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Subscriber Shawn Taylor has good things to say about the smallmouth bass fishing trip handled for him on the Kankakee River in Illinois this past June by Big River Flyfishing (www.big¬riverfly.com), owner and personal guide Will Winans. He says he caught more than 20 smallmouths and half a dozen rock bass by swinging streamers on floating lines while Will rowed the drift boat. He goes on to say:
“Water level was slightly low for the season, Winans told us, instructing us that our best bet was to cast toward the water willows and along current seams and ledges in the river bottom. The flies we used were imitations that Winans tied of local species of min¬nows. We were just a little early for consistent popper action. I hasten to add, however, that the fish of the day was the last fish of the trip. It was a feