Man-oh-man has it been a wacky series of storms and crummy fishing weather here in SoCal. But there finally seems to be an end in sight and the itch to fish is turning into a raging burn, if you know what I mean.
Now, it’s not like we haven’t tried. Over the last several weekends my fishing buddy, Sean and I have hit assorted local waters both separately and together with little to show for our efforts.
This Sunday however, the dry streak finally broke in a most unexpected way. Sean was down for the count with some kind of intestinal bug and I had several things to attend to all day Saturday and most of Sunday morning. But late Sunday afternoon while out on some errands with my beautiful bride she just happened to mention that she wouldn’t object too much if we happened to stop by one of the local lakes and perhaps…fished a little. (Sorry guys, she’s all mine).
Anyway, after bringing the car back into the proper lane and apologizing to the guy in the silver SUV who now had Starbucks all over the inside of his windshield, I made a quick adjustment to our itinerary and had us over at Legg Lake in no time at all.
The fact that we immediately found a parking space right near the start of the path leading to my favorite spot only served to confirm, in my mind, that I had chosen wisely.
It wasn’t until I opened the back of our vehicle that I realized that I had only one fly rod in the car and since my wife had made it fairly clear that she was willing to go fishing on the condition that she could practice her fly casting, it seemed like an obvious conclusion that I wasn’t going to be.
Fortunately, long time readers will recall, I vowed way back in July during our trip to Connecticut that I would ALWAYS have a plan “B”. Sure enough, tucked down under a couple of duffels sat an unremarkable black case in which I just happened to have my trusty Penfishingrods.com collapsible Goliath model rod and matching reel. (For which I paid full price and do not receive endorsement reimbursement for mentioning, by way of full disclosure).
It was a beautiful moment.
So, after rigging the 5-weight up with an olive wooly bugger for the Mrs. we headed down to the water. When we got down to the lake it was blatantly clear that the burn I mentioned earlier was an epidemic. I hadn’t seen so many fishermen at Legg for weeks.
These guys were fishing hard. Most had multiple rigs with dark colored plastic worms and oversized swimbaits dominating the menu. One guy had a backpack set up with at least six baitcasting poles pointing heaven ward. From a distance he looked like a walking cell tower. The atmosphere was cordial but intense.
We picked a spot where I had success catching everything from Bluegill to Carp to Bass to Trout. I reviewed some technique with my wife and stepped a few yards away with the Penrod and a tiny single-hooked trout-patterned lure. She worked on her backcast while I gently shouted encouragement and suggestions her way (keyword: Gently. Think domestic tranquility. Also remember I don’t like our couch as a sleeping platform).
All the while I just sort of plinked around with my rig. After one particularly well executed cast on the fly rod I was praising my Beloved when I felt the telltale twitch of a hit on the little lure.
I set the hook and the battle was on.
As is made abundantly clear on their website, the key to success with a Penrod is maintaining a loose drag and being patient.
My wife noticed the splashing fish but not that I was tied on to it. She excitedly pointed at it and suggested that I cast toward all the commotion. I gently explained that I was actually the reason the fish was acting so strangely.
Now, I’m not gonna lie to you and say that my little protracted battle was nowhere near as exciting as if I had been on a fly rod because frankly, it’s been a looong winter and I was just so happy to actually have a sizeable fish on that I could have been using a broomstick and wouldn’t have cared. So Purists, say what you will — I was fishin’!
Long story short, I’ll let the photo do the talking. It looks like it is gonna be a great Spring and Summer.
I love this addiction called urban fly fishin’.
Follow Up(Got a phone call today from Michael Di Pippo, President & CEO of Penfishingrods.com. We had a brief but very cordial conversation during which he mentioned that in my previous post, Plan “B”, I did not give the correct e-mail address for his company and the fine products they offer. Now, with all the scams and cheap knock off versions floating around out there, not giving our readers the correct info was a great disservice to all of you as well as to the REAL pen fishing rod guys who work so hard to offer the quality gear they do and who back it up with exceptional customer service – my sincere apologies. As I mentioned before, my pen fishing rod is my constant travel companion, fits in my standard all day bag and is a reliable back up rod for those days when fly rodding isn’t gonna cut it. So, with the mea culpa out of the way, let me suggest that you pay a quick visit to penfishingrods.com site and check out their products. I’m sure you won’t be disappointed.)