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Monday, 30 August 2010 02:00

A Day Of Firsts

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View through the Rock House arch View through the Rock House arch Photograph by Mark Watanabe

Last Friday some of the members of Kentucky Kayak Fishing planned a camping-fishing trip on the Cumberland River.  Every Kentucky state record trout has been caught on the Cumberland River; let’s just say I was excited.  I wasn’t able to head down Friday but met up with the group Saturday morning.  It would be the first time I got to meet our newest member Pam aka Yak Girl.  This would turn out to be a day of many firsts for me…

Everyone camped at a spot called Rock house; it’s a natural bridge in Russell County, Kentucky.  Used for thousands of years by Indians and early setters as a meeting place it seemed a fitting place for our group of YakAngler’s.  I got to camp just in time to grab one of Geno’s breakfast burritos, with homemade salsa “Awww Yeahh”.  I’d never fished for trout before so I asked some of the canoer’s that were camping next to us what to use.  They said earlier one of the guys caught a 22” Brown Trout on a night crawler.  He said that corn works well and also Mepps spinners.  Out of the three he mentioned I had one a Mepps spinner.  So I rigged up my rod with my only  spinner and we headed out.


Geno making breakfast burritos

We launched at Helms Landing and planned to take out at Windfrey’s Ferry approximately 11.3 miles downstream.  I know everyone told me how cold the water was in the Cumberland but stepping into it for the first time almost took my breath away!  

The first mile of the Cumberland we all stuck out.  The current was rippin and it was hard for me work the spinner without it snagging and twisting my line. Unable to figure out any pattern to the trout I switched into smallmouth mode.  I tied on old faithful, a crawfish Rapala Fat Rap.  Within eight casts “fish on!” at first I thought it was a Smallmouth, turned out I had just caught my first Trout.  Pam took a few pictures of it and I let it go.  Casting the Fat Rap into eddies I was able to catch another rainbow, this one much smaller than the first one.  I’m not sure what he was thinking when he hit my lure.  The fish was only 5 inches longer than my crank bait.    On the same stretch Pam caught her first fish on a fly a nice Brown trout.


My first Trout


Pam's first fish on a fly

Everyone regrouped at a sandy grass bed and we grabbed a bite to eat.  We all decided to take a dip in the icy river to cool off.


Left to right: Jami, Geno, Adam, and Pam. That's Belmont up front.


Geno after his dip “can you tell its cold”


Jami decides to give my fly rod a try.

I shoved off while everyone was still eating lunch and noticed several trout hit insects on the surface.  “Time to break out the fly rod”.  Several errand casts later I plopped the fly right next to a trout boil…  “Wham fish on!”  My first fish ever on a fly!  The trout was no monster but the awkward-ness of the fly reel made the fish seem that much bigger.


Pam and Adam as we race down to Windfrey's Ferry.

We all fished for a few more hours, everyone landing a few more.  I'm not sure how many Geno, Jami, and Adam caught Pam and I lagged behind for most of the day.  Realizing that we had only gone 4 miles by 4 pm we hauled ass down to Windfrey’s Ferry.


I snapped this photo at the Windfrey's Ferry pull out.

It was a day of firsts for me; first time I got to meet Pam aka Yak Girl; first time fishing on the Cumberland River; my first trout; and my first fish on a fly!  What a great day a day of firsts.

If you would like to hook up with us on one of our trips check out our YakSocial groups Louisville Kayak Fishing and Kentucky Kayak Fishing or creat your own group!

Here is a quick clip of me attempting to to fly-fish.... Be amazed by the Technique!! 


Read 2596 times Last modified on Monday, 30 August 2010 19:14

Mark Watanabe

Mark "YakSushi" Watanabe is the Co. Founder of YakAngler.com, "He built this site!". He considers himself a mediocre fisherman and an unexceptional writer. He's the devoted father of a ton of little sushis (Air Quotes) and everyday tech ninja.

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