Thursday, December 4, 2014

First Winter Storm Blowout, On a Lighter Note The Christmas Spirit

Feisty Lil Hatchery Half-Pounder

After a few days of solely tying flies I decide it was time to get out and wet my line. I recently received a new St. Criox Imperial rod to replace the one I broke and I wanted to "break" it in. The weather for the day called for thunderstorms and the previous day was more overcast than rain. I was hoping for more of the same but got a crap ton of water dumped on me while I was out instead. Figures.

Feather River
One of the best things about fishing during a storm is that there is no one else crazy enough to fish it, therefore I had the river to myself and worked a run as long as I wanted to. I hooked several fish but only landed two. All the fish I hooked were pretty small for steelhead, either natives or half-pounders. There were still a few salmon out and about but the majority of them have died off. Most of the fish came off a caddis pattern that I came up with. I'm going to call it the "AT Worm." Simple and very effective. Feels good to catch something that you created.

The new rod was a bit awkward to cast. I guess I was just use to the medium-fast action of the switch rod. It took me a bit to get into the groove but I eventually got it. The new rod feels a lot lighter and faster than my old rod and its also a lot harder to feel the line load. It'll take some practice but a little 12'' half-pounder really kicked my butt on it. The fish were really aggressive during my time out there; they jumped, ran, shaked, and most of them threw the hook. Exciting!

So a new tradition that I am starting is listening to Christmas music whenever I'm in the car during that time of the year. From time to time I'll be jammin' or singin' along so if your behind a Camry with a Fish First sticker on it that's probably me rockin' out. The Christmas music not only signals the urge to buy things, Christmas time, etc, it signals that its winter steelhead time!
Total River Blowout
After I got off the river I checked out the flows and this storm blew out a lot of streams. Butte Creek went from 200 CFS to currently sitting at 1,020 CFS. The Yuba below Deer Creek shot from 700 CFS to 2500 CFS. The North Fork of the Feather at Pulga went from 220 CFS to 4250 CFS. Total blowout! Well there's your rain. Too bad its not in snow form but we'll take what we can get.

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