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Old 08-11-2003, 02:38 PM
Big D Big D is offline
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BassmanPete, a few folks from another board and I took one heck of a Sweetwater trip this past weekend.

It was roughly 11 miles on two rivers through parts of three states. We put in on the Shenandoah at Millville, WV and had real good luck with smallmouth bass in a nice long quiet pool that led up to a class II shoals type rapid (I just learned that term this weekend). One of the fellows on the trip was a real expert on this section of river. He knew each and every professional guide that passed us by, and appeared to be considered an equal if not a superior in his knowledge of that river by them.

The first set of rapids in my recreational SIK (Perception America) wasn't enough to boost my confidence for Bull Falls - a class III chute with a wicked rooster-tail right in the way of making a smooth exit. I portaged. Others in the group ran it not only once, but twice. Our friend and guide cooperated with some of the professional guides to make sure that all the paying customers as well as us slighly ill-at-ease smallmouth fishermen had fun and stayed safe.

We fished in and around the rapids and exited via a class II chute that our guide suggested was nothing much, but that dumped several inches of water in my skirtless 'yak. If anyone had told me three years ago when I first started using a 'yak and feeling disconcerted by the "wobble" that I'd be going through a class II rapid taking water while calmly fishing river ledges with my paddle across my lap, I'd have told them they were nuts, but Bassmanpete was there to attest to the truth of that particular lunacy. The river gave up a couple more smallies in this section.

After bailing, we were off for some more fun. I took more water just after the Shenandoah's confluence with the Potomac near Harper's Ferry, WV. The Potomac was cooperative and gave up fish to all who made the effort to fish. Everything seemed to be working. I was using dark gray tubes in a Texas rig, but others were using spinnerbaits, in line spinners, white grubs, Rapalas, flukes, and even top-waters. Everything worked so long as it moved. These fish were HUNGRY.

Just after Harper's Ferry, we entered White Horse, a class III+ rapid that made Bull Falls seem like kid's stuff. It was a long series of four foot standing waves, hydraulics, and ridges. There was no way to portage. We all cinched down what we had, smiled at one another, and followed the line of our fearless guide. Two of us swamped. The 13'6" America shot through those waves live a cruise missile through the clouds, but I took on so much water that my secondary stability was shot. Other members of our group who ran the rapid with less severe effects came to the rescue of those who swamped. We took a break to recover, restore, and regroup. Then off to some more fishing, and the fishing remained good. Smallmouth, catfish, warmouth, and walleye were all caught and released.

Rapids after White Horse were practically ignored. We needed no more guiding. Nevertheless, our friend and guide kept an eye out to ensure everyone's safety from the high seat of his raft. The river can be fickle and punishes over-confidence severely.

Interspersed with the excitement were periods of beauty. God was showing off just what he could do. One section literally took the words from everyone's mouth. The tranquility of the spot entered our hearts and closed our mouths.

By mid-afternoon, the white miller hatch was on and the fishing picked up. Bassmanpete counted 54 smallies on his tally and took one heck of a largemouth besides. Especially considering that this was his first real whitewater experience and that he spent most of the first five miles concentrating on avoiding death, that's an excellent total. I didn't fare nearly as well as he, but had a good day nevertheless.

It was excitement, exposure, and enlightenment from the seat of a Perception America.

Next time, I'm going to have a skirt.

- Big D

"Come follow me, and I will make you fishers of men." Mark 1:17
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"Come follow me, and I will make you fishers of men." Mark 1:17
  #2  
Old 08-11-2003, 02:38 PM
Big D Big D is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Loudoun County, Virginia
Posts: 101
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BassmanPete, a few folks from another board and I took one heck of a Sweetwater trip this past weekend.

It was roughly 11 miles on two rivers through parts of three states. We put in on the Shenandoah at Millville, WV and had real good luck with smallmouth bass in a nice long quiet pool that led up to a class II shoals type rapid (I just learned that term this weekend). One of the fellows on the trip was a real expert on this section of river. He knew each and every professional guide that passed us by, and appeared to be considered an equal if not a superior in his knowledge of that river by them.

The first set of rapids in my recreational SIK (Perception America) wasn't enough to boost my confidence for Bull Falls - a class III chute with a wicked rooster-tail right in the way of making a smooth exit. I portaged. Others in the group ran it not only once, but twice. Our friend and guide cooperated with some of the professional guides to make sure that all the paying customers as well as us slighly ill-at-ease smallmouth fishermen had fun and stayed safe.

We fished in and around the rapids and exited via a class II chute that our guide suggested was nothing much, but that dumped several inches of water in my skirtless 'yak. If anyone had told me three years ago when I first started using a 'yak and feeling disconcerted by the "wobble" that I'd be going through a class II rapid taking water while calmly fishing river ledges with my paddle across my lap, I'd have told them they were nuts, but Bassmanpete was there to attest to the truth of that particular lunacy. The river gave up a couple more smallies in this section.

After bailing, we were off for some more fun. I took more water just after the Shenandoah's confluence with the Potomac near Harper's Ferry, WV. The Potomac was cooperative and gave up fish to all who made the effort to fish. Everything seemed to be working. I was using dark gray tubes in a Texas rig, but others were using spinnerbaits, in line spinners, white grubs, Rapalas, flukes, and even top-waters. Everything worked so long as it moved. These fish were HUNGRY.

Just after Harper's Ferry, we entered White Horse, a class III+ rapid that made Bull Falls seem like kid's stuff. It was a long series of four foot standing waves, hydraulics, and ridges. There was no way to portage. We all cinched down what we had, smiled at one another, and followed the line of our fearless guide. Two of us swamped. The 13'6" America shot through those waves live a cruise missile through the clouds, but I took on so much water that my secondary stability was shot. Other members of our group who ran the rapid with less severe effects came to the rescue of those who swamped. We took a break to recover, restore, and regroup. Then off to some more fishing, and the fishing remained good. Smallmouth, catfish, warmouth, and walleye were all caught and released.

Rapids after White Horse were practically ignored. We needed no more guiding. Nevertheless, our friend and guide kept an eye out to ensure everyone's safety from the high seat of his raft. The river can be fickle and punishes over-confidence severely.

Interspersed with the excitement were periods of beauty. God was showing off just what he could do. One section literally took the words from everyone's mouth. The tranquility of the spot entered our hearts and closed our mouths.

By mid-afternoon, the white miller hatch was on and the fishing picked up. Bassmanpete counted 54 smallies on his tally and took one heck of a largemouth besides. Especially considering that this was his first real whitewater experience and that he spent most of the first five miles concentrating on avoiding death, that's an excellent total. I didn't fare nearly as well as he, but had a good day nevertheless.

It was excitement, exposure, and enlightenment from the seat of a Perception America.

Next time, I'm going to have a skirt.

- Big D

"Come follow me, and I will make you fishers of men." Mark 1:17
__________________
"Come follow me, and I will make you fishers of men." Mark 1:17
  #3  
Old 08-11-2003, 05:12 PM
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Scott Scott is offline
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Big D, I have the skirt for that yak,a nd my only suggestion would be...if you can get one with a zipper in the middle for opening into the cockpit or desiogn one into it. It would be a big help. S

Yak, Yak, Yak...is that all I do?
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  #4  
Old 08-12-2003, 01:40 AM
JonS JonS is offline
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Great report.

baja55@optonline.net
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