To be honest I wanted to fish a lot more of the St. Croix but my shoulder was not having more than just a couple of hours. I had been on the water of some kind for the past 7 days; a couple days involved casting my 10 and 12 weight rods for musky and thus a beat up shoulder was quite sore. I decided to try the section from County Road T down to Schoen Park.
While I had never stopped at Schoen Park…while passing by on the water it looked like a nice place; there were restrooms, a picnic table or two and even a small shelter. We, Vickie and myself, drove County Road T, crossed over the St. Croix and took an immediate left on Beaver Road. A couple more quick jogs and we were at Schoen Park…and the view looking out on the St. Croix was just as good from land as it had been from water.
We quickly ran back up to the intersection of “T” and the St. Croix where I dumped my blue float boat into the water and in just a few minutes was headed south towards the park. This upper section, the first mile or so after putting in at “T” is a series of riffles and pools as you can see from the video. On this day the weather was perfect and if you are a fly-guy then you will know that perfect weather doesn’t always or even often equate to great fishing. Simple answer is too much pressure on those swim bladders and that puts the fish down in a much less aggressive manner.
I was able to hook and land a few fish, the largest was just short of 17 inches…but once again the St. Croix had not produced one of its patented 20+ inch fish. Regardless the beauty of this river may seriously be second to none. When combined with the always present wildlife of the area…it makes for an incredible run no matter how many fish you land.
As my boat swung wide around the last bend I could see the camping spot just upstream from Schoen Park and my truck, along with Vickie setting streamside. I pulled over to the east bank and made a few casts into the pools behind the large boulders that frequent the river and managed to hook and land a nice ‘take-out’ fish for my audience of one…that is always a fun thing.
One note about the water; as you watch the video you need to know that the stream was in a ‘high’ state. Just a few days earlier it had been rated at ‘very-high’. I am not sure I would want to be on the river in the very high state…but at the same token, navigating the boulder fields with less water than the current high state would also not be of my liking. Maybe it would be easier in a canoe or kayak…not sure as I have never been on the St. Croix in either of those vessels. I can tell you that I had to maneuver my float boat making sure to stay in the deepest channels possible…and if I wasn’t able to do that, I had to walk my boat through and the rocks are quite slick and tough to negotiate.
To read about, and watch a video of, my previous day on the St. Croix, click here.
If you have any questions you can contact me using the comment section below or by emailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org.