Saturday, June 18, 2016

38ish Inch Lake Trout From Granby

I got back from camping at Arapaho Bay on Monday. I took off to back to Granby at 4 am on Wednesday. This was by far my best trip ever to Granby.

I made it to the Lake about 6:30 am. I checked out the Stillwater campsite and was able to find a really nice site with power. After securing a site I used the ramp at Stillwater to launch my boat.

My friend Jeremy called right as I launched and said him and his friend Ed were fishing at Ford's Hump and that I should meet them out there. I met them at the hump and started fishing. The water temperature was about 59 degrees and I was fishing in about 70 feet of water right on the edge of the hump. I caught a few fish right away. Fishing was pretty good there till about 10ish. I missed a lot of good bites. After 10 I think I checked out a few more places on the lake and got another fish or two. That evening Ed invited Jeremy and myself to dinner at his RV campsite. His wife Willie made a great pot roast. We hung out for a few hours and had a really good time. Ed and his wife are great people.

Thursday I fished with Jeremy and his dog out of his boat. Jeremy has been fishing at Granby for years and was also a guide there for a while. Fishing with him that day taught me so much. I really feel that all the pieces came together for me that day. First I got to see how he uses his electronics to target suspended fish. I had tried this before with no luck. The problem I was having was my sonar was not zoomed in enough. So I could see my jig and the fish, but I could not see the subtle movements the fish was making and how they were reacting to my presentation. Also my jigging rod's tip is waaayy to soft. The soft tip took so much feeling away. When I would jig with it sometimes I would feel bites. Often I would just feel the weight of a fish on when I lifted the rod to jig back up and then I would set the hook. I would not feel the fish picking up the jig on the drop. Those two things and lots of other subtle things made a huge difference for me. We caught fish all day and I even managed to catch one suspended.

That night Jeremy invited me over for dinner. He made an awesome steak.

Friday!!!! So Friday morning I was at the boat ramp at 6:30. Ed was there and was just launching his boat as I pulled up. He waited for me in his boat. I backed my boat down and stopped right before my boat was in the water. I took my dock line and tied it to a kleet on the dock and left some slack in the line. I then backed my boat down into the water and tapped the brake and let the boat slide off. I pulled up and parked the truck. When I got back to the dock I found my boat floating away!! My dock line either snagged on something or just snapped. Thankfully Ed was there and he gave me a ride to my boat lol.

Ed and I headed to Ford's again. It took me about and hour to figure out how to "zoom" in my fish finder. Humminbirds don't really let you zoom the 2D sonar view. What you do is set the lower and upper depth thresholds. I set it to show the bottom (70 FOW) and 30 feet up from that. So I had a really zoomed in view from 40 FOW down to the bottom. It was great. I could really see every little detail. I started catching fish right away. I was even able to present to suspended fish and catch some of them. I stayed at Ford's for about 3 hours.

Sometime in the early afternoon I headed to Inspiration Point area. Found some water about 95 feet deep. I jigged for a while and could not catch anything. I could see on the bottom a mass of something. I wasn't sure if it was weeds or mud...or something else. I decided to stop jigging the bottom which is the standard presentation for Lakers at Granby. I decided to suspend and jig right above the mass at the bottom. As soon as I did this I caught a fish. I was able to work out that the mass I was seeing on the bottom was all fish! I kept suspending my jig to get the fish off the bottom and interested. I would then usually have to drop the jig back down once they were interested. Then I would jig normally for a second or two and they would hit. The longer I did this the more the fish got excited. At 12:00 noon exactly I was doing this same thing. I was jigging maybe 5 feet above the bottom and I saw a normal size mark come up off the bottom. I then dropped my jig all the way to the bottom, jigged two or three times then BAM!! Something about the hit and the flash I saw on the fish finder right before the hit made me think I was into a big fish. I reeled up for about 20 seconds without much resistance . Then I saw the fish completely off the bottom on the fish finder.It was a HUGE mark!! Right then the fish woke up lol. The fish ripped line off my reel like it was a snoopy rod and reel set up. It took me about 10 minutes of fighting just to get the fish off the bottom. He would come up maybe 10 feet then go right back down. The whole time my rod was completely doubled over.All I could think about was the back to back uni knots I used to tie on my mono leader to the fireline. PLEASE don't fail knot! When I wasn't thinking about that I was thinking about the fragile walleye style jig head I was using. A fish like this could easily straightened out the thin hook I was using. The intense fear of equipment failure and the overwhelming joy of hooking a fish like this had me laughing like a complete idiot. I'm talking about the deep, from the gut, uncontrollable laughter. It was truly amazing. After about 10 minutes of give and take I was able to get the fish up about 30 feet to 65 FOW. At that point he started to tire. The last 65 feet or so only took about 5 minutes. At this point I was hoping I could just see the fish, even if he got off. Please just make it to the top so I can see what I have hooked into. Then I saw him! I have seen quite a few big trout, 30+ inchers, I knew instantly that this one was bigger. He was also fat!! After a minute of holding my breath I had him in the net!! :D Once I got the fish into my boat my hands were shaking and my back was burning a little. I scrambled to get my tape measure and my camera. I set out the tape next to him and took a few pictures. Then I put him back in the water. I held the fish by the tail and revived him for about 5 minutes. Then he slowly swam away :) I sat down in my boat for a few minutes trying to take everything in and lock everything that had just happened into memory. About that time the wind picked up. I figured this was a good way to end the day so I headed for the ramp.

Saturday I caught 3 fish lol. Packed up all my gear and headed home.

37-38 inched and about 25lbs

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Granby 8-15

Pretty good trip. Truck camped at Elk Creek Campground. That kind of sucked.. Fishing was good though :)