SRC--Semi Madness Returns-Hood Canal

Discussion in 'Saltwater' started by dryflylarry, Jan 26, 2010.

  1. dryflylarry "Chasing Riseforms"

    Posts: 4,102
    Near the Fjord
    Ratings: +569 / 0
    The itch returned to me this afternoon about 1:30 PM. I noted that the tide was turning pretty well, so I thought I would go hit the beach. Last weekend my two friends and I hit the beach at three different locations with very minimal SRC success in two days of fishing. Giving in until today, I figured most of the fish are up spawning, but the itch hit this afternoon. So I headed out. I parked, strung up my rod, then tied on my old standby, a “Popsicle Stick”. A simple fly that has proven itself time and again for the last two years. Nothing fancy and I’ll be the first to admit it. Anyway, I wandered down the beach, made a few casts on the way to my further beach destination. Nothing. It was approaching 2:30. The Hood Canal conditions were perfect, a slight ripple on the water, overcast with half the Olympic mountains under cover. I was all alone, except for a loon out far from the beach and some other shoreline birds that I have trouble identifying. It was quite peaceful. I worked the beach for about 15 minutes then got a good tug. The fish was an acrobatic cutt of about 15 inches. It looked like a solid fish. She came out of the water several times, took some line, and spit the hook at me with another bold leap. Darn. I wanted her. The madness lasted a minute or so. Five minutes later, I was stripping the fly with rather long slow strokes. I could feel the slowness but deliberate take of a fish. I set the hook. It felt like a heavy fish, strong and another mad acrobatic one. He leaped free of the water several times and was taking line quite well. It was a long fight, unexpected really. He must have thrashed and half leaped another 3-4 times. He was getting close to shore and made another thrashing dangerous move in the foot deep cobbled beach water. Damn, I wanted that fish! Hang on! I finally beached him. A nice male of 17 inches. Pretty fish. My camera was handy, so I snapped a couple and it still had lots of power when it left. As I was playing that fish, I saw another cutt roll very nearby. I quickly got my fly back into the water. Another 10 minutes or so passed. I worked my fly down deep and slow again with long slow strips. I felt the subtle tug and there she was, just as the other. Slow, determined take. I set up. Some more acrobats, but not as much as the pissed off male before her. I beached her faster than the male. She was a good 17-1/2” (my rod is marked), but was obviously slender from recently spawning. Back into the water quickly. Another 15 minutes passed, a long cast, and a little more deliberate retrieve nabbed me a nice 14-1/2” female. A bright fish with plenty of spunk. Things began to slow. It was only an hour of fish catching. They moved on, got less hungry, or I failed for the rest of the afternoon. Elusive fish, the mighty cutthroat. I wandered more beach without another strike. Ah, but what a nice day as I watched the sun go down! Hood Canal is one of the most beautiful places in the Northwest! I will try to let the cutthroats rest now after their spawning activities…I think. Seems I get the itch too often to get on the water.
  2. Ed Call Mumbling Moderator

    Posts: 17,549
    Kitsap Peninsula
    Ratings: +1,507 / 9
    Living the life of Larry, awesome report.
  3. Nick Clayton Active Member

    Posts: 2,989
    Ratings: +1,290 / 4
    Great report. I really need to get out on the water!

  4. Sterling silver Member

    Posts: 188
    Gig Harbor, WA
    Ratings: +4 / 0
    I was on the lake today, enjoying some nice rainbow action, and thinking that the coastals were upriver. Seeing as how Saturday we managed only one 13 inch fish between the two of us, I was quite happy to be in the Outcast. Now I have to rethink things and get back out on the salt. Nice report, even if it makes me itch to get out and play with the coastals instead of being satisfied with the rainbows!

  5. Upton O Blind hog fisherman

    Posts: 2,171
    out of state now
    Ratings: +221 / 0
    Nice, thanks for sharing your outing.
  6. MasterAnglerTaylor Member

    Posts: 749
    Poulsbo/Pullman, WA
    Ratings: +0 / 0
  7. SeaRun Fanatic Member

    Posts: 413
    Northwest, WA
    Ratings: +19 / 0
    OK... I've really been trying to keep quiet over the last couple of these threads, but... Oh well. here goes...

