It's a hot June - time to go fishing!
Kris Rehn - 6/22/2021
Wow, it's hot out there! With potentially record-breaking temperatures headed our way in the coming days, nothing sounded better than spending time this morning in the cool water of the Boise River. So, I went out to enjoy the sunrise and throw some flies in the upper stretches of the river before all the inner tubes and rafts got put in for the day (if you didn't know, floating the Boise is a SUPER popular).
The day started like any other - get the rod out of the rod tube, get the reel out of it's case, put on the waders and boots... you know, all the fun stuff that you hate doing when clearly all you want to do is be on the water as fast as you can. I checked the water levels app on my phone to see where it was at... DANGIT! The water rose overnight to nearly 800cfs.
As the sun began to rise, the anticipation built. I hastily got into my waders and boots, and speed-walked down the path to get to the spot I was hoping to fish. Not sure what exactly the spot would look like, as I hadn't fished since the water rose up from winter flows to spring flows, I was excited and relieved to see a good water speed and depth. It just looked fishy.
Observing the water, it was apparent that no fish were rising... so I made some adjustments and put on two small nymphs and an indicator, and waded in to about knee deep. An osprey flew overhead, ducks were quacking at me as they flew by a rod's length away, and the cool water felt good through my waders.
I spent some time casting and adjusting my indicator to make sure I was gently ticking bottom every so often with my nymphs. Suddenly... INDICATOR DOWN! I set the hook - and I felt a solid 'thud'. Nothing moved, no head shakes, nothing. I was stuck. I tried for a bit to get myself unhooked from whatever I'd found on the bottom, and finally felt the bounce of movement... but there was still a heavy weight. I knew right away I'd caught one of those famous 'stick fish', and proceeded to bring a ~4 foot long branch to shore. I let the water rest for several minutes and enjoyed my surroundings. Nobody else was on the river in my immediate vicinity.
After what felt like an eternity waiting (it was maybe 3 minutes), I decided to get back out and start fishing again. First cast, great mend, nice drift... and INDICATOR DOWN! I set the hook - and this time, that glorious feeling of a head shake met me immediately. My indicator zipped halfway across the river before witnessing a beautiful and heavy rainbow trout tail-walking across the water trying it's hardest to spit the hook. Which it of course did, much to my disappointment.
Feeling slightly defeated, I went right back to the same spot where I hooked that fish. Several more casts, and the indicator shot sideways. I got in another great hookset and the fight was on! This felt like another good fish, and every time it leaped out of the water I hoped and prayed that it wouldn't spit the hook like the last one. After several minutes I was able to get this gorgeous trout to my net. Snapped a couple quick pictures and a release video, and went back at it.
I spent a little more time in the same spot, until the sun had fully risen and cleared the clouds that were building over the foothills, and had a heck of an awesome morning on the water.
We truly are lucky to have such a gem of a river right here in town! It's got a healthy ecosystem that supports a variety of species and age class fish. Tight lines!