The Saturday before Memorial Day I headed
for the lake again. The crappie were still
in and I had a guy that wanted to take me
out on the lake. He felt that he could catch
more fish with tube baits than I could with
flies, but wanted to try it at the places
that he fished. He also wanted to try a fly
rod and this would give us the chance to do it.
I got to the lake about 5:30 am and he was
not there yet. I went out on the jetty and
started casting. I could see the fish flashing
under the water and would have fish follow
the fly but not take it. Time to put the
thinking cap on. I tired another fly but
the same thing happened. I changed retrieves
and depths and nothing happened.
I figured that this was another one of
those fickle days when I was going to
have to find the particular fly that
would work. I stated using everything I
had in my boxes, while casting flies tied
in tandem. This way I could test them twice
I tied on a new fly that I had received in
a swap. The first 6 casts resulted in a
crappie taking the fly. I had liked the
look of this fly so I had tied a few up
and had them in my box. I took the swap
fly off and tied the ones I had done on
and started casting. I was getting one or
two fish to hit on every cast. I was having
some trouble hooking them.
At this point my friend drove up to the
parking lot. I noticed he did not have his
boat with him. When I asked why he said that
the hitch assembly had come off the truck
when he hooked the boat up. He had spent
some time getting the boat secured before
he came out to the lake. He said that he
would not have time to fish as he needed
to get his hitch fixed.
I did ask him what time he could go to get
that done. He said not until about 7:30 am.
I told him that we had some time for him to
catch a few fish with the fly rod. We could
fish from the shore and he could try one of
the rods and see how he liked it. He decided
that he had some time to do that.
I rigged up the other rod with one fly on it,
and showed him the basics of casting. I quickly
realized that he was having a hard time doing
this. He had way too much arm in the cast and
was snapping the line. I knew that drastic
measures would need to be taken to get him
to get into the swing of things.
I went and got two sticks from the willows
that had been cut down near the lake. I also
got some rope out of his truck. I tied his
arm to his side and then had him just move
the rod back and forth between the two sticks
that I was holding in front and back of him.
It took about 10 minutes before he got the feel
of the movement. We then took some line out and
had him start casting again. He had trouble
feeling when the line was straight behind him.
I turned him sideways and had him watch the
line go back and not start forward until the
line was straight. It took quite a while before
he got the feeling of this. I do have to say
that he picked it up faster than I did.
He finally got all the pieces together and
decided that he wanted to try for a fish. We
headed to the shore and let him have at it.
He could get about 30 feet of line out, but
that was enough line to reach the fish. He
did miss the first several fish as he was
having trouble remembering to clamp his finger
down before he tried to set the hook. It took
him a little while but he picked up on this
and finally hooked a fish. He had great fun
bringing it in.
He did catch about a dozen fish before he
felt that he needed to leave. He also decided
that he wanted to get a fly rod. He said that
catching fish that way was too much fun not
to do it. When he gets it in, we will go to
a pond that he knows of and catch some fish.
I stayed for about another hour after he left
and got some more fish. It was a slow retrieve
with long pauses that got the fish to hit the
fly. They were not hitting the fly very hard.
It was a matter of waiting a few seconds after
they hit the fly before setting the hook. When
I showed enough patience, I would catch a fish
or two. They were all lips hooked. I did loose
more than I caught, but I was having fun.
I did head home earlier than usual but we had
several things that needed to be done. I also
knew that I would be going out Memorial Day
morning. Getting the things done Saturday
would make me free to stay longer on Monday.
I still had about 70 crappie when I got home.
Made for some good eating.
Hope you can get out on the water. ~ Rick firstname.lastname@example.org