the god Loves you sign

What a crazy week. Monday I was in Wheeling, yesterday I was in Williamson. For those of you who failed WV History and never learned all the counties in social studies, that is Ohio and Mingo Counties. Two places very very far from each other yet within state borders and two COMPLETELY different cultures despite an overdependance on a single industry. That is something that really interests me, that somehow each region’s people within WV seems to have a little shell around them that somehow they represent all of WV and the rest of the state is just like them. Like how when WVU played Georgia in the Sugar Bowl in 2006 (which we won) and how on WVU messageboards there were a large portion of fans from the northern WV area trash talking to Georgia, but actually using stuff like Sherman’s march to the Gulf during the Civil War as if WV was the winner in that affair. These folks simply had no concept that half of their own state fought for the confederacy, that there are confederate memorial statues across many of our county courthouse lawns and even OUR STATE CAPITOL has a statue commemorating our confederate dead (with our native son Stonewall Jackson standing tall). These folks have no idea that walking into a bar in Logan County and calling everyone a bunch of yankees is grounds for a killin’. Like it or not, the Civil War is still being fought in the south…why? Simple. It is an identity. Northern people irritate southern people and likewise. It is just an excuse for an identity seperation. Folks in WV are probably tied to those divisions more than any other state simply because it is probably the most contentious border state of all.

So anyway, I digress, some of you read the title and were wanting an update.

For those of you not in the loop, let me catch you up. Around 2005 a group of anglers formed through the WVAngler.com messageboard took on a project in southern WV. To redistribute some wild rainbows and browns from Elkhorn Creek in McDowell County to some miscellaneous southern coalfield streams that had been identified by one of the group as having high potential via stream chemistry testing. One such stream in Mingo County got a transplant of fish. It is a rather long creek, probably 15 miles or so, and only one slug of fish was put there. The fish were all put in at a nondescript location along this creek at a roadside pull off where a simple board was once nailed to a tree that exclaimed “god Loves you”…with a lower case “g” and an upper case “L”…and nailed so that it faces parallel with the main highway in a manner that the only way this sign was meant to be read is if someone happened to feel like standing in the middle of the road and looking perpindicular on the day they needed this particular evangelism OR in the case that a group of marauding anglers determined to put a batch of wild rainbow trout in the creek at said location.

For two years after the transplant I personally caught trout from one single hole above this location. There is some very nice looking water below this area, but I’ve never had time to thoroughly fish it. You see, it is quite a drive for me to get to this place. So the only way I’ve been able to visit it is during my workday by scheduling to make my lunch hour at this location when travelling in Mingo County for work. I did that this week and…drumroll…I did not catch anything other than creek chubs. Now, I only fished for 20 minutes tops and only in two holes. There was a dead dog under the bridge at the lower hole so my time spent there was measured in seconds. Stink, stank, stunk. Last summer was brutal in that drought conditions had creeks dried up to a standstill throughout the state. I really hope that this creek didn’t get purged of salmonids during this drought. I got a report from Benny that the “Beckley” creek and a fat tributary were void of fish during his visit last week as well. Gonna be a rough year, brace yourselves.

This is the hole where the fish were caught in previous trips…

This is a nice god Loves you rainbow

This is a nice smallmouth that I caught years ago under the bridge mentioned above where the dead dog lays now.

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About wvangler

Bamboo rodmaker. Prognosticator. Fly Angling Purist S.O.B. Dabble in snowboarding/mountain biking/backpacking. Right Wing Environmentalist. Food Junkie. Hillbilly. Intellectual Geek.

Posted on April 18, 2008, in flatulancy, ifished, pointnshoot pictures. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. I have been fishing a bunch this year (20 days so far in 2008), and it has been my experience that it seems just about everywhere I have went took a hit last year due to last summer’s drought.

    As to fat triburary or Beckley Creek, last September it was bone dry at the mouth. There was not even a wet spot. In over 20 years of fishing there, I had never seen it completely dry.

    Now the day I was there, I did not go very far up a dry creek bed, but I assume if you went far enough up the mountain you would find protected plunge pools of water somewhere?

    In the 80’s I helped with the some the initial fingerling stockings that took place there. I think there were only two years worth, and that’s all it took.
    Those first stockings were a complete bear physically, and they would be even harder today since the Upper way end is now posted..

    Someone needs to get the DNR back up there to survey. If it took as bad of a hit as I think it did, it might be time to start again. (Maybe with a brookie transplant this time)

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