Been getting reservations and fishing at Smithgall Woods for the past three years. My son has been out of the country for the last year with a Fullbright Scholarship overseas. I scheduled our first to Dukes Creek back in October when I knew we could go together. I have had several hook ups with a Dukes Monster, but they are very adept at getting free due to downstream runs or hanging you on a limb or root. Saturday morning first thing we could see a big trout holding in a run. We proceeded to take turns running different flies through the run to get the one they wanted. While my son was tieing on another pair I told him "Hooked Up." To say it was a fair fight would be presumptuous as the big trout pretty much went where she wanted to go while I hung on with my 3 weight. Several times she went under a tree and I tried to keep my line flat so she could not rub me off. I was finally hung by my tag line on a root and I just kept the pressure up. She finally broke the tag and swam free so it was on again. After a short downstream run and an upstream run my arm was about to fall off from holding the pressure on a doubled over rod. My son was finally able to net her by the head and the celebration was on. My best rainbow to date taped at 25 inches and 16 1/4 inches of girth. This will probably be my biggest rainbow of 2018?
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