I stopped by a small stream in the early afternoon. The cold nights recently had frozen over the slower stretches. Where there was moving water, it was running on the top of the ice. I was hoping that the warm afternoon sun would bring a few stone flies out but there really wasn't any open water in the slower stretches. The woods were quite beautiful in the bright sun so I figured it was a day for picture taking.
|Squirrel tracks in the snow|
Given the conditions, I had two spots in mind that might have open water and yet be deep enough to provide some refuge. At the first stop, I managed to coax something to pick up the pinkie but it popped out of it's mouth and I couldn't stir up any more interest. The final stop, I tried the pinkie again and had two fish pick it up and move around the pool but again the slightest pressure pulled the fly free. Lately, it seems the fish are just picking up the pinkie at one of the ends and not really taking the whole fly. As a last attempt, I tied on an Edson Tiger and a brook trout came off the bottom and followed the fly. I held it in the current for a moment and it closed in on the fly. When I saw the fish turn, I raised the rod and had a solid hookup. The next challenge was to safely get down the steep snow covered bank without sliding down and onto the shelf ice and into the water. Mission accomplished and the brook trout was quickly back into the icy water.