Bear River Tackle – May 2020 Adventure
Spring was to be an exciting time for Bear River Tackle. We were testing new big fish patterns in Pyramid Lake Nevada, prairie lakes of Idaho, and the mountains of Arizona. But that was before Covid-19 exploded on the scene and forced all three trips to be canceled.
In addition, our local spring weather was cold and wet which delayed the start of good fishing. Last week it rained four inches; unbelievable.
On the plus side it was finally starting to warm up and there were new flies to try! This is fishing, the conditions are never perfect. The best time to go is when you load your truck, so off I went.
Arrived at the creek with first light and was shocked to see there were flood debris ten foot above the normal water line! When there is this much current, larger fish can be washed downstream and those that are left in the pools are in no mood to eat. Almost turned around, but the day was beautiful and there were flies to test.
The best of the new patterns will become the Big Bad Bass family, specifically designed for trophy size bass. They are tied 4.5 inches long on a #2 streamer hook. I had eight different color and feather combinations to test.
In the first couple of pools a few jumbo sunfish hit the flies, but no bass and I was starting to get worried that the flood had cleaned them out. It wasn’t until late in the morning that I landed a 3.0 pound bass but there were no others.
Just for kicks I decided to try a nearby pond that is notoriously hard to fish.
As expected, the water in the pond was off color from the rain and it was now 11:00 AM which is not exactly prime time for flies. However, my best fish of the day did not come until 9:30 AM so perhaps there was a chance. More importantly, cloud cover had moved in shading the water, the wind picked up adding a nice surface chop and a storm was arriving the next day; all very positive developments.
Amazingly the bass hammered the test flies. First cast connected with a 2 pound bass. Second cast caught a 2.5 pound bass, followed by 3 pound and 3.5 pound fish, all on just one of the test patterns.
At that point I reeled in the fly and took pictures to ensure I could remember exactly how it was tied. Also, it was time to try some of the other patterns. Three of these also caught large fish but you could not buy a hit with four of the other designs. This is why all Bear River flies are tested in actual fishing conditions; you never know what fly will prove to be exceptional.
I switched back to the first fly for one final pass along the shoreline before heading out and promptly broke it off on an underwater snag. Darn, that fly was the only one like it; good thing I took pictures.
By now it was Noon and the other side of the pond had not yet been fished so a few throws were in order.
Third cast connected with a heavy strike. Thought it was a catfish because of the power of the run, but once it got closer to shore you could see it was a very large bass. Quickly got it on the bank, took a few photos and eased it back in the water.
The bass was 20 inches long (with a cloth tape measure) and easily weighed 5-6 pounds!
No way to top that. I thanked the Lord for a fabulous time and called it a day.
You never know how a trip is going to turn out when you start the adventure, but it is always a great time if you love the outdoors.
Time to go fishing!
Bear River Tackle