Awhile back, one of the local forum members had sent out an invite to myself and two other members to meet up and fish Strawberry Reservoir from his boat. This was something I had never done and I also had never actually met Keoni, even though we've spoken for about three years. His brother, Keala and I have fished together a few times though.
The plan was to have everyone meet at the parking lot at the mouth of Provo Canyon at 4:00am to get an early start on the morning bite. Everyone was on time and we were on the water by 5:15 in the dark.
Despite our early arrival, the fish hadn't become active yet. We didn't get any action until the sun had risen.
Scott was the first to score and had a couple others before anyone did. They were in the slot (between 15-22 inches - mandatory release - cutthroat only) and released before I could snap a pic.
Brandon got a pretty good one in the slot:
Keoni with his first catch (Scott - background):
Keoni's friend, Jordan, who showed up later on his tube. Another slot cutt:
My first catch of the day (slot):
Keoni with a skinny one:
Jordan got quite a few while kicking around, including a chubby rainbow that we was happy to take home. Keoni followed suit with his own fat bow:
Brandon with another slotty:
The catching continued throughout our time on the Berry, but taking photos seemed less important due to the catches all being slot cutts between 19-21 inches. We headed back to the dock to drop Scott off, who had some commitments to attend to. It's sad to have to go while the catching is good.
We motored out again and found another good school to anchor over. More cutts came to hand and back to grow larger.
Finally, I got a break. While tending to my minnow rod, I sat my jigging rod down, but noticed a strange bounce to the tip that couldn't be attributed to waves or any wakes from passing boaters. Out of curiosity, I picked it up and it flexed downward for a throbbing fight to the surface.
It had inhaled my jig all the way into its gill rakes and was bleeding heavily, so I hoped it made the mark, which it appeared to before measurement. Confirming this with the tape, it stretched out to 22.5 inches and I was relieved that first, I got a slot buster, and secondly, I didn't have to release a doomed fish.
This would end up being the only one over the slot for the day, but we really did pretty well, overall. Having the advantage of a boat on the Berry was great and I've never caught so many nice fish there in one outing. Very fun!
After some more catching, we decided to get off the lake and do some stream fishing. I knew a good one within our range and we spent about an hour working whatever holes we could find. Having three guys on this small creek was interesting, but we made it work and all took turns working the next hole up.
We weren't expecting to catch anything with size, just some pretty cutthroat and maybe some browns and rainbows.
The first catch came on my Blue Fox from a really nice looking hole under a spill. Gorgeous cutthroat!
Immediately after my catch, Keoni tried his luck in the same hole with a black marabou jig he tied. What a surprise to see this beautiful brown dart out from under some roots to snatch it up! Great catch for this creek:
Brandon got a cutthroat after we'd marched upstream a few stretches:
The next cutt to hand was really nice looking. Nothing beats catching good looking fish like these on tiny mountain streams!
One more and we called it quits for the creek. Brandon had somewhere to be and we'd had plenty of fun for the day.
We got back to the mouth of Provo Canyon and bid each other farewell. It was a really good trip and I enjoyed the company of some really good guys. Keoni and I will likely get out in another couple of weeks to spank some brookies before winter locks them away for a few months.
With my house being just a short drive from our meeting place, and so much sunlight left for the day, I couldn't resist trying my luck on the raging Provo River.
Just casting my spinners I got 5 browns, all within 100 feet of each other. This was a good note to end the day on and I took my cue.
What a day! Thanks to Keoni for extending his invitation to me and thanks to Brandon and Scott for providing good company.
Happy Fishing, Humans.
The Southern Belize Fly Tying Initiative - Placencia Session - *(If you missed the first post in this series, please circle back and start with the Hopkins Session before continuing on.)* The next morning we were up ea...
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