Sunday, February 20, 2011

A Slippery Slope.

A simple request to go fishing brought me home late Friday night. I arrived around midnight and got some gear ready. Early the next morning, I found myself on the road again with a long drive ahead to our intended destination. This particular piece of water is not fished very often but we usually find ourselves on it around this time each year. After a long drive, we discovered that the water was partially frozen over and the rest of it had slush and small icebergs floating down it. It was impossible for us to get a good drift in and after a brief while, we left. 

Slush on Top & on the Bottom. 

Why You Shouldn't Wade Near the Edges of Anchor Ice.

Paying Homage to Our Polish & Hungarian Roots.

On our journey home, we made several stops looking for the fish. We settled on an old winter favorite, a small stream home to wild browns. The only problem was the hike in. Pennsylvania's snow had yet to melt and after the last ice storm, the snow pack was hard as a rock. It was like walking on an ice rink and we fell numerous times. Stud-less boots are not the best piece of gear to be using while traversing slippery terrain. We took it one step at a time but couldn't prevent ourselves from crashing down. It was like pulling the rug out from underneath you. One second your stable and the next your laying on your side with a fresh bruise & hoping your fly rod is still intact. 

Open Water & Snow Showers.

The Worm Dunker Cup Holder.
First of 2011.

Letting Her Fly.

As the solitude and silence of the woods was interrupted by our clumsiness, we finally found some willing fish. However, we still had to work for them. The water was very low and perfectly clear. Combining this with limited room for presentation created a lot of lost opportunities because the fish knew we were coming. After spooking a hole, we often turned our attention to the aquatic life found in the stream, which is top notch. Turning and flipping rocks revealed caddis, stoneflies, a plethora of midges, and a variety of mayflies. 

Third Piece of Water.

Small Wild Browns.

A Frozen Snow Pack = Fresh Bruises.

Skinny Water.
Low & Gin Clear.

Mayfly Clinger.


Reflecting Stones.

Prolific Insect Life.

As we got deeper and deeper into the woods, the sun began to set behind the trees and we found a nice pocket of fish. We took turns landing browns 8-10 inches in length as the temperature dropped. For one little brown, I meandered out onto a shelf of anchor ice. As I bent over to land the fish, the ice gave way. I figured it was only a few inches deep but it turned out being closer to 2 ft. My whole right side got soaked but I didn't lose the fish. We fished on for another hour before hiking back out to the truck. After a few more falls on the ice, we were grateful to get back on solid ground inside the truck. 

The Meadow Section.

Small Enough To Jump Across.

Mid-afternoon Sunset.

Anticipating a Strike.

The Anchor Ice Broke & I Fell In.
Didn't Lose the Fish Though.

A Hard Day's Payoff.

Adam's Turn.

Bringing One To Hand.

Small Stone FTW.


Our day started out with a specific plan, but ice through a wrench in it. We ended up floating from water to water before settling on something familiar. Even then, the ice kept throwing us curve balls and we slipped & slid on thin ice all day long. We fell, laughed, got wet, and caught a few wild browns. Not bad, not bad at all. 

1 comment:

AZWanderings said...

Brown trout + Perogies = a great day. Looks like fun, thanks for sharing.