Before I became a fly fishing addict, I was a bait-casting bass guy. Nothing could top spending an evening out on my boat throwing a LIVETARGET frog into heavy cover, waiting for an explosion. In those days, my boat got a lot of good use and helped me catch a lot of fish.
Unfortunately, last summer was extremely busy which included buying a house and attending 6 weddings, so the boat was neglected. I was anxious to get behind the wheel and stand at the bow with the trolling motor peddle under my feet again. The only difference is this time I would leave my bait casters at home and exchange them for fly rods.
On a side note, it’s amazing how many people I talk to that have loads of nice, traditional fishing gear that they no longer touch after taking up fly fishing. Fly fishing brings a satisfaction and challenge that seems to cause people to set aside the traditional methods.
After spending the entire spring fishing trout, I decided it was time to take a break from the trout streams and get the boat going. The plan was for Abigail and I to meet up with my buddies Drew and Joey at a lake that I was familiar with from my previous bass days. The weather forecast… 45 degrees and a soaking rain. Not ideal, but when you and your friends are fishing freaks, you “forget the forecast.”
We met up at the lake around 7:30 am and were pleased to see there was only 1 other boat that decided to brave the weather. After getting checked for invasive plants (and passing inspection), we launched. The goal was to find bass and pike–the 8 wt was the rod of choice paired with a nasty pike fly that Drew tied.
Not long after we started, Drew hooked up and landed a nice bass. Drew’s mojo must have rubbed off on me, because I followed suit shortly after with a nice largemouth of my own and man did he want the streamer I was offering. The rest of the day was pretty sporadic, but I managed to land a solid pike and Abigail managed the tiniest little tiger muskie I have seen caught. Although it was only 14″ long, she now holds bragging rights because she has a muskie on a fly and I don’t. The goal is to triple that length yet this year, but for now she holds that over me…
After spending nearly 5 hours in 40 degree temps and a soaking rain it was time to call it a day. When we returned to the landing, my truck was the only one still parked. The weather was uncomfortable, but we had the whole lake to ourselves for a majority of the time. Fishing in nice weather is enjoyable, but there is something invigorating about fishing in bad weather. It forces you to focus and give extra effort. Your sole reason for being there is to fish, nothing else.
- Don’t let weather deter you from getting out. It usually will deter everyone else, leaving the water all to you.
- If you don’t have full rain gear, wear your waders and put a rain jacket over them. It acts as full rain gear without having to be rain-specific gear.
- If you’re throwing big flies, double haul. It’s a must if you don’t want your arm to turn into a noodle. If you don’t know how to double haul, there are plenty of youtube videos you can watch.
- Enjoy time spent out on the water, regardless of the conditions!