by Brian Ibenthal
(Trabuco Canyon, California , United States)
22 inch Rainbow Trout from Lake Wickiup
I caught and released this twenty-two inch rainbow trout on Lake Wickiup in the Deschutes River arm in Oregon in June 2010.
I was fishing with live nymphs suspended under bobbers with fishing guide John Garrison. The weather had been on and off - rain and clouds were playing hopscotch with the sun.
We had caught a few brown trout to seventeen inches, three rainbows to sixteen inches, and one whitefish before this fish struck.
The fish hit the bait, and as soon as I saw the rod tip plunge downward in the rod holder the fish leaped out of the water a good three feet out with its body parallel to the water surface. The fish was headed to Klamath Falls before I grabbed the rod out of its holder. The fish proceeded to run and catapult itself from the surface of the water skyward at least 5 times within the next 10 minutes.
I played the fish gingerly with light spinning tackle hoping to manage the large full finned rainbow trout to the net before the fish could throw the hook out of its mouth. The fish circled the entire boat with its acrobatics before it was eased into my guide's net.
I quickly held the fish for a photo and then carefully released the fish back into its home. The fish did not look back as it quickly swam back into the depths below.