Driftless Trout Anglers

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William Schlafer  
#1 Posted : Wednesday, February 28, 2018 12:37:12 AM(UTC)
William Schlafer
Rank: Super Fly

Joined: 7/24/2011(UTC)
Posts: 3,055
Location: Sussex Wisconsin

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The forecast of 50 degree plus weather today was just too much to resist. So I took the day off from work and made the 3 hour drive up to the Driftless.

The plan was to fish and old favorite stream and break in my new pair of Simms wading boots that I bought last fall - but haven't gotten around to trying out till today. They were a little stiff to start out with, but by the end of the day they felt great. I highly recommend Simms Freestone boots. My second pair.
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There was no snow on the ground and most of the fields surrounding the creek were only slightly muddy. But I found the stream high, muddy and with 40 degree water temp. After 30 minutes it was obvious that there would be no fish caught here today. There was lots of sand and silt washed up on the banks from some minor flooding from the heavy rains last week. So that's at least some good news for this stream in the coming months.
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A quick drive around the area showed all the streams either blown out or heavily muddied up. Instead of heading home disappointed, I decided to try a hail mary. There was a stream I knew of that has a short fishable section only a mile from it's source. It runs through a valley with no farming or development of any kind. With luck, it might be fishable. But, it was a 30 minute drive away. I decided to take a chance with Plan B.

I arrived to find the usually crystal clear running small creek stained and up at least 10 inches, but in better shape than anything else I had saw driving around.
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I was promptly rewarded for my decision to make the drive on my second cast.
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Several more nice Brookies followed.
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And even some nice Browns. For this small stream, these are really nice fish. The Pink Squirrel was the fly of choice this day. Everything else was ignored. I did see some rising fish around mid-day, but didn't bother with dry flies, as they were probably eating those tiny midge things, which isn't worth the effort.
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I caught a bunch of small Brookies in the 6-7 inch range which are always fun with light gear. With most of weeds beaten down it was easier to fish this stream than it is when the jungle takes over in summer. A short leader and a smaller fly rod makes it a lot easier too. Brookies on a 3W are a blast!

This spot was particularly productive. Plucked six dinks and one of the bigger Brookies above out of this pool. The stained water made it much easier to approach and cast without spooking the Trout. Turned into a pretty nice day and the warm sunny weather made it nice to be outside again.
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Seven hours of driving and three hours of fishing. It was worth it!


-Bill

Edited by user Wednesday, February 28, 2018 12:39:05 AM(UTC)  | Reason: added text

“You'll never look back on your life and wish you had spent more time in the office." -- Brian Trautman, Captain SV Delos
thanks 1 user thanked William Schlafer for this useful post.
weiliwen on 2/28/2018(UTC)
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EddieRivard  
#2 Posted : Wednesday, February 28, 2018 12:45:01 AM(UTC)
EddieRivard
Rank: Dragon Fly

Joined: 7/26/2012(UTC)
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Location: New Brighton MN

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Dang William nice work!! ThumpUp
William Schlafer  
#3 Posted : Wednesday, February 28, 2018 12:54:42 AM(UTC)
William Schlafer
Rank: Super Fly

Joined: 7/24/2011(UTC)
Posts: 3,055
Location: Sussex Wisconsin

Thanks: 39 times
Was thanked: 74 time(s) in 64 post(s)
Originally Posted by: EddieRivard Go to Quoted Post
Dang William nice work!! ThumpUp


Thanks Eddie!

The streams out there were pretty ugly today. I may have found one of the few that was still fishable. Lots of windshield time driving around, but it's worth it when you can catch a few decent Trout. Didn't see anyone else fishing Trout streams, but there was a flotilla of boats on the Wisconsin River near Muscoda. Must've been a Walleye run going on.


-Bill
“You'll never look back on your life and wish you had spent more time in the office." -- Brian Trautman, Captain SV Delos
Gurth  
#4 Posted : Wednesday, February 28, 2018 1:07:13 AM(UTC)
Gurth
Rank: Stone Fly

Joined: 11/7/2016(UTC)
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Location: Madison

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Glad to see that one being productive as it seemed vacant in the fall when I stopped by.

It's on my list of early season places to hit before stuff grows up.

Private correspondence at: jkschind "at" tds.net
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