Driftless Trout Anglers

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William Schlafer  
#1 Posted : Monday, May 22, 2017 6:04:37 PM(UTC)
William Schlafer
Rank: Super Fly

Joined: 7/24/2011(UTC)
Posts: 3,134
Location: Sussex Wisconsin

Thanks: 49 times
Was thanked: 82 time(s) in 69 post(s)
I had big plans for April and May, but things just didn't work out for me.

I was going to fish every week, but as it turned out, I've only been able to get a handful of times in the last eight weeks. Looking at the calendar, things weren't going to get any better in June. So I told my boss I wasn't coming in today and pointed the car West towards the Trout waters of the western counties.

I figured the streams should be back to normal after all the weekend rain and the weather forecast promised rain wouldn't start today until late in the afternoon. OK... so why are there dark clouds on the horizon and big drops or rain splattering on my windshield?

A quick check of the radar on my iPhone showed a large area of moderate to heavy rain - heading right towards the area I planned to fish. Great. The rain arrived about six hours earlier than forecast.

And sure enough right when I pulled up to my stream it started raining steadily. Somehow I managed to leave my raincoat at home, so I had a decision to make: go home, or get wet. After reading about Sheb's adventures in the rain over the weekend, I decided that I would give it a go.

The grass is certainly taller than it was on my last trip here back in March.
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After about 20 minutes I was thoroughly soaked and shivering in the cool air. I thought about bailing out, but the Trout were hamming my streamer. The water had a perfect stain the rain and clouds seemed to be coaxing the bigger fish out.
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The Brookies came out to play too.
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Then low rumblings of thunder came up the valley and flashes of lightning struck the nearby hills. The skies opened up and a heavy rain started to fall. Time to run for cover. Blue skies taunted me just a few miles to the north.
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I cowered under some heavy bushes and rode it out for 30 minutes. During the rain delay, my back stiffened up making it difficult to bend over. This would prove to be a problem when I hooked into some larger fish and couldn't get down low enough to net them. I did manage to land a couple nice ones in the 15-16" range. But at least one 18" Brown got off due to my back issues.
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This chub must've had a close encounter with a large Brown Trout.
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There is a very large Brown that lives in the stream. I first saw him last year when he swiped at my hopper. I saw him again earlier this year. But I have yet to get a hook into him. I thought today might be the day, but I couldn't locate him. I last saw him underneath this sunken stump.
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A few more decent Browns bit on my streamer. I caught bunches of them this size.
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Yeah, let's not step into that hole.
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And then, the sun came out and the fish bite stopped cold. But the bug bite was on. Millions of biting flies and gnats swarmed around my head. Of course, my Buggins and Picaridin were in the car trunk. Something bit me below my eye and a large itchy welt came up which swelled up until my eye was half closed.

I soldiered on for awhile but couldn't take the bugs any more, so I limped back to my car and called it a day.

Around 30 Trout caught in three hours, including a 30 minute rain delay and another 30 minutes of no bite when the sun came out. Completely soaked through clothes, a sore back and a big eye welt.

Playing through the pain. And totally worth it.


-Bill

Edited by user Tuesday, May 23, 2017 12:38:38 PM(UTC)  | Reason: added link

“You'll never look back on your life and wish you had spent more time in the office." -- Brian Trautman, Captain SV Delos
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shebs  
#2 Posted : Monday, May 22, 2017 6:12:03 PM(UTC)
shebs
Rank: Stone Fly

Joined: 5/12/2014(UTC)
Posts: 898
Location: Mpls

Thanks: 4 times
Was thanked: 22 time(s) in 18 post(s)
Isn't it amazing what kind of misery we accept for a good trout bite? It's like an addiction, or something LOL

Way to get on it despite the difficulties ThumpUp
A bad day of fishing is better than a good day of work. ~Author Unknown
Modern Translation, with respect for the Notorious B.I.G. : "Fuck Money, Get Fishes"
snbrd4evr  
#3 Posted : Monday, May 22, 2017 6:24:21 PM(UTC)
snbrd4evr
Rank: Midge

