The deluge of spring 2011 continues, but we caught a break in the latter half of this week. Steady rains had the main tribs of steelhead alley blown out early in the week, but my I still got to fish on Wednesday. After a day of great meetings in Wooster, I stopped by Apple Creek, a small stream that the local Trout Unlimited club stocks.
Despite the heavy rains, Apple Creek was running clear on Wednesday evening. There was a heavy current and things looked promising. But other than two chubs I came up empty in 45 minutes of fishing. I look forward to returning and fishing the stream more thoroughly.
By Thursday evening the Chagrin River was dropping and fishable. With my wife off visiting the Global One at Ohio University, I took advantage and drove east after work. I fished the barking dog hole (if you know the area around Mayfield Road you know the spot) with one other angler and picked up several nice fish. Most of the fish were very dark, signs that they had been in the river a bit.
Friday morning before work, Rebecca joined me on the East Branch of the Rocky and we hooked into a few fish in the drizzling rain. Hopes for a banner evening on the Rocky fell short, but three of us managed a few fish. On Saturday morning, I returned to the best spot from Friday and enjoyed a morning of solitude and steelhead. For a few hours I had the river to myself. My only company was a red fox that emerged from the woods to walk about a quarter of the way up the 100 foot-high shale cliff. The fox headed downstream walking along the cliff wall as if it were a hiking trail. At one point I was certain he'd have to turn back, but somehow he kept from falling off the cliff and scampered along. He must have had some velcro on his feet, or perhaps was part mountain goat. About 40 yards downstream he turned to look at me and stood on the cliff without moving. I wish I could have taken a picture, but I had my hands full. The fox showed up just as I hooked a steelhead.
The fishing was great, the catching would have been better if not for three large trees that dropped off the cliff and into the river a few days ago. The steelhead have already learned to run for the trees when hooked. More on the trees and the steelies that use them to escape later on.