Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Saturday's surprises - new gear and stockies.

Last weekend was a fun weekend. It started with me getting my new Zimmberbuilt Tenkara Guide Sling Pack way before expected. I asked chris to customize it for me to hold my UL titanium net, and to make it with black instead of the usual checkered white and black fabric.  He had it done in a couple of days and shipped it before leaving for Midwest Tenkara Fest, I presume. I was blown away when I took it out of the box, just 2 days after it was shipped, and less than a week after I had placed my order.

 I added a standard Tenkara Strap Pack to hold my fly box, 7x tippet, a couple of spools of line, and my clippers. The rest fits in the bag itself. It has two zippered pockets, each with a small pocket inside for organization. As soon as I had the thing out of the box I got in the car and headed towards a new stream I planned to scout in an area I caught a lot of fish recently.

Sometimes, as is the case with Blue Lining, you don't really know what's going to be there when you arrive... in this case, the stream was way too small to want to fish. Bummer. I had been dreaming of discovering a "mirroring" stream running up a parallel gorge. Alas, it was too good to be true. But, I wasn't far from Kent, CT, so I headed to a well known stream that I don't mind dropping the name of - Macedonia Brook, pictured above.

Make no mistake, this is a nice wild trout stream, but it has insane peak season fishing pressure, and happens to be stocked a few times a year, and it was a very different fishing experience than when I fished it with TenkaraBum last fall. This weekend there was, apparently a boyscout outing and the stream had been stocked with some really raggedy-finned browns that were aggressive as hell and hitting every fly that sunk below the surface.

I caught stocked brown in all the pools I fished, but what I had really wanted was wild trout. Am I really this jaded? This was a clear example of why introducing stocked fish into a wild trout stream is less than ideal. These fish were clearly going to eat all the baby brookies and other trout they saw in their path. I just hoped the boyscouts would have good luck and eat their catch, helping to shift the balance back towards the wild trout and help them avoid becoming dinner for these beat up hatchery fish.

After a nice ride home I snapped a quick photo of the moon behind some clouds before joining some friends for a BBQ. I knew I'd have to find a special stream the next day to "make up" for my experience on Macedonia Brook, and contemplated a trip to the catskills.

Reflecting on my trip at the end of the night, I scolded myself for being at all disappointed, after all, I had landed many decently sized trout and gotten to put my Suikei 39 to the test in a newer environment. All was not lost, and tomorrow held a new adventure...


  1. Nice trip report! I too struggle sometimes with the wild vs. stocked dilemma, preferring wild. End of day, they're fish.

    I also have the similar sling pack. It's really a great piece of equipment.

  2. Thanks for the perspective, it always helps to know others feel the same.

    Really looking forward to getting some more use out of the pack, its pretty amazing. I'll post a little more about it next time.