Spring Brook Trout

Discussion in 'Hunting, Fishing & Gathering' started by WRHC TopGun, Apr 15, 2017.

  1. WRHC TopGun

    WRHC TopGun Supporter Supporter

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    IMG_3799.JPG IMG_3860.JPG IMG_3797.JPG IMG_3869.JPG IMG_3870.JPG IMG_3878.JPG IMG_3882.JPG IMG_3921.JPG IMG_3848.JPG Got out last Wednesday to chase wild native brook trout in Shenandoah National Park. We had a perfect spring day with redbuds and many wildflowers in full bloom - trilium, downy yellow violets, cinquefoil, moss phlox, star chickweed and several others I don't know. The dogwoods were just starting to blossom. Their whites along with the many blues, pinks and yellows from all of the understory blooms were set against bright vivid greens from the myriad mosses, ferns and other new spring foliage. The stream was flowing strong feeding many waterfalls and plunge pools full of eager Brookies. What an absolute perfect setting for a fishing adventure.

    I fished exclusively with dry flies on this trip. Patterns included parachute Adams, Royal Wulffs, tan and black elk hair caddis and a purple haze in sizes 14-18. As long as I did my part placing an accurate cast and achieving a drag free drift the fish were not selective. I caught fish on each pattern and size I tried. In these small, swift mountain streams the fish cannot afford to hesitate when food presents itself, working greatly to the angler's advantage.

    The rod was my new Chris Barclay 70P, a beautifully crafted 7' 4wt fiberglass of Chris' own design and build. It cast a DT 4 with precision. I think it was about as close to a perfect rod for me on this trip as I could imagine.

    I don't count fish but I caught plenty on this outing. Most were males between 6-8" with a few going closer to 10". Though we are in the heart of spring here in Virginia many fish retained remnants of their fall spawning color. Just beautiful healthy fish.

    I describe this trip to friends as a rigorous hike in the mountains interrupted by some rock climbing and a little fishing. We hiked about 7-8 miles and gained several hundred feet of elevation as we fished upstream through boulder gardens and over waterfalls for several hours. I definitely felt it the next day, though the minor aches and pains were a small price to pay for pristine wilderness fishing. We didn't see another soul all day until we got back the parking area to load up and head home.
     
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2017
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  2. T MAC

    T MAC Old Squid Supporter

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    What a great day out; I love my native Virginia!
     
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  3. jonathan creason

    jonathan creason Tracker

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    Some very impressive wild brookies. I wish I lived closer to water like that, I love chasing them in those step pools.
     
  4. Pastor Chris

    Pastor Chris Hardwoodsman #7 Hobbyist Supporter Bushcraft Friend Bushclass II

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    Beautiful! I'll bet that little rod is a real delight to cast!
     
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  5. Hunt4lyf

    Hunt4lyf Guide Bushclass I

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    Wonderful TR! I love chasing brookies.
     
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  6. pab1

    pab1 Supporter Supporter Bushclass II

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    Beautiful fish and stream! Thanks for sharing!

    I've shared it here before but brookies and streams like that always remind me of this quote by Cormac McCarthy from The Road.

    “Once there were brook trout in the streams in the mountains. You could see them standing in the amber current where the white edges of their fins wimpled softly in the flow. They smelled of moss in your hand. Polished and muscular and torsional. On their backs were vermiculate patterns that were maps of the world in its becoming. Maps and mazes. Of a thing which could not be put back. Not be made right again. In the deep glens where they lived all things were older than man and they hummed of mystery.”
     
  7. arfanatic

    arfanatic Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

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    Nice trip!
     
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  8. GreenFrog

    GreenFrog Hardwoodsman #8 Supporter Bushclass III

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    Just beautiful. Great way to enjoy a day.
     
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  9. manitoulinbound

    manitoulinbound Apple Fritter Lover Supporter

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    That's the stuff that memories are made of!
     
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  10. Grouse Hunter

    Grouse Hunter Supporter Supporter

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    Great pics and TR, beautiful looking area.
     
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  11. Scott64A

    Scott64A Tinder Gatherer

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    So glad I'm not the only person left who chases little brookies for hours in the woods...
    I'm up in MA, and it's high time for brookie hooking.

    I use a little 7ft bamboo rod to do most of my brookie fishing, and when the water is high, I drift a bit of plain old work down into those step pools and soon enough I'm on my way with a meal.

    Gonna go up to the Limerick/Standish area in a couple of weeks and get my fill of brook trout fishing soon.
     
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  12. PeterCartwright

    PeterCartwright Guide

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    Trillium and brookies! What says Spring better than that! Our trout season has opened but the trilliums won't be here for a few weeks. Snow predicted for today. Gotta love the U.P.

    PC
     
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  13. halfmoon

    halfmoon Tracker

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    still many good little native trout streams left in Va. Lovely time indeed
     
  14. HazMat870

    HazMat870 Tracker

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    So jealous. It will probably be the 4th of July before I’m able to wade the creeks in my area.
     
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  15. Bitterroot Native

    Bitterroot Native Guide

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    We have some brookies around here that were planted LONG ago. I would love to pursue them in their native habitat! Great catch, looks like an amazing trip.

    Good on ya chasing em with a fly, nothing like it!

    Tight lines :dblthumb:
     
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  16. Sharp_canadian

    Sharp_canadian Out There! Supporter

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    Beautiful trilliums! And brookies.

    Got these yesterday on mepps 0/1 heavy current from the melt off.


    IMG_0571.JPG
     
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  17. Brook Trout

    Brook Trout Scout

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    As my forum name suggests, I'm all about this. I love chasing all types of fish, fowl, and critters, but if I had to choose, I'd have to pick brookies. If forced to explain, I'm not even sure I could. Is it because it's the first type of trout I caught? Is it because they're so beautiful? Is it because they're native? Who know, but I love 'em. And yes'm Trillium and Brook Trout go hand in hand. Thanks for starting this post, Top Gun, and thanks to everyone else for keeping it going. Brookies rock...period! :dblthumb:
     
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