BEREA, OH – Just getting out fishing, regardless of success or not, seems to be the goal of late. I didn’t do nearly as well as I hoped in 2019 as far as the amount of time spent fishing. With the holidays providing a little extra time off from work, I tried to make up for some lost time. While I do enjoy ice fishing, if it’s not cold enough to create good safe ice, I prefer it to be mild enough to go out on the kayak in relative comfort. The unseasonably warm weather allowed just that, and my final fishing of 2019 and first fishing of 2020 would be from the ‘yak.
The kayak fishing wasn’t very successful, with just one fish was caught. While it was a nice fish, a rather healthy Crappie, it wasn’t like I was catching them in great numbers. It also wasn’t a mixed in catch amongst the trout I was targeting, it was just a lone fish. I reminded myself what a blessing it was just to be out, healthy enough to be kayaking, and reminisced over 2019. Fishing is a lot like life in general, moments of great joy and success, and pain and failure. This past year had it’s share of pain with the loss of two close relatives, that has remained too difficult to blog about.
While I would end 2019 with some tough fishing, my second time fishing in the new year was marked by tremendous success. It may have been that I wasn’t as rusty as I had thought, but just the reality that the fish stocked on December 16th may not have spread out across the lake as I had expected. With some advice from a friend, I hit an area that I had not covered on the kayak in previous trips. This resulted in a total of 8-9 landed Rainbow Trout, quite the difference to be catch and releasing after a limit, than fighting to get a single bite!
It can sometimes be challenging to determine whether to keep or release a fish. I never want to have more than two until I am leaving, just in case one of those bonus fish find their way to my hook. If you read the Cleveland Metroparks Fishing Blog, you can see some of those choice specimen get landed now and then. These fish provide a little more fun and excitement, just knowing they are out there. I have managed only one, a very interestingly colored Brown Trout on my first kayak outing of 2019 (can see that fish here). On today’s trip, it was just a wide range of size, shape, and color of Rainbow Trout. One of the reasons I love the species, is just how much diversity there is within it. The above pictured fish, was one of the smallest of the day, but most handsome. It was released. A nice couple fishing near me, showed me their stunning Brook Trout that was deeply colored with the bright orange fins tipped in white. A spectacular fish!
The two fish pictured above are great examples of the uniqueness of each individual fish. I’m not sure if I am the exception or other anglers are like me, in that I appreciate each catch. Even if I only inspect it briefly before a quick release, I always find myself taking a quick note of it’s characteristics. Maybe it’s my inner child, that simply has never stopped enjoying anything I catch!