Maramec Springs Trout Park — December 22, 2001

Craig (aka cpeterson) and I headed down to the Maramec for some catch and release fishing this morning. We left High Ridge at 4:30am, stopped off at Denny’s for a quick bite to eat and then headed towards Maramec Springs Trout Park by 5:30am in the pouring rain. We arrived around 7:00am and since the rain let up a little, we decided to try our luck at the Hwy. 8 “Bridge” access in the river above the park. We suited up and “explored” that section of water, but given the recent rains the current was too swift and the water somewhat “green” made venturing too risky. After about an hour and no hits, we decided to head to the park. We arrived at the park around 8:15am and started fishing. We fished till about 10:00am without a bite or a fish — then we found the “magic lure.” Again it was a beadhead crackleback (or Christmas Tree as Mike_S called them), only this time we added a split shot about 2 feet up the tippet. Immediately I began to hook up with fish (fishing near the wire at the very top of the park), but kept breaking tippet (fisherman error I guess). Then I hear a yell from the “Handicap Hole.” Craig has caught his first fish on a fly he tied himself — a beadhead crackleback. We continued to catch fish off and on — each missing our fair share of fish. Another gentleman fishing near the top of the park caught a dandy fish on a size 12 olive wooly bugger — the fish was a solid 20+ inches and he had to “walk” the fish down the fast chute that splits the island to land it. It was a very nice fish. We fished down the left side of the stream and continued to hook up with fish off and on. In total Craig and I caught between 16 and 18 fish, but none of them had any size to it — Craig did hook in to a nice one, but couldn’t bring it to hand (he said it was worthy of a fiberglass remount — but I never saw it). Water conditions were up and the temperature seemed to be dropping by late morning and the wind did begin to pick up. We ran into Mike_S and his friend fishing the park. We traded some stories and wished them luck, and then we were off and back to St. Louis. Craig and I are headed back there next Sunday morning if anyone is interested in meeting up. Time to go tie some more beadheads. — Matt Tucker

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