Lake fishing tomorrow!

Discussion in 'Stillwater' started by Jim Wallace, Nov 4, 2012.

  1. Jim Wallace Smells like low tide

    Posts: 5,663
    Somewhere on the Coast
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    Hedzup! If this forecast holds, then tomorrow is looking good for hitting wetside lowland/foothills lakes. The sun is supposed to make an appearance.
    I've got a lake in mind. Stacking my gear near the door. Next up, a couple of proven lake patterns will be whipped up at the vice. My lake box is currently verging on "impoverished" status. Slim pickins of what I like to fish, the rest being filler.
    Recently, the forecast has been turning bad, with rain coming in when I had been hoping for no rain. Its raining lightly and blowing moderately hard from the south here on the coast right now, but I am hoping for high pressure to be building tomorrow morning.
  2. Jim Wallace Smells like low tide

    Posts: 5,663
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  3. Gary Knowels Active Member

    Posts: 1,110
    Seattle, WA
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    Let me know how you do. I'm still planning on being on the Harbor this weekend. If the weather cooperates, lets find some fish!
  4. Jim Wallace Smells like low tide

    Posts: 5,663
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    Gary, the weather forecast is looking good thru Saturday, after this front hits and moves thru tonight. Could even see some sun again tomorrow. Overnight lows to be dropping successively each night, and we should be seeing frost in the mornings before the weekend. So I plan on being ready for Sat.
  5. Jim Wallace Smells like low tide

    Posts: 5,663
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    Here's my report on yesterday's fishing:

    Got a late start because I had to tie up some extra flies, but of course I never got around to needing them. Couple of guys plunkin' bait were packing up with their limits as I got there, and told me the fishing had slowed down.
    I stripped out some line and quickly paddled across to the far side of the lake where the shoreline is undeveloped, dragging my Narwhalsawzall Stocker Clocker (NSC) at high speed just below the surface. That succeeded in inducing some extra drag, but produced nothing else.

    OK, now I'm past the last house and near a row of pilings, slowed to a near dead-drift so my line can sink, and I see a couple of rise rings. Thinking to strip in and cast to the rings when I get a good grab. Stuck it and had a frisky 14"er really put a bend in my med/soft action 8' 4 wt. Released that one unharmed, and not long after, i noticed a small school of baitfish bust the surface only about 2 casts away. What! Reminded me of stuff I see on the estuary. I stripped in, paddled over, and cast in that direction. Strip, strip...wham! Hooked into a strong 16"er that just refused to come to the net. It jumped several times, too. Whenever it saw my net, it took off again. I eventually got it in for a pic, and then revived it until it swam from my hand. That was a good fish.
    I C&R'd another about 15", and although the action was pretty good where I was, i headed down along the brushy, treed shoreline, trolling some, and also casting to the submerged logs.

    I paused to photograph an eagle, and ended up cursing myself as I noticed my camera's batteries dying. I had forgotten to change 'em out. Well, I had gotten pics of two good fish. Enuff.

    Action slowed down. Nothing was hitting, so I stripped in, and found that, on my last cast, I had perfected my "riffling hitch cast" whereby the fly automatically riffle hitches itself midcast!
    That type of rigging imparts questionable action in a lake pattern (not many riffle sections out in the lake), so I un-hitched it.
    My luck improved again! I cast toward a big submerged log and stripped my NSC slowly out over the drop-off near the tip of the log, pausing to let it sink. Whups! Snagged? No! A solid fish!
    It felt big, but hadn't really lit up yet. I had it stripped in almost to my leader connection, and I got a glimpse of it. Biggest one of the day so far! Suddenly, it jumped and took off, downwind, and I fed line until it was on the reel. I didn't get into my backing, as I started going for a ride, with the fish and wind eventually pulling me halfway down the lake before I was able to get it near the boat again. (That 8' 4 wt Cabela's Traditonal was flexing into the grip most of the time, and I decided that it was too soft a rod for these strong 2 pounders).
    I wasn't too worried, though, with 3X fluro tippet (on a soft 4 wt). Eventually that fish tired enough to let me net it. Whew! Didn't get a pic, as I had put my camera away. I did measure the beast's length. It was a solid 18" fatty.

    I trolled back up to the calm, glassy lee shoreline, where I could drift and cast easier. That was where most of the good action was earlier. Tried a new line that I had strung up on another outfit, but didn't like it, so went back to the original stick, which was fine, as I didn't hook into any more of those 2 pounders. I did enjoy some good action provided by several players in the 13" to 15" class.
    Over all, the action was a little slow over 3+ hours of fishing . Probably released a dozen that I brought in, and lost that many more on LDRs. Some of the ones I lost were "2 pounders."
    I might add some pics to this later.
    Ford_Fenders likes this.
  6. Gary Knowels Active Member

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    Seattle, WA
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    Jim,
    seems like the internet had it out for you and cut off your report. Also, any pictures of that Narwhalsawzal Stocker Clocker? I was playing around at the vise last night after making dinner and a couple glasses of wine (see, the trick is to only use half of the bottle of wine while making the sauce and drink the rest of it by the time you are done cooking) and created a fly that I'm calling the reverse oreo. It's yet to see water, but I'm hoping it proves successful.
  7. Mark Yoshida Active Member

    Posts: 471
    Seattle WA
    Ratings: +67 / 1
    Jim
    Love that lake. Wish it was closer. I always got fish near those piling and by the last house. Also in front of the blue slide and near the clearing between the houses where the wind funnels through. Do you know the story of those pilings? So odd that they are there.
    Nice report. I figured thats the one you would pick.
  8. Jim Wallace Smells like low tide

