I need to go for a paddle on a lake!

Jim Wallace

Smells like low tide.
Tomorrow. I have a lake in mind. I need to get in shape for paddling along the jetty for rockfish and Ling Cod fishing. A lake provides a nice little paddling workout. Riding in a power boat just doesn't work for me, after sitting in a car driving to the lake. I NEED to paddle!
I'll start out dragging a bugger until I find some fish. Then I might just anchor up (or drift if there's no wind) and cast and strip. Temps are supposed to hit the low 60's here on the Harbor tomorrow afternoon!
Should be a decent day. But I'll be up in the lower foothills.

Jim Wallace

Smells like low tide.
Finally got up to the lake and got some paddling in and my line wet by a little after noon, PST, or maybe it was a little after 1pm PDT. Was feeling a little ADHD. Sun was bright, sky was blue, and the air was about 57 F. Lake's surface was a sheet of glass. The regular powerbait dunking crew were envying my C&R net as I launched and headed for the far shore.
The surface temp varied from 49 to 50 degrees F. There were a few chironomid husks floating, and I even saw a few adults, about 3/16" long. Seemed like I missed the actual hatch, though. I spied a small light tan mayfly, and a small stonefly. There were some small reddish brown spiders floating on the film, too.
To avoid confusion, I started out trolling a 2-fly combo (BH #8 bugger with a soft-hackle trailing it) on my 8' 4 wt and clear intermediate line, but only snagged some chara weed. Couldn't cast all that crap with the med action 4 wt, so I switched to a Sixpack.
After drinking the Sixpack, I turned into a casting wizard! (Just kidding!!!)
The #10 Sixpack started drawing strikes right away. I hooked up whenever I was casting and retrieving, but missed most of the yanks that came when I was trolling. Fly worked at whatever depth I tried, from just above the bottom in around 15' of water, to just under the surface.
All nine of the trout I brought to hand were cookie cutter stockers about 12.5"-13.5" except for one lunker of 14." I lost a few. One of the ones that got off seemed bigger...gave some large violent head shakes right after hookup, and ran some line off my reel, but I never saw it.
None of the other anglers on the lake (7 or 8 boats worth) mentioned anything bigger than 15". A guy in a Hobie yak had caught one of the 15"ers, and he held it up for me to see.
A dude in a driftboat was anchored up and appeared to be fishing with bait, and said he was keeping his trout for Halibut bait.
"What happened to the bigger ones??" we all asked each other and ourselves.
I brought in one 13"er that was covered with some ugly red bumps and lesions, and I carefully de-hooked it without touching it with my bare hands, using my forceps. Yuk!
Wind came up just a little bit, so I hung out just off the leeward shore, where it wasn't much of a bother. Came up even more as I was paddling in to the ramp just before sunset, which gave me a light paddling workout.
Mission accomplished, sort of.

Jim Ficklin

Genuine Montana Fossil
Sounds like a fun & productive day, Jim. I'm done rigging & modifying my NuCanoe & transportation apparatus. I'll work on home projects thru the weekend (supposed to have wind & rain today & I don't "go out with the masses" on weekends . . . it's a "retirement thing"), but Tuesday is looking pretty good right now. I added a Pocket Puller to the transom so between that & my anchor trolley, I will be able to anchor fore & aft from my seat. Should work good.

Jim Wallace

Smells like low tide.
Aha!!! I discovered the problem. Unbeknownst to me, WDFW had stocked the lake on Mar 4th with 5,000+ Rainbow Trout from "Trout Lodge Commercial" hatchery. They are 1.3 fish per lb, or approx 3/4 lb each. As far as looks, general quality, and fighting ability, these trout are far inferior to the really nice, beautiful and hard fighting Rainbows from Eells Springs hatchery that are usually stocked in this lake. THERE IS NO COMPARISON! These recently stocked trout really suck, and I hope the powerbaiters clean them out ASAP. I won't be back to Narwhalsawzal until I notice that some better quality trout have been stocked there.:confused:


I'm headed to a planted Oregon coastal lake tomorrow. May have a fish caught report... may have a fishing and no fish caught report... may have a great breakfast and that was the highlight of the day report.

(I hope there's some manner of trout in the lake: I have a dozen different experimental fly patterns I came up with over the winter that I need to try.)