Monday, March 14, 2011

2011: Operation First Fish

Mother nature decided to ruin my plans for the past weekend, a trip planned in all details for the past month an a half. Well, except one detail, that was uncontrollable: the flooding power of a 2 day heavy rain in early spring, that raised the water levels up to 4 times fishable values on the main river and pushed the tributaries out of their banks.

So what do I do with a 4 day weekend? At least one day had to be dedicated to the reason I took the days off. My attention turned to one of the small creeks that I wanted to fish for a while, let's call it... T River to avoid spot burning. Its flow and water temperature remain almost constant over the whole year and the C&R section, although very short, offer some protection to fish, despite heavy fishing pressure.

After 2.5 hours of driving, accompanied by Bob and Bob, here we are on the trail going along the river, heading to the only pool holding fish, according to other flyfishermen met on our way.

But my eyes are still used to spotting grayling in Romanian rivers. I soon discover there are fish out of the famous pool, they were just doing and excellent job camouflaging themselves along the structures on the bottom.

Another myth: Fish are only feeding on ridiculously small flies: size 24 up to 32. The guy we met in the parking lot showed us some of the flies that worked for him: tiny midges. The smallest flies I have are 18s and they looked like elephants next to those. After trying on a bunch of light and heavy flies I put on an unweighted nymph tied on a size 16 hook, and that was the firs one to draw some attention from the fish. Luckily the water was pretty shallow and the fly was getting right where I wanted it. A little bit of work and soon the results started to show: 5 rainbows and one brook trout did not resist their curiosity (or hunger).

One of them made me understand why were they seemed to be chasing each other: he threw up a bunch of squished eggs while I was reeling him in. I guess they already started to spawn, despite the shelf of ice still visible is some places. The water temperature was around 40 degrees Fahrenheit, according to Bobby's thermometer. Bottom release water was responsible for this because the water in a brook nearby was only 35 degrees.

Overall it was a nice outing, good fishing, good weather, good company, perfect way to start my season.