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Wierd Spring

Rick Zieger
By Richard Zieger, Iowa

This has been a wet and late spring. I have been out to the lake five times over my lunch hour. I have only been out on one Saturday. I picked up a throat infection and have been on a course of antibiotics to get that straightened out. Besides that last Saturday it was spitting snow in the 35mph winds. It was not the best time to try to go out, especially when my significant other was not in favor of the idea.

I did try to explain that my mental outlook would be so much better that my physical health would improve from that. The condensed version of the reply was along the lines of, "If you want to live long and die happy, you will not even think of it."

We have had rain once or twice a week since the beginning of March. Not the gentle rains but the gully washers that cause all of the ditches to fill up and the rivers to go out of their banks. The other thing that happens is that a lot of dirt gets washed into the rivers and ponds as this is going on.

Visibility at the lake has been about three inches. That is how far down I can see the stems from last years weeds. I have fished bright flies and dark flies. I have fished big flies and small flies. I fished them at all depths in the water. I fished fast, I fished slowly, and a bunch of things in-between. My total for the whole time was the loss of three flies.

I lost the flies when I snagged things on the bottom and could not get them off. This is the time when you can justify tying flies to save money. The bead heads came from some stuff out of an estate sale. A whole box of stuff for I think $5.00. So the cost of anything in the box is negligible. I got the hooks for about 2.5 cents apiece by going with quantity and catching sale online. So the hooks did not cost me much. The material for the flies came from some llamas and alpacas. I get to go out and collect the stuff that is caught on the fences and some other places. That is if the folks who own these animals don't gather and give it to me in a bag. This makes nice hares ears type flies. So the flies cost me less than a nickel to make.

Don't ask me about the vice, the scissors (8 pairs), bobbins (15), hackle pliers (4), and various other tools I have. I figure those will get depreciated over a large number of flies. This will not add much to the cost. It makes as much sense to me as what my CPA tells me very year with our taxes.

Today I finally caught a fish out at the lake. It poured buckets three times yesterday. The lake is up about two feet. The visibility was about one inch. But the weather was warm and felt good. I had the need to put a line in the water.

Several other folks had the same idea and there were cars along the road and at the far jetty. I pulled into the near jetty and got my rods out. I figured the best place would be between the jetty and the road. It is a broad flat expanse and some fish might be rotating through the area looking for food. Even if it doesn't work, it sure sounds authoritative to write things like that. The other thing is that the fly might be a little more visible to fish with the water being shallower.

I was casting out and retrieving very slowly so the fish could see anything that was near them. I am not sure if I missed two hits or if I nudged some weed stalks. But I kept on casting. On one of the retrieves the line felt different and I set the hook. I had a fish on and it took me a minute to figure out what it was. I got a carp of about seven inches.

That is the only fish that I caught today. With the four bass that I managed on a Saturday outing that almost makes a fish an outing. Not what I am use to having in the spring.

The rain will stop sometime, the water will clear and I will, hopefully, get into some more fish. I am glad to see the reports on the board of some of you catching fish.

Hope you can get out on the water. ~ Rick

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