Saturday, September 4, 2010

A Day on the South Platte

Today I decided to take out my Iwana on the South Platte and see how how the it fishes at 150cfs, which is perfect for dries.

Took off early, heading towards the foot hills of the Front Range.

Oh, I forgot to mention. Leaving the house, the temperature was 60F. Arriving at the stream 40 mins later, it was brrrrrrrrrr 37F. I guess packing the fleece was a very good idea this time.

However, it was a beautiful Colorado day, blue sky everywhere you looked. I rigged up a new line I was tinkering with (7 ft no 4 fluor carbon, 5 ft no 3 fluor carbon plus 5 ft tippet) and tied on a rainbow warrior and a RS2. Realized I forgot my stick-on strike indicators, so I had to go back to the car and see if there was anywhere a strike indicator I could use. I was lucky enough to find a small size "thingy". Soon enough, I hooked up with nice 'bow that fell for the rainbow warrior and was reminded that those South Platte 'bows are quite spunky. I realized that I still have to work on my fish fighting technique with a Tenkara rod... sometimes I do miss that reel!

I switched to a sakasa kebari and but couldn't buy a strike - not sure if it was lack of technique of just wrong fly for the river. The South Platte is a tailwater fishery with small nymphs being typically the ticket but right now I would like to blame lack of success to lack of technique, lol. I also tried to fish with the fly only, no weight, no indicator, but again, years and years of using strike indicators left me a bit doubtful whether I do have the technique to fish without. This is certainly an area I will be focusing on more in the future and try to learn better and simpler fishing techniques.

As it was warming up, I switched to a yellow CDC & Elk, size 16. I figured it would be a good pattern to imitate both Caddis and Yellow Sallies. I also switched lines, using initially a "tapered" fluoro level line (yeah, tapered and level, what was I thinking?) and moving to the Tenkara USA furled tapered line. Had issues casting with that line at first, I was wondering if the fly was too fluffy, the leader too long (5ft) or just, again, lack of technique. It took only a few cast's though to "get" it, the line being wet and having more mass helped also a lot. The wind however did NOT help.

Had to move around quite a bit to find good water for dries since this is mostly a nymph fishing river, but I was able to coax 4 more beautiful bows into taking my flies, all fish were in the 13-15 inch range. This one was a particular beauty!

A few shots of the river today, before to rubber hatch started - I am so glad that Summer is over with no more float tubers on the river...

Fly of the Day: CDC & Elk, yellow, size 16:

Oh, one more thing. Did I mention that it was 90F by the time I got home?