Wednesday, April 8, 2009

South Park

The last two Sundays I ventured to South Park. The first trip ocurred two days after Spinney opened for the season. Jason and I waited for the blizzard to calm down and then made our way up. We had action right off the bat.

The notorious South Park winds picked up a few hours in so we relocated to the South Platte River where spawning bows didn't disappoint.


The following Sunday I headed back to South Park with Vaughn, Swizz, and Kevin. We pulled up to Antero only to find it glazed in ice. Instead of waiting around for the winds to break up the film, we drove over to Spinney. Fishing was extremely slow in the morning. Lulu, Swizz's malamute, got sleepy waiting for us to start catching.

Finally, Kevin caught the first of the day.

After more miserable slowness we decided to move to a different location. On the hike back to the trucks we ran into Jerry; a true veteran of Colorado fly fishing. The first time I met Jerry was last Fall when he promptly caught this PIG. He joined up in our band of anglers.

We walked the South Platte above Spinney but the areas that were big enough to accommodate all five of us were already infested with other anglers. We bypassed the river and jumped into the trucks.

We moved to the opposite side of the lake where the wind was just beginning to get frisky. The masters of the fly proved their prowess despite the harsh headwinds. Vaughn, Swizz, and Jerry all caught numerous fish while Kevin protested the conditions and I haplessly copied the flies that the other guys were catching with - to no avail.

Vaughn cradling a female ready to explode with eggs:

Once the winds picked up to an unbearable velocity, we moved to a spot that Vaughn knew of that was craftily shielded from the howling, raging madness. Swizz and Kevin called it a day and took off. I was approaching hour 8 of total skunkage and was spiraling into a state of jaded misery. However, Jerry, Vaughn, and I persevered.

After a little bit of lock picking we cracked the combination and struck a period of truley hot fishing. All three of us landed roughly 20 fish each over a course of 1.5 hours.

Jerry admiring a bow that was sporting an impressive kype:

This cutbow had a bright orange belly that just didn't come out in the photo:

A harsh day turned into a memorable one due to the fantastic ending. I was broken down all day only to be handsomely rewarded at the very end.

A massive herd of elk that extended well beyond the frame of the photo while departing up Kenosha Pass: