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  #31 (permalink)  
Old 12-30-2012, 11:42 AM
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Default Re: Most Memorable Fish of 2012

Geez, I don't know... Was it the big 19" Yellowstone cutt that I saw in a deep pool and then spent 15 minutes trying to catch before I finally got him?

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Or the cutt that took me well into my backing and I had to chase over 200 yards downstream (admittedly, he was foul hooked) in some raging current?

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Or the 19" westslope that I caught in Alberta, who chased my streamer on at least a dozen different casts before he finally got it?

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Or the "extinct" Alvord cutthroat that I caught in the Oregon desert?

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Or the bruiser of a Yellowstone cutt that I finally caught out a hole that has given me nothing but trouble (break offs, lost fish) the last two years?

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There weren't any particularly memorable fish in this stream, but it was definitely the most memorable place that I fished.

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  #32 (permalink)  
Old 12-30-2012, 08:32 PM
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Default Re: Most Memorable Fish of 2012

no pics and no great fish fight story...but. While In MaineI found out that I missed the season by 3 weeks. Online info was not very clear. But I went to the fishing dept at the LL Bean store when my wife went up to the guy behind the counter to find a spot-he said that "most" of the streams close on the last of Sept. But there was a stretch about 2 hours north of Bar Harbor that was C/R but great for Land Locked Atlantics. Well, It was close to 4 hours but we made it there. My wife I love her-she sat in the car reading a book while I fished for 3 hours. I caught a few smalls but the Atlantics and the Brookies stayed away. I ran into an older fella that gave me some advise and gave me a fly-he said "use this." Its my own pattern.
I went back to a spot where I saw some of the Atlantics sitting on gravel. 2 casts later I was fighting a nice one. Not too far out so it was no great long fight. But it was a 24" Atlantic. After that I caught 2 more and called it a day.
Thanks Al-the guy I talked to
And thanks to my wife who kept telling me that she was fine and for me to go fishing. Love ya baby.
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  #33 (permalink)  
Old 12-30-2012, 09:25 PM
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Default Re: Most Memorable Fish of 2012

The brown below was my most memorable fish. Nothing like waking up early in the morning to chase heads until the sun makes it to hot to do so in the summer. The take was just the classic take I would picture on a painting. I caught him rather quickly to try not to stress him to much and than let him go. I would have to say my favorite trip though was with my dad and granpa on the Missouri for two days this July. Neither of them where fly fisherman but they got the hang of it and had a lot of fun and even caught a few fish.

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Old 12-30-2012, 09:49 PM
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Default Re: Most Memorable Fish of 2012

My most memorable fish was one that got away this fall. I was fishing one of the best musky rivers in Northern Wisconsin with the guys from Musky Country Outfitters. We'd been fishing hard from 8 am, and at the time of hookup it was about 6 pm. My arm was dead. If you've never cast a 10 or 11wt with musky flies for an entire day, it's hard to understand. But it's not a good feeling.

We were rounding the last bend, and I had told myself that I had 5 more casts before my arm would literally fall off. Both sides of the river were fishy, and so we started on the highest hole. I put one cast into it, and had a small pike take a few swipes but never connected. I put another cast back into the hole, and managed to bring a decent musky out to play and follow about 40' back to the boat. After some hard, deep figure 8's, he just wasn't having any of it and disappeared back into the depths of the river. We'd blown our shot on that hole.

On we went, rowing across the river to set up on the last spot of the day. I was wiped out, had nothing left in the tank. Chris told me one to man up, and put a few more casts in there. He knew there was a big fish in there and told me exactly where to put the next cast. I started out, arm went dead, and the cast fell behind the boat. I was laughing hysterically at this point. How dumb I must have looked! Finally I was able to gather what wits I had left, and get the fly placed right next to the bank under a tire swing. Immediately a monster fish shot upstream about 15' giving chase to my fly. This fish was charging my fly with absolutely no regard for it's life. It was the king of it's domain, and he was pissed that my fly was in his zone. The wake from this fish looked like a jetski had just came blowing by up the river. It's a monster. My guide starts yelling: "Strip strip strip strip" about as fast as anyone could get the words out. In the blink of an eye, the fish was on the fly and my 11wt was doubled over. A few minutes later and a couple power runs by the fish, and he was up to the boat. He looked like he was ready to admit defeat and pose for the requisite hero shot. Below the boat he sat, readily awaiting the net. The guide started to dip the net as soon as the fish was within arms reach, and the the musky flipped out. Literally, there was a moment when I thought I was in the movie Lake Placid. I was worried he was coming into the boat to kill us both. He death rolled over and over and over, right below the boat. And then disaster struck! He managed to bite through the 100lb floro bite guard we were using, and swim away, pride still in tact knowing he just fooled the fisherman. Both the guide and myself just sat there, slack jawed at how the whole thing had went down. My adrenaline was sky high and I couldn't decide whether I wanted to laugh or cry. I decided to laugh and make the best of it, and for the next minute or two, the guide and I were doubled over laughing at how cool that experience was.
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  #35 (permalink)  
Old 12-30-2012, 11:15 PM
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Default Re: Most Memorable Fish of 2012

