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Re: To count or not to count- that is the question.

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Never thought about it but im sure i can do about a mile in an hour easy

Posted on: 2010/2/12 4:09
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Re: To count or not to count- that is the question.

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I used to fish Valley with dries and catch an average of about 3-4 per trip, the range was skunkaroo to a dozen. Now I fish for poconos brookies, and catch a range from skunkaroo (new place that didn't work out) to three dozen (stream I know, 4 am departure with fire in eyes, mountain bike to save time). I probably catch three-four times more brookies on an average trip, maybe 15?, than I did at valley, maybe 3-4?

Sometimes I will find a great pool and catch five brookies in a few minutes, but you can't catch five fish in a few minutes at the letort (I haven't caught five there in my life!), so comparing total fish numbers across types of fishing doesn't mean much.

I probably caught a lot of fish last year, but only because I made a lot of brookie trips. I have already had days where I caught a dozen brookies this year, but I don't keep an annual count. I look at fishing days more on "did I do a good job with the conditions?" and "did I learn something today?"

I like to move around when I fish, and I agree with Sal -- the first cast is the most likely one to catch a brookie, so I like long streams with many pools, and it pays to keep moving and fish more of the stream.

While I agree that stealth is important in small stream brookie fishing, sometimes moving faster even with a little less care can work. I have caught a few nice brookies in infertile streams this winter that turned downstream after a fly, so I watched them swim right toward me!

Posted on: 2010/2/12 6:52


Re: To count or not to count- that is the question.

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From Pretty much everywhere at some point, Thorndale today.
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yep, moving quick. I think I fall somewhere in between troutberts and sal's estimates of travel speed. Thinkin of a particular stream last summer, where I know the distance well, I fished about 3 miles in 4 hours. I'm sure this varies a little depending on the water, and streamside brush for that matter.

Posted on: 2010/2/12 7:36


Re: To count or not to count- that is the question.
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2006/9/9 9:29
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I would never de-emphasize the importance of stealth on small streams. In addition, I think stealth precludes moving fast unless it is to purposely pass over water that you think will not be productive. I think if you painted a streamside tree bright orange, the trout would "worry about it" for less than an hour. On the other hand, If you, dressed in your best camoflauge, move quickly into their field of view, they will spook, period. If you pause and remain still for ten minutes, they may return to ease and feeding locations. Have you ever tried standing still for ten minutes? Much easier to move slowly in the first place so that when they become aware of you, they do not regard you as a threat. If they didn't see your form enter their field of view, but merely catch a glimpse of you in repositioning themselves, they are unlikely to be alarmed, particularly if at that moment you are still.

Anyhow, just my thoughts on moving quickly.

I think Akid was also asking about moving from river to river or section to section. I am inclined to choose my location to park as Plan A based upon prior knowledge of the stream and go and find the best water I can walk to. If water levels, turbidity, etc. dictate a different stream, I will usually give that one at least an hour before thinking of going with Plan B.

Posted on: 2010/2/12 7:43
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Re: To count or not to count- that is the question.

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"...3 miles in 4 hours. I'm sure this varies a little depending on the water, and streamside brush for that matter."

yes, also, while the fish are less active in winter, the reduced brush is a big help for covering more distance.

Posted on: 2010/2/12 7:43


Re: To count or not to count- that is the question.
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Pat, my math may be off, but would 3 miles in 4 hours be equal to 66 feet per minute? That seems to be an awfully quick pace unless every 10 minutes or so, you just hightailed it upstream a tenth of a mile or so. I'm not doubting, just wondering if that is a good fishing pace.

Posted on: 2010/2/12 7:48
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Re: To count or not to count- that is the question.

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2007/7/3 16:22
From Downingtown, PA
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Quote:
PennKev wrote:
I know how many I catch. If it's a lot and i lose count, I still know within +-1 or 2 fish. Also, I can usually remember most of the fish and how I caught them if the fishing is not too fast and furious. Additionally, I write it down afterwards in a log with the weather and water conditions. This info is useful for future trips.


Ditto - And the fewer I catch the more accurate the count. ;^) I'm not obsessive about it and don't write it down on the stream or notch my flyrod. I also keep a log of water temp, air temp, weather, flow, hatches & etc for each trip so I can see trends both on and between streams, reminisce during the winter, etc.

I'm a counter by nature, and I'm sure some of you are as well. I know how many seconds it takes to fill the coffee pot, our humidifier, the juice container & etc. Not an intentional thing, I just find myself going " 1.. 2..3.." while doing any task. I know, I know - bring out the restraints...

As far as moving goes, I seldom leave a stream unless I find it high & muddy, until it's been whipped into a frothy foam, or if there are simply too many people there. One day last year I started on Fishing Creek, moved to Spring and ended up on Penn's. BFC was high flow, low temp and completely dead. Spring was in similar shape and everywhere I went some knucklehead would immediately jump in 50' above me. Finally drove to Penn's to get some solitude and was rewarded with a late afternoon sulphur hatch.

EG

Posted on: 2010/2/12 7:56


Re: To count or not to count- that is the question.

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Jack I agree that stealth is important, and too bad an approach will shut a pool of brookies down. But I also agree that the first cast in a pool is the most likely one to produce a strike. Since stealth costs time, and doesn't need to be perfect, at least in small brookie streams, I think it is sometimes better to move faster and give yourself more of those best-chance first
casts in more pools. This also depends on the stream, you can overdo speed on a really small stream and wind up in higher smaller parts that don't fish as well as the bigger lower area you blazed through. But if the stream is big enough and long enough that its upper areas still have good pools, it might be worth trading some stealth for some speed. And if by moving up you are getting away from the nearest road, you might reach bigger fish because even in isolated brookie steams some fish wind up as a fisherman's lunch.

