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Thread: First fish on a fly

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    First fish on a fly

    Monday, July 6, 2015

    Not much time for fishing today, as many in the family hiked to Ruth Lake in the Uintah mountains. Beautiful hike, but I had to drive by a lot of lovely water to get to the trailhead. After the hike, I got together with my brother-in-law, Aaron Wickley, who had flown in from San Diego the night before and really wanted to do some fishing. We first checked out a small creek in a section right next to the main highway. Here Aaron picked up his first fish ever on a fly!

    

    Special guest Aaron Wickley and his first fish on the fly

    However, most of the fish were small and there weren't a lot of them, so we decided to head back to my Saturday location to pick up some numbers now that he knew the basics. But it was not to be. As we started walking to the creek from the pullout, the rain started to fall. Then the bolts started to fall. Back into the car we waited, but the storm was slow moving and we eventually gave up and headed down the valley...to where I remembered seeing what could have been a beaver pond next to the road where a side canyon came in.

    I have learned that there doesn't have to be much water for there to be trout, especially when beaver ponds are involved. That again proved to be the case. The small creek no more than a couple feet wide and shrouded completely in willows had been dammed by the busy mammals in a couple of places right next to the road. Pushing through willows and grass from near where the culvert went under the road (we know that culverts are most often a good omen for fishing!) we came out on a small dam and pond, just a short cast from the dam to the far end. There were a few fish rising and I could see some cruising. I guided Aaron on some casting, he got his fly out into the middle, and promptly hooked about an 11" or 12" trout, that swam right towards him. With all the slack in the line, he thought he lost it, but got the line tight again and fought it for a bit longer before it came unhooked. But he had a great thrill.

    Sadly for Aaron, but good for me, his line got totally tangled with all the fun he had, so being the good guide I am, I promptly cast out and caught a couple fish while he untangled his line. We got Aaron back in the water, and while he was trying to get another rise (I think he did miss one or two), I eyed a good sized fish that was nosed up to a little inlet of water coming from the upstream dam at the far end of the pond. It was too far for Aaron to reach with his newbie casting skills, and approaching more closely would likely spook the fish. So I took my renegade (I had changed when the fish in this pond looked at my Turk's dry but didn't hit) and laid it out about a foot behind the trout. I watched it turn, gave a couple short strips to the line, watched the mouth open, the mouth close, then lightly set the hook. Perfectly done! After a short fight, this nice 11" rainbow was brought to hand.

    Beautiful trout from the beaver pond

    We weren't quite done, yet. Carefully creeping up on the inlet stream, I directed Aaron to cast into the moving water about 15 feet upstream where it spilled over the upstream dam. I was in the water downstream, Aaron was up on the bank. First cast was short, the second he dropped right in the current. As it floated down towards us, we both watched an 11" fish rise slowly to his dry and suck it in. He lifted at just the right moment and had the fish. Aaron's turn for a perfectly executed catch. Sadly, no picture as he tried to lift the flopping fish up to him with the 5x tippet, which promptly broke. That's OK. The memory will stick with him, as will the memory of this beautiful, hidden little pond by the side of the road.

    The little pond with the nice fish

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