    Is it really necessary to drag each of these precious wild fish onto the beach for a hero shot? You mentioned in another post that you've been flyfishing for 50 years, one would think you'd have a little more respect for the resource. Beautiful fish, beautiful day, nice report; crappy release ethic IMO.

    Let the flaming begin. Wait, I'll save y'all some time:

    Can't anybody post a report without catching crap about release technique? Not when it sucks.
    This is why there are so few reports on here these days! Waaaaa!
    Larry's a great guy! No doubt that's the case. Just don't drag the damn fish onto the rocks for the umpteenth hero shot.
  8. dryflylarry "Chasing Riseforms"

    Posts: 4,102
    Near the Fjord
    Ratings: +569 / 0
    SeaRun Fanatic--

    The fish was left in the water and wasn't "dragged" up onto the rocks. It is left in water and barely handled before a quick release. You will notice by the photos that these are "smooth" rocks and not barnacle type or oyster shell rocks. I avoid those. I don't believe these type of beach rocks will hurt a fish with a couple of inches of water covering them as seen in the photo. My camera is in my wader pocket with easy access if that makes you feel a little better. Hero shot? Oh, give me a break fella. Anything else I can help you with feel free to spout off.
  9. jmwfish224 You know what it is!

    Posts: 62
    Seattle, WA
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    I definitely have something to say. Great report! Its awesome to read such a well-written description that captures the moments of spectacle ("...half the Olympic Mountains under cover...") and excitement ("He leaped free of the water several times and was taking line..."). I love reports like this and I hate to get caught up in the finger pointing. To be completely honest, if we all really, I mean really, had the best interest of the fish in mind, we would all put down our rods, save the hole in the fishes jaw and the energy it wastes fighting us in battle. Does the picture really make that much of fundamental difference, especially if the photographer takes the care to be as cautious with fish as Larry was? I guess to some, it may. To me, it does not. Once the fish is hooked and fights for its life, the damage is 95% done. The photograph seems relatively harmless when compared to a four or five minute, leaping, line-peeling battle. I have to say, SRFan, at least you posted your comment in a respectful and approachable manner and I certainly respect your point of view. Most of all, great report, Larry.
  10. Ed Call Mumbling Moderator

    Posts: 17,549
    Kitsap Peninsula
    Ratings: +1,507 / 9
    The high road is the one to the left. Look left and a bit up and you'll find it just fine. I won't defend Larry, he is a big boy and seems to know what he is doing with a fly rod, reel, line and flies. To claim he does not respect the resource because you don't approve of his landing, photo and release techniques is making a determination on limited input and observation. Maybe instead of coming down hard on people who are following the rules and regulations of the state of Washington you could just skip over the threads with a paperclip icon. That way you can avoid the photos that disturb you. Based on your screen name you respect the resource, maybe you handle them differently. We need not all agree, we should all just realize that for as many members as there are here there are likely that many different opinions on what to do and how to do it. Two useless cents from the peanut gallery. Feel free to judge me on whether I do or don't respect the sea run cutthroat resource (and others).
  11. kelvin Active Member

    Posts: 2,028
    Ratings: +294 / 0

    DUDE you are sooooo RIGHT !
    apparently this man has been torturing fish for over 50 years and gets his jollies off from doing so

    He must be stopped!

    Please report him before he kodak moments again!

    oh wait this is a fishing web site ...

    my bad

    and Larry you might ease up
    I think you are statring to tick alot of us off with all the noise you are making with all the fish you are hooking into
    while telling new guys on the board they should not even bother fishing til March cause there aint no fish out there...and I quote
    "It can be pretty "slim pickens" out there right now. A lot of fish in the streams mating ya know? You will find a few around, but slim pickens. Things should pick up in March. "

    (a few around?? the few, the proud, the SEARUNS I guess) what kinda fish are in the streams mating? CAT FISH?

    and while all of us are at our desks "working" and visiting this site to see how many hogs your "I worked 40 years so all I have to do today is go torture fish and take photos of them" self hooked today

    PS love your Hood Canal ORANGE CRUSH shrimp pattern
    I am looking forward to March when I can finally give it a try when pickens are better

    PSS some guy told me you can cast all the way into your backing and then some.....

