"Sometimes, you just need to go downstairs and waggle a rod..." - Scott Hanson

"Write what you know. If you don't know, make it up..." - Scott Hanson

Monday, October 3, 2016

Last Day of the Season

Technically speaking, it wasn't the actual last day of the trout season, because the state of Wisconsin extended the season to October 15th this year, for the first time ever. But, when I asked for the day off from work on September 30th, I had forgotten that fact, and still thought the last day of September was the closing date of the season. Since I probably won't take another day off to fish before October 15th, I'll just say that it was the last day of the season, even though it really wasn't. Did you follow all that? Because now I feel more confused than I usually do...

So, I went trout fishing on Friday. My original plan was to explore a new little creek that I had recently learned about, and if that didn't pan out, I was going to explore another new, bigger creek that I had recently learned about. I started on the little creek, which looked awesome and fishy, but after about a half hour of exploring with very little action, I came to the conclusion that I wasn't really in the mood to spend the last day of the season doing so much exploring and so little catching, so I packed up my stuff and drove to my favorite trout stream in the world, where I can usually catch at least a few fish, and no tedious exploration is required.

My favorite stream.
When I got to my favorite place, I noticed the water was still a tiny bit high and off-color from some recent rains we had gotten, so I tied on one of my Mushroom and Swiss Buggers, looking for some big hungry trout. Instead I found a handful of smallish, hungry trout, so after I worked my way downstream a fair way, I tied on the biggest nymph I had with me, a size 10 CDC-Enhanced Rubber Leg Prince Nymph, turned around and headed back upstream, to see what I could do.

Mushroom & Swiss Bugger
CDC-Enhanced Rubber Leg Prince Nymph
My first cast hooked a small brown, and my third cast hooked a slightly larger one. Seemed like I was on to something with my fly selection, which doesn't always seem to be the case. I proceeded to go up and down the river, hooking dozens of fish, and landing many of them. I was able to perform beautiful and yet completely disheartening LDRs (Long Distance Releases) on the three largest fish of the day, but I did manage to land one brown over 12 inches, plus about 4 dozen in the Under 12" category. The biggest one that I LDR'd swam around menacingly like a log with fins for a few seconds before the tippet snapped. What an excruciatingly wonderful way to end the 2016 season, wouldn't you say? Can't wait til next year!
Brown trout, ready to head back home.

Gear Used: I had recently gotten a new-to-me Garcia Americana Beaver Kill model 7-foot 5/6 wt fiberglass fly rod. It is one of the few vintage glass rods that Garcia made with a glass ferrule. Most of their glass rods had metal ferrules of one kind or another. I paired it with my Lamson Konic 1.5 reel with an S.A. 5wt WF line. The whole set-up performed flawlessly all day. what a sweet casting rod! At the end of the day I brought out my old Heddon Black Beauty 7.5' 6wt glass rod, pairing it with my Cabela's WLX 4.5 reel and some no-name 6WT DT line I have. This, too, worked very well. Love my old glass rods!

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