A Native Northern Californian with 45 years of hands on fly fishing for trout, Jon Baiocchi carries on the tradition of sharing the knowledge and the passion passed down from his father; a fly fishing hall of famer, and a legendary voice for saving California fisheries. Jon’s home is the rich flora and fauna of the foothills to the Northern Sierra. Fishing, guiding, public speaking, tying, writing, and teaching. The legacy continues.
Thursday, October 28, 2010
The Essentials Of Fishing Off The Bank In Late Fall
Late fall brings changing conditions to stillwaters, trout come into very shallow water, the sun is lower in the sky offering the best sight fishing, and cold weather hugs the land. For me, fishing off the bank is simply the best. No float tube, no boat, no BS! If you plan on playing this game one must bring the essentials to survive the cold weather. Survive? Think of Eagle Lake in December, bitter cold! Besides the normal gear that us fly anglers wear, I like to bring much more. First a comfortable day pack. In that pack I bring a stove, I like the Snowpeak Titanium model with the electric start and the matching titanium cookware. It's light and easy to use. I prefer the cartridge fuel canisters rather than liquid fuel. I had a MSR liquid fueled stove blow up once and luckily nothing serious happened - It did scare me though! Next, hot coco, and a Mountain House meal to seal the deal and make my day an enjoyable one. Yesterday for example, I was fishing Lake Davis and it was a cold morning at 23 degrees. I hunkered down in a patch of willows blocking the wind and let the sun cloak me like a favorite blanket, and fired up the stove. In ten minutes I had a hot meal laying in front of me, and energy to prowl the banks for hours while sight fishing to hungry trout. Other items in my pack include water, extra layers, gloves (one pair that gets wet while fishing, and one pair that remain dry), treats for the trout dog, hand and foot warmers, a trash bag in case I want take some trout to smoke, and a lighter to start a fire. At Eagle Lake my buddies and I often start a small fire on the bank to warm up - It's HUGE for the soul! We also at times take a freshly caught fish, and cook it right then and there. To eat a steaming cooked trout with just your hands when it's freezing out, is quite the experience - You feel so connected to the land! Roaming the shore and fishing off the bank is not for everyone, but with a little planning it can be the best. Sometimes simple is better.