The Troutist - 10/4/2011
This is the final column of this three part series on field-testing Mack’s new Smile Blade Fly and the invisiswivel. I have found these products to be a great one, two punch when utilized together.
For this next portion of field-testing I’m changing things up a bit. I will be working non-combustion engine lakes, where the electric motor is the King. I will be adding a .08 Smile Blade which comes in different colors and patterns, a size 4mm black bead, and a size #6 Woolly Bugger. I’m looking for three things. 1) Will it produce trout, 2) will it produce the same ferocity of strike, and 3) What will the overall performance be on this set-up.
The set-up I will be using will basically be the same as with the Smile Blade Fly with a few minor differences. I will tie on 6’ of leader to my loop and at the other end I will add my invisiswivel. I will then tie on 4’ of leader to the other end of the swivel then at the other end of the leader I will add the smile blade, then the bead, and finally the fly, sliding them down until they meet at the end of my leader.
(This set-up can also be easily adapted to your spinning rod, and then just add a few split shot above your swivel until you’re satisfied at the depth you are attaining). I will then begin breaking the lake down.
June 27th-Mason County’s Trails End Lake is my destination. The weather is overcast with drizzles and an occasional downpour, the surface water temperature held steady at 68 degrees all day. The trout were hold at 8’ and deeper, I worked the lake from 8:30am until 11:30am. The lake was like glass when I arrived and stayed that way for the first hour. I started out with a size #6 black Woolly Bugger and a .08 silver scale smile blade. Hooked and released six in the first hour ranging in size from 11-13 inches. Each trout seemed to give it a double pull then a good solid take, all good scrapers. I then decided to switch to a gold blade and an olive bugger, only received two tugs in a half hour. Next up was a silver scale blade and a brown bugger, drew an absolute blank. I then switched back to the silver and black set-up and quickly picked up two more. Then the skies opened up with a fierce down pour and having left my raingear in the rig I called it a day. Satisfied with my first outing with this set-up.
June 28th-Mason County’s Benson Lake was my next target. Overcast with a slight breeze picking up later in the morning. When I first arrived the water was like glass with the trout feeding on top slurping bugs at their leisure (note to self; get out of bed earlier and get on the water). As the morning wore on the trout were holding at 6’ and deeper. Surface water temperature was holding steady at 68 degrees. I worked the lake from 8:30am until noon, when the wind picked up and made it impossible for me to control my boat and fight trout at the same time. I had my mind made up the night before that I was going to find the right color combination and stick with it just to see what I might be able to produce and also refine my methods and make adjustments from there. I started with a size #6 black bugger. I hooked and release six and lost that many in the first hour. I decided to that maybe if I switched to a bigger fly that might solve the problem of losing so many. I quickly tied on a size #4 black bugger and that was definitely the ticket. The hook-ups were very solid without the peck-peck-peck. The wind picked up and I called it a day, a very successful day I thought.
Thoughts and Conclusions-I will admit I am always skeptical of about 99% of all new products; it has been my experience that most of them are designed to catch the fisherman instead of the fish. In this case I give the Smile Blade Fly a two thumbs up rating and has become a permanent addition to my arsenal. I am very impressed with its performance and results.
Adding the Smile Blade to my own flies produced quite well and I am looking forward to doing some more experimentation with this set-up. The different colors of the blades and finishes that are available will make this an enjoyable experience as I try to find the one that just knocks them dead at all lakes. Sounds like a great challenge to me.
Brett Malmberg with a 4lb 2oz Nahwatzel Lake bow
I was also very impressed with Aqua Tekos Invisiswivel, so much so that I don’t leave home without them. In my opinion these are the best swivels available on the market today. Well I hope you enjoyed my field test experience and that you will always continue to read my columns, for that I thank all of you. So until next time may your next trout be your trophy mount. The Troutist-“Uncle Wes” Malmberg