Busted - Almost!

by Les Albjerg


I had three hours between appointments yesterday. It was a nice morning, and I have my TenkaraBum Traveler 44 back from my son because he bought his own rod. This was my second premium rod from Chris, but I didn't get to fish it much last year because my son fell in love with it. Now he is fishing on his own as well as with his Dad.

I really don't like going to Wilson Springs on the weekend. Now that I have fished it a lot, I know most of the regulars. There are several of them who don't like me because I catch too many fish. I am open to sharing. To be fair, there are several who greet me, and are more friendly and are curious about my different way of fishing. I have been exploring the TenkaraBum Traveler at the 36 setting. There is a corner where I like to fish and this is just about the right length. The first fish I caught today on the second cast with a Red Wiggler swallowed the hook. So it was a keeper. I caught one more and released it, and then decided to try the W.C. Strwart's triple hook set-up. He talks about it in the "Practical Angler", and shows how to rig it on page 143. I don't like it after my first experience with it. I cast it out with my usual 2 Dinsmore #10 split shot into the current, and the rig drifted about three feet, and Wham! fish on. The problem was it was too much on! The first hook (tail end) was in his gut. The middle hook was in his gill, and the third hook in the upper mouth. What a mess! My second keeper, so my fishing was done in the put and take pools.

I had never fished the "Trophy Pool." I just had gotten some pink chenille from Chris, and had tied up a dozen "overhand" worms on Gamakatsu R10-B size 14 hooks. I went over to my car and put the two trout in the cooler, and got rid of my worms and rigged up with the overhand worm. It is amazing that fishing 10 yards from where I caught the two fish in a different pool, the rules are "artificial lures only, single barbless hooks, catch and release only." After about a dozen casts, I realized that the current in this pool is stronger, so I added a BB split shot 24 inches above the fly. On my second cast with the heavier rig, I got a strike! I had just casted out again, and a voice from behind me said, "Idaho Fish and Game, I need to check your outfit." I turned around startled, and said, "O.K." I pulled in my line, and stepped up to him. His first comment was, "Where is your reel?" I simply told him, that I was using a Japanese fixed line fly fishing rod." He checked my license. He then said, let me see what you are fishing with." I handed him the fly. He carefully inspected the hook to see that it was barbless. The great thing about the Gamakatsu R10-B is it is made as a barbless hook. He then asked me, "What kind of fly is this?" I said, "It is called the Overhand Worm." He said, "O.K., but there were some guys who stopped me and told me you were fishing with real worms in the trophy pond." I didn't respond, but asked, "Is it O.K. to get back to fishing?" He said, "Yes go ahead."

I was getting the currents of this new pool figured out, and about 20 minutes into fishing the pond, I was into a really nice trout! I caught my largest rainbow to date on fixed line! It was a very nice 19.25 inch trout that gave me a good 10-15 minute fight! Unfortunately, my cell phone was in the car and a game warden on the prowl, so no picture! The "Overhand Worm" is a winner! There are several links to it on this website. You can find it under "Ultralight Worm Fishing" tab. It is a winner.

Comments for Busted - Almost!

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Feb 19, 2018
Check & Double-check
by: John Evans

Les--
A good cautionary tale about staying legal! It always pays to read the regulations . . . and then read them again. For example, in my part of Texas barbless rules are almost (not quite) unheard of. Consequently, if I traveled to another area, that's one law I'd easily overlook. It's something I just don't think about. I do fish one area that's catch-and-release only, but some folks either don't know about that rule or decide to ignore it. Right now our state parks don't require fishing licenses within the strict confines of the park. If you get on the river and exit the park, however, a license is required. For a pleasant trip, know the law and follow the rules . . . And--if you fish long enough and often enough--realize that you will be checked!

Feb 20, 2018
Overhand Worm
by: Les Albjerg

I am feeling good about being an advocate. Two years ago I went into Idaho Fish and Game with several flies that are commonly used and meet with a couple of officials. I told them that by the letter of the law, most flies that are being fished today are not legal. Idaho has broadened their definition of a fly, so now virtually all common flies are legal including the "Overhand Worm."

The "Overhand Worm" is one of the easiest flies to tie. It is also very effective. I would venture to say, more effective than the San Juan Worm. I gave Edy a new co-worker who fly fishes, 3 "Overhand Worms" for the Mountain Whitefish contest he fished in last weekend on the South Fork of the Boise. He used both flies, and caught his two fish on the Overhand Worm.

I tweaked my rendition of the Overhand Worm a little. I like to tie them on the Cultiva SBL 35 size 12 Wide Eye hooks and the Gamakatsu R10B, size 14. After tying the chenille on, I put a small drop of Loon Knot Sense and hit it with the UV light. I then take a lighter and put the heat near the tips of each end to seal them and give it a nice point. I found that by gluing the knot, I got a lot more fish out of each fly fishing for sunfish last summer. Having a pointed worm makes me feel better! I'm not sure it catches more fish! My next tweak is to use some Loons UV red paint on the knot and make a hot spot.

So, if you don't like something about the fishing rules in your state, speak up. Fish and Game wants to hear from you. Give the Overhand Worm a try. You don't even really need a tying vise to make them. The Overhand Worm is really effective.

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