Day two dawned cold and clear. Getting out of the sleeping bag felt like a monumental task. The night before, the moon had been almost full and the elk were bugling all night long. A few came close enough to where we were sleeping to wake us up as they called to each other. Once or twice I almost thought I could hear them moving through the woods around us.
We began driving to the creek, with a few access points to the canyon floor of this creek sure to be occupied by others, we decided to park along the ridge and take a game trail down. This trail actually turned out to be fairly substantial and we were at the bottom after a short while. With no idea at all what was hatching I tied on a mini hopper and started casting into likely looking spots. The first pool was fishless for me. The second I came to was filled with fish, the only problem is as soon as the fly fell into the pool they all started trying to find hiding spots..
Upstream I heard Kayla shout and saw a splash! As soon as it was on, it was off though.. But a sign of good things to come I’m sure! I moved into the head of the pool I had spooked and one fish came up for a half-hearted take, which I missed. The good thing was I knew the mini hopper was gonna work!
The first fish of the day came from a likely looking run and my fly was inhaled in a flash. The small brown I brought in had good coloration and was back on its way after a photo or two.
As we moved upstream the three of us leap-frogged each other and seemed to alternate catching fish as we moved up. Some pools the fishing was good enough get four or five takes as we worked the tail of the pool to the head!
I was very impressed by the quality of the fish in the water and it appeared to be bouncing back well from the fire that had torched both of its banks. It is good to see water in Arizona with no stocked fish and a strong wild population!
The valley seemed to be coming alive as the fall set in. We moved through tall grassed made flat from elk beds and underneath groups of migrating red tail hawks. The hawks piercing calls bouncing off the canyon walls. Not a bad place to spend a morning!
The feisty takes continued as we moved upstream and the fish seemed to be living in every spot they could fit in throughout the creek.
I could have spent a whole weekend trying my best to fish everywhere along this cool mountain stream. But it was time to head back to Flag. We walked back up that steep trail that had brought us in underneath spiraling hawks. A good way to end a fun weekend checking out some new spots. A whole weekend catching wild trout and not a single other fisherman seen, not bad for Arizona trout fishing eh?