Big Brookie on
Air Stage 290 硬中硬
by Chris Lynch
Wyatt crossing a bridge on Bradley Fork
My son and I went on our first father-son camping trip last weekend, up to Smokemont in GSMNP. Fall colors were awesome, temps were PERFECT, it was a great time even if that's all we had going.
The creeks were simply beautiful. I was having to entertain and keep an eye on my boy, who isn't always interested in fishing, so we didn't do nearly as much as I'd liked, but it was still eventful.
Finally, at the end of a decent hike (for a tired 4yo) in the Deep Creek section of the park, we stopped at a pool where I saw lots of small wild 'bows. I made a few casts with my Air Stage 290 硬中硬, White Tenkara tapered line, some 7X, and a small golden-yellow soft hackle beadhead from the local shop in Bryson City. The little guys were nibbling at it, but I kept missing takes, and it may have been too big for them.
Finally, just as I was about to give up, I saw the unmistakable white fin edges of a brookie come out from the shadows, and I couldn't believe the size! I gave the fly a little twich, fish turned and took it. Then I was like "crap, what do I do now?".... This fish was one of the larger trout I've hooked, and I had it hooked with my softest rod on 7X. I was able to play him long enough and soft enough to protect the tippet, get the photo, and release the beast.
No, it's not a wild brookie- some stockers make their way into that section of the park from the Tuckasegee River.
After that fish, I put away my gear and was satisfied.
Wyatt had fun hiking, seeing waterfalls, was super stoked about the big "bwook twout"...
I was thrilled to land such a hog on the small rod.
“The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten” – Benjamin Franklin
"Study to be quiet." - Izaak Walton 1653
"Be sure in casting, that your fly fall first into the water, for if the line fall first, it scares or frightens the fish..." Col. Robert Venables 1662
As age slows my pace, I will become more like the heron.
The hooks are sharp.
The coffee's hot.
The fish are slippery when wet.
Beware of the Dogma