Winter in the Middle of July

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SSSdave
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Re: Winter in the Middle of July

Post by SSSdave » Sun Jul 23, 2017 12:33 pm

A big thanks for not mentioning or pointing out those lake names. Both are obvious to a number of us with closed lips. Below a feast after fishing one of them during a 6 person 2005 10-day trip I led:

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Rockyroad
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Re: Winter in the Middle of July

Post by Rockyroad » Sun Jul 23, 2017 12:50 pm

I haven’t fished the past few years, but this report makes me want to bring my fishing gear again, especially if I’m in that area. Excellent report and photos!

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Re: Winter in the Middle of July

Post by robertseeburger » Sun Jul 23, 2017 5:58 pm

Great shots and goldens...! I wish I had had micro spikes on my trip like you. Fascinating how there is more snow and ice in some lower areas and then less in some higher areas. I would have guessed the lake with the goldens would have been frozen.

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RiseToADry
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Re: Winter in the Middle of July

Post by RiseToADry » Sun Jul 23, 2017 8:43 pm

Hobbes wrote:Going up in a few days. Checking some lakes that have been reported here. Might get lucky and be first of the year. Hoping for fatties.
Good luck, tight lines! Would be hard NOT to catch a fish in these lakes. :snipe:
SSSdave wrote:A big thanks for not mentioning or pointing out those lake names. Both are obvious to a number of us with closed lips. Below a feast after fishing one of them during a 6 person 2005 10-day trip I led:
No worries, just discrete enough is the way I like it. ;)
austex wrote:All I can say is thanks. I have to say this is the best fish p*rn to date. Reminiscent of stories from Yeager's book Press On.
I'm always happy and perhaps a bit giddy to see others getting back to some of the true rewards for hard work, homework and persistence. Highly worth the reward. Thank you for sharing and I'm sure it made some tighter bonds between the three of y'all.
Truly flattered by the compliments... Once a year I get to spend a week in the backcountry stalking wild trout with my dad and brother. It definitely means a lot to me.

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RiseToADry
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Re: Winter in the Middle of July

Post by RiseToADry » Sun Jul 23, 2017 8:58 pm

robertseeburger wrote:Great shots and goldens...! I wish I had had micro spikes on my trip like you. Fascinating how there is more snow and ice in some lower areas and then less in some higher areas. I would have guessed the lake with the goldens would have been frozen.
The microspikes were so clutch - especially on firm/icy snow. The late afternoon stuff is slippery regardless. I too could not believe the Golden lakes were mostly thawed, yet the other was mostly not. After looking at your report, I'm glad we adjusted itinerary because I doubt the other lakes we wanted to hit would have had any part of the lake be ice free. It was a brutal winter in the high country that still lingers even in late July...

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Re: Winter in the Middle of July

Post by steiny98 » Mon Jul 24, 2017 8:53 am

Awesome report! This area is high on the list to explore.

Were you using a full sink tip line?

Were your brother/dad using a sinking leader with the floating line, or just a normal leader with a heavier streamer to get it down?

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RiseToADry
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Re: Winter in the Middle of July

Post by RiseToADry » Mon Jul 24, 2017 12:24 pm

steiny98 wrote:Awesome report! This area is high on the list to explore.

Were you using a full sink tip line?

Were your brother/dad using a sinking leader with the floating line, or just a normal leader with a heavier streamer to get it down?
I was fishing the Rio InTouch Deep 3, so it was full sink at 3-4 inches per second. My dad and brother used floating lines with a size 10-12 beadhead simi seal leech that was just heavy enough to get their furled leader and tippet (neither were designed to sink) down about 4-6 ft. Near the inlet/outlets of lakes the floating line is actually a little better - it is easier to keep the fly off the bottom - but if you're trying to fish the pattern 15+ft deep it doesn't work quite as well as the sinking line.

I also noticed the sinking line casted better in the wind, likely because it's a little heavier than floating line.

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Re: Winter in the Middle of July

Post by giantbrookie » Mon Jul 24, 2017 2:04 pm

TahoeJeff wrote:Awesome Bows and Goldens!!! Best fishing report of the year so far?
Yup, I'd say this follows in the footsteps of the great 2016 report to a different high altitude area. Best of 2016 and Best of 2017!

Other thoughts.... The statement about the feeling when cresting out and viewing the other side really hits home. In the decades I've been hiking all over the High Sierra, no view has said "Welcome to the High Sierra" to me more eloquently than that one. Yes there are other outstanding passes, some of which are physically harder, others which are easier but also have fine views, but there is something extra special about cresting out there. My wife and I once ran into this 7 year old hiking with his grandad and dad. He was carrying a pack so big it hung up on the snow groove at the top, but he was leaving his dad in the dust (grandad was leading and the kid was bounding along with him). Anyhow, both the young fella's parents used to hike all over until the mom developed knee troubles. Of all the places in the Sierra this must have left a huge impression on them because this kid's first and middle names were place names on both sides of the pass. Judy and I in fact considering doing the same for our first born (ie different place name but same area), Lee, who was born 6 years after that trip, but we opted to be more conventional. 20 years since I've been there.... far too long.

As far as the fishing goes, I did not experience the quality of fishing you did at the golden spot in my two visits in 1996 and 1997. They played dead and fishless during the daylight with nothing visible even in the outlet areas, no cruisers, no rises, and no response to my various offerings...then the sun began to set and the place exploded, but my top end both times was only 14". My 1996 and 1997 trips were also my only two visits to that partially frozen one where my experience was pretty much identical to yours both times as was the size range (top end were fat 16-inchers). It was the best combination of quantity and quality I had experienced to that point.

Thanks so much for this post. It radiates and conveys joy to all.
Since my fishing (etc.) website is still down, you can be distracted by geology stuff at: http://www.fresnostate.edu/csm/ees/facu ... ayshi.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

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Re: Winter in the Middle of July

Post by thebacs » Mon Jul 24, 2017 5:22 pm

I'm the "dad" in this story and I would like to add a couple of things. First, these two boys are the best sons a man can have. I struggled up to the pass on the first day, clearly slowing them down, but they were patient and encouraging. They wanted their old dad along (warms my heart). Second, the son who wrote the TR (RisetoaDry) puts in a lot of time and effort researching and planning these trips to maximize the fishing time as well as finding quality fish. We have not had a mediocre trip.....ever.....thanks to his diligence in the planning stages!

For those headed out, please be careful. The amount of water and snow out there is plentiful, beautiful, and can be very dangerous. Take care!

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Re: Winter in the Middle of July

Post by windknot » Mon Jul 24, 2017 9:27 pm

Excellent report and beautiful photos! Both your writing and your images expertly convey the pure joy of exploring and especially fishing for trout in the High Sierra.

On a slightly different note, I've been curious for a handful of years now but haven't remembered to ask you yet -- what kind of camera do you use when backpacking? The lens appears to have a pretty wide angle, which to this untrained eye seems to help even more to emphasize the vastness of the Sierra.

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