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knowing it would be my last opportunity to fish DH water while it was still catch-and-release (until october, of course), i set out for wilson creek on sunday long before the sun even thought about hitting the snooze alarm, and i stayed on the water until the last licks of light lapped at the horizon. it was quite the day.

took a couple of friends who were only remotely acquainted with fishing (well, one knew what he was doing) and wound up serving as a pseudo guide for most of the day, setting them up with tackle and gear and handling most of the trout that were caught and hooks that were snagged. i had guaranteed a total of 15 trout (not a tough task at wilson) and we got that done, all three caught between five and nine trout, of all three species. pretty much all of the trout were sitting on a current edge (shocking, right?) and hit on my little 2-inch senkos. a couple hit 2-inch grubs, too. hadn't really tried the pseudo guiding thing, but it was actually a lot of fun, even when i didn't have my own line in the water. who knew? i wound up with a handful in limited casts while they were there, and then caught another dozen or so after they left at 3ish. biggest one, at about 18 inches, came at 8:17 p.m. always fun to get one last big fish at the end of the day, isn't it?

later in the afternoon, i had a mink say hi a couple of times. once, it saw me from across the river, and started swimming directly toward me. right about the time it got close enough for me to start wondering if my 7-foot light-action rod would be enough to shoo it away, it reversed course and swam on down the shore. not 20 minutes later, after i'd moved upstream a bit, i heard a rustling four or five feet behind me. out pops the mink a few seconds later, with a rabbit in its jaws, from the bushes right next to me and it proceeded to swim back across the creek, rabbit secured. very cool moment. wish my pics were better, but only had my phone and had to take it out of the sealed ziploc bag, so i didn't get it until the mink was halfway across the creek.

all in all, a good end to troutin' for a few months. time to turn the attention to smallies in the mountains (toe river/south fork of the new, here i come) and big bluegill and bass and whatever wading streams i can find east of charlotte. there's so much of this state left to explore ...
 

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Ozarks anytime you wanna hit the Deep and we can line it up I'm game!

Gene - Red》X《 - Asheboro
 

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thanks for the report. thinking of going to Wilson on Friday. Should still be some fish in there for a couple more weeks I hope. New river smallies sounds great! have not done that in at least 5 years
 

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Discussion Starter #6
i'm sure you'll find fish up there, GB. my favorite part about wilson is jumping around often. some spots hold fish one day, then not the next. all about finding them, y'know? i'll hit a dozen spots a day up there, even when they're biting.

and, as much as anything, for me, i'm treating the end of DH catch-and-release as a mental turn-the-page type of thing. so easy to get in a trout frame of mind that i forget there are other waters to explore and other types of fish to target. such a big darn state with so many options. 'twould be a shame to fixate on one all year.
 

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Its true. Ive lived in NC for 12 years, and have fished a lot, but that probably amounts to about 2% of the state. A lot more out there to explore like you said. I have not hit hit a trout stream since last October, so I am majorly due! thats what 2 little kids will do to you!
 

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Funny.....we were on Wilson Sunday as well. 22 fish...but only 4 of those were trout. Small mouth, rock bass (didn't know we even had these), crappie, ton of bream, and then the four rainbows. Only kept 2...the rest went back in to grow. All fish came on either a pink shad Berkeley powerbait worm....or a yellow coach dog.

The funny part about it is when my best friend yelled that he saw a ferret...I came down stream and saw nothing. 10 min later, further down stream (viewing distance to bmb)... another "ferret" came up on us. I thought it was a river otter...but seeing as those are in the eastern part of the state....I suppose it was a mink as well.

Sent from my SCH-I605 using Tapatalk
 

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Stone Mountain had fish in it this past weekend believe it or not. We stopped by on the way back from somewhere else and caught 3 browns in one spot before we had to bolt.
 

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I caught 4 at stone mountain Saturday morning (including my first ever brook) and lost a very good rainbow. The big pools seemed to be fished out, but I found fish in some of the faster water that people have overlooked, I guess.
 
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