I tend to review a few fishing blogs and coaching blogs prior to getting my brain work for the day going. Working from home... it's great, but it's also hard. The great is the "freedom"... But that's also a challenge and the "hard". One of the challenges is the benefits of a commute. Commuting gives you a few minutes to wrap you brain around the task of working, to bring to the front, key things you want to focus on while working. It's a real value. Sure, a LONG commute is beyond what I'm talking about... but 20-30'... Not a bad thing.
So knowing I was going to load some pic's today I thought I had to "show" Alan, AKA BrkTrt of Small Stream Reflections who wished us all a good cup of Joe today, that I was indeed. "Treat form" given today it was foam cup wednesday - when I got a D and D after dropping the kids at camp for the day.
After living here since 2000, I'm embarrassed to admit I'd never even checked out this local city park until this spring when a few of the kids school friends asked us to go play there on a playground. The first thing I thought was whether the pond had any fish, and the next was that the trails looked fun for running. Oh, and that the city has done a heck of a job making this a gem of a park - it's gorgeous.
A little research showed the trails are great for running (especially a good 300 feet of elevation gain along a little water fall on the backside of the property - that gets the old heart thumping really well)... But I was pretty sure I'd seen a few sun fish... Add them to the rainbow's the state stocks for a local fishing derby and for locals to catch... but which have to die by early June given the ponds temps... and this may have some "legs".
A week ago I was going to zip out and fish for bass at a local pond after reading the kids stories. I'd planned an hour prior to working on a paper for school. But at the end of the street something triggered me to turn right v left and I found myself at the park.
There were a few folks fishing with worms and bobbers, The cities giant fountain in the middle of the pond (it's about 7 -8 acres) was making for great, relaxing noise, a few kids were playing on the playground and a group of folks were taking an outdoor yoga class under the pavilion overlooking the pond. AWESOME to see so many folks enjoying being outside! I had no expectations, or cares. I was just going to prospect with a deer hair diver I'd made. I took no pics. Made no posts - till now. Sometimes, you just want to be there. Maybe it's selfish... I dont think so. Some times, you just need a recharge... so the camera stayed in the pocket. Anyway, I caught a lot of 8-12" bass that night. Maybe 12 of them in an hour.
So last night, same scenario, I was excited to see how things went... was that a fluke or was I on to a great little "secret". Turns out, that I was... This is a fun little pond and I'm sad to admit I've not fished it until now!
I managed a bunch of fish, and was treated to a lot of fish attacking some small fry near the surface which was really cool.
I knew there were sun fish and bass... I knew the state stocks it... but bow's are not going to survive here, no chance. What else lurks.
Well, last night, the first taker was a bass on the same hair bug I'd been to lazy to change from the last trip...
Then I decided to try a little bunny and plastic legs streamer with some maribou. Had a few takers, but was surprised when the one I finally landed was a nice sized perch. I caught several more of these guys prior to deciding that I wanted to fish up top again.
Looking through the bass box, I noticed a small foam diver. it's white and red, and with a loop knot it really wobbles under water. It's not pretty, but it's always caught fish for me, so on it went. Oh, and it's pretty small. It's on a #2 hook, maybe 3" long... Given the fry looked small and the fish are small this seemed a good option.
First cast landed this 10" bass, and then several more from the same area... I start seeing boils about 20yds down the causeway trail I was fishing from and work my way over. After shooting the little fly out, I got a nice take, and "quick released" a real nice crappie. I ended up catching maybe 4 more that actually came to hand. I had NO idea there were perch or crappie in here - cool!
I think people often focus on fishing crappies with small streamers or bead heads.. but man, I've caught a bunch over the years on poppers and sliders. They really like to take small fish, and bugs off the surface - they are definitely "up" feeders.
Next time though, I'm going to bring the 6wt v the 8. The 8 is set up for bass so I just grab it and go... My 6 is still set up for salmon from the fall. It will work fine, just have to grab it from the basement. It will work better if I bring smaller flies and try to target the variety here more than just the bass - which was really my intent the last few trips. Coming out with a ton of #10 white woolly buggers and little pencil poppers could yeild a TON of crappies if last night is an indication... And I think the average bass size suggests they would be happy to eat that stuff as well. Wish I could night fish here... With all these smaller fish around, there has to be a few 5+lb bass in the pond...
No worries though, I'm just psyched to have found it, and look forward to enjoying my new "honey hole".
Oh, and it's resulted in exposing some people to fly fishing that have only seen pic's or seen it on TV. They have been really intrigued and seem excited to investigate it more. Pretty awesome.
Enjoy the 4th of July!