Baum Lake is a great destination for any kind of fishing any time of the year. I tend to like fishing Baum Lake when the weather warms up in the spring as it is more comfortable and scenic. This trip I decided to do something a little different and solely fly fish from my inflatable kayak rather than my float tube. I was looking forward to getting some more experience learning how to effectively catch fish from my kayak with a fly rod.
On the day I arrived the parking lot at Baum Lake was nearly full as if everyone had the weekday off. I was a little worried about the fishing pressure but previous experience has taught me that the lake is always full of fish no matter the amount of anglers. I set up my kayak and spoke to a regular who reported that the lake was stocked with larger +4lbs trout in January and that they were taking callibaetis.
|Large Baum Bow|
I set off to my usual run and started playing with my new anchor. It wasn't long before I hooked and landed my first fish. This rainbow trout was a brute and most definitely one of the bigger planters that the gentleman I had spoken to was referring to. After netting my first fish of the day it seemed like all the fish had stopped biting which was a bit unusual for Baum Lake.
Hours went by with no grabs and by high noon the sun was starting to beat me down. I stopped fishing and decided to do some recon on my kayak to find where the fish were holding. By kneeling on both knees in my kayak I was able sit up higher and spot fish. One thing I noticed was that there were way less fish than my previous visits however the fish I saw were much bigger. Baum Lake was going to be quality over quantity fishery this time around.
I didn't start catching fish again until about mid-afternoon when most of the other anglers had left for the day. It wasn't easy fishing by any means, the fish really made you work to get them. The tactic I found the most productive was nymphing while using my kayak as a one man drift boat. I had to control my drift with my paddle in my left hand while holding my fly rod and presenting my rig with my right hand. It was a lot of difficult multi-tasking but the technique was deadly productive. I only caught a total of five fish the first day however they were all steelhead size rainbows that ripped out line like they were wild fish.
|Callibaetis and Scuds|
My second day out on Baum Lake fished a little slower. I hooked about six big fish but they were well spread out throughout the day. I sampled a few of them to identify what they were eating and my findings showed that each fish had eaten a few callibaetis nymphs and one or two scuds. This was surprising because most of the fish I had caught were on midges.
|They Almost Look Wild|
The fishing was a bit tough this time around but the fish were all big and phenomenal fighters. The kayak helped me get to places that I would have been exhausted kicking to on a float tube. I'm starting to really like this whole fly fishing from a kayak thing.