And again, I will say that I love Fall fishing! Michelle was itching to hook up with some big fish, and I was itching to get onto the river with some decent weather overhead. There's nothing quite like fishing for 6 days in some of the worst weather (Wyoming trip) that will leave you wanting a calm, sunny blue day.
Two weekends in a row Michelle and I found such days ... and we capitalized! I think for this blog, I'll just let the photos do the talking. If you've read my previous posts on the Taylor C & R there's not much more I can say. Tough, big fish, small tippet and a lot of loss. But every once-in-a-while you strike it rich and the winds are calm(er)(they never really stop), the sun is overhead, the fish are in spotting lies and moving pretty well for nymphs.
Day one produced a solid 10 fish, one of which was a 24" brown that Michelle lipped, had on for 3 seconds, and then pulled right out. She later redeemed herself with this rainbow that had some pretty serious "chunk" to it.
I caught a good number of fish, and near the end of the day spotted a "long as your leg" rainbow. I fished to him for a solid 45 minutes, changing out patterns constantly, and I think I hooked him one time, but it was so short I can't even be sure.
The next weekend brought the same fortune, but with even BETTER weather! We ended up getting out a little late in the day, but things were so good that even Michelle wanted to stay past sundown, so we fished until the light was so low that we could barely see the indicator.
It was near the end of the day when I hooked THE PLANET. Yes, that's right, THE PLANET. I've never dubbed a fish such a term before, but then again, I've never hooked a fish that size.
The light was fairly low, but we were up in some flats where the water was only 18" deep. I had a slight section of water that there was no glare on, and that's when I saw him turn a little bit. It was all I needed to see to know that I would need to spend some time fishing to that fish. It was such a large fish and in such a perfect lie. I was able to fish to him with my favorite rig (baetis, micro split shot and a micro indicator).
After 20 or so well placed drifts my indicator slowed ... my heart stopped ... and he took off. His first action was to surface (?#@? I'm not sure how to describe it, but he was too large to jump, so it was more like a submarine surfacing where the bow of the ship comes out of the water, but the tail of the craft is too weighty to allow it to come completely out of the water). It was at that moment that we realized he was not only 32" but as round as they come. I'm confident he was at least 20 lbs+
After surviving two quick runs he was just hanging out, no doubt regaining his strength, when ... nothing. No fast run, no jump, nothing. My line just went slack. I thought for sure the flies had pulled out because there was no reason for me to not have the fish on anymore, but he was gone and so were my flies. Must have had a knick in the line that finally gave way. It wasn't even that a knot had pulled out.
Another day ...