Went fishing last week with a friend. Put the first musky in the boat for my new boat on a little lake in Virginia. My friend caught it while casting as I motor to the next log piling. It was in the low 20" range. Just a small one, but it's always nice to put one in the boat.
Friend's first musky
My catch, man this branch fought hard on a fly rod.
One thing I've learned about musky fishing is it takes patience. I've been spoiled over the years with catching a couple fish every single outing when I go for brook trout. When exploring new streams I always have a backup plan in case a stream ends up being sterile for trout. Brook trout also are not picky eaters. If you get the fly to them in the presentation they want, they will eat for the most part. For brook trout it is more about their beauty and getting away from the hustle and bustle of every day life. Getting on some little trickle coming off the side of a mountain and flinging a 2 wt with a size 14 dry is a great way to relax and enjoy a little bit of God's creation.
Musky fishing on the other hand is completely different, especially with a fly rod. It is exhausting. It takes patience. It takes focus. It has been going on two years since I have even hooked one. It is a completely different kind of unwinding. It is satisfying to go out on the river and get your butt handed to you by a fish. Throwing ten inch flies on a ten wt all day long just for a little hope of coaxing this predator to bite. Patience is something that musky fishing teaches you. It is probably one of the only species that just seeing them follow your fly is like having a hundred trout day on the stream. So while there are days where I need to be on a mountain stream catching a couple dozen 6 inch brook trout, there will also be days where I need to be out on the river throwing out my arm for a fish that I shouldn't be targeting with a fly rod.
And the tying of musky flies is a therapeutic activity as well. Expensive, but fun. I have gone through more bucktails this week tying musky flies than I like to admit.
I went out again Saturday to again not see a single follow. I caught my first musky on my first outing for them and now I'm having to pay with 20,000 casts instead of 10,000.......Patience.
Been a while since I've gotten out for some trout and been even longer since I've made it up to the SNP. Contemplated about taking the boat out but was just in a trout kind of mood so it was off to the SNP. When I was hiking into the stream I saw a spin fishermen hiking out. Had a chat with him for a while and found out the locals have been running dogs in the area for bear hound training. Guy said he had dogs chase a bear right in front of him on the stream and decided to call it quits. I picked up where he left off fishing and the fishing was good. The fish were not interested in dries at all. I had two swipes at my dry, the rest were on the dropper. I did catch one late in the afternoon on a dry. This big boy demolished the stimi.
Only fish to taken on a dry. An odd ball but I'll take it.
This tree was pretty cool too. It was a single tree that about 5 feet up slip into three separate trunks. Learned that this is due to Apical Dominance.
Here are the rest of the pictures.
Stream levels were surprisingly well for this time of the year.
Can't complain about this much needed relaxing trip. Thanks for reading.