It had rained pretty hard the night before, so I had no idea what the surrounding creeks would look like. I figured Valley would be a safe bet since it clears quicker than most, although I'm trying to wean myself off fishing there as much. I was enthusiastic about fishing because I had a few new things I wanted to try out.
The first new item was a 12' tenkara rod from Esoteric Tackle over in the UK. It was sent over for me to demo & review, and while the latter will not be covered in this post, I will hint that I was pleasantly surprised by the rod's capabilities.
The second item was a new (to me) fly pattern I was kind of lusting over in recent days, Kiwi's Royal Sakasa Kebari. He had actually recently posted on his blog a variant with a green band called the McGee Lime Kebari...and I had spent the morning tying up a variant of the variant, substituting out the green in favor of pink thread Lilly got me for X-Mas two years ago. Rod & flies in hand, I hopped in the car and drove off.
|The fish had already gotten to this one a few times...|
Well...when I got to Valley, I was greeted with high flows and pretty much chocolate milk toned water. Not totally "blown out," but very high and muddy. I actually like fishing Valley when it's high and discolored...the fish don't seem to spook as easily and the other fishermen tend to stay home, so I was planning on having some fun over the next few hours.
With the cool temperatures, I was surprised at how few people were there walking their dogs or jogging along the stream. It had rained the night before, but the paved trails were far from wet or muddy. That said, once I was in the water, I was also surprised at how many of the folks that were out and about decided it was going to be a good idea to stop, look down the embankment, and try to strike up a conversation with me. Usually, I may get the token "ya catching anything?" question once an outing...but on this day I had to get at least 5 or 6. One older gentleman even noticed that I didn't have a reel on my rod. "Is that some sort of new style of fly fishing?" he asked...
Fortunately, the fish were more than cooperative and allowed me to
show off land a few for my surprisingly captive audience. Maybe the rod had extra unicorn hair, maybe it was the dark, buggy body of the Pink Lilly Kebari fly in the muddy water, but whatever it was I caught a bunch. Actually more than a bunch...it might have been my best day at Valley since April, if not all year.
|This was actually caught on an Ishigaki Kebari|
After about 3 hours of constant action yielding several more fish like the above, I collapsed my rod, spooled up my line, and headed home. I could have stayed longer and fished until the bite completely stopped (or lost all my flies; you can see in the first rod pic I didn't bring many), but why bother? I've always thought that when things are going that good, it's best to keep a good taste in your mouth and not to push your luck.
Okay, I'll admit it, I left because it was dinner time, and when the belly says "go home," I listen.