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Monday, June 2, 2008

Willing to Work for trout!!

So the steelhead have returned to our toy ocean we call Lake Erie. Ahead is a summer of gorging and growing and getting ready to return to us this fall even bigger and badder than last. As sorry as we are to say goodbye until next autumn , there is certainly no reason to put away the fly rods. Fortunately for us , our region has many great opportunities to chase beautiful fish while exercising the "art of the fly".

Thus it was that an early morning in late May found us happily on our way to check out a local cold water fishery. Granted , there was a border to cross, but at under an hour and a half from my door it isn't all that different from a day chasing steelies somewhere on the "alley". There was one big difference though. As a steelheader , it was downright therapeutic to fly in the face of that odd , enduring association we have between the fly rod and the pain of the elements. On this day in May we are actually concerned with being too hot!

When we arrived we found the stream a bit on the low side and running quite clear. Trout were visible holding and feeding sub surface, so ,much like a day with our favorite chrome fish ,we began by nymphing. It was just a short time before we began to bring some beautiful rainbows out of the water in tremendous leaps that slapped the surface and shattered the silence of the early morning. Baetis nymphs in sizes 14 and 16 as well as Prince nymphs , Copper Johns and Caddis nymphs in similar sizes did the trick through the morning as we brought numerous fish to the hand.

By later morning we began to notice the fish beginning to take advantage of the hatch and we were able to follow the surface feeding and successfully present some Wulffs for the added thrilling dimension of the trout on the dry fly. All in all it was a tremendous day replete with sunshine , the smell and the sparkle of a fresh cold stream and good friends. Steelhead or no, it is good to be a fly angler in Northeast Ohio.

Tight lines
John Clouser
SAO Fly Fishing guide

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