I don't normally travel on long weekends preferring to avoid the masses where possible but the weather forecast forced my hand and we rolled the dice heading into a spot that was likely to be very busy with a lot of hunters. I still packed my rifle on the off chance that the human traffic was going to be low but as it turned out there were plenty of people with the same idea, luckily no-one else was fishing and it felt like I had this whole river to myself. Fine weather, hungry fish that have seen little pressure and fishing by yourself is a recipe for pure gluttony, and chow down I did.
The dogs getting acquainted at the heli pad.
We were planning on walking in but we figured it was worth it to fly just to take a few more beers with us. We atoned for our sins by walking out.
My first fish off the top for the season, a text book slow motion take of a sz16 Para-wulff Pheasant Tail, the stuff we all dream about. The majority of the fish were feeding subsurface with the go-to rig being a sz12 Mirfz Brown BLT with a sz16 Back Country Pheasant Tail hanging underneath.
The days were mostly sunny with a strong southerly breeze, everything froze at night.
Lots of lovely fish like this over the weekend.
River scenery photo #1.
River scenery photo #2.
River scenery photo #3.
River scenery photo #4. A BIG fish was lurking just under my feet below the ledge, I tried to sneak around from upstream and get a shot at him but he was way ahead of me and nowhere to be seen when I got down there. Good on him.
River scenery photo #5. Just waiting for a silly deer to wander out minding its own business.
Apart from my rod setup this is the sum total of my tackle for the weekend. Minimal is good when you're counting the grams in your pack and I never felt like I didn't have something I needed.
Condition is coming on for a lot of the fish, things could be pretty good for later in the season. Only one fish showed signs of possibly feeding on mice.
Another beauty of a brown.
The 9ft 4wt Scott Radian never missed a beat, able to wrangle in the big fish, present at short range and deal with a stiff breeze ripping down the valley. I'd be lost without it now.
Looking back down an unbelievable stretch of water.
Long story short, when the weather plays ball just get out there...