Monday, June 13, 2011

Fishing the farm pond

I went to visit Randy, Bob and the kids last Friday and I was hoping to get in a little fishing.  After visiting with everyone for a bit, I drove over to my sister and brother-in-laws (all of a country mile) to try my luck at their pond.  The pond is not fished by many people so I had my hopes up.
Although the cattle have access to the pond and one has to watch were he steps, I saw no evidence of the cows entering the water. I tried a fly that I've no idea were I got it and had lots of blue gill take is as I was stripping it through the water.  The gills were biting good, so I decided that I'd go back early Saturday morning if it wasn't storming.

The next morning, the first and third casts produced bluegills.  After that I wasn't counting.  I moved over to the dam and caught more blue gill and a small bass.  Nothing very big, but lots of fun.

I worked my way around the pond and finally hit a spot were most of the strikes were bass.  That's when the fun began.  Again, none were very large, but there was enough of them that I was having lots of fun.  After about two hours, I went up to the barn and had a cup of coffee with Sandy and Joe.  Planned to come back Sunday morning.

The next morning started slow, a small bass, then another, no bluegill for some reason.  Then my line went tight, the rod bent and I had a big fish on. Played it for a couple of minutes, I couldn't keep it from a tree limb in the water and snap! Yes, I'd lost it.  Never did see what I had, but it was fun while it lasted.  Another small bass and then my line went very tight again.  Rod felt like it was going to bend double.  After several minutes and giving line a few times, I was able to finally hoist my fish onto the bank. I completely forgot that I had a tape with me.  But by using proportions in the picture I took ( I used the fish and the handle section of the rod).  I came up with a little more than twenty five and a half inches. I had caught one of my sister's catfish!!! It was a struggle and this is the largest, by a little more than an inch, fish I've caught on a fly.

That was fun and hard work.  The rest of the morning I caught several more bass, but no more cats and no blue gill. Below is a picture of the fly that I used most of the weekend.  I fished this color almost all of the time and it is the fly that caught the catfish and most of the bass on Sunday.  As you can see, my fly has a friend.  I used the artificial!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Lots of fishing spots visited

This last two weeks have been busy.  The first I had my grandson with me and he definitely kept me busy.  Visited Fantastic Caverns (my first time), then went to Branson for the Haunted House and Dinosaur Museum, visited and hiked a little at Lake Springfield and went to Close Memorial park for the playgrounds and then some more hiking.  We kept pretty busy for a six year old and an old man.  I took him home Thursday and then I left Friday for Memorial Day weekend at Bunker Hill on the Jack Fork River.  Good time with good friends.  Three of us fished with minimal luck.  Marty probably did best; a few small smallmouths, and rock bass.  Nothing to brag about, but better than being skunked like I was.

Tuesday and Wednesday we spent with the WOLF class from Springfield.  About 50 fifth graders were given instructions on fly casting and fly tying on Tuesday and on Wednesday we took them fly fishing for about 2 hours.  Kids had a good time, learned some and the instructors were rewarded both days with a lunch provided by the parents and lots of "thank yous" from the kids. One little girl tried her best to come up with a dragon fly pattern on Tuesday, but they did not have much to work with.  After she finished fishing on Wednesday I gave her a damsel fly that I had.  You'd have thought I gave her a thousand dollars.

Tuesday night we had pizza and fished with the boys from Good Samaritan Boys Ranch.  Most will not be back next year.  This was the first year for our program and I believe it was a real success. We're looking forward to doing this again in the fall.  I caught three very nice bluegill that evening. Very nice and fat bluegill.

Today I went with Russ to Crane Creek.  Russ has been turned on by Czech nymphing and I went along to try my hand.  I do have a 10 foot rod, but its an awfully heavy rod to be holding at arms length while dragging the fly through the water. I was lucky enough to catch two McClouds and a very colorful minnow, maybe an Ozark Minnow in breeding colors, with this technique.  Both trout were quite small, the second one probably less than an inch longer than the minnow. Wild trout though, so what a blast.  Russ did a little better, more fish and larger.  We also saw what we both believe was the largest trout we ever spotted in Crane Creek; it was definitely a "keeper" if we could have caught it and we were into keeping. I'm sure it would have been photographed and returned to the water.

Just realized that in less than a month Gary and I will be back from Alaska.  I still need to tie some more flies for that adventure.