Tuesday, January 08, 2013
A January Weekend
Friday was the main intent of the trip up to the Cabin. My old GMC was in need of some attention and the local Garage near the cabin affords quality workmanship at a bargain price compared to my home town mechanics. This coupled with the fact that I like to support the local businesses in the area so they are there when I need them saw me without transportation for the better part of Friday as they repaired my old girl. I took the time to tend to some overdue chores around the cabin and give the sleds a good run around the property to keep them in shape. By the time I did end up at the river it was an hour before dusk and I only managed to persuade a few trout before calling it a day. Saturday found me meeting up with a Michigan Centerpinner and new friend Brian T.
We got the Clacka safely in the water and were soon on our way. The morning hours faded away quickly in conversation. We failed to turn any fish but we had fun exchanging stories over the mile or so of river we drifted. It was very apparent we chose the wrong section of river for this particular morning so we cut our losses and decided to re-launch higher in the river for round two. Buy now the temps had risen and were actually hovering just above freezing. We worked our way down river picking away the seams, troughs, and buckets. Aside from a few trout we had nothing to show for our efforts. Then Brian tied on a small washed egg bead.
Within 10 mins he had hooked and lost three large fish out of a line we had been working diligently with other offerings. Once again an undisputed bead testimonial had presented itself. We carried on for the remainder of the outing only turning a few trout before calling it a day. It was a full day on the river but when shared with good company and conversation seemed to pass far to quickly. Brian is a great guy and I look forward to sharing a drift with him again in the very near future but next time returning the favor in my Hyde.
I awoke early Sunday morning with aspirations of launching the Hyde out of High Bridge. I had mounted some “Downeaster” rod holders to the front casting platform on Friday as part of my list of chores. I was eager to get out for a maiden plugging voyage but I quickly learned Mother Nature had other plans in mind. There was a couple inches of fresh powder on the ground and more falling.
I was not prepared to do battle with a slippery snow covered launch in my 2WD on the day I was scheduled to drive home so I decided to call it and made plans to wade fish below the coffer. The morning was relatively mild in comparison to Saturday. The access was quiet with only one other soul on the river when I arrived. I settled into the river and began my day. Maybe a dozen or so drifts into the morning I turned around to be greeted by a familiar face. It was Gary M a Schmidt’s guide friend from the Wellston area. I had fished with Gary out of my boat back in the spring and it was nice to meet up again on the river. We caught up and shared some centerpinning conversation and the overall state of the current fishery. I showed Gary the bead Brian T hooked the three fish on the day prior and tied it on in the process.
The first cast saw my float disappear while in mid conversation with Gary and I had my first fish of the morning. It was a small shaker steelhead but confirmed to us both the effectiveness of these crazy beads. A little while later after a total retie I popped a Waxworm back on and slide down river 25 yards or so. Once again midstream of our conversation my float dropped but this time the surface exploded when a very large dark hen leaped from the edge of the middle chute. She peeled line and screamed downriver. The GLX was loaded up deep but holding her own. I started to work my way down when the fish broke surface again then began to roll on top followed by sudden disappointment...She threw the hook. It was too bad but certainly nice to finally load the rod up with a decent fish on the big river. It was still early in the day and I was determined to put a decent one on the bank so I shook it off and carried on. Gary had to get going so we bid our farewells and I carried on down river picking away my favourite haunts.
On a disappointing side note I experimented with a new field camera that I had received for Christmas on this outing. Sadly enough the images are subpar and I apologize to all for their quality. I keep chasing an elusive ghost with these cameras and now have learned the hard way to be happy with what works. Lessons of the river...