April 17, 2007

It's still good

Well I got out this past weekend, but only for a short while, like 15 minutes. And it wasn’t on trout waters. Domestic duties kept me at home this weekend, but after a walk around the neighborhood with my daughter Saturday morning, we ended up at the bridge crossing behind my house on the Pelican River. White suckers were starting to line up in a deeper pool of slow water. My daughter had fallen asleep in her stroller 15 minutes earlier, so I quickly walked back to my house and grabbed my 6 weight.
I tied on a 12 foot 4X leader, and a size 14 beadhead Prince nymph. I pinched a piece of moldable tungsten onto my line about 12” above my fly. I headed down to the backyard and made my way past the bridge. After a few drifts through a pod of fish, my fly wasn’t getting deep enough, so I pinched off another little piece of tungsten and moved it to about 6-8” above the fly. After a couple more drifts, I felt some resistance on the line. I hooked up with a fish but soon the line went limp. I pulled in my fly and removed a scale from the end of the hook. I drifted my fly through the pod two more times before another hookup. I lifted my rod to set the hook. I looked back at the end of the line and a sucker slowly rose up to the surface, head first. A fair hook! I eased back off the bank a bit and moved over to a spot where I could get better leverage positioning. I got the sucker in near the bank before the fish would make a run and scream the drag on my reel. I quickly eased off the drag a bit and palmed the rim. The 4X tippet should be plenty to avoid a break off, but I wanted to make sure. After a few more runs, I finally landed the fish on the bank. The hook was firmly lodged in the sucker’s upper lip.

At about this time, one of my neighbors came over with his two daughters to see what was going on. I showed the girls the fish and the fly I caught it on. I mention that the fish was fairly hooked, because my neighbor is the Area Conservation Officer. We chatted about work and the upcoming walleye spawning run for a little bit before I had to head back home before my wife left for work. That sucker was a fun fight on the fly, I wish I would have had the time to catch more fish. It was not a famed trout on the end of the line, but as a fellow coworker said to me yesterday, “a tight line is a tight line”.