Quote:
Originally Posted by ted4887 View Post
My most memorable fish was one that got away this fall.
I know the feeling. A couple of years ago mine was a fish I lost also. It was the biggest Pike I have ever had on. I have had some really big ones. It hit and then ran me into backing with me chasing it down the bank like a track star. I got it stopped and turned around. It was heading back up river and I saw it after getting most of my line back on the reel. As soon as I saw it, it went out and down. It was not 30 seconds later my line did a 'Twang!' like a guitar string. I still had something there but it wasn't fighting and it wasn't big. Then the sickening realization of what happened when I see half of my leader come up with a hunk or rotton wood lodged on a blood knot of the half of the leader my Pike wasn't swimming away with. It was easily in the upper 40's and absolutely topped 30lbs. It would have been the biggest one I ever caught. At least I got to see it. I have had really big fish get away and never saw them. I hate that even worse.
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  #36 (permalink)  
Old 12-30-2012, 11:23 PM
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Default Re: Most Memorable Fish of 2012

I would have cried if it was an upper 40's pike. That is a huge fish for Minnesota. Edit - That's a big fish for anywhere!


By the way, I drove through Roseau last Thursday for work and thought "shoot, I should have let Dan know I was going to be in town and make him take me out ice fishing". Thirty minutes after thinking that though, I was back on the road on my way to Thief River.
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Old 12-31-2012, 12:08 AM
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Default Re: Most Memorable Fish of 2012

You should have. Next time let me know. If you give me warning I'll meet you in Warroad and we can go out over there. Better end of the lake for giant Pike. PMing you my phone number.
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Old 12-31-2012, 11:17 AM
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Default Re: Most Memorable Fish of 2012

Wow! Some great responses thus far everyone. Thanks for sharing. It's interesting to read what makes something memorable to each one of us. Not always the fish, size of the fish or species. Often related to the overall experience.

I have another memorable fish, but I think it is my most memorable and I never brought him to hand. Years ago my wife and I lived in West Yellowstone, MT where I was acquainted with a fair amount of well-known fly fishers. Early every summer a group of local businessmen and guides would get together and float local rivers and make a day of it. It was usually early or mid-June. We first floated the Madison River and I was assigned to Bob Jacklin's boat - what a treat! He and have since become fast friends and whenever he sees me he still calls me the "banker" as that was what I was doing at the time. While I struggled to cast and fish out of a drift boat (my first time ever), we had an unproductive yet fun day on the Maddy.

After lunch we drove over to the Box Canyon of the Henry's Fork where we launched boats again and proceeded to try and find some fish still looking up at the tail-end of the Salmonfly hatch. About mid-float we pulled over and the three of us in the boat got out and went to different areas of the river. Before I stepped into the water I was treated to a wonderful casting display by Bob as he threw streamers - what a pro!

I was given a box of Sofa Pillow Salmonfly imitations by one of the guys on the trip and I tied on of these onto my tippet. After wading to the middle of the stream I began working the water and picked up two smallish bows. I turned and put a cast tight to the shore about right where I had entered the water not fifteen minutes earlier. A huge head came up and I pulled the big fly right out of its mouth I was so surprised. I cast again above where that big head had been and he came up again and engulfed my fly - FISH ON!!

Now, I had never fished rivers this big with currents this heavy. I stood my ground and fought this fish for about ten minutes, all the while with that big fish straight downstream of me. It finally dawned on me that I needed to follow this fish downstream as I would never be able to bring him to hand against the big water current I was in. I made about five steps before my line went slack...I figured I had just lost the biggest fish of my life - and it probably was.

I learned a lot of lessons from that day with the 'boys' on our businessmen's outing. I also became friends with one of the premier fly-fishers of our time and will always be grateful for that.

I still see that big beast as it rolled to the surface to give me my one and only look. I've been back to the Fork and caught many good fish, but never one to equal my first HF bow - the one that got away.

I'm sure there are more memorable fish and experiences out there, so let's get busy and post them up!

Thanks all who have shared these memories and photos - keep 'em coming.

Best Fishes,

Kelly

---------- Post added at 10:17 AM ---------- Previous post was at 09:17 AM ----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by Diver Dan View Post
Grayling are such a pretty fish. Photos really don't do them justice. Nice fish you have there thorsten.

I really like this kind of thread. You can tell by some of the threads that have popped up lately there is already some cabin fever setting in. However this has been one of the best threads of recent days.
Thanks, Dan! All of us are the sum total of our experiences, and its fun to share and be shared with...

Kelly.
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  #39 (permalink)  
Old 01-01-2013, 10:43 AM
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Default Re: Most Memorable Fish of 2012

There were many trout this year that I'm proud of catching. Not all were big. Mostly because I had caught more trout this year than I have in the previous 3 total years combined.

My most memorable will be the small native brook trout I caught. It included a wonderful (long, but wonderful) hike through the woods with a close friend. The section we fished opened up at the foot of big dam in a meadow. It was beautiful. There were lots of brookies holding in a few runs. I didn't catch this one on a dry fly (my next memorable fish I hope).

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  #40 (permalink)  
Old 01-02-2013, 11:44 AM
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Default Re: Most Memorable Fish of 2012

Probably a rainbow trout of 14-15 inches-not in itself all that special, but it came from Colorado's Big Thompson catch and release area on a caddis I tied personally.

I'm used to fishing in a Missouri trout park with easy drifts and stockers that are fairly easy to catch. That fish represented a step up in my abilities as they are much more educated and the faster water is much more challenging.

Second place: A 5-10lb. flathead catfish. Never caught one before and part of fulfiling two long term projects of fishing every county of Kansas and catching as many different species as possible.
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