Fly Fishing at night is definitely a whole new beast for me to learn to conquer. There have been knotted up leaders and a different kind of knot on the back of my head. Flies lost in astonishing numbers from trees and fish alike.
The first couple of times out felt like the most frustrating time I’ve ever spent fishing, not just fly fishing I’m talking freaking fishing in general!
I remember going home the first night, and stating to my wife just as I walked in the door “I’m never trying that again”.
Yet just a few days later, I found myself back in the dark, headlamp on, and more clothing than I needed to keep the mosquitoes away.
On the second night things started to turn around. I started feeling the fly on the back cast, and I had only hit one tree. After a couple of hookups, but no fish to net. I sat down on the bench and started to contemplate what I was doing wrong.
I started to realize that the fish were hitting a lot harder. I needed to set the hook with more authority and get the fish to the net as quick as possible.
The next night I brought my 6 weight, beefed up to a 3x tapered leader, tied on a heavier BH Flash a Bugger, and started working the fly just a little slower than usual.
One cast and I had a 2 pound Largemouth Bass on the other end of the line. So many things started flooding to my head. Why had I been sleeping every night for all these years? Was this a dream? Was I really starting to get the hang of this Urban Fly Fishing at night thing.
After dodging a couple of drunk teenagers, a homeless man sleeping on the bench, and a few hundred sleeping ducks (Apparently Urban Fly Fishing at night has just as many dangers as it daytime counterpart).
I cast out a couple more times to a new spot with no luck. Then a Thud. I stopped my fly for a split second, and all of the sudden the line started flying out of my hand. I set the hook and the fish changed direction. I started the chase running from one end of the pond to the other like a mad man (which I’m sure the drunk teenagers got a real kick out of).
After about 5 minutes. I pulled the fish to the net (at least what of him would fit). Flicked on my headlamp and could not believe my eyes. It was a 20 plus inch Bass (not hard to figure out as my net’s only 20 inches). I grabbed my phone to snap a quick pic, and pulled out the lip scale. The fish weighed in at just over 5 pounds!
This was my best Bass in a long, long, long time. I was shaking uncontrollably. I didn’t want to let go, but I remembered that I had to get this fish back in the water as soon as possible. I set him gently in, and “whack” a flip of the tail to my face and this big boy had a little retribution.
I sat there for a moment breaking down my gear, just taking it all in.
As I walked (maybe even skipped a little, wait did I just write that?) back to the Urban Fly Mobile, I was starting to enjoy this, as Dan says
“Addiction called Urban Night Fishin”!