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Flood Time

Rick Zieger
By Richard Zieger, Iowa

It was a Saturday morning. On Thursday we had from 8.5 to 11 inches of rain. It all depended on which band of rain came by your place. It is still time to go out and see what I might be able to do. The canoe is at home as I know that all of the fields and roads into the ponds will be impassable.

The first pond I try to go to does not work out at all. There is a three foot deep 15 foot wide ditch that you have to cross to get to this pond. I get about 50 feet from this ditch when I see that the water is that far out of the ditch. The water is probably about five feet deep in the ditch and running very fast. This is not a good place to try to think about going.

I head back to the truck and go toward another pond. This one I can see the dam from the road.

Water is shooting about 10 feet high out of the drain pipe at the bottom of the dam. This drain pipe had been modified a few years ago. When water shot straight out of the pipe it was eroding the bank across from the bottom of the dam. They put a "U" joint on it with about two feet of straight pipe above it. That way water comes up and does not erode the bank.

With water shooting that high out of the drain pipe I know that this pond is very dirty. I also know that this is one of the ponds that I do not catch many fish in if it is dirty. So it is off to a third pond. My wife says that I can be obsessive about fishing at times. I like the term of persistent more.

I head to a pond that I know I will have to hike into. But this pond is higher on the hill side than some others are. Maybe the rain has not affected it as much. This pond is on the back side of a hill so I can't see it until I go over the hill and look at it. I make the half mile hike and get to the pond. Illusions and delusion are great things for the confirmed fly fisher.

There is water running over the overflow spillway on this pond. The water is 10 feet behind the trees that are usually about 10 feet from the water line. This will not be a place to try to fish.

I hike back out to the road to head home. I meet a farmer that lives in the area. He told me they had a couple of bands of rain come through that kept him from seeing his barn that is 80 feet from his house. He said it was not rain drops, but it was sheets and blankets of rain.

There was one more stop to try and make. The local lake that the city draws water from has a concrete dam that acts as the overflow for the lake. I thought there might be a few fish hanging around this area.. With all the water going over the dam there might be some fish looking for food in this area.

I spent 20 minutes casting in this area and managed to catch one crappie. This was a nice fish so it turned out to be my supper that night. I was just short of being skunked for the day. I am not wildly successful every time that I go out fishing.

Hope you can get out on the water. ~ Rick

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