Thursday, 23 May 2013


Once again I have dropped the ball when it comes to keeping this Blog up to date.  So on that note I'm going to jump back in with an entry covering the Spring so far and it's many outings.  I will start with a few pics from before Opener.  These fish were  caught in the year round section of the Maitland river.

Some incredible conditions occurred early this year. 

As the river dropped fishing was good, although I didn't fish as much as I would have liked too, it was good to load up the NRX every so often.

  This Opener would be a special one.  Dave my best friend for  many years has always been interested in my Steelheading outings. Sadly our schedules seemed to be at odds all the time thus trips together never materialised .  A visit in early April would have us making plans to fish the Opener together. Over several Beers Dave decided that he wanted to fly fish. I was happy, but stressed the fact that he could fish however he wanted.  He insisted, so I rigged up the 10' 7wt for him.  Funny, it was to be a back-up rod but its new purpose is now a loaner for Dave. 
  Finally the day arrived and Dave and I were  hiking through the woods in the dark to reach the Run we would start our day at.  Of course we arrived a few hours before first light, just as planned. We  promptly opened the backpacks to fish out a couple of  Luke warm beers.  We sat and enjoyed some great conversation as the hours passed, before we knew it the chirping of Robins could be heard and daylight was on its way.  We scrambled to assemble the rods then took our places on the Run. As it turned out we had the run to ourselves. I set Dave up just below the Mid and told him to work his way to the Tail out.
I took the Head and would work my way to the Mid.  He picked up roll casting instantly.  Fish started to rise immediately  in Dave's section as if they were signalling  they were ready to be caught.  Several botched  chances missed and Dave finally was into his first Steelhead ever and his first fish on the fly.


I watched from the bank as the Steelhead jump several times and took line.  It was a decent fish and watching my best friend with his first was way better than hooking my own.  Finally I
tailed the fish and it was official.

Dave continued to do well as the day passed,  he missed fish and hit a few more.  I finally hooked some fish too, but for me the highlight was watching as Dave tumbled into the Steelheading addiction.  We never did leave that Run.  A friend of mine Brian Watson showed up and we all rotated through the Run and hooked a considerable amount of Fish.

Plans were made with Dave for an outing when Bass season begins and a Fall date for Steelhead has been set for us to do a drift with Mike Verhoef of Flyfitters. Unfortunately Dave was busy for the remainder of the Spring Steelheading window, but funny enough he was constantly texting me for updates and reports.  I'm glad to say another Steelheader is born.

The following week after opener would be spent fishing whenever I could.  Here are a few pics from some quick outings.

With River levels at prime or close to it, I would squeeze in several more outings of course.

  One of which would be a drift with Mike Verhoef.  Early May would see us on the Maitland River, drifting lazily down the river as the rains poured down from overcast cloudy skies.  We passed over fish on beds and watched as they darted back and forth in the swift current.  Dark males were easy to spot, and every once in a while we would see the unmistakable flash from a Hen.  I look forward to my drifts with Mike.  He has become a good friend and his knowledge of this River is impressive.  One trip with Mike is worth four of my own in learning.  We Swung intruders and Nymphed  untouched water.  It was a great day.

The next day I would head out again to explore some water further downstream on the Maitland river.  I arrived late and tired from the previous day at the access only to find a couple cars.  I
headed up river and was delighted when I reached a favourite piece of water that was void of anglers.  Several drifts through the feeding lies and I was into a strong fish, surprised by the fight
I was in shock as the clean silver Hen left the water multiple times and proceeded to cover every inch of the run to free herself. 

As the green algae grows on the river rocks you know things are coming to an end.  This spring was a good one.  Fish are still high in some systems but levels are low and river temps are on the rise.  Time is now best spent doing yard work or flipping something tasty on the BBQ .  Although, as I type this sentiment its raining and I am hoping that a little trout stream I know of is about to spike...  Perhaps some Resident Trout fishing will be on my list soon.  Until then, there are a few gardens that need weeding and grass that needs cutting.