A semi-coherant collection of ramblings,misdealings, and Tom Foolery experienced in pursuit of Great Lakes Steelhead.
Thursday, December 13, 2012
The Bead Crow has landed
Beads...One time I quite possibly could have been quoted as saying " I'll never fish them..." or "Nope no need to bother...not for me" It's not that I didn't believe they would work but I questioned why everyone was jumping on the bead band wagon all-in. I saw the bead as nothing more than a single egg presentation that was flawed compared to it's rival the yarn fly. To each his own I thought...I've seen it before with the pink worm and the marabou jigs.
To me beads were nothing new. They have been on the West Coast Scene forever and all of a sudden it seemed that there was no other way to catch a steelhead in Ontario last year than with the almighty bead. I also questioned the trailing hook and how one would not line their adversary for lack of a better terminology or perhaps better explained as hooking them on the side of their face rather than directly inside the mandible as other bait presentations work. I like to think of myself as a free thinker and one that needs to understand the form behind the function.
These points and the fact that we were still catching more steelhead than any sane human being deserves pretty much kept me from trying them. Perhaps a little bit of old man stubbornness should be thrown into this mixture for good measure. I have become accustomed to catching fish with my methods of preference and perhaps this has started to set me in my ways. I never used to be that way. I was always the one pushing Norland to try the latest and greatest alternatives.
I was notorious for having something of mystery in my kit for trials but these beads...Dammit I just couldn't go there...I refused! This was all to change for me after this past weekend. I fished with a gentlemen who's rig would make an Ontario Steelheader shutter. This coupled with his bizarre offering so foreign to the likes of any Canadian purist float fisherman puzzled me. But what puzzled me more was he caught fish! As a matter of fact he out fished me on a piece of water that I know intimately. He got me thinking that I have become set in my ways and perhaps losing the edge I once revelled in.
Then came the text message from an editor friend requesting some quality imagery of Steelhead caught with beads. Jesus...I thought to myself. Now I gotta eat crow and try these god forsaken tokens of conformity. Today I fished a bead and today I became a believer. Crow has never tasted so good and I totally understand why so many people have flocked to them. I caught enough fish to negate any question of it being a fluke. I fished them faithfully for the mainstay of my day just to evaluate them fairly and they consistently produced fish without question.
There were some fish that were hooked external to the mouth but I learned to adjust my hook tail and started to refine the presentation. I'm in...I'm sold...They work and work very well. The latter part of the day I switched back to roe and pounded out a few more fish in no time which led me to believe I may have enjoyed similar successes with the old faithful tried and true Roebag. The effort wasn't to see what produced better. |It was to capture some quality imagery of Steelhead on the bead and understand what all the hype was about.
I managed to accomplish both. The river had more traffic than I have experienced in many years but I still managed to fish in isolation. I am now curious to put them to the test on the big river at the Cabin in MI. Favourable reports have been exchanged with these offerings and it will be fun putting them to the test on the stubborn water.