Well it seems that Eastern Washington has a few secrets to hold. I spent the last four days fishing for Rainbows, Browns, and Tiger trout out of a pantoon boat with my dog in tow. There is a gathering at Lake Lenice every year for the opening weekend of trout season in Washington. This was my first shot at fishing in this manner, and I have to say I was more than skeptical. Being from the background of fishing moving water, this still water fishing can be an intimidating task for a Steelheader. Along with the still water comes the light line, the light rods and reels, and most of all the small number 14 and 16 hooks. To a Steelheader this is like microscopic surgery. The first morning was the start of several surprises to come over the next few days. First of all I was up and ready to fish at 6 AM, the rest of the crew slept until 8 AM. I couldn’t understand what the heck was taking so long, so I headed over to my photographers trailer, (Brian Woobank) to see what the hold up was. After waking him I was shocked to see him roll over and seeing the clock reading just 7:30, he just rolled over and said “the hatch won’t start for another few hours, go back to bed”. I couldn’t understand this, but I just waited to see what the rest of the day would bring. After a reasonably good breakfast of sausage, eggs, toast and coffee, we were on our way to the lake. The walk to the lake is a fairly short 10 minutes from the camp. Making the camping area off the banks of the lake make it alot less accessible and leave it open for fisherman to find a good spot to fish, even when it’s busy. We geared up with waders, flippers and pantoon boats and headed into the lake. The fly of choice is the chrominid,which is a pupi stage of a mesquito. Not a big lake in size, it offers some very large browns and Tigers, with the rainbows reaching about the 28 inch mark. The first day I spent 3 hours on the lake from 9 to 12 with no luck at all. So I headed back to camp and had some nice camp style hot dogs for lunch and relaxed for about an hour before heading back out to try again. At this time I was sure that this was not for me. As I walked down the trail to the lake I started thinking that I fish for Steelhead and that’s just a big trout. So upon getting to the lake, I scanned to bank line and made a decision to fish in a spot that I had seen another fisherman in earlier. The other fisherman was Capt. Larry from Pacific Yacht Instruction and guide services. Knowing that he must know what he was doing, I decided that it looked fishy and so I paddled over and dropped the anchor. Working with the smaller gear was a bit of a challenge at first, but within an hour I was on it and doing fairly well. Within ten minutes my indicator went under, and I lifted up on my first ever bow on a chromonid. I expected to just bring this fish to the boat no problem, but another surprise hit me when this bow took half my line before I even knew what happened. I had to play him with kid gloves and be very gentle, or the 2# test I was using would snap with just the slightest bit over tension on the line. I landed that fish and 6 others the first day out, this was the third surprise, I didn’t think this could grab me the way it has, and I will now start my studying of the world of trout and bug fishing.
Stay tuned for what the second day brought………………………………..