First Pike on the fly for Clark, and on a new pattern I had whipped up, I was the proud "father", he was the stoked Pike first timer.....the day had begun
Clark proceeded to grease two more cookie cutter males on this same fly over the next half mile of drifting as I tossed various other patterns that had worked only a mere five days before.
We worked some deeper water farther downstream, and having noted that a particularly long stretch of stream had been worthless a week before, we decided to motor back upstream and drift through the same water again.
The day had warmed significantly and I was beginning to be concerned that the bite was all but over. As we began to drift the beginning stretch again I noticed a small male come flying out of the milfoil I was working. No sooner did I yell, "I have a follow!" did the northern hammer my fly. My skunk was off, I breathed a sigh of relief, released the fish, and continued with the drift.
We each had several more follows as we drifted toward a deep hole that we had passed up when motoring downstream earlier. We positioned ourselves at the head of the hole, noting the wind influence and the nature of our drift. Second cast into the deep slot my day changed. This fish took the fly, and soon enough I knew I was into a something significantly better than the 5-6lb cookie cutter fish we had been into. We got several glimpses at the Pike, not able to truely tell it's size. Then Clark got his first solid look, "Dude that is a good fish; really nice fish man!" It's downward fight was powerfull; it's runs weren't epic, but were strong enough to remind me that I was dealing with a freshwater barracuda of sorts and that my 25lb fluoro bite gaurd at the end of my leader was the only thing keeping this fish from shredding my line.
After a five or six minute battle the fish came to net. Some fist bumps and some encouragement from a local camp owner on shore were the defining moments of the fight; I had gone from a near skunk to some afternoon heroics.
We repositioned in the same fashion at the head of the hole, proceeded to drift again, and once more I was onto a fish, not quite as big, but another big Northern.....hell this hole was on fire.
6 very legit Water Wolves came to net, with countless follows, and several fish in the high teen to 20lb class seen with our polarized lenses in the water. Each fish came on a new pattern I had tied up since the last outing.....epic weather, epic outing.