MTU board member Richard Foust had this to share about the recent FWAM trip to Susie Q Farm:
The thermometer at my house read 19° when I left the house, but I had not been fishing since November and a strong case of cabin fever pushed me out the door. After scrapping an 1/8” of ice off the windshield of my truck I drove to the Mossy Creek Fly Shop parking lot and met Bill Cartwright shortly after eight. Bill greeted me with “What’s up with you guys? Everybody is early today.” Obviously I wasn’t the only one suffering from acute Cabin Fever.
The Susie Q parking lot was covered with a thick layer of frost, frozen vapors were rising from the slowly moving water in Smith Creek, and the brush along the water’s edge was covered with dense white needles that looked as long as the thorns they hid from view. The water temperature was 45° at 8:45, a little on the cold side for trout, but I put together my fly rod, attached the reel containing a new Ultimate European Nymphing line I have been itching to try since Christmas, attached a pink Golden Retreiver on my tippet with a Psycho nymph pattern as a dropper, 22” above the point fly, and hit the water.
This was my first outing of 2014, and the first cast on the first outing carries some real significance in my book. I landed a 12” rainbow on that first cast, and it wasn’t a very good cast at that. The second cast went where I wanted it to go, and I immediately hooked up with a 14” rainbow. When I retrieved my landing net to use with the second rainbow, I realized it had frozen into the shape of the first fish I had landed 5 minutes ago. After dipping my landing net in the warm, 45° Smith Creek water, the net material assumed it original fluffy shape, and I was able to land trout number two without difficulty. I knew now it was going to be a good year!
Most of the trout I caught Saturday were in the 12” to 14” range, but I landed two that were over 20” and shaped like footballs. I lost three more because of broken knots, and kicked myself for not starting out the season with new leader (I have been too busy to make the run to Mossy to replace last year’s leader spools). By lunch time I had no idea what the temperature was. Early on I dropped a glove in the water, and I was fishing bare handed most of the morning, but it didn’t matter.
It was a good day on the water at Susie Q, and 2014 promises to be a great year, if my success holds up.
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