Saturday, November 12, 2016
Toothy Fish and Mergansers
There is something very satisfying about strip setting a big meaty fly into the toothy mouth of a carnivorous, aggressive fish. This time of year that becomes an effective way of catching most species of large predators from big brown trout to stripers... and somewhere between those are walleye and pickerel, my targets for today. I lost one (a big walleye, high 20 inch range) and landed the other. I was glad to get something viscous and marauding to eat the wiggle tail pike fly, and boy was it a good hit. Just a solid thump. And it wasn't even that big of a pickerel! Size tends not to have anything to do with beauty when it comes to fish and this was fish had that text book chain pattern and beautiful green coloration.
I also managed a small bass and a fairly exceptional white perch. Both are fish I am always happy to catch this late in the year.
The north end of the pond was packed with ducks. There were three flocks; mallards, black ducks, and mergansers. As a photographer I could not miss the opportunity to get some sweet and hard to obtain shots. I did some serious stalking. I muddied my jeans and jacket and had to remove a couple ticks crawling up my left arm getting into position. But I could not get close enough.
Then I got extremely lucky. I spooked the mergansers. As they took off I turned on my camera, grabbed focus and panned into the lower end of the pond. I waited for the ducks to enter frame and I hit the shutter once. What I caught was something stunning.
And with that, good night!