This Saturday was one of the most amazing experiences that I’ve ever had Fly Fishing.
The weather was perfect, just enough clouds and a little rain to keep the crowds out of the San Gabriel Mountains.
I woke up, checked the forecast (only 1/10th of an inch of rain throughout the day) perfect!
I threw on my gear, hit Jack-in-the-box up for some coffee, and I was on my way.
As I drove up the 605 freeway, I immediately noticed a problem TRAFFIC “on a Saturday morning”, I thought to myself. What was going on? As I passed slowly about 3 mph to be exact, I noticed two cars flipped over on the other side of the freeway.
The adrenaline hit my system, and I drove away with a new sense of safety. Driving a little slower up the mountain I stopped in to renew my yearly Adventure Pass.
The drive up was beautiful, water flowing from every direction.
I passed up the West Fork, and started my way up the North Fork to my ultimate destination Crystal Lake.
I was scoping out a few new spots to stop and fish as a group of bikers road passed going down the hill. Then it happened, one of the bikers started skidding out of control, and he slammed into the side of the mountain. I screeched on my brakes to pull over, threw the truck in park, and jumped out so fast the guy behind me almost ran me over. I stopped and looked both ways. It was clear, and I darted over to the fallen “Road Warrior”.
He had already gotten up and was carrying his Road Bike over to a small dirt patch. His helmet was cracked, but he seemed to be okay and the man in the truck behind me had an extensive first aid kit.
After he was all patched up and back on his way, I again started back on the road even more cautous, I wasn’t about to make it a day of “all crashes and no fishing”. I stopped at a new section and started my way down the path slipping and sliding down the side of wet rocks. When at last I was at the stream.
I cast into a few holes with nothing more than a couple of small about 3 inch Rainbows to show for it. As I moved up though, so did the size of the fish. By the last hole I had an 10and 11inch Trout to the net, and things were starting to look up!
Realizing that it gets dark by 5:00 pm I hurried back to my vehicle, still wanting to ultimately wet a line at Crystal Lake. I arrived to find the gate unfortunately locked, and it was time for the cold tired feet to get back to action.
Finally I was there. I pulled out a Size 16 Rubber Leg Yellow Stimulator, with a Size 16 dropper Flash Back Hares Ear Nymph (my lucky San Gabriel Combo). First cast and first Trout was on.
It was a stocked fish, small only about 8 inches. However I was cold and tired and a “fish is a fish” no matter the size. So I cast a couple more times and caught a few more small fish.
I decided to call it quits, but as I looked up I realized I was literally in the middle of a rain cloud. The Air was dense and cold immediately, and it felt like I was breathing in water. It poured out on the Lake for about 3 minutes, and then just a quickly as it came it was gone.
I took it as a sign to make one last cast, and luckily I did. My Stimulator completely disappeared. I sent the hook, and before I knew it I was into a 13 inch Trout.
It was every bit of 13 inches, trust me I measured it in my net, but it was the skinniest thing I had ever seen.
I guess even the Hatchery Fish are feeling the Economic Recession!
Urban Fly Venturing, a Disease Worth Catching!
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