Tuesday, October 26, 2010
2010 fall family fishing trip
This past weekend marked the fourth time that family members have made it out to the Western part of the state to take part in an annual fly fishing trip. This year I was joined by my Dad and brother who would fish with my oldest son and I on a tour of some of WNY finest Lake Ontario tributaries. And with the exception of a rather lengthy train delay, that required a rather aggressive plan "B", the trip was a great success!
Saturday we got a late start, but made the most of it at a small trib that has had a small but steady push of salmon since early October. We found a few fish moving up through our location and Dad hooked up with a few fish early, but couldn't seal the deal. We then worked our way downstream, stopping at every good looking location to fish. We even found a nice pocket pool that held a few salmon and worked to those fish for a while, but some tangled lines and bad timing left us fish less once again. Then at the end of a nice riffle section I spotted a fish holding in the tail out. It was a good sized salmon that appeared to be resting. I worked a fly to that fish for a minute or two before the line went tight and we had our third fish of the morning hooked up. My son Jonathan took over and battled the Chinook salmon for a good 15 minutes before he could tire it out enough to slip a net under it. It was an older fish that had a white tail, and in a week or two would be dead. But it put up a great fight and provided us with some wonderful memories.
After a much needed lunch break, we headed West to a larger more well known stream where we would find some other friends and a few more fish. We worked some water above where my other fly fishing friends were, and every now and then could see some fish move through. But it took a long time before any of us was able to hook up with a fish. As we were heading back toward the trail that lead to the parking lot and the end of our fishing trip, Andy and Dad met up with Jessie on the opposite side of the stream. They spotted what they thought was a nice trout holding close to shore, and Andy worked that fish while Jessie helped give him some pointers on his drift. After a missed opportunity, the fish moved and we waited for it to settle back in. Another 10 minutes later I was able to hook that fish and play it to the net where Andy scooped it up. But it wasn't a trout...it was a female Atlantic salmon that was very dark in color. It was a very unique fish with a black colored head, back and fins and silvery purple sides. Lucas Carroll had by that time made his way up to us to see what we had caught, and graciously took some family photos for us...thanks Luke!
It was now getting late in the afternoon, and Dad and Andy decided to make their way back to the car while Jonathan and I tried one more spot. And I was very glad that we did! Jonathan and I walked to the head of a large pool where we spotted 3 fish holding close to shore. I got us into position and handed Jonathan the fly rod. He began casting to the fish, but was having a little trouble getting the line to do what he wanted. After about 5 minutes he handed the rod to me and said "dad it's your turn!" A good 4 or 5 drifts later the water exploded...Fish On!! I gave the rod back to Jonathan and he did battle with a fish that spent a whole lot of time flying out of the water and peeling line off the reel at an alarming rate. But Jonathan held his ground and when the fish tired enough, I slid the net under our second fish of the afternoon....a large male Atlantic salmon!! What a way to end our trip. Not only did we get into a few fish, but we were able to make some great memories with family and friends. I can't wait until next year...thanks everyone!