Hi everyone. Sorry I've been MIA for a while. Been swamped with work, and with edging the massive garden around our house before I get the mulch delivered.
I was in northern NJ yesterday for a vendor demo for my job and the trip home took me through the Lehigh Valley, so I decided to stop and wet a line. When I got to the stream, there were a few scattered rises. There was no major hatch, but definitely some surface action.
One fish stood out from the rest. It was probably the biggest brown trout I've ever seen in that stretch of water. my guess would be somewhere between 6 and 8 lbs. This thing definitely had a death wish. It was showing no fear, and was quickly darting all over the water, rising at all kinds of things floating near it such as bugs, leaves, twigs, etc. For as big as this fish was, it was amazing to see.
I noticed sulphurs and very tiny midges coming off, so I opted for a size 18 sulphur emerger soaked with floatant trailed by a size 24 Al's rat sitting just under the film. After about 15 casts, the fish finally stood still long enough to see my flies and I saw his giant mouth open and inhale the lower fly. GAME ON. This thing fought like hell. I must have battled him for about 3 minutes without making any progress. The 7x tippet had me being extra cautious. When I finally started to get the upper hand, he cut right and tried to head upstream into faster water. My entire rig came shooting out of the water and smacked me dead in the chest. I lost him. Upon inspection, I noticed that the hook on the Al's rat was straightened out! This fish bent the hook straight and spit it back at me. I didn't land him, but damn, that was one of the best fights I've ever had. This thing fought like a steelhead on steriods. I re-rigged and sat down for 5 minutes waiting to see if it's fall back in his feeding path, but he was gone.
Although I didnt land the monster, I did bring 4 or 5 fish to hand, including this beautiful brown trout that came in just short of 16 inches.
Not bad results for only an hour on the water. I'll take it.