Tuesday, January 4, 2011
Crane Creek 12/28 "12 inches of trout (in 4 inch increments)"
Made plans to meet up with a good friend and chase some wild trout around Crane Creek for a day. Brett's a hell of a fisherman and an even nicer guy so I never pass on the chance to spend some time on the water with him when his busy guiding schedule alllows. We met in the city park at 8:30 and geared up before heading off downstream to fish our way towards the railroad tressle. The first thing I noticed was the low, clear water. I guessed it to be close to 6 inches lower than the last time I was there just weeks prior.
This stream has always struggled with water in certain sections. While the area we were fishing today always maintains good deep pools other sections are prone to drying up during times of drought like the one we're experiencing in Southern Missouri right now. While these fish have survived through much worse water conditions than what we have now I can't help but think that some extra water during the upcoming spawning season would help the survival rate drastically. Regardless, the task at hand was still to see about fooling a crane creek bow or two and we didn't make it past the first bend before we saw our first pod of fish.
The deep pools just above the highway bridge always hold trout but they're extremely wary as they see more pressure than fish in any other section due to easy access. Brett and I took turns casting flies to these fish and in turn having them snubbed time after time by some pretty nice fish. We fished from town to just above the railroad tressle seeing several pods of fish that we were able to get flies over. Unfortunately the result was always the same for both of us , I think we each caught one small fish during the morning.
These big wild mccloud rainbows had handed our hats to us on this beautiful winter day. It's always enjoyable to fish with Brett and I had a great time taking turns spotting for each other even if the fish didn't want to cooperate. Brett had other engagements after lunch so I decided to check out some other areas of the creek.
I found the middle wire road access dry below the bridge and too skinny to hold trout up above for as far as I walked. Just last year I had caught several small bows where now there was only dry streambed , disconcerting to say the least.
After leaving here I drove up to the upper wire road access but found another truck in the lot so I didn't stop. I decided to go back down and check out the section above the town park that I had never fished. This part of the creek had good water and I was able to land two more small fish before calling it a day about 4:30. I had seen some really good fish just hadn't been able to fool them on this day , just another good reason to plan a return trip at the first chance I could find.
Posted by HighPlainsFlyFisher