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Old 10-27-2008, 08:23 PM
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PeteCz PeteCz is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Maryville, TN
Posts: 800
Default Daytrip from **** - Part II

I'm not sure what possesses me sometimes.

After two weekends of being skunked (first on Slickrock Creek/Straight Fork, and then on the SOHO), I should have called it a year and just waited for the spring, but.....

I couldn't end with two shutouts.

Instead of going someplace easy where I know what I'm doing and have a decent chance to catch fish, like WPLP, I decided that I needed to go someplace with more adventure...

I should have known better.

Yesterday when I woke up, for no good reason (does insanity count as a good reason), I decided to hop in the car and head back to the Brookie section of Snowbird Creek. I had pretty decent luck there in the early Summer, so I figured I could give it another shot and end the year on a good note. Big Mistake.

The drive over to Snowbird was nice. A nice layer of fog was burning off Santeetlah Lake by the time I made it over the Dragon and to the stream. I was amazed that there were no cars on the road up to the stream (I should have wondered why...). There was no one camping (no one...again, I should have thought about why...). No one at the trailhead (why...). I literally had 18 miles of stream to myself (why...).

I hopped out of the truck and quickly geared up for the 5 mile hike to Big Falls. I pulled out my digital thermometer and watched the readout start falling 56...54...52... It did feel a little brisk, come to think of it. 50...48...46... Ok, so maybe it's a bit colder than I though it would be (wasn't it supposed to be 70 degrees). 44...42...40... Now, for the first time I start second-guessing myself (of course it's now 10:30am and I'm 2 hrs away from home), maybe this isn't such a good idea...

Then in the back of my head I start rationalizing...Its more of a hike than a fishing trip...if I don't catch any fish, the 10 miles of hiking will be good for me. Right! Let's go! So off I went. I made it up above Big Falls abut 90 minutes later. I pulled out the digital thermometer again. The temp at 12 noon was now 45...The water temp was 42...perfect (if you're a steelhead...)

Needless to say I had no luck catching or even spotting a fish. I tried just about everything with not even a splash. I didn't even spook fish. They were nowhere to be found...After about 3.5 hrs, I packed it in and hiked back. The air temp made it up to 50, but was already dropping by the time I headed out. On the hike out, I ran into two guys that were hiking in and wanted to know how I did (and where they could find the nearest campsite). They were about 200 yards from the nice site at the Sassafras Creek confluence. I hope they did better today than I did yesterday.

After what seemed like an eternity (the knees and hips were starting to really complain the last 3 miles) I made it back to the car. On the way home, I stopped at a pullout along the road and cast an EHC a few times. On the third drift, POW!....a 2" rainbow! Normally that fish wouldn't count, but in this case...

- Miles hiked: 10
- Hours driving/hiking: 7
- Hours fishing: 3.5
- Fish caught: 1
- Ouch

Yearly Recap:
- Fished in TN/NC: 33 trips
- Fished in CO: 1 - 10 day trip
- General assessment: Fewer fish than 2007, but on average the fish seemed a bit larger

I think maybe I'm done for the year....maybe...

"Even a fish wouldn't get into trouble if he kept his mouth shut."
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