I took the day off from work on Friday, 3/30, and drove from Chapel Hill to Weldon, NC, to fish for Hickory Shad on the Roanoke River. It’s about a 2 hour drive; left home at 8AM and pulled into the parking lot just before 10AM. Rigged up, carried the pontoon boat to the river, and headed out to a spot right at the “big rapid” where the shad bunch up before they continue upstream. The morning was crisp; there was frost in my neighborhood as I left, but it was about 50F when I reached Weldon. I rowed across the river and anchored in the eddy. I first tried a yellow/orange fly, as my nearest neighbor was catching fish on a gold spoon on his spinning outfit. However, I didn’t get a hookup, so I changed to the hot pink fly that’s served me well at Weldon in the past (pink ice chenile body, pink bucktail wing, and pink kyrstal flash on a size 6 or 8 hook, with bead chain eyes). I was soon catching fish! The fish varied in size today, from about 14″ to 18+”. The larger fish were very thick and strong, and jumped and dove when hooked. I managed about 20 fish in 3 hours. The bite tapered off after 1PM, so I rowed back across the river and headed home. A beautiful, bluebird day…light wind, clear skies, spring greens in the trees, fish, and a cold beer at the end of the day. Damn, I need to do this more often 😉
So, I’m taking the day off Friday to try to catch some shad at Weldon. I may tie a few flies tomorrow evening, but I checked my boxes and I’m better stocked than I thought. I’ve got several of the pink ones that worked very well historically. I am looking forward to trying my one-man pontoon boat (a Creek Company ODC 816). I need to find an anchor, but I think I’ve got a sash weight in the garage somewhere. Hope to post a trip report this weekend!
So, back on Feb. 21, I lost my cell phone at scouts. I was pretty hacked with myself, but hey, I’ve flushed a pager, so what’s dropping a phone in the woods. I went to the cell phone store, bought a new one, and went on about my business. So, today, Mar. 27, we were cleaning out the scout hut and sorting gear. Apparently I did not drop it in the woods, it was in the hut, and was actually still powered on (albeit very low battery). What makes this really funny is that today, my younger son forgot to take his phone out of his pants pocket before mom threw them into the washer. Killed that phone, and I was heading to the store to buy him a new one tomorrow. So, manna from heaven. I will get this one reprogrammed for him, as it’s a nicer phone anyway.
So, I’ve been neglecting this poor blog. I’ve thought about posting a few times, but nothing of note has come forth. I thought, however, that I’d mention something that’s coming up and is one of the highlights of the spring each year. It’s almost time for the annual Hickory Shad run! In late March, these fish come up our piedmont rivers from the ocean, and provide wonderful fishing. This year, I’m hoping to try out my one-man fishing pontoon. I’ve often used my powerboat on the Roanoke River at Weldon, but that’s really overkill.
I can’t wait!