The wife slept in and took the kiddo to the pool in the morning while I started the day at Cold Hole and worked over to Evening Hole. My overwhelming excitement caused me to overlook the fact that the days are starting to get shorter. I woke up WAY too early. I did however catch the Hook and Hunt Show on the radio, and I can now tell you I wont lose any sleep if I miss it next time.
On my second cast into the pool and I got a hit on a BH Prince Nymph with a Red Hot Midge dropper. I was so surprised I set too hard and he was off. Now wide awake!
The morning was pitch black but I continued to fish.There was still 40 minutes until first light, so I honed my Jedi nymphing skills. I was more concerned with getting a hook in the eye than missing a strike, but I decided to forgo the sunglasses as not to be mistaken for Stevie Wonder Fly Fisher Extraordinaire.
Action was pretty steady all morning and I was relieved at how few people were on the water. I hooked a nice brown in a deep pool. He put up a good fight and I got him all the way to the bank and he broke off as I leaned over to net him. Later, I wasted some time trying to catch one of the 4 albinos cruising the first few pools to no avail. Around 10 am the fishing slowed down (or maybe it was just me) but the crowds were picking up. Several people around were having no luck at all and leaving as soon as they came. Most spooking everything in sight then moving to the next area. After a German guy and his buddy crossed right through the riffle and nearly stepped on the 20" fish I was casting to I decided to head back for some Pizza at Greatful Head. On the way back I ran into a guy with his boys that was landing a fat 18" rainbow on a crank bait. He was pretty excited and I was glad to see someone else having a good day on the water too.
After the pizza I was recharged and had a good idea of an area the wife and my son could relax and play nearby while I fished some more, so we headed back to the park. Many of the frustrated fisherman were packing up as we arrived. My buddy from earlier was back in his spot and hooked up on another decent rainbow. I could hear him tell his son he was going to break off in the current, so I offered to net it for him. He was happy we landed the fish and I was relieved he had filed down the barbs on that crank bait. It was good to see a dad spending time on the river with his boys teaching them to follow the rules and still doing better than those that chose not to.
I caught a few more small ones and had a great time with the family. I saw several fish actively feeding. One was sipping off the top like clockwork, but I could't see what it was taking out of the foam. There wasn't a hatch going on and he wasn't taking my offerings, so I gave up on him and headed home vowing to be better prepared with my arsenal next time!