Sunday, July 15, 2012

Return to the trout, and something to scratch off my bucket list

It was back to work this week after 9 days at the beach. 45 hours of work, about 20 meetings, and 1500 emails later, I was in need of some relaxation again. I haven't actually fished for actual wild trout since the end of April and I felt I was due for some trico action.

I sat up Friday night and tied half a dozen trico spinners, 3 females and 3 males. I was on the water by 6:45am. I forgot how beautiful a limestone stream is in the morning.

There is something zen-like and soul cleansing with early morning trico fishing. The fog starts to lift off the water, the birds start swooping down inches from the water picking up the spinners before they drop, and then you see the first dimple from a rising fish. I missed trout fishing. It's a far cry from throwing straight 10 lb leader with big flies to bruiser smallmouth in my backyard.

To say the fish were smart would be an understatement. They've been doing this dance a thousand times this summer; easily snubbing your fly for the 200 naturals around it. This stretch of water gets hammered with anglers. They've been stung way too many times, and know the difference. They are so accustomed to people fishing while they gorge that they aren't even afraid anymore and will sip flies 5 feet in front of you but almost always will just stop even examining your fly after 5 casts.

I had to work really hard, but I did come up with a couple of rainbows in an hour.

I was going to pack it in, and then a saw a flash of orange downstream from me. Turns out a nice fat Palomino decided to come to the party. I've been trout fishing a long time, and I've never seen one rise. Not only was he rising, but he was rising every few seconds and was at one point, less than a foot in front of me. Even though these are mutant stocked fish that are bred for nothing more than being a stuffed trophy over the fireplace in a house that watches way too much Nascar, I still thought it could be cool to take one on a size 24 trico.

I worked him for about half an hour, and finally got him to take a spinner. The fight was boring. He had been caught quite a few times before and knew the drill. I picked him up, snapped a pic, and send him on his way.

With that, I called it a day. Not a bad way to spend a Saturday morning.


  1. Nice Palomino. Where did you fish?

  2. Nice fish Mike. I've never seen a Palomino before...beautiful!

  3. Awesome trout dude!!!! Is that also called a lightening trout? There are stocking programs in Washington or Oregon ... something like that.. I personally have never seen one here on the east coast, only stories. Great picture.. lucky you!

  4. It was on the Little Lehigh. They are actually fairly common around here, at least in the spring and fall. They definitely aren;t wild. They are fat mutant overfed breeders from the hatcheries. All the bait guys get so worked up about them that they all surround the spots where they hold on opening day. They are usually all gone by the 2nd day of the season because they stick out like a sore thumb in the water.

    This guy apparently escaped from the hatchery during the hurricane last fall and has been hanging out in the catch and release section, which is why he was still around.

    Here's a pretty good article on them