June 9, 2007 - Chatfield Res.
Water was super high and super off color - although not sure if the water is usually any clearer - never really fished here. The day was hot 82 or so and partly cloudy (although the tops of my legs and arms are fried). I took the kayak and the dog and went carpin'!
Got there around 12 noon and went to the dog park to try and wear out the dog first. Got on the water after inflating the kayak around 1:15 pm. The dog was pooped so she didn't fight me too much about getting in the front of the kayak and laying down. We hit a section on the back side of the reservior close to where the river dumps in - but I did not really see where the river dumped in. Right off the bat I saw a carp jump out of the water to the left side in the frog water next to the shore. The land fishermen weren't anywhere near it so I dropped anchor and cast to the carp. I'm not exactly sure what I am doing - so I tied on a 10 foot leader and 2 green damsel fly imitations I had tied earlier in the week. They weren't pretty flies, but they were buggy. I cast to the torpedo multiple times, but got not luck. I couldn't see the fish, or even see any tailing fish or wakes, just a huge splash every 7 or 8 minutes. Pretty crazy. The fish was huge - like 12-15 lb range and he was brownish orange with a brighter belly than his back. I'm not sure of the make or model - but it was definitely a carp.
No luck there so I decided to work the muscles a little on the kayak. I went to a small island and dropped anchor just offshore - no luck there either, so I pulled anchor and decided to explore. The water is super super high right now and I could literally paddle between the trees and shrubs and make my way over what lloked like a peninsula - the water was only a foot deep, but this kayak doesn't go very deep. This is very very carpy water - I can imagine that a pro would have a blast. I could hear fish jumping out of the water and would see one every once in a while out of the corner of my eye. I didn't stop in the shallows, instead went to this small island and parked the kayak. The dog was happy to get out and walk around and I wanted to wade a little and see if I could "see" fish - nope. I actually got bit by mosquitos and thought to myself just how "snakey" the water looked and decided to get back in the kayak. I started paddling back when I saw a guy in a pontoon boat and went in his direction. He was right at the entrance to a lagoon that had some really froggy water. I paddled past him and dumped anchor in 2.5 feet of water. Two HUGE carp jumped out of the water in a lagoon between me and the pontooner. Damn, I wanted to try and get him, but I didn't want to get to close to the other guy.
I was having a ton of problems with cottonwood puffs clinging to my line and my fly. No way can you get these things off - they are like yarn and hard to cut. I went into some really dead water and saw a sweet turtle and scared something off in front of the kayak that scared the crap out of me. I moved on as the water was skinny and I didn't want to pop the kayak on all the sticks in the water. I moved finally to a spot that I thought for sure would be good. I finally got the cottonwood puffs off my line and I was twisted facing backwards by the wind, so I would myself back with the paddle and again had cottonwood puffd on my line. After finally cleaning them off I made 4 casts into the brush where I had seen a fish jump (not sure how they got into the shrubs and bushes) and I hooked a branch and lost my flies. I decided I had had enough - so I paddled for home. The kayak takes about 9 minutes to set up and 9 minutes to break down and pack away - pretty damn easy.
This was my first time fishing from the kayak. I like the kayak - although in the wind it will SUCK! Also, I'm very low in the boat and I can't see crap/carp. Sometimes I boost myself up on the back that is inflated, but it isn't very easy to balance. I need to make some sort of high seat in it - to see better, but also to keep my ass dry - when you paddle, the water goes into the bottom and then rolls to the heaviest place in the boat (my ass). I need to make a rod holder or something so that I can paddle easier without hitting the rod. I also need to make some sort of lap box/bag to put all my stuff in. There isn't a ton of room for your feet, so having a waist pack at your feet is crowded. My fly line was also getting caught often on the velcro look on the side of the kayak - not sure how to fix that.
Well, that was my adventure in a nut shell.