Joined: 5/23/2013(UTC)
Posts: 88
Location: Eagan, MN

Thanks: 3 times
Was thanked: 6 time(s) in 3 post(s)
Yep... I would have sat in my car, waited until the rain stopped, and then caught nothing Crying

Great call on toughing it out though! That looked like a great fish day. I need to start fishing streamers, anyone have any good tips they want to pm me? ThumpUp
William Schlafer  
#4 Posted : Monday, May 22, 2017 6:41:38 PM(UTC)
William Schlafer
Rank: Super Fly

Joined: 7/24/2011(UTC)
Posts: 3,134
Location: Sussex Wisconsin

Thanks: 49 times
Was thanked: 82 time(s) in 69 post(s)
Thanks guys!

BTW: for anyone with lower back issues, I highly recommend heated car seats. They came with my Altima when I bought it, but I didn't think I would ever use them much. But after a cold wet day of fishing, there's nothing better for the long ride home than to crank up the heat to the backside. It really helps.

Sure wish I would've brought my coat. Would've been a lot more comfortable in the rain. That thing is going to stay in my trunk from now 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
Ctrl_Alt_Dlt  
#5 Posted : Tuesday, May 23, 2017 5:23:43 AM(UTC)
Ctrl_Alt_Dlt
Rank: Midge

Joined: 3/10/2015(UTC)
Posts: 121
Location: North Saint Paul

That bugger bite looks awesome! All of quality size too. Great job!
cschub13  
#6 Posted : Tuesday, May 23, 2017 7:11:53 AM(UTC)
cschub13
Rank: Caddis Fly

Joined: 7/28/2014(UTC)
Posts: 150
Man
Location: Milwaukee

Great report, sounds like an adventurous day for sure out there. Glad the hard work paid off for you. Like Shebs stated, it's amazing the kind of misery we put ourselves thru just to catch some fish and then let them go right away. Gotta love it!
vmthtr in Green Bay  
#7 Posted : Tuesday, May 23, 2017 1:51:16 PM(UTC)
vmthtr in Green Bay
Rank: Dragon Fly

Joined: 3/6/2012(UTC)
Posts: 410
Location: Green Bay WI

Thanks: 6 times
Was thanked: 3 time(s) in 3 post(s)
Nice report, glad you decided to fish.
EddieRivard  
#8 Posted : Tuesday, May 23, 2017 7:23:01 PM(UTC)
EddieRivard
Rank: Dragon Fly

Joined: 7/26/2012(UTC)
Posts: 1,175
Location: New Brighton MN

Thanks: 59 times
Was thanked: 20 time(s) in 13 post(s)
Great read thanks for posting!
William Schlafer  
#9 Posted : Wednesday, May 24, 2017 6:46:43 AM(UTC)
William Schlafer
Rank: Super Fly

Joined: 7/24/2011(UTC)
Posts: 3,134
Location: Sussex Wisconsin

Thanks: 49 times
Was thanked: 82 time(s) in 69 post(s)
Whatever bit me below my eye has really done a number on me. My eye nearly swelled shut yesterday and is tender as hell. Doctor just shrugged his shoulders and said put ice on it (health care is a joke). The head net and bug spray are definitely going back into the vest for my next outing.

It still was worth it.


-Bill
“You'll never look back on your life and wish you had spent more time in the office." -- Brian Trautman, Captain SV Delos
shebs  
#10 Posted : Wednesday, May 24, 2017 7:10:08 AM(UTC)
shebs
Rank: Stone Fly

Joined: 5/12/2014(UTC)
Posts: 898
Location: Mpls

Thanks: 4 times
Was thanked: 22 time(s) in 18 post(s)
William Schlafer wrote:
Whatever bit me below my eye has really done a number on me. My eye nearly swelled shut yesterday and is tender as hell. Doctor just shrugged his shoulders and said put ice on it (health care is a joke). The head net and bug spray are definitely going back into the vest for my next outing.

It still was worth it.


-Bill


Yikes. I always get big swollen itchy-as-all-hell welts for the deerflies that come out this time of year. No fun.
A bad day of fishing is better than a good day of work. ~Author Unknown
Modern Translation, with respect for the Notorious B.I.G. : "Fuck Money, Get Fishes"
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