Great Lakes - Trifecta FF Trip [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Great Lakes - Trifecta FF Trip

06-30-2002, 10:27 AM
Well decided to take Friday off and do the trifecta trip that is possible from Chicago in one day.

In the morning headed one hour south of Chicago to the Kankakee rive which flows through farm land and is known for its blue ribbon smallmouth and walleye fishery. River was dropping but still murky so not great for fly fishing. Stayed a couple of hours caught two smallie, lt than 10 inches. Nice and peaceful downthere though had it all to myself. This is the start of Abraham Lincoln country, he lived about 2 hours south of here.

Decided to head up to NW Indiana an 1.5 hour drive through some beautiful farm country, on the back roads. Neat little old farm towns, felt like I was Charles Kuralt going through these sleeply old towns. Amasing when you think this is what most of geographic America is made up of. Stopped by a couple of creeks that get large skamania summer runs. Not much doing most are still in the lake scattered. Only a couple are in the creeks now. Fished for about 1.5 hours, saw one other angler.

Decided to head to SW Michigan drove through harbor and dunes country on the South side of Lake Michigan through northern indiana into Michigan. Got to the first location had it all to myself, could not beleive it. Fished for three hours for skamanias lost two, one which just about ripped my arm off when hitting a black bunny leeche style fly, similar to Juro's Purple Nasty pattern ( thanks Juro, I have tied up a bunch of these, I think they like them based on that first hit) Looked like a 12-15 lb skammie that broke my 10 LB maxima on the first run. Lost another on a smelt streamer pattern, caught a couple of smallmouths on streamers also.

Left in later afternoon for another local river searching for skamanias and brown trout nothing, but had some nice water to myself again and solitude !

On the ride back to Chicago stopped in Dune country at a harbor and thought about waiting for dark and throwing in the surf. But called the wife and she wanted me home. So it was off to Chicago a 1.5 hour drive.

Threw the spey rod with a sink tip all day tried a number of new fly patterns.

Water in rivers and now the lake are to warm keeping the majority of summer runs out in deep cold water. If we don't get some cool weather soon and rain the summer runs may not be well into the rivers until August or September. Prediction for the next week is more 90 degree weather, so it is going to be a while I think before there are large number in the rivers.

Charter boat fisherman on Lake Michigan still are going out to deep water for the salmon and steelhead. Lake surface tempertures are up in the sixties which is warm.

"Great Lakes Great Times"

Tight Lines To All

Pat Bahan
06-30-2002, 09:34 PM
I take it from your verbage that the skamania battle took place in a river, as opposed to the beach? Five days & I'll be headed up that way. I65 to The Region, then head up the Dunes & skim the coast. Have camping reservations up at Wilderness SP by Machinaw on Sunday, so we have two & a half days to play with getting there. :hehe: So many rivers, so little time:hehe:

07-01-2002, 10:11 AM

You must be in the middle or south of Indiana ?

Yes it was in a river.

Good luck on your trip, try Michigan Hex browns at midnight on your trip through blue ribbon waters country.

Let me know how the St Marys is.

Good luck and tight lines,


John Desjardins
07-01-2002, 10:26 AM
That sounds like an interesting trip Hal. I've only done two states in a day.

07-01-2002, 12:48 PM

When I lived Nlrthern NJ I could do 3 states in one day.


I guess that is my limit. I could do 4 states from here by starting in Wisconsin early AM, then Il, IN, MI, but thats more driving then fishing, not worth that record.

I do most of my fishing in Michigan, there is a good reason for this,
It is very good ! :smokin:

Pat Bahan
07-01-2002, 03:19 PM
Yup, middle of Jackson county, about 75 miles due south of Indianapolis. Will try the hex for browns, if the wife will let me out of the tent at night. This the 25th/2nd honeymoon trip, you know.:hehe: :hehe:

07-01-2002, 08:42 PM

I am sure you will be able to sneak out for a couple of hours of Hex fishing, it was my 25th anniversary in May. Hope it cools down some what for your trip, these 90 degree days and humidity are getting old already. Looks like 80s for the rest of this week though.

Have a good one.


Pat Bahan
07-02-2002, 05:55 AM
Thank you for the weather blessing. That has been a concern to me. I just watched the weather for that area and thought to myself that it would be REALLY nice to hit an unusually cool, instead of hot, wave.