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Old 04-28-2008, 05:38 PM
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Default A Blade Of Timothy Grass

A Blade Of Timothy Grass

Written by: Len Harris
Photo by: Len Harris

Click the image to open in full size.

Wanigas....

Had never heard of the rod until yesterday.

I was treated to seeing the rod used by 2 masters.

The day started like a typical outing. The weather was not the best. It was windy and even spitting snow. Both anglers took long rods with stiff backbones to battle the wind. We went in at a bridge on permissioned property. The father/son combination of family Noll, had clearly fished together numerous times. The father let the son have the first hole. The father watched closely as the son presented a black wooley bugger with crystal flash to the finicky trout. Three casts in the hole and the son landed a decent driftless brown.

We plodded on battling the wind. Dad placed himself on a beautiful hole.

The hole was quite a puzzle with multiple currents and eddies.

Father Noll did manage a hook-up of a large trout that put quite a BEND on the long fast action graphite rod. The big trout did not cooperate.......

We decided to move upstream and try another enormous hole.

Matt still had the long fast action graphite in action. Matt was throwing a coneheaded turkey leech.........

He managed a LARGE chub.

Father Noll was throwing a weighted hornberg. He had a couple hook-ups with none landed in the deep enormous hole.

We went to lunch and talked plans for the afternoon.

Father & Son told me that they wanted to catch some brookies.


Off we went to the Brookie Lair

Father/Son
Father/Son exited the truck........

We stood at the rear of the truck.........

We then discussed what we should use.......

There were lots of willows to contend with here.

Both were confident in their casting ability.

Father Noll took out a fast action graphite 3 weight/ 7 feet long.

Matt took out an old rod.........He called it a Wanigas.....I said what the heck kinda rod is that? Matt said it was Saginaw written backwards.....

I looked at the very old fiberglass rod.
It was OLD and showed considerable wear.

One of the eyes were wrapped with a different color thread.
The rod had certainly seen some miles on it.

I chuckled to myself and thought.............
That SOFT action old beater will have a hard time in here.
Then Matt put an OLD reel on it.......that he said had no DRAG and he would have to palm it if he got any big fish.....

Then he said to his dad:
"Is this the right kind of grass?"
Father Noll said: "Use a piece of Timothy Grass to secure the ferules."

Matt picked a blade of Timothy grass and his dad told how to put the rod together with the one blade of grass.....just the right way to get the rod to fit together properly.

Matt started with a pink squirrel and Father Noll started with a biot bug.

The trout were having no part of what we were throwing.

The old fiberglass rod was holding its own on the windy day.

Matt and his dad put the same black crystal flash wooley bugger on.......and they both put on an indicator...VT special indicators.......They fished the bugger like nymphs.....slow strips and a pause in between.....

The first cast Matt hooked up on a sweet brookie.......

That old soft action Wanigas had a huge bend in it.........

After a long battle with that soft 3 weight fiberglass rod.......

Matt landed the nice brookie

Father and son were fishing the long beaver dam hole exactly the same..........
Click the image to open in full size.

They compare the retrieve styles..........

Both doing the same type of retrieve........

Matt was landing trout hand over fist.

Father Noll was watching most time.

I watched each angler closely to see if they were doing anything different.

Matt said it has to be the rod.........

I snickered inside again.......

I watched for a while again.........

Matt was catching 5-1 trout over his dad.........

I suggested a rod change.......

Matt took the graphite and Father Noll took the Special Fiberglass rod.........The one with the Timothy Grass holding it together...........

I joked that the old rod had some special MOJO.........

Father Noll started catching fish just like Matt......

I made a running count of the brookies caught.............
Click the image to open in full size.

Before and after Wanigas trade...........

Matt had caught 25 trout with the old wanigas rod.......

Father Noll caught 2 with the graphite rod..........

Same fly.............Same retrieve.........Same strike indicator......same depth.........

After trade..........

Father Noll 7 trout.............

Matt 2........................

The only thing I can figure out..................

Is that old Wanigas rod was MAGICAL.

We walked back to the truck.........

I told Father Noll to try one more cast downstream under the bridge.............

He floated the bugger under there and a MASSIVE brookie slammed the bugger and 2 head shakes later.....It was off......


Maybe it was the Timothy Grass............
Maybe the aqua blue thread holding on the eye..........
Maybe the fish gods were smiling on Old Rod.........

Or maybe.............

There was some magic in the OLD rod
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