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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I left yesterday morning to go to a large stream that I had not visited this year. When I arrived, the stream was high and discolored. It's a tricky stream to wade anyway, but really difficult at that height. I decided to try one of the stream's many tributaries and possibly return later in the day to see if it dropped and cleared.

The first trout came to hand a few minutes after starting. I was disappointed when the first water temperature reading showed 50 degrees, but I wasn't surprised, given the cold overnight temperature.

The action was decent the first hour, producing 9 wild browns. The action slowed down in the second hour, with only six trout landed. Things picked up a bit in the third hour; I landed 10 trout and lost several others. The first 19 trout of the day were wild browns, but trout #20 was a colorful 15 1/2 inch rainbow that slipped out of my hand before I could snap a picture. A short distance upstream from there, a heavy trout hit and got off. I caught one more wild brown before I reached posted property.

I drove upstream, parked my car and then walked downstream. The action was very inconsistent. There were stretches of little activity, followed by several catches in a short time period. I caught 14 wild browns in the 1.75 hours it took to reach the next stretch of posted water (unfortunately, on this stream, there are several). The largest trout was a 13 1/2 inch wild brown.

I had been forced to wear a jacket to that point due to the cold temperatures and the wind, but by the time I reached my next destination, it had warmed up enough to shed the jacket. I made the mistake of leaving it in the car.

I walked down through the field and woods and began fishing some rather thin water. The action was fast, though many of the trout were sub-legal sized browns. I took the water temperature and it was 53 degrees.

The sky darkened and the wind began to howl and a snow squall came through. It only lasted about ten minutes, but I wished that I hadn't left my jacket in the car! Just about the time I was prepared to go back and get the jacket,the sun came back out and it became comfortable again. I wished I had pulled out my camera and taken a picture of the squall, but I didn't.

20 wild browns came to hand in that hour. The car was in sight as I fished upstream. I caught 9 more trout before I reached the next stretch of posted land. Two of the trout were chunky rainbows of 14 1/2 and 17 inches. (All of my previous big trout this year were browns.) Three of the trout in the last stretch were wild browns of 13, 13, and 13 1/2 inches.

I noticed the sky had darkened again and headed to the car. Some more flakes fell, then it turned to rain. I reminded myself that it was mid-May and not late March or early April.

I returned to the main stream. It had not dropped much, but had cleared a bit. I switched to a larger rod and tied on a #9 Rapala (Rapala-ing as opposed to repelling). A small bass slightly larger than the lure hit, but got off. I switched to a #7 Rapala and caught a 10 inch smallmouth. I made one final lure change to a large spinner. Two small browns hit and got off. I walked back to the car and drove a short distance upstream. As I started to park the car, the wind picked up again, I knew what was coming next and said that's enough. I drove until the sky brightened again, then pulled into a parking lot to remove my waders and head for home.

For the day, I landed 69 trout (all on spinners) and 1 smallmouth bass in 7 1/2 hours. All but three of the trout were wild browns.

I saw a wild turkey flying along the road and later a hawk as I drove home.


13 1/2 inch wild brown


Inviting spot


17 inch rainbow


High Water


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Sounds like a nice outing. The cold front on Sunday (SE PA) kept me off the water. By tomorrow, I'll be kicking myself for not getting out on the water when I had the opportunity.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I believe in getting out and fishing when you can, especially in May, whether it feels like May or not.
 
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