Half pounders slamming

A few friends asked about the half pounder action once the steelhead season was underway.  Tradition has it that every year I take a few selected friends to a “secret spot” on the central coast for ultra light rod action fly fishing for half pound steelhead.  Low water was a concern and delayed the trip for a few weeks.  Our only significant rainfall opened our selected river and away we went.  If you saw us you would have thought that we were in a TV ad for ultra light fly rods.  With three of us on the trip and each bringing 3 to 4 rods per person, we could have used a rod caddy.  Each of us were wanting to try out  one of the new rods accumulated over the past year.  The flies we use don’t change much as the half pounders will hit anything put in front of their faces so streamers, dries and dry/dropper combinations all were effective.  But new rods are always introduced or built or traded for in the off season and that adds up to a quiver of short, ultra light weight rods that will bend just by staring at them long enough.  Yes, we are ultra light weight rod junkies.  We won’t deny it if accused by authorities (wives and girlfriends) who wonder where all that money went that Uncle Bob left us in his will.  Once we arrive at our river, we learn that Mother Nature has altered the river a bit and our usual hike into the honey hole of fifteen minutes has now doubled to a half an hour.  Thats ok as long as we run/walked on a quickened pace to ensure we are the first ones there.  Its a small river after all and more then 3 people make for a crowded day.  We reach the hole and start the gearing up process.  Now I learned from my friends that they consider me to be a slowpoke as I was usually the last person in the water.  My pride demanded that I get smarter/not faster in my prep work.  So now I hike in wearing my waders and carrying my fully rigged rods so that when we arrive I am now one of the first ones to cast my line.  With a friend along for his first time there, I allowed him the #1 slot and his first cast was spot on. “Fish On”, he yelled as a  bright 15″ steelhead broke the surface not once, not twice but three times and made a good twenty yard run down river before my friend could find his reel to begin the retrieve.  The sun shone bright all day as we all continued finding the limits of our 2 weights.  The hook ups came often and we delighted ourselves with appreciation of our surroundings and the bounty of half pounders that tested the limits of our ultra light weight rods.