sized creek with crystal clear water, lots of frisky trout from dinky to trophy sized, and the place gets a fairly nice variety of aquatic insects that feed them. There are always some caddis, mayflies, and golden stones fluttering about, and the fish are typically looking up; so you can fish dry flies almost at any time.
Healthy creeks require healthy surroundings.......good forests = crystal clear water
Fishing was fair to good when we were there, and we saw a mixed bag of caddis with some ranging from size 14 to about size 10. Adult golden stones were doing their egg laying in the late afternoon, and there were also some pale morning duns along with a random green drake spinner here and there. We did not catch any whoppers, but we did see a totally huge rainbow slash at a dink that I was reeling in two times. Unfortunately, it seemed as if that occurrence was enough to spook the gorgeous red sided bow to not take my offering. At this place you can get a few casts into a pool before the big specimens become aware of your presence and they disappear. That is probably a good thing; since the place is open to the use of bait and retention of 5 trout per day. Somehow these nice wild native fish make it through that unfortunate pressure they should not face; especially since we came across a fish that was latched to a snarl of sticks with the mono-filament causing it to kite in the current with the bait hook lodged into its gullet. This poor trout was too deeply hooked to take the hook out, but we at least cut the line to let it swim free. You wonder why bait fishing is allowed at these pristine places....? People think they are so pristine that you can keep fish and allow bait fishing, but maybe the mentality should be to preserve these pristine places; so they can stay special. All of the hard to access spots have nice consistent fishing, and all of the "easy to get to" areas are totally fished out or tough to catch anything significant.....Hmmmmm.......Food for thought.......

Anyhow, enough ranting about bait fishers and wild trout. I wanted to share the amazing time Nikki and I had out there. Here are some pics from the camping trip Nikki and I took for my 40th birthday. It was an awesome time fishing the place where I basically learned how to fly fish, and to be there with Nikki; so we could experience it together. 
The best gift in 40 years is having the best fishing partner in the world!
Running the golden stone dry fly through a piece of pocket water
Unhooking the Rogue Foam Stone from this little rainbow
Crossing some heavy flowing pocket water....refreshing as long as your balanced...
Golden Stone Nymph spotted in the water
That was one busy beaver!
Wade in fishing requires some hiking around in sweet settings.....
Sampling out a nice pool for some feisty trout....
Columbine wildflowers were abound....
Scrappy rainbow caught in the middle of some fast pocket water on a golden stone dry
Long logs make for some nice walking through the woods
The "Honey Hole" - it was responsible for about 20 trout
Lots of nice coastal cutthroat trout exist in these smaller to medium sized creeks
The Possie Bugger works as usual on this feisty rainbow fish "dry and dropper"
Nice paint job on this little wild trout
Fly Fishing paradise and loving it!!

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