Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Pyramid Lake - Thanksgiving Morning

For sometime now Thanksgiving has meant more than turkey, stuffing, family, or booze, its meant hunting. I have always enjoyed getting out in the outdoors on Thanksgiving and Christmas morning, its a good way to center yourself before sitting around with family for hours rehashing the same old stuff over and over. Not that I dont appreciate or love them, but it always seems the same. How is work? How is life? Have a girlfriend? The answer to the last is almost always an inevitable NO.

You see, having a girlfriend would really put a stranglehold on my ability to participate in outdoor activities, at least it has on everyone else I know, so until I meet a nice fly fisherwoman or a chukar with human breasts and a vagina I think I will stick to my current way of life which is to spend every free day on the lake, in the river, or hunting some variety of wild game (This was for you old man, you will get your grandchildren eventually).

Moving on... This years Thanksgiving outdoor adventure was influenced by our good friend Steve who was visiting from D.C. and was in deperate need for some outdoor love. Steve is not a fly fisherman so some fish were caught on spoons, please dont judge him.

Thursday morning started off cold and windy as is usually the case in November and December in this region. The nice thing about Thursday's weather was that timed bouts of dead calm would sweep through every 20 minutes making the wind very bearable. We started off at the same old beach we always go to and found that even with an earlier than desired wake up call we weren't the first guys there. "Our spot" was already taken so we moved inside the bay to another good ledge and started tossing flies. The bite seemed slow at first as the guys on the point were struggling to get a bite. Steve struck first with a nice hen cutthroat of average size (18-19").

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Next Dan hooks and lands the second fish of the day, a nice trout with a head that seemed disproportionately large compared to the rest of his body.

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I scored the last 2fish of the day but seemed like I had gotten the short end of the stick in the size category (story of my life).

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At the end of the day we had 4 fish come to shore. No monsters today, but the tug at the end of your line combined with one hell of a view made for a nice start to the Thanksgiving holiday. We'll see you out there Christmas morning too!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Cold Sunday Afternoon

As most of you know, it was cold this weekend. Damn cold. Snow flurries and light winds added to the chill in the air, but I decided that I would make the trek out to the lake to get a little time on the water. I packed up the wife's car with the minimum amount of gear and headed out around noon. I figured this would be a great time to break in the new waders, and make sure they were leak free.

PRO TIP: If you've ever seen the prices on Patagonia Waders, you've probably thought, "Holy crap! That's ridiculous! Are they made with Panda?" I had been suffering through the spring and fall with a nice pair of Sportsman's Warehouse specials that I paid $75 for a few years back. They were leaking at the boot though, which makes for miserable fishing. Patagonia just happens to have an outlet store attached to their warehouse near Mayberry Park, and it just so happens that in November they have a ridiculous sale where they knock off 60% from the lowest marked price. I managed to pick up a nice set of $425 waders for a little over $100. They're amazing BTW...

I got on the water around 1 pm, and it was cold. Gloves and Winter jacket cold. There was a steady wind coming in from the North at around 8 - 10 mph, which can really mess up your casting technique, and possibly cause a winged ear here and there. I noticed a couple of lead tossers fishing the point, so I moved down from them but wasn't catching anything. They moved on around an hour in, so I moved into their spot. I noticed they left with 3 small cutts so I figured there had to be fish there. On my second cast, I managed to hook this 21 inch cutt, great color, and a fairly aggressive fish for the cold water temps. He put up a good fight.


I managed to lose a few more fish before I landed this 19 inch cutt about 45 minutes later


All in all, I had 4 fish on. Not bad for about 2 hours of fishing. Be sure to pack your cold weather gear when heading out. These fish were caught on an Olive Crystal Bugger and a Midnight Cowboy.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Pyramid Lake - A day in the Wind

Saturday evening found us drinking a little too much to make it out duck hunting at 3am so we decided our Sunday would be best spent tossing a few streamers around at the lake. The forecast for Sunday was calling for light and variable winds out of the north, this being right on the backside of a storm front called for overcast skies and the promise of a decent day. Upon arrival at one of our usual beaches we noticed that the winds were anything but light, and the term variable didnt apply to a steady 10-15mph north wind. Thank fully we fish a beach facing south, so our casting wasnt too troubled by it. About 15 minutes in Dan had a nice hit but lost the fish, and not too shortly after that he hooked up and landed (not very gracefully i might add) a nice 22" LCT which would prove to be the only fish of the day. The day went on without much more than 2 bites between the 2 of us.

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Although the bite was slow for us we didnt actually get on water until about 2 hours after fishing light (6:00am). In the time we were setting up we watched a couple guys on the point bring in 4 fish and said that they had gotten 4 earlier as well so the bite seemed to be better in the morning and was drawing to a close just as we were arriving. Between the 6 guys that were fishing this beach with us we only saw 2 fish caught after 8:30.

Despite low temperatures across the area the lake has yet to cool off and settle into its normal winter pattern. The fish still seem to be chasing flies stripped at a moderate speed and the lure guys are still catching them while burning their spoons into shore. I have been seeing a good average for the start of the year so we should be in for a good winter and spring out there. Good luck and see you out there.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Pyramid - Opening Weekend Pictures

Well guys, I'm an ass. I have had some pictures from our opener at Pyramid along with some video and I have just not posted whether due to time, hunting, or just plain laziness. After a summer of pretty much sitting around thinking about fly fishing we finally got out of our chairs and hit the water.

The lake produced a mixed bag for a lot of folks that weekend. Fortunately for us our opening day spot did not dissapoint. We hooked into multiple fish, landed some and lost some. As it so happens the 2 biggest fish of the trip (hardest fighting at least) popped off mid fight. We were able to take a few fish over the 20" mark and saw a few over the 24" mark taken as well by spin fishermen.

As noted by a previous post the name of the game was bait... if you found a bait ball then keep your casts short and your strips very fast. The quick strip seemed to entice the bite far better than a medium paced strip (as I noticed while comparing techniques to a friend on saturday). It was a given that everytime I saw that bait there would be a hookup. It was an exciting couple of days and a great feeling to get back out to Pyramid where everything started for us. Enjoy the fish porn below.

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