SAO Pages

Monday, March 30, 2009

Amidst the Maddening Crowd

After hearing good reports from a certain large river all week, we headed out ultra early Saturday morning. Head lamps on, we humped it down the hill to a favorite run to set up shop for an early morning session of swinging flies.

Water color was as good as it ever gets, flow slightly low but still plenty good for swinging. Optimism running high, we stepped into the head of the run and let one fly. And then another one, and another one and another one all the way down the run. Nothing. Fly change, then starting all over again. Nothing. One more fly change, and another run through. Nothing.

The run looked so good, so promising, and so totally to ourselves it was hard to believe we didn't get so much as a bump. This was starting to feel like real steelhead fishing and not the bobbicator massacre we've become accustomed to.

We quickly reeled up and headed downstream where we found a few fish and a few more anglers as well. With the 2 handers laying big goose eggs, the short rods and floats yet again proved their effectiveness for catching finicky fish.

After a while and a very short burst of activity, we decided to join the rest of the Saturday angling hoohurah and see if we couldn't find a few fish further upstream.

40 minutes of hiking and a few stream crossings finally bought us a little solitude. Although for most of the day there was more angler migration up and down the bank than steelhead.

Fortunately, these guys could fish. I mean they could "get it done". 40 foot casts and sweet extended dead drifts to water beyond the average angler's reach started to pay off with a slow but steady number of hook ups. Unfortunately, most of the fish hooked had been in the river for a quite a while, i.e. "dirty fish" due to their grey bellies. A few hot fresher fish made their appearance as well, but no super charged chrome came to the net.


AJ with a fresher hen.

When faced with the madding crowd what can you do? Smile and shrug it off... hell no. Walk farther, fish harder, and cast longer. In short, just get it done. Thanks Jeff and AJ, you're my kind of anglers.

Will Turek

SAO Steelhead Guide

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