Nice pig, Jefffly. I'll bet it put up quite a battle. I've never been to Pooh's, but I've been told of the place.
As its lying on the dock in your pic, i assume you bonked it. I'm OK with that, as its a pay-to-play stocker pond. I wonder, though. Does "Pooh" charge you any less for the lower pond if you just C&R every fish you catch? I think $25 is rather expensive! But it might be fun, and worth the price, to go there and tie into one of those if you have never hooked a big trout before.
Then again, I'll probably never go there. With ga$ and the fee, that would be a $70-$75 trip for me and I can get to my favorite seasonal local lake and back for about $8, and a decent year-round lake for about $10. I don't want to have to pay up, or keep one of those big ones. I've hooked some big stocked "trophy triploids" in some of the lakes I've fished. Awesome fun on either a 4 wt or 6 wt.
I kept a couple, the first year I started finding them. They smoked up OK, but were really oily, being fresh stocked at that size, and the meat was pale and not very appealing in appearance. I kinda wondered what it had been eating all its life....food pellets? I always wonder what kind of anti-biotics, if any, are in the food pellets, and if any of that stuff accumulates in the flesh.
I had to bust one off (at a favorite lake) that was at least as big as the one in your photo two seasons ago, because I would have had to tire it to certain death to get it in on my 4 wt. It was tiring out, but kept nosing slowly but powerfully into the weeds. I finally pointed my rod tip at it and gave my line a yank. (I would have had to bonk it, and I didn't want to eat it).
I do sometimes bonk a good 14" to 16" stocked Rainbow from a lake, though, as that is just about the right size for a good meal. At least once a year, I'll even take home a limit of lake-caught stocker 'bows so I can run a smoker full. I figure snacking on smoked stocker 'bow is probably much less a health hazard than eating bacon.
No I didnt bonk him, I know shouldnt put him on the dock I tried not too, wanted to keep him in the rubber net but he flopped himself out onto the dock so I took a quick snapshot with the cell phone and slid him back into the water! it was a good little fight with my 3 wt
The ponds are very beutiful up there and the owner Ken is a great guy who does put alot of time into keeping the fish healthy. Ive never kept one out of the ponds the average fish up there I would say is 2-3 lb and are fiesty kamloops trout thats the third one ive caught of that size.
He does feed them but only occasionally he like to fish for them too so if he feeds them to much they would get dependant on the pellets. and yes the Elusive Pellet fly does work!! but you have to hit the water with the fly to stir up the surface to bring on the feeding frenzy!! cheating but I had to try it once just for kicks.