    The backing is the part of the line right after the leader part right?

    see ya in March
    could you give me some casting lessons?
  12. dryflylarry "Chasing Riseforms"

    Posts: 4,102
    Near the Fjord
    Ratings: +569 / 0


    You are hell funny Kelv! See you in March or so.... Don't bring your camera for gripe sakes!!! I'll provide the blindfold however....
  13. kelvin Active Member

    Posts: 2,028
    Ratings: +294 / 0
    see ya then Larry
  14. Steve Saville Active Member

    Posts: 2,522
    Tacoma, WA
    Ratings: +351 / 1
    Nice report Larry, regardless of the feedback. It appears to me that the fish did not suffer any damage. I like the Orange Crush, too. Keep those fish on their tails!
  15. Rob Ast Active Member

    Posts: 1,919
    West Pugetopolis WA
    Ratings: +238 / 3

    Some more great fish you are getting into. Maybe when you and Kelvin get out I'll tag along.

  16. kelvin Active Member

    Posts: 2,028
    Ratings: +294 / 0
    sounds good to me

    you bring the blindfolds Larry
    I'll bring my GPS
  17. DimeBrite MA-9 Beach Stalker

    Posts: 924
    Marine Area 9
    Ratings: +406 / 0
    Between Larry dragging his fish up onto the rocks and Kelvin giving them the ninja death squeeze, these cutthroat don't stand a chance. Is there any way we could tie this fish handling problem into a climate change thread to spice things up around here?

    By the way, those were some nice looking cutties.
  18. johnnyrockfish Member

    Posts: 320
    Kitsap County, WA
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    Sweet fish Larry, no photos needed for me, I trust you.

  19. dryflylarry "Chasing Riseforms"

    Posts: 4,102
    Near the Fjord
    Ratings: +569 / 0
    I have reviewed and practiced a number of fish handling techniques while fishing for cutthroat along the salt. (I think this different than landing a rainbow in a warm lake somewhere) Some guys on here claim to hurry up and land the fish, and then quickly release them. I have found that sometimes a fish quickly landed requires applying a good deal of “pressure”. This pressure put on playing a fish, in my opinion and experience, has taught me that it can hurt the fish easily and make it bleed, particularly if hooked in the tongue, but I have seen it happen at the corner of the mouth also. I’ve done it. So, unlike other guys, I “play the fish” until it is somewhat tired but not exhausted, let the fish lay on it’s side on the edge of a smooth rock/gravel beach in a couple few inches of water or less. It is much easier to detach your fly and release when they are a little tired. I have tried releasing in deeper water and when they have not been played out fully. When I grab the fly for release, they have still too much spunk in them, sometimes “twisting” as I have the fly in my fingers trying to release. It can make them bleed and jamb that hook around in their mouths with detrimental effects, especially if it is near the eye. I’ve tried it. Sometimes even tho we are using barbless hooks, that hook can penetrate in serious places in the fishes mouth and can still be difficult to get out. I do use a catch and release net, but not all of the time. It is probably a wiser choice. I think there is a distinct difference between playing a fish to exhaustion, tiring a fish out, but not exhausted, and horsing a fish in thinking that you are doing it a favor. I don’t normally take pictures of all the fish I catch anyway, but for this winter report, I felt like maybe I was helping brighten someone’s day in their work cubicle! I do, on the other hand, like to take photos and have practiced on how to do it quickly. Oh well…just my opinion. Tight Lines!
  20. Richard Torres Active Member

    Posts: 1,355
    Mill Creek
    Ratings: +79 / 0
    I knew sooner or later someone was going to bring up Kelvin's kung fu grip issue.. :clown:

    Thanks for the beautiful post and pics Larry. Keep it up!