Thursday, September 2, 2010

When a 50 fish day is not

After some acceptable luck last weekend on the Willamette North Fork I decided to give it another go this weekend.  In order to mix it up I drove to the same spot I've hit the last two trips, I tried driving farther up along the forest road I have been parking on.  Unfortunately it went uphill away from the river rather than along it.  But after a few minutes of highly entertaining rally racing in the dirt I went back out to the main road and moved upstream a ways.  Finally I reached a nice big pullout and pulled over to check it out.  About fifty feet down below was a nice mix of pocket water, slowly moving stream, and riffles that looked as good or better than any other terrain I've seen on this river so far so I pulled out my gear.

With my waders on, my rod ready to go and my car locked I stumbled my way down the steep embankment to the river.  I walked downstream to a spot just below a nice section of pocket water with some deep runs and huge rocks that I figured would all hold fish.  There a few fish rising quite regularly so I tied on a baetis and midge double dry (I saw both flying around but mostly midges).  I got some action almost immediately but I could tell the fish were small because most of them completely missed the fly.  Not to mention some of them would jump up out of the water doing so.  But a fish is a fish at the beginning of any day so I was happy to have some instant action.  If only I could can that and carry it with me or sell it.

I continued to have success in that section of water.  It didn't really matter, in fact was quite amusing, that half the fish I caught I yanked out of the water with what I thought was a gentle hook-set.  There was little fight, but lots of fun.  I moved up from hole to hole and the moving was very very slow, which is unlike me. There were just too many sardines to pull out of the water.

In fact I fished one particular run, which was actually three separate runs and a couple deep holes behind some huge boulders, for the better part of an hour or two.  I did manage to pull one nice fish out of the area, the only reasonable fish of the day.

All in all I would estimate that I had 40 fish in hand and yanked well over 50 out of the water.  Some came off the hook after being thrown 30 feet behind me on the hook set, and some wiggled off as I pulled them up out of the water.  I know some people say you have to touch the fish to count it, but if it's small I count it if I have it up out of the water wriggling in front of me.  Then again I don't usually count.

What I do know is that a 50 fish day is not always a 50 fish day.  Like when some of them are this big....

1 comment:

  1. Found all the good water in Oregon yet?

    I'm dropping you a link in my blog roll right now.