Don't get me wrong, I never fish downstream unless it's the only possibility, often kneel to cast, try to cast from behind trees, and there are branches over the stream, I have to keep low anyhow.

But some of the books I read made it sound like camo and crawling upstream are the only ways to catch brookies, and I have caught some nice fish fishing downstream when I had to, and have had several fish this year swim right in my direction
downstream chasing a fly. Of course I stay still, but I would not have guessed that wild fish would do that it's cold and they saw FOOD! :)

Posted on: 2010/2/12 8:08


Re: To count or not to count- that is the question.

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2007/5/10 14:53
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I count. Always have and probably always will. It's most likely the accountant in me that makes me count. I don't count to brag how many I caught, but rather I use it as a personal reference in my fishing log and nothing more.

Posted on: 2010/2/12 8:20


Re: To count or not to count- that is the question.
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Quote:

k-bob wrote:

But some of the books I read made it sound like camo and crawling upstream are the only ways to catch brookies, and I have caught some nice fish fishing downstream when I had to, and have had several fish this year swim right in my direction
downstream chasing a fly. Of course I stay still....


Just to be clear, I am not saying wild trout are hyper-spookie. I am saying they are more frightened of movement of objects ABOVE the surface (hence shadow issues) than they are by objects in their above-surface "vision" that are not moving.

I'n not saying either that I think there are 11 tout to catch in a pool as I described and pictured earlier. I also don't believe there is only one. I would probe the rear of the pool with a couple casts before i drifted the mid section and would drift the head last. If you approach pools this way on large streams, you should do so on the small one's.

Anyway, with my method, you don't have to walk so much. I would prefer to hike 25 minutes or more just to reach the place I put in and then worked slowly and methodically over a smaller stretch. Just a preference, I guess.

Posted on: 2010/2/12 8:43
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Re: To count or not to count- that is the question.

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2006/9/10 7:44
From Enola, Pa.
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Quote:

Maurice wrote:
I count and have come to the conclusion that people who catch more than 500 trout/year are either liars or are way better than me at it. I am inclined to believe the former most often.


Years ago when I was in my prime, I have had over 500 fish a year, I know this because I keep records. Now days in my golden years Im lucky to catch half that but I still love flyfishing for trout. That will never change!

PaulG

Posted on: 2010/2/12 8:58


Re: To count or not to count- that is the question.

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"I am saying they are more frightened of movement of objects ABOVE the surface (hence shadow issues) than they are by objects in their above-surface "vision" that are not moving."

Yes, and I think that's the only reason that after I approach a pool from downstream, make a cast, and the fly drifts back, a brookie will sometimes turn and swim toward me (cool to see) -- it's because even though I am not small :), I am not moving at that time. If that fish for some reason were pointed downstream
during my cast, he'd be in cover before the fly hit the water. (You can often see fish that spook, so you know you screwed up.)

I fished for brookies during bear season, and was out there in an extremely bright blaze vest to increase the chances of maintaining my "dermal integrity" :). I didn't help, but it was atradeoff I was glad to make. I still caught brookies on dries at close range, some even from the side of pools if that was the only casting lane. But I bet I also worked harder at staying low in orange day-glo.

I agree a lot of this comes down to preference. I love brookie streams that have a lot of good pools over a longer section, and I just view it as a 43-hole golf course. Patience is not my strength.

Posted on: 2010/2/12 9:03


Re: To count or not to count- that is the question.

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jack - here's another thing that suggests you are right, that what really spooks fish is above-water movement: you can sometimes catch multiple brookies, up to five, from the same hole, on dry flies. I try to bring 'em in and let 'em go, which must cause some underwater and surface comotion, and then another one will hit a fly. so it is not just any motion or disturbance, it is above surface movement that seems to send them darting. herons and muskrats everywhere.

Posted on: 2010/2/12 9:13


Re: To count or not to count- that is the question.

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2007/10/17 10:49
From florida
Posts: 6269
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Quote:

acristickid wrote:

What are your thoughts on fish counting?
Does this effect your outing?
Do you ever move spots?
How quickly does it take you to decide this?


Sometimes I count:if there are lots of fish I try to keep track of numbers and size.
Numbers don't affect my trips any more.I just enjoy the whole experience from the driving to getting tackle ready,to choosing flies to try ,etc.
Generally have a plan before I get started.Hit X stream and drop over to Y and so on.
Decisions on the evening before or the AM depending on variables such as weather .
I try to carry a camera and take pictures,although posting them is a laugh.
My memory is still pretty good so I can recall times and places and fish numbers.

Salt water is a different animal.With limits and seasons you have to count or get in trouble with the man ,if you get stopped.

Posted on: 2010/2/12 9:25
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Re: To count or not to count- that is the question.

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For what it's worth, I've counted in the past when I kept detailed personal records, but it was more complicated. When I did it, on index cards, I broke the pool down into zones and had a code system.
It was a way of giving myself insight into determining the difference between my perception and reality.

For example, how many sub-legal brookies are part of a 70-some trout outing, and how many were legal-length?

After enough of those, and then seeing from old wounds or other evidence and figuring out how much damage barbed hooks do to all those sub-legal brookies resulted in my making changes to strictly barbless and the smallest hook possible to minimize damage. It also helped alter my striking response. A lot of undersized, eagerly surface-feeding brookies can be avoided the pain of a size 12 hook just by moderating the strike response (to include not striking to set the hook).

Other info I got for myself included how many on a deer hair cricket versus caddis, royal wulffs, beetles, etc.

For friendly one-day comparisons, I've participated and likely will again, depending on the person.

Other than that, the only reason for me to count is if I'm going to kill.

I find no value whatsoever in merely receiving someone else's simple tally.

Posted on: 2010/2/12 9:34



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