Saturday, October 15, 2011

NY Trip Recap, Getting Revenge, and My first Salmon

Jack and I just returned from a long 3.5 days on the Salmon River in New York. Unlike the last 3 times I've gone up there, we finally had some luck. I picked up 4 kings (admittedly - one was foul hooked right at sundown and we didn't realize it until he was in the net), and interestingly enough, a monster chub, and a sucker who both loved a red Estaz egg. Jack unfortunately walked away with two small trout on a woolly bugger, but he did hook in to quite a few.

I'm not going to post a giant play by play of the trip, but here's a quick top 5 list of how it went down and some observations.

1. The Salmon - It's truly amazing to watch these things jump. The Kings kind of porpoise, doing a slight raise of their back fin out of the water, while the Cohos go crazy and shoot straight out of the water, sometimes up to 4 feet in the air. Think of someone throwing the biggest log they can pick up into the water, every 20 seconds, all day long. That's what it looks and sounds like. Unfortunately, a lot of the fish we saw and hooked up with were at the end of their journey and not looking too great. I don't get how people want to eat these things with how they are looking. You also spend the day ankle deep in rotting salmon carcass. My car smells so awful right now.

2.Even though they are close to dying off, King Salmon are hands down the strongest fish I've ever fought on a fly rod. I battled one as the sun was setting on Thursday night for over 20 minutes until he finally did a big run and broke me off. My arm was killing me.

3. Two-Handed Rod - I am 100% absolutely in love with my new switch rod. It is so much more efficient than a single handed rod. You can shoot 75 yards with ease. I'd highly suggest it to anyone who fishes big water. Much easier on the arms and shoulders as well after 12 straight hours of fishing without a break.

4. The Ugly Stick Posse - People are scumbags. Seriously. I've never seen so much blatant disregard for the law in my whole life. These guys get Ugly Sticks with bass spinning reels, 50 lb test, big hooks, and just put a tiny cube from a sponge on the hook to call it a fly. They add like 5 oz of weight, and just zip their hook through the water until they hook a fish in the fin, and then reel like hell. It's a shame that law enforcement doesn't crack down on it. They keep every damn fish they snag too.

5. Weird stuff - On Thursday, I think I was the most unlucky person on the face of the Earth. I was walking up the hill from staircase hole to meet up with John, and two guys walked by me and said hi. One had a cigar lit. When he ashed his cigar, the wind literally blew a hot ember right towards me, up under my glasses, and right into my eyeball! What the hell are the odds of that? It finally feels better today but I did have a littled blurred vision. Creepy.

An hour later, came within 12 inches of getting hit head on by a drunk driver flying through a stop sign to take a piss at a Porta-a-potty. Serious bad luck.

Well, that's about it. Here's some not-so-great pics of the trip. No amazing artsy farty shots though, I was too busy fishing. Enjoy. I know I did.

Rotted Salmon

Me getting my ass kicked by a Salmon at the Staircase

John Ryan choosing a fly before the evening bite at Staircase

The snagging crew was already hard at work at 7am in the Unemployment hole

My biggest fish of the trip on a size 4 purple Estaz egg. He was pretty spawned out.

Jack working a run in the Schoolhouse pool on Wednesday night

John Ryan hooked up into this beautiful colored up Coho in the lower fly stretch right before we headed back to PA.

Drift boats getting ready to launch at first light

Another king

Thanks again to the Lutz family over at Little Salmon Tackle for the accommodations. If you ever need lake fishing gear, this is the place to go!


  1. Nice post...We should plan a steelhead trip to SR. Spend the days chuckin & swinging two-handers.

  2. any more info on the new stick. i purchased the same lsi and will be testing it out up in pulaski.

  3. Thanks Matt. With the kid on the way, I doubt I'll be up there again until at least next fall. sucks.

    Johno, I love it. I usually like a stiffer rod (thats what she said) and it's a little whippy, but I found that it actually helps to shoot more line when two-handed casting. I'm very happy with my purchase and it handled some big fish like a champion.