I took the 11' Cabela's rod I scooped up over the weekend out for a trial cast at one of our local lakes, Blue Marsh. Blue Marsh was created by the Army Corp of Engineers in the 70's as a way to stop the flooding of the Tulpehocken (not really sure how to spell that one, we call it the Tully.) And how do you stop the flooding of a stream? You flood a valley, of course!
So while you wander around the lake, you'll come across roads that lead straight down into it's murky depths from when it was a community. People also used to scuba dive and go down into the houses at the bottom. God only knows what the degeneration of those is putting into the water.
But anyway...... I get to the lake with about 2 hours until it closes at 9pm. I gear up and wade out and start slinging an Ant's Special Streamer on a sink tip. I notice that the tail of the streamer is a bit long; this must be one of the one's that I tied while still working out the pattern. Whatever... tied it on anyway.
But the rod did cast pretty nice. I think the sink tip slowed it down enough that it had a medium action, which I liked. The longer rod did give me a bit more line control, as I like to change directions in my retrieve to give the streamer the look of a darting, or dazed fish, depending on the strip length.
But I cast it out and stripped it in. Finally, without any nipples or anything, I switched to a twist retrieve.Twist...twist....wham! I lift the rod to set the hook. I felt a tug back and then pop! The fly pops out of the water.
Stupid long tailed fly.
Muttering I change to an Outlaw Minnow. I spent some more time defining my shoulder and back muscles, but no more takers. I slowly wade to shore and start to walk around to the other side of the "bay." I look up and see dozens of fish rising right along the bank about 50' from me.
Now dry fly fishing with an 11' rod and a sink tip line didn't really sound like a good time. But I still had my Tenkara rod in the back of the van. I rush back to the van, already seeing the blog post title "Tenkara to the rescue."
And I'm sure it would have. If....... a) night didn't fall 10 minutes ago, b) I could see what the hell the fish were rising to and c) I could see where the hell my fly was landing in the water.
I'm a firm believer in big flies at night, so I tried a #14 Adams. Big but not too big, as I think that they were rising to something a lot smaller. I cast and cast and cast, but no takers. Finally, at 8:45pm, I call it a day...er night, and gear down.
But I did find this. And I will admit, yes, I thought about taking some feathers to tie with, but no I didn't.