Rick's fishing season is over until the ice melts,
but we have a nice stash of articles he has written
in the past as ideas or events occured to him. We hope
this will explain apparent 'out of season' articles.
I will relate something that happened to
me last Sunday afternoon as I was out for
a little while. I had been asked by a good
friend to catch a few fish so she could feed
some people coming through a fish dinner.
Not that I need many excuses to go fishing,
but this was a good one. My wife even said
that I needed to do this. I think mainly
because she was afraid I would be hard to
live with if I did not do it.
I decided to try a pond that I can fish about
50 feet of shore on. The rest is on the property
of another person that will not people fish from
his land. I did call him to tell him I would be
at the pond, but that I would not go on his land.
It is easier to do this than to have him come and
yell at me for not telling him. There is only one
place to park and he can see if someone is there
and will come out to the pond to check. If I tell
him, he trusts me not to go onto his land.
I grabbed the 3 wt and 5 wt I have built and headed
out. This is a pond that I have not figured out how
to get the canoe into. I have to cross a gully that
is about 15 feet deep and then go down a fairly
steep hill to the pond. If I could get the other
land, it would be a snap.
I like to fish this pond because the water drops
off fairly quickly along the bank I fish. There
is a good stand of lily pads and bull rushes on
the opposite shore and covering the shallow end.
Part of the space I can fish is on the dam so I
can get fairly decent casts out and cover about
50% of the pond. This is not a large pond so I
do not take many fish out of it.
I tied on a floating/suspending nymph and a
peacock sword tail nymph (See Ricks Favorite
bluegill flies). I try the floating/suspending
nymph first and cast it along the dam. I slowly
bring it along and get a nice gill to hit the
fly. This fish cuts a series of circles as it
comes in. I made a short cast so I can lengthen
them each time. If I catch a fish then I don't
scare others as I bring it in. I caught two more
gills along the dam and decided to try the other
fly to see what might happen.
I cast this fly out and it felt a little funny
doing it. I figured it was just the caster. I
let the fly drop and had moved it a few feet
when I felt a solid thump. I sat the hook and
had a bass go ballistic on me. As the fish
jumped, I thought the fly looked funny, but
I was working on catching the fish. I saw the
fish coming up to jump again and I dropped
the rod tip a little. Now the problem comes
The tip end had come off the rod, or at least
most of it. When I dropped the rod tip, the
line whipped around and tied a knot on the end
of the rod. When the fish hit the water and dove
it was too much for the leader and the line
snapped. I undid the knot and wound the line
in. I had about 1/8 inch of the bottom of the
tip top still on the rod. The rest had come
off and was now gone.
I did catch some more gills with the other
rod and was able to get a mess of fish for
dinner for my friend. I even took a few fish
to the other land owner to build good will.
I had them filleted and everything.
The main thing is that I had not looked at
the rod at all before going out or even
after coming in. I just assumed that it
would work and that everything would be OK.
I am not sure that I would have seen the
problem with the tip top, but I don't know
because I did not look. I had another tip
top so the rod has been repaired. I can tell
you that I have looked at all my other rods
to check the line wraps and the tip tops.
I know that several folks have written in
numerous books and magazines to check your
equipment. I wonder how many of the rest of
you are like me and we just go fishing without
doing this. I am going to try to make it a
habit to check everything before I go and
when I come back. At the rate I function that
means it will happen one of those times. I am
just glad that the rod did not break when this
happened. I am also glad that I had another
rod tip to fix it.
I hope you can get out on the water,
with well checked equipment. ~ Rick