Saturday, December 22, 2007

How High? How Fast? How Cold? Float and Fly Smallmouth at Flood Levels 12/22/07

Mike C and I planned to get him a December Smallmouth Bass. He was late buying tiddlywinks, so I went and checked out a hole early. Overnight, the river had turned into a raging mess. It was up almost 2' from melted snow overnight!!!

So, discouraged I went and met him at 1PM and told him the bad news. Chocolate milk and high water.

I suggested a pond to practice FnF. We did this long enough for me to drink two beers and say let's go get some flowing water.

After wading through the woods and seeing a deer with arrow in hind quarter we finally hit the pool. There actually was some slack water up near steep bank. We started fishing it from above.

A few minutes in I caught a 12 then a 15" on FnF. There was a lot of flotsam in the eddy and both fish came 2' from the shore.

We got into some of these guys:

The Rock bass we caught were extremely pale with none of their customary greenish hue.

Most were small, but I did get 2 about 8-9" slabs.

Visibility was about 6". All our fish were caught within 2' of the bank.

I was just bouncing that float a couple feet in front of me when the float sunk and it was a big SMB. Fought like crazy. Heaved it on the bank where my line snapped and I grabbed the fish.

It caught on one of Don's FnF jig! So this pic is for him:

Then Mike caught a couple of Googs once he switched to black fly. Finally, he broke through with this monster:

We only fished 2-3 hours and expected to catch nothing with the water so high. This was a terrific surprise!

BT: 3 SMB (18.5", 15) 8 Rock Bass Mike: 1 SMB and 3 Googs.

Shocked when I looked at the flow guage to see 2180 CFS!! Thursday was about 600. Summer was as low as 29 cfs!

I can't recommend enough winter fishing for the things you learn about Stream bass. Fun.

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