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Dumbfounded
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Back to Foster for trout. This is the time of year they drop the water water level at the reservoir. There is only one boat ramp that reaches the water. It is located at the Middle Fork of the South Santiam river. When they dropped the level 20 feet last year in October I had two banner trout days by finning upriver from the launch. I planned to do the same on Saturday.

Speaking of fins, things did not start of well at all.

I was all set to launch and all I had to do was pull on my fins and launch into the river. I pulled on one fin and tugged a little too hard on the ankle strap to tighten it. ...the locking clip separated from the rubber strap. WTF? I looked at the clip and compared it to the opposite side and a roll pin that secures the strap to the clip was missing. Somehow I must have dislodged it when tugging on the strap and it went off to neverland.

I spent a half hour looking for that black roll pin on the launch and never found the damned thing. I considered my options... maybe I should just forget fishing and head for home.

I noticed trout were rising not far from the ramp.

Okay, this may be may last trout fishing trip of the year, I was hellbent on somehow attaching the fin to my foot. Just so you know, you can not successfully use 10lb tippet material to secure a fin to your foot.

Crap. I'll use one fin and hope for the best.

So, for the the entire fishing trip, this was my fin approach:

Water Blue Lake Leisure Grass


Surprisingly, I was able to move around easier than I thought I could by using a single fin. However, if the wind did come up, as it usually does, I'd be screwed if I was far from the ramp so I didn't half-fin upriver as far as I planned.

This is the river channel twenty feet below the norm. You can see the boat docks on the left side... twenty feed above the water surface:

Water Sky Blue Natural landscape Cloud


It was a good thing I did decide to one fin it because the trout catching was very good. I was, as per normal, using two flies and did end up catching two trout at a time.

Automotive parking light Automotive lighting Automotive tire Grille Hood


The bad thing about catching two fish at a time is that it really messes up your tippet material because the trout flop around. I had to cut the tippet material off and get the fish back in the water and retie on the flies each time I caught two trout at once. Netting two trout at once is also no easy feat.

As the trout were rising, I opted to use my clear, intermediate sinking line as it was obvious the fish were holding close to the surface. That set up worked.

Another good part about the trip is that an experimental pattern I came up with a few weeks ago worked great!

It is a seal bugger with a blended olive colored body and a wide black rib. It's always a thrill for me when one of my experimental patterns works.

Sky Artificial fly Azure Blue Organism


The other pattern that worked is another one I came up with and it was very effective during my last trip and last year. I have yet to name it.

Sky Blue Terrestrial plant Electric blue Artificial fly


So, regardless of the fin problem, I had a pretty danged good day. However, I would not recommend using only one fin if you don't have oars on your boat. Eventually, my leg with the fin on the foot started cramping up so I had to call it quits.

The fin company offers replacement ankle straps for the fins so needless to say, I ordered some.
 

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Glad you were able to salvage the day, Half-Fin! There are always spare straps aboard my float tube as well as duct tape, baling wire & a few assorted cotter pins & o-rings in my truck. All of each have come in handy from time to time.
 

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I'd have to see the roll pin connection to say if this would work, but my first thought when reading this was would a sturdy zip tie have worked as a quick fix? Those are always good "McGyver" supplies to carry. Glad you salvaged the day!
 

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Well, you apparently are a better fisher than I am, for I have never mastered the two fly rig. I guess I don't really need to at
my age. For me, at this time of life, it is all about the beauty
of the surroundings and the fact that I know the fish are there
with me. The fact that they do not like my choice of fly does not
bother me at all. LOL.
 

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Jim, normally I carry spare fins in a duffle bag on my trips but I didn't this time. That was a mistake.
Why is it that whenever we forget our "be prepared" motto and leave something critical at home, that it is badly needed? But, you salvaged the day Mr. Onefin. ;-)
 

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Dumbfounded
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I'd have to see the roll pin connection to say if this would work, but my first thought when reading this was would a sturdy zip tie have worked as a quick fix? Those are always good "McGyver" supplies to carry. Glad you salvaged the day!
I tried to McGyver it with all I had at my disposal in my fishing vest. The boat ramp is very long and steep and my rig was parked waaaaaaay up there so I had no zip ties to try and I didn't want to trudge all the way up the ramp to see if there was anything in the truck that I could use to fix the fin.

When I'm a long trip, I always bring the back up fin bag. Because Foster is so close to my home I must have figured I wouldn't need it. Whatever the case, I won't forget it again.

I still had a good day of fishing and catching trout so the lack of a fin didn't hinder me all that much.

Well, you apparently are a better fisher than I am, for I have never mastered the two fly rig

Hardly ever do I fish stillwaters without two flies for a presentation. Even if the trout prefer one specific pattern, sometimes they won't hit it without another fly tied on. Some weird trout feeding thing I guess.
 

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I fish two flies most of the time. I rarely catch doubles, but have found that on the days I get a double there ate often multiples. Glad you had a nice trip Gene! I once tried fishing from a tube on a day I forgot my fins, that didn't work. An ADHD guy like me needs a list
 
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