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Old 10-06-2013, 06:25 PM
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Default Kirman Lake Adventure

A couple of weeks ago, I was exploring some waters around Sonora Pass and decided to fish Kirman Lake, which I had heard about in the past. The lake is known for having huge brook trout that regularly measure over 20 inches.

So, a couple of friends and I decided to make the three-mile hike to the lake and check out the action. The trail is not difficult, but it goes through some cattle leases and requires scaling a few fences. Access is well marked by Fish & Game, and there is a box to fill out angling surveys.

The lake is in a sagebrush encrusted bowl surrounded by distant forests and high mountains. It sits at about 7,500 feet above sea level.

I decided to inflate the Outcast and carry it on my back with my gear stowed in the pockets. It felt a little awkward at first, but I quickly got accustomed to its girth.

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So, we made the trek and found our way to the lake, which was calm and clear. We were greeted by a few large fish eating something on the surface not far from the shore. One would infer from this type of activity that catching fish might be part of one's future. Perhaps.

I started to gear up and soon realized I had brought a spare spool instead of my reel, and I had left my fins in the car. That's just great! Now what?

Luckily, my friend had brought a spinning outfit in addition to his fly rod. He kindly shared his gear, so I kicked out in the cool water with a borrowed reel and no fins. As I drifted out, I was looking down in the water and could see some large, colorful trout sitting on their bellies in the grass on the bottom of the lake. They were impressive, and instantly boosted my confidence. This is going to be awesome, I thought.

In the ensuing three hours, I threw the fly box out there, making every attempt to entice those fish into biting scuds, dries, streamers, copper johns, ants, stimulators, hopper/dropper rigs, etc.

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I never got a single bite, but the fish kept rolling and crashing and eating... something. My friend hooked one on his spinning outfit and brought it within ten feet of his feet when it spit the hook.

It's one thing to go to a body of water and not detect any signs of activity among the aquatic residents. It's another matter entirely when you can see them and hear them, but can't get them to eat your offering regardless of what you throw.

I will definitely go back there to try it all again. Next time, I'll be sure to bring my reel and fins. It will make the whole process much better experience.

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Here's a video of people having a much different experience at the same lake:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CwHOFbyljn4

Cheers,

-VB
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Old 10-06-2013, 06:36 PM
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Default Re: Kirman Lake Adventure

VB: That is a good looking lake, sorry you guys didn't have any luck there. Looking at the video it looked like those guys were fishing in some pretty shallow water right next to the weeds, just wondering if you tried that or were you out in the open water. Is there a fly shop nearby that might have some insight into that lake?

Larry
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Old 10-07-2013, 10:20 AM
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Default Re: Kirman Lake Adventure

Larry,

We tried along the reeds and in the lanes between them in shallow water. The nearest fly shop is about 20 miles away. They made a few recommendations, and I tried them all. I chalked it up to one of those off days when I just couldn't figure out the pattern. Those fish sure looked like they were eating something.

I certainly didn't help the situation by forgetting my reel and fins. Kicking in a tube with no fins is like stepping on the gas in neutral.

Despite it all, it was a nice hike.

-VB
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Old 10-07-2013, 10:43 AM
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Default Re: Kirman Lake Adventure

it's a shame to see the fishing decline there as it has over the last decade or so. Pressure does that.
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Old 10-07-2013, 12:14 PM
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Default Re: Kirman Lake Adventure

Quote:
Originally Posted by von behr View Post
Larry,

We tried along the reeds and in the lanes between them in shallow water. The nearest fly shop is about 20 miles away. They made a few recommendations, and I tried them all. I chalked it up to one of those off days when I just couldn't figure out the pattern. Those fish sure looked like they were eating something.

I certainly didn't help the situation by forgetting my reel and fins. Kicking in a tube with no fins is like stepping on the gas in neutral.

Despite it all, it was a nice hike.

-VB
VB: Sounds like you tried everything I would have. Sometimes it can be frustrating to see the fish feeding and not being able to crack the puzzle, but it happens to all of us, better luck next visit. It sure looked like a great place to spend an afternoon despite the lack of fish, always fun to get out on the water.

Larry
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Old 10-07-2013, 01:40 PM
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Default Re: Kirman Lake Adventure

I've been going in there for a little while...there are also very large Cutthroat's in that pond. I generally use Seal Buggers (which they have at Ken's in Bridgeport) and Damsel and Dragon Fly nymphs - on the heaviest sink tip, right off the bottom, worked towards the shallows...

That place can be very frustrating at times but the scenery is unbeatable !!!


PT/TB
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Old 10-07-2013, 04:23 PM
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Default Re: Kirman Lake Adventure

PT, it is a beautiful spot. I've never tried Seal Buggers. Ken's was suggesting mainly scuds or streamers.

I'll have to check out Seal Buggers next time.

-VB
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Old 11-15-2013, 05:01 PM
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Default Re: Kirman Lake Adventure

It can be a tough lake with the pressure it sees but it still produced some good fish for a few of my friends that went up there this year. Stripping Damsel flies, scuds and streamers work well there
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Old 11-15-2013, 09:40 PM
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Default Re: Kirman Lake Adventure

Hi VB,

I know very well what it's like to fish where you know there are fish and draw a blank. What I really want to know is what's up with the step ladder shot................
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Old 11-15-2013, 09:55 PM
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Default Re: Kirman Lake Adventure

VB: I forgot to ask about the Outcast, does it come with the straps for backpacking, or was that something you rigged up? Also how much does it weigh? Sure looks like a great setup for backpacking into lakes off the hwy.

Larry
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