    Posts: 5,663
    Somewhere on the Coast
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    I actually broke my speed record for driving to the lake, yesterday. Lucky thing I didn't get pulled over, as I left my driver's license at home!
    Doug Rose has some interesting comments about that lake in his recent book, Fly Fishing Guide to the Olympic Peninsula. His info has added to my knowledge and enjoyment of the fishing there.
    He mentions that the pilings are leftover from a sawmill that operated on the lake when the surrounding forest was logged in the 1930's.
    I won't spill the other beans, but I will recommend the book!
  9. Jim Wallace Smells like low tide

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    Gary, I'll show it to you when go fishing together. Its just a BH lake bugger tied with marabou tail, body of New Age Chenille, hackle color varies to compliment body color (black, brown, grizzly, or furnace), and a couple wraps of Petite Estaz right in front of the hackle/behind the beadhead.
    The one I was using had a black marabou tail with a pinch of red in it, and furnace hackle wound over "chocolate mint" new age chenille, and "opalescent olive" petite estaz. Size 8 4x streamer hook.
    I'd tied up a similar one with "black pearl" chenille and estaz, black saddle, and with a little bit of purple in the black tail. That one's still a virgin, though.
  10. Gary Knowels Active Member

    Posts: 1,110
    Seattle, WA
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    Saturday works for me. I plan on being at the lake pretty early, daybreak if possible, but will probably need to head out around 1 or 2. Might fish Sylvia the next morning too, just for a few hours while the rest of the family sleeps.
  11. Jim Wallace Smells like low tide

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    Gary, daybreak is a bit early for me to arrive at the lake, but I could shoot for as early as 9am. Don't think I'll make it any earlier, what with the sub-freezing overnight temps and possibly slick roads. This time of year, I like the sun to have risen over the tree tops by the time I arrive at the lake.
    We'll have to stay in communication. Are you thinking of using your kickboat? I'm not sure of its capabilities, but Narwhalsawzall is no place for a regular float tube, if you want to get around. You should at least have oars. I could always hitch up my fly-friendly 16'er. A good fresh water dip wouldn't hurt it at all.
  12. Gary Knowels Active Member

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    I was planning on using my kick boat. Essentially it is halfway between a float tube and a pontoon. My butt rides out of the water, with legs submerged. I don't have a paddle, using only fins to get around. I've taken it out on some decent sized water, but I'm always a bit leery of venturing too far, especially if more than a breeze is forecast.

    The only flotations that I have are the kick boat and a U-style float tube that I use for hike to lakes.
  13. Jim Wallace Smells like low tide

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    Its a good half mile or so to where i usually like to start fishing, and maybe 3/4 + of a mile of shoreline that I like to fish (along the undeveloped far shore), with some ziggin' and zaggin', so its going to be at least 3 miles or so, by the end of the sesh. So I will be getting my "fly-barge" ready, just in case you think you might want to get taxied around fishing from either a chair or a casting deck.:)
    If you'd rather just meet up and fish from separate personal watercraft, then I'm good with that. Makes it easier for me. But the barge and trailer won't suffer from a fresh water dip.
  14. Gary Knowels Active Member

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    I'd love to share a boat with you. I guess I didn't realize that the lake was as large as it is. I love my kick boat, but distance and/or speed is the one real stillwater limitation it has.

    However, if I didn't have the option I still would have given it a go with what I have!
  15. mtskibum16 Active Member

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    Puget Sound Beaches
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    I've been wanting to check that lake out. I've heard good things!
  16. Jim Wallace Smells like low tide

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    Hit it first chance you get on a nice day this month, and in Dec as well. The fishing gets tougher later, especially when there's some ice on the lake. I fished it a couple of times mid-winter, and it was pretty slow action. That only means that I didn't figure it out those days.
  17. Go Fish Language, its a virus

    Posts: 1,285
    Rheomode, Wa.
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    Jim, thanks for the report. I love that lake and fished it
    in spring with 3 fish to hand in a few hours. A boat would
    be the best way to go, wish I had one. I should fish there
    more with it being only 45 minutes away. What line were
    you using?

    Dave
  18. Jim Wallace Smells like low tide

    Posts: 5,663
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    I have found that a clear intermediate full sink is the most useful line there. It works slow trolling in the 8 to 15' depths I troll. I'm not snagging bottom, usually, but I stop and let my line sink a lot. I'll often get a strike after letting my fly and line sink again mid-retrieve, or while slow-trolling, and usually right when I re-start my retrieve or take a paddle stroke.

    Its also great for casting buggers/leeches toward the brushy/wooded shoreline on the far side of the lake (need a boat) and retrieving over the dropoff. Across much of the undeveloped far shoreline, the bottom drops off rapidly. There is one low, shallower point subtly protruding underwater about midpoint on the far side. There's lots of submerged logs all along back there. I'll work the shoreline when there's boats trolling around the lake out a little further. The NE corner of the lake beyond the row of pilings gets shallow.
    After that, a floater, as i usually see a little bit of surface activity. Its maddening to try to anticipate which way they're going when you sneak up on 'em.

    There's fish all over and around the shoreline of the lake. I prefer to fish in front of the undeveloped part, but that doesn't mean that that's where all the good fishing is.
  19. Jim Wallace Smells like low tide

    Posts: 5,663
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    Other Mason Co lakes worthy of interest are Lost, Island, and Spencer. All have received recent plants.
    Isabella also looks interesting, although I don't notice any recent stocking. Its outlet is Mill Creek, which flows into Hammersley Inlet. Hmmmm.
  20. William Fifield Santiago, no fish in 84 days.

    Posts: 134
    Snohomish, WA
    Ratings: +19 / 0
    Great report. Thanks for sharing.