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Better Be Quick

Rick Zieger
By Richard Zieger, Iowa

I headed out to the lake over my lunch hour. It was supposed to be cooler today and the wind was not blowing too hard. Besides that, the lake is more fun than sitting in the office. Also it was a chance to try some flies to see how they work. I was digging around in my vest and I found a couple of hook boxes that I had put these flies in and then forgot to use them. When someone sends me some flies, I usually put them in a hook box with the persons' name. Then when I use them I can report back to the person. That is why they don't go into the fly boxes in my vest.

I went out with a fly that Dan Gober had sent me. Black marabou with two strips of mylar flash, one on each side of the marabou for the tail. The body was black chenille with a black hackle palmered over it. It also had black bead chain type eyes.

I went to the flat on the lake that I fish often during the summer. I cast out and started slowly retrieving the fly. As the line came in, I noticed the end of the line going down slowly. I sat the hook but nothing happened. I did this four times, thinking that I was hitting weeds every time.

Then I began to pay attention some. Other places along this flat where there are weeds, they show. They are to the surface or you can see them under the surface. Nothing like that was happening here. Could it be that these were fish that were following the fly and just holding it in their mouths? As they do this, the line can go under the surface a little.

On the next cast I was really primed. Any twitch in the line was going to be cause for a hook set. I cast out and slowly started bringing the line in. I did not see the line twitch, but the end started to drop. I set the hook and had a nice feisty gill on the line. This fish really started cutting some figures under the water. I got her in and released her to fight another day.

Being curious I cast back out into the same area and started to retrieve. This time there was a solid hit. This was a nice size rock bass, especially for this lake. This fish wanted to dig a hole in the bottom of the lake, but I got him landed.

I kept casting into this area and when I watched very carefully for any change in the end of the loop at the end of the fly line, I would catch a fish. The only thing was that as soon as the line changed I had to strike. If I waited any amount of time, the fish would not be there. I tried other flies, but the fish where not interested in them. This was the only fly that worked for me today. I fished along the whole stretch of this flat and caught a few fish at each place that I cast to. The only thing was to be very fast on the draw.

The last fish I caught was a small carp that hit the fly. There was no skill on my part in this. I did not even know the fish was around. By the time I got this fish in it was time to head back to work. Making a living can be bothersome at times.

Hope you can get out on the water. ~ Rick (written 07/07/05)

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