Another year on the Kish, that makes 8. I wanted to post a quick recap of my year seeing as I rarely put up individual reports any more. Having two boys under three years old has, not surprisingly, taken a toll on my fishing time resulting in only a handful of outings. I managed,
1 Spring group float with the ISA, had about 6 members total and floated 10 or so miles of river. My best smallie day boating 6 of them with three being 16-18 inches.
2 Summer float and wades, The first with my friend Anthony. We caught a bunch of small to medium pike and a couple smallmouth. We each missed a quality fish with Anthony being manhandled by a monster pike and me losing a bronze bass that hit so hard and ran so fast I barely had time to react. I tried a follow up float solo next weekend but the river was blown out with rain the night before, skunked.
3 Fall wades. November was a great time for Pike. I had three wading outings within a two weeks, all solo. Went 0-3 on the first one missing two nice fish, skunked on the second, and 2-3 on the last finally landing a solid pike on the fly.
Looks pretty abysmal written down. The lack of time on the water, along with the growing pains of learning to fly fish took their toll. With that said, it was the most fun I've had in a long time. It was great to be challenged and even on days I got skunked, I went home knowing I improved upon my casting and technique. I think this video edit I have is a much better representation of my year.
-Holy hell fly fishing is fun, learning curve be damned, once you hook into a quality fish and feel how "connected" the fight is it's hard to go back.
-Fly tying is also a great time, there's an investment but once you have the tools and materials and techniques to let your imagination go wild it's hard to stop.
-This river still holds a special place with me, there's lots of variety between the north, south, and main branches. It may not have the most numbers or the largest fish, but it feels wild in many sections. Always an adventure with something new around the bend.
-With my oldest son almost three. I'll be comfortable taking him out more next year. that means more fishing time, I can't wait to expose him to one of my favorite activities.
If you love Smallmouth and want to help protect the rivers they live in check out joining the Illinois Smallmouth Alliance, it's a great group of people with tons of knowledge on our rivers. http://www.illinoissmallmouthalliance.com