Were we at the same place? I got out to the Ford for the first time this year Wednesday afternoon. Damned cold, but the fish were biting. I only saw one other guy Wednesday. We were both catching fish.
As much as anything, I went out to play with a couple of rods I have in my quiver but that don't get used all that much.
I fished mostly with an Echo 2 7wt with a saltwater configuration, a GPX line and the 'D' tip. Figured those leviathans could put a bend in a 7wt. The Echo is a nice rod. Very fast. A little clubby, even. You have to put more than a little effort to make it work. But still, there's not many places at RF, even with a little breeze and ice in the guides, where I couldn't throw a weighted bugger the width of the creek. Felt like I was bass fishing, working the weeds on the other side. I think that Echo and a GPX may end up being my go-to RF streamer setup.
One thing that worked in my favor is that I was using a relatively new line. Since I don't use this rod much, I don't have a big selection to choose from. With other rods, I keep a few old, beat up lines exclusively for use at the Ford. They're gonna get distroyed in the ice and the weeds and the mud and being stomped on. Might as well start with one that way.
Anyone ever see anyone at the Ford using a stripping basket? I may bring one next time.
The other rod I played with was a BIIx 6wt with an SA Ultra 4 line. I bought the rod used from a guide who beat the snot out of it. There's chips out of the cork and from the shape of butt cap, it looks like it was dragged behind a pickup truck. Still, the blank is good and it's a BIIx that I got for practically nothing. I don't use it much because, for trout, I'm more of a 4 & 5wt guy and I fish mostly Loomises in that weight range.
What a nice rod. Weighs as much as a 4wt. Way slower, though, than a comparable GLX. But, if I take my time, I can throw it just as well. I was using it to fish scuds, so I wasn't really trying to heave it a mile. It felt like I could have, though. But, again, I needed to pay attention and slow my stroke way down. Not easy after flinging that Echo for awhile. As light and feathery -- even delicate -- as it felt in my hand, it turned those triploids no problem. I'm not sure I'd pay full retail for one -- doesn't naturally fit my stroke -- but I can certainly see the attraction.
Note to self: Ice chips out of snake guides easier than with single-foot guides. All things being equal, something to consider.
I came back Thursday at first light. Had the whole place to myself and the fish were cooperating. Damn there's big fish in there. To the point where I was getting tired of them. After hooking a half dozen of those whales, I was kinda hoping I could get into a feisty, running, jumping 15 incher. No luck, though. Nothing but big ones.
About 10:00 people started showing up and about noon it started snowing pretty good so I called it a day. Rocky Ford is kind of a wierd place, best taken in moderation. But, when you're jonesing for trout, it's a fix. Might try to get back out one more time this winter. If not, I'll be back in a year.