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Finicky Rainbows
09-21-2017, 10:17 PM, (This post was last modified: 09-22-2017, 07:11 PM by Hawnjigs.)
#1
Finicky Rainbows
Best trouting resource right now here in the Midwest plains is a 40 mile power plant cooling water source canal which gets escapees from the managed for stocked trout reservoir origin.  For whatever reasons, the canal provides very fertile habitat for brisk moving water weeds, crawdads, baitfish, and bug hatches, so trout therein thrive.  At least every 5 years, federal regulations mandate a complete drain down and maintenance, and in that time the canal resident trout get very large,  with our state record 16# caught  within.  Unfortunately, nothing survives the drain, and cycle has to start over.  Last Fall was the scheduled drain, but an additional emergency drain for a current check structure repair is currently underway.  During normal flow, the current is too brisk and water too deep for my finesse jigging style, but with the water low and dropping fish are aggregating in deeper pools, and in just a year the residents have grown surprisingly large & fat.

So, with the down "stream" reservoir inlet wiper bite done due to the reduced water flow, lucky that the trout up "stream" are now accessible. Bite won't last for more than a few days before the water is gone, but today was optimal at one of the pools I found yesterday driving along the canal searching. Not a lot of #s after only a year, but got 4 of those 18-20" wild jumping drag rippers. The water was choked with drifting hair weeds so Boolies were out, and trout cranks were ignored along with bright colored shad darts both useful for somewhat minimizing weed hangs.  All 4 trout bit some of the first jigs I tied for them well over 10 years ago, 1/16 de-collared round heads from before I got my no collar ball head molds, painted with black nail polish and tied freehand (no vise!) with only low grade black marabou fedders.

Noteworty that all my fancy fur & flash stuff didn't work and the most primitive all black ones I have did.
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09-22-2017, 08:06 AM,
#2
RE: Finicky Rainbows
Interesting, and a good read... congrats on the catch.
>>>------------> Make It Count!!! <><
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09-22-2017, 07:19 PM,
#3
RE: Finicky Rainbows
Last nite tied up some updated black head - black tie jigs with crosscut rabbit on slightly heavier Hooksup heads and today got serious and walked down about a mile beyond a no vehicles barrier to access off the beaten path canal. 14 fat trouties 15-20". All released, but too bad they are doomed.

So, in the quest for the perfect jig don't overlook plain & simple.
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09-23-2017, 04:18 AM,
#4
RE: Finicky Rainbows
I would be very happy to get a good look at them. I got the picture of a simple leech pattern but would love to learn more details.

Shame to let those fish go to waste, perfect hot smoke material. Then again, harvesting such a mess of fish isn`t exactly my idea of trout angling either.
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09-23-2017, 08:48 PM,
#5
RE: Finicky Rainbows
The updated jigs are pure function rather than an appearance pattern. Consider that the fish are "finicky", meaning if they see me they either will swim away or won't bite. Consider also that flash and bright colors elicited cautionary avoidance response rather than bite stimulus. So, best solution was the the most non-threatening appearance possible while still resembling forage meaning all black. The heavier 1/15 oz. Hooksup heads were needed for better control in breezy conditions than the actual weight 1/24 oz. 1/16 de-collared round heads and the original light wire #6 hooks were bending out so were upgraded to #4 heavy wire.

So yah, if one wanted to label appearance a leech would be closest, tho the intent was more generic moving food source. Sorry, still don't have an image recording device.

Would have kept a few, but my smoker is still stuck in the house until my home repair guy fixes my back door. Not a simple project as the perimeter foundation in that area has settled dropping one side of the door framing considerably more than the other.
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10-02-2017, 11:33 AM,
#6
RE: Finicky Rainbows
Update: while most of the canal has drained too shallow to hold fish judging by sighting, I would guess a lot of the trout made it down "stream" where the water backs up due to releasing very slowly at the canal terminus at the reservoir inlet. Not big #s anymore as the fish are still spread out over at least 5 miles of canal without any signifcant holding structure and water too murky to sight fish due to lack of flowage. Still getting 3-4 nice ones per session by perseverent search casting, with a change.

The formerly successful all black rabbit fur jig bite completely died, so switched to a flashy white pearl 2" Gulp! twister w/ propeller and 2-1/2" Gulp minnow w/out to get back in bizness. I guess one can't depend on just one jig or lure all the time.
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10-02-2017, 04:32 PM,
#7
RE: Finicky Rainbows
The simple black jigs sounds like a black fly or black gnat

One of the best trout jig/fly's I've thrown for slime rockets all over the country
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