As I said in the last post, day 1 of this trip was nothing short of amazing. Here’s how it went down, but also what led us back up to the cabin for Memorial Day weekend.
Memorial Day weekend has become our annual pilgrimage to the coldwater streams of North Georgia, utilizing my parents cabin as a home base. This year however, we toyed with the idea of going to Arkansas and floating the Buffalo for smallies, which is something I still would like to do, but I really didn’t put in the planning necessary to give us a real shot at success. This weekend kind of snuck up me, not gonna lie. I mean, I still had the date blocked off on my calendar, knowing I’d be headed somewhere, but I kind of thought it would be somewhere new. I figured I’d be halfway through the bass slam by now, but life happens and I’ve yet to make the first trip on the quest, so the priority of accomplishing the bass slam is quickly sliding down the list. Having some success at the cabin in April certainly didn’t help make me want to go anywhere else either.
When we decided to head back to Georgia I thought it would be a good opportunity to stop at the Flint River, in shoal bass territory, and at least try our luck with one new bass species to us. However, last weekend’s heavy rains put an end to that idea as every gauge I checked for the Flint did not paint a pretty picture. It’s always good to have a backup plan though, and heading to North Georgia a day early was not a bad option.
We got in real early Thursday morning, put in a few hours of sleep and got on the creek about mid-morning. I went to work pitching a streamer, which I had some success on in April and landed a couple small browns at the first spot.
Working our way upstream, it was evident that the interest in the streamer was just not there so I switched rigs. I still had the dry dropper rig we fished with on the Upper Colorado River in September set up in my pack and I told Blake, “if I catch just one fish on this rig, I will consider it a success”. Wouldn’t you know, just a few drifts in and I hook into a nice one.
It was a stud rainbow on the dropper. The rig was a success and would continue to produce the rest of the day. To get an idea of the rig(and to understand why I made that statement), take the biggest foam dry fly you have in your box and hang the biggest stonefly imitation you’ve got below it, now add 2-3 split shot in between and that’s about what I was fishing. For the size water we were fishing throwing the rig seemed ridiculous at first, but we caught browns and rainbows in pretty much every likely looking spot. Some bigger than others, with the biggest going 22-23″, most were around 14-16″ though.
We headed back to the cabin for lunch/brews and stopped to look for fish food under the rocks on the way back. Sure enough, we found our Huckleberry. Found some fish eggs clinging to the rocks as well.
If you can believe it, the fishing actually got better after lunch. Blake caught twelve in a row standing in one spot with one of them being a monster. While he was at that spot I was just downstream having have similar success, landing back-to-back browns that were probably my biggest to date. I know this is private water and most of these are stocked trout that receive supplemental feed, but the fishing was unreal by any standards.
We ended our day at a spot upstream known to hold behemoths, with both of us hooked up on big fish I decided to set up the GoPro. Unfortunately I failed to account for the sun being in the shot and Blake wasn’t able to bring his to hand at the very end. Still, I landed probably my biggest rainbow trout ever.
With that the weekend was off to an incredible start and we would be hard pressed to top day 1.