Water is everywhere…and one of the absolutely few things that we can’t do without. We could go upwards of 30 days with food but try and go even half a day without water and you will get dry; probably because of the simple fact that we are water, about 75% as is our entire planet…give or take a few percentage points.
I love water; not just for its effect in keeping me alive but for much more. I awake each morning and while some folks have to have that morning cup of brew…I truly need and want my warm shower. Sure I can get by without one but the day just doesn’t feel the same.
I love water as well because it is where fish live and through the years my love for water has grown to what I know at times is a feverish level. Now this is where it is hard to actually describe to those of you that aren’t fishers…or in my case, fly-fishers; I truly believe that we were meant to be around water or even in water which is actually my very favorite.
I know there are those of you that love the beach. My gal Vickie is one of those…she loves the waves, the smell and all that goes with it. I myself get pretty bored at the beach and quickly want to grab my 10 weight and see just what might be lurking out there 70 or 80 feet out…about casting distance. If you are one of those beach lovers, then my hats off to you!
For a fly-fisherman there are so many kinds of water…from varying degrees of temperature to the amount of water that is either flowing by or resting below you. I was in my float tube a couple summers back and crossing one of the lakes in Minnehaha to make the turn back toward my put in point; I had my depth finder on my tube and was watching while kicking backwards noting that I was in some pretty deep water. Most of the way across it was 70 feet, but then it went to 80, then 90, etc… right up to the point that it bottomed out at 120 feet in depth. Now I know this might not be deep for an ocean situation but sitting in my float tube knowing it was 120 feet straight down was both exhilarating and a little nerve wracking. My mind started wandering about how big the fish could actually be down there and how could I get my fly down that deep…then quickly the depth retreated back to 70 feet and even shallower.
If you haven’t yet noticed how many colors of water there actually is then you are missing out as well. We live in an area that has an abundance of differing colors from incredibly clear to chocolate colored water. Airline Pit in Greene-Sullivan is absolutely one of the clearest lakes I have ever fished in and if you are looking for a nice day fishing, set your compass for a few miles west of Linton where you will be mesmerized by how far you can see down…it is much like looking into an aquarium. I fish this lake in my float tube and have to admit that at times I don’t fish as much as I sight see; the view straight down is spectacular and seldom can you see all the marine life in any body of water.
Tannic is a term that refers to a color of water that I associate with acidity or high PH in the water and the color is best referred to as tea colored and usually occurs because of naturally occurring tannins or organic compounds found in the water thus giving it a root beer color. As odd as it sounds I love fishing tannic water as it always seems to produce for me. Often I use brighter colored flies in whites, yellows or even some neon or flashy colored flies. There is a small creek here in southern Indiana that often produces a batch of rock bass and some usually healthy smallmouth bass…and all in some very “tea” colored water.
Just this past week I had my new Twin Troller boat out on Allen’s Creek on Lake Monroe. It was a windy night and I wanted to see how the boat would do in rougher conditions. The water was murky at best and in some spots was downright chocolate colored. Experience has taught me that predatory fish like to sit on the back side of points that give them protection and blow unsuspecting bait fish into their lair. Such was the case this night as the water exposed to the wind was very off colored while just a few feet towards shore…and just off the grass beds the water was much clearer. I took my 8 weight and a 4 inch white streamer tied on a 60 degree hook and made cast parallel to these grass beds. The first fish was 20 inches and 4.2 pounds, the second fish I will have to guess was about a pound or so larger as it escaped my net right beside the boat. As rough as the seas were and as many complications as fly-fishing in 30mph winds created…it was one of the most thrilling couple hours of fishing I have had. If you can stand it and if you can situate yourself at these points…there are some big fish waiting for a meal.
If you like me are in love with water…I hope this spring gives you many memorable moments atop or in your favorite type, color or body of water. If you haven’t yet experienced or are in deep need of some H2O then what are you waiting for? Let your stress float away and just maybe you too will gain an infectious love of water as we all Enjoy the Great Outdoors.