Starvation Smackdown

Recently, the word got out that the rainbows at Starvation Reservoir were spawning and shallow gravel shorelines were stacked with nice fish.  Yes, rainbows usually spawn in the spring, but these have been historically tricked into spawning in the fall, at certain hatcheries.  Kinda crazy, I know.

Having never caught a trout from Starvation, I was excited to hear about the easy pickings and went to check it out on Black Friday, instead of contributing to the retail madness.

My arrival was met with a stiff breeze and I was unsure how much fly action I'd be able to get in.  The first spot I fished was a sheltered cove, although no trout were visible or biting.  It didn't take long for me to realize that I was in the wrong spot and I started walking along the shore, watching for dark masses moving about.

After a march of only about 100 feet, my eyes met several of those dark masses, some of them not even two feet from dry land.  Sneaking up on them, I started to cast an olive sculpin pattern.  The wind was horrible and I could barely get my fly out 10 feet, if that.  Not to mention, aiming my cast was nearly impossible.

Despite my difficulty casting and spooking fish with hard line slaps, I still managed to entice one of the smaller masses to give chase.  Half-guessing when the fish took, I lifted the rod and had a connection!

Though it was one of the smaller fish mulling about, it was still a nice catch.

Ah, my first trout from Starvy.  It felt nice to shrug that monkey.

A few more attempts at fly casting were made, but the wind was just too much to deal with and out came the Blue Fox, so I could pick on these brutes more effectively.


What a difference that made!  She was large and feisty.  I never got a tape on her, but I'm positive she was over 20 inches.

Some smaller ones also found my lure while I moved on to another area where I could find some shelter from the wind and hopefully find more active rainbows.

Once I arrived to a nice little bay, the wind was still annoying, but nowhere near as bad as the other spots. One side of the bay was shallow while the other had a steep, rocky shoreline.  Though it was the most sheltered from the wind, the rocky shoreline left me wondering where the fish were, so I tried my luck on the shallower end, where many casts were chased by more nice fish.

The action was hot for big fat rainbows and I even got a little bit more fly casting in.  It was a blast.

The Blue Fox was working well, never going more than 10 casts without a strike.  Some smaller fish also came in, but with the super cold water on my hands, they didn't warrant a photo.

Here's another really good one, this one coming from my favorite sculpin:

The wind was still a factor and I ultimately lost that fly, trying to cast into the breeze.  After that, I didn't feel like trying anymore and it was back to casting the Blue Fox.

My day started a bit later than I would have liked and the evening was approaching, so I started moving back toward my car, picking up a couple more rainbows on the way out.  Here's the best of those:

On the way back home, I stopped in and fished some moving water for about 10 minutes, catching three browns and seeing a lot more hanging out in an eddy.  One of them was huge, but he wasn't interested in my measly Blue Fox.  I could only pull in two little dinks and this one:

What a day!  Sight fishing for big rainbows all day long, overcoming the tenacious wind, and finally catching some trout from the mighty Starvation Reservoir.  It was a great time.

Happy Fishing, Humans.

Some Background...


Why not go jogging, hit the gym, start a garden or whatever it is that normal humans do? What's so fascinating about these slimy little creatures that live in the water?

Fishing is a bit more to me than a hobby or a sport. It's an essential part of life that helps me connect with the Earth in ways similar to the long-practiced traditions of mankind. Wherever man has had a water source, there has been fishing.

It's only natural.

Happy Fishing, Humans.