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fly fishing hawaii:

the next two days.

according to albert einstein the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.  so of course after the brutal weather on tuesday, we decided to hit it again on wednesday... bad idea.  as rough as it was on tuesday it was even worse on wednesday.  the winds bumped up a few notches to a constant eighteen to twenty knots with higher (many higher) gusts.  the winds were out of the northwest instead of the southwest as they were the previous day.  the addition of the the cold north wind air just added to the “fun” factor.  it was the worst conditions i’ve been out in in a long time,  but i have always been the advocate of fishing the tough conditions when no one else wants to.  i was not about to be the neighsayer and back down from the fight, though in retrospect i probably should have.


brutal is an understatement.  the winds were ridiculous.  you could barely make a cast up wind and when the wind gusted it was difficult to even stand still.  i hunkered down with my back to the wind using my wading staff to help support me.  i could get a decent roll cast and switch cast off with my sage 691-4 method rod though it wasn’t very pretty and did not feel very good.  it was more positioning the line for the wind to carry it out than actually casting.  it would fish, though, and had to do.  the hard part would be getting the fly down and keeping it from swinging wildly and unnaturally in the chop and current.  i used the heaviest fly the little six weight line could turn over.  to compensate for the current i casted short of my intended targets and threw in some stack mends after every cast to allow the fly to sink as it slowly approached the target area where i thought the fish might be.  it worked… well sort of.  i did manage to hook four bones doing this in these ungodly conditions, but i had a difficult time landing them.  the high winds and rough water surface made it tough to stay in contact with the fly.  add to that the constant slack i had to keep putting in the fly line just to keep the fly down in the zone and it was quite tricky business.  i lost two fish because of a poor hook set.  the hook just popped out as i fought them illustrating the importance of keeping contact with your fly and getting a good hook set.

another one got the jump on me.  the most critical part of fighting bonefish, to me, is the seconds right after it bites and before it gets going on its infamous bolt for freedom.  once the fish gets up to speed there is little you can do but hang on.  at least out here, that is where a lot of fish (and fly lines) are lost.  anyway that fish bolted before i could take control of the situation by slowing his run from the start and directing the fish to run the way i wanted.  that one parted company with me soon after on some coral.  fortunately, the fish gods took pity on me and let me land one small bone (the day and blog saver) for which i am grateful.  one out of four is a pretty low percentage but under the circumstances... i’ll take it.

the fish gods took pity on me.

despite letting me have a fish, the fish gods got the last laugh.  i woke up the next day (thursday) sick as a dog.  it may not have been directly because of the beat down the cold winds laid on me the day before but that probably didn’t help.  i had told matt i would take him to the lake that day for one more fish before he returned to the mainland for college.  i knew he would be disappointed if i cancelled so i toughed it out.  overnight the weather did a complete turn around from the hurricane conditions the day before (par for the course in the winter here).  winds were light but straight out of the north which put a little chill in the air cooling everything off a bit including the peacock bass bite.  we pounded around and found a few willing eaters but it was nothing like the last time.  the fish were there just not really that active.  still, after a relatively slow start, we both got a number of fish including a few decent peacocks.  we even got a couple of doubles during some short feeding spurts.


after we had been out for a few hours i hooked one more peacock and decided i was done.  a little while later matt hooked one and proclaimed it his last peacock of the winter and we headed in.  always good to end on a fish.  since then the weather has stabilized a bit.  it looked pretty nice out there the past couple of days.  there is another front coming some time this week so we’re not out of the fickle weather patterns yet.  i’ve been laid up in bed, writing blogs, and trying to get rid of this nasty cold.  hopefully i can get better soon so once again i can... see you on the water.

a couple of lake bleugs (bluegill).

this one was matt's first fish caught while he was controlling  the boat with the trolling motor.  one day he will have to do that full time. 

you know, i think i like being the back of the boat guy.

matt with a nice peacock.

lil' schoolies.

releasing another good one.

nice fish.

the powerful spotted tail of the peacock bass is what makes them fun.

doubled up.

winter can be crazy around here.  sometimes you just gotta play the hand you're dealt, take what the gods give, try not to get sick, and just enjoy the good times.



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"Nervous Water Fly Fishers- your guide to fly fishing in Hawaii"