Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Quite a few days of fishing with Justin. I was worried about conditions the weeks leading up to the trip, but I never doubted that we would have a good time. As it turned out, the conditions didn't detract from the fishing nearly as much as I had thought they might. I'm too tired for more than just the highlights right now, but here are a few moments from day one through day 4.

Day one...Trout on BIG dry flies:

There is nothing like the salmonfly hatches of the west. Justin had fished the big D with me before during this hatch, and this time was no different. We chucked monster flies up underneath every tree we could find and were rewarded with plenty of spectacular action. The redsides on the D fight as hard as any trout, and watching them smack a fly on the surface is just the kind of visual candy J and I are always looking for. Quite a day of trout fishing.

Day two...Carp, any way we could get 'em:

The carping was not easy. The water was high everywhere, and muddy in most places. We stalked around as well as we could and with a little luck and some clear water, stumbled into some nice fish. Justin literally busted a knuckle on one hot fish, and I put the hurt on a big tailer that ended up tipping the scale at 22 lbs.

Day three...more carp, what did you expect?

Day three found us stalking some bigger flats, and surrounded by hundreds of spawning carp. The fish were thick, and too busy getting down to be thinking about eating. We stayed patient, kept moving and picked out the singles from the herds. Justin put it all together on a really nice fish with a 50 ft cast that plopped the fly right into the zone. He then followed up that great cast with a hook set on a nearly imperceptible take. To top the day off J hooked and landed a 15 lb beast that prompted me to tell him "The next time you come to OR, bring more backing."

Day four...despite the lure of big trout on dry flies, we "settle" for huge carp on nymphs:

We really did think about going back to the D, but it wasn't a very long discussion! Day 4 brought even higher water, but we found the fish yet again. At one point Justin was hooked up to a big fish (turned out to be 16.5 lbs). I was standing next to him with the net and flipped the fly out on a smaller fish and hooked up. I landed the fish while J continued to fight his big daddy. I kept the fish in the net planning a picture of a double, and like a dope I flipped another fly out one handed and hooked ANOTHER carp. Three carp between 2 guys is a little too much to handle, but we did managed to land two of them! Highlights of this day included multiple doubles, and we each landed beautiful mirror carp.

All in all, a spectacular trip. I loved showing Justin some of my favorite spots, and can't wait for him to get back out here again. Always a pleasure to fish with you J!


Anonymous said...

Amazing. What was the hot carp fly, John ? The SJW ?

Anonymous said...

I guess I should have gone out even though the water was high. I'll come in July for a week though. the Reel John Montana

Unknown said...

damn, you boys sure put a hurt on those fish. great job guys! looks like a great trip to cherish and remember.

was the clam before the storm for show, or did you get a carp to take it?

John Montana said...

Great trip...we caught fish on a variety of flies, but the big winners were:

Bullet head salmonfly (dry)
San Juan Worm
Rubber Legged hare's ear

Justin got a few on a swimming clouser as well.

the clam was for show...we didn't fish it. I like the concept, but think we need a closed version. all the clams we found that were had closed up shop.

Wendy Berrell said...

What a trip. Here it is more than a week removed and I'm still riding the high. Thanks for having me out, and for taking me to such cool water. Loved it.

Great 22 lb fish too - nice work.