Sunday, March 17, 2013

A 26in Rainbow on a 5Wt with 5x on a size 20 Blackbeauty? Or Two?

What do you get when you mix light weight tackle, tiny flies, nasty weather, and a huge Gore Canyon Colorado Rainbow? or Two. 

A. A very tense, adrenaline pumping, terrifying, rod bending, backing pulling, totally absorbing, bicep exhausting, reel spinning, live connection with a vigorous wild fish.

Todd Fehr, former President of Denver Trout Unlimited, grabbed a rare open slot on Reid Baker's guide calendar and put out an email to the DTU board to split the cost. My email filter bumped this to RED ALERT and I snagged the spot before the other sadly employed board members could respond. Working full time has serious draw back.
YR Ranch is a Freestone Outfitters lease managed to keep the conditions optimum for the fish. Unlike the Jones property just upstream, these fish are all wild, unfed, and in their natural state as they come up river from the life blood of the West, the Great Colorado River. Clint Packo, Freestone's owner is a world class fisherman, two victories in the extremely difficult Carp Slam, aquatic habitat designer, guide operation entrepreneur, and all around friend of Colorado's natural river environment. He manages his lease to provide a great experience for the fish. Guide clients wind up learning all the right ways to enjoy the sport and improve the river. Clint rests the river for three days every week and never permits fishing over redds. 

 According to guide manager Reid Baker, these two 26 inch rainbows were an indication that all the work being done upstream in the headwaters of the Colorado, all the municipal wastewater treatment plants from Grand Lake to Kremmling, all the work done by State, Federal, and Private organizations to improve the Colorado is helping these fish grow and reproduce naturally. Their annual migration to spawning grounds in the Blue is becoming better each year.

"One 26 inch monster rainbow each season is cause for real celebration," said Reid.
"To have these two bumbling idiots catch two in a single day is a great indication that the health of the river is coming back big time," is what he was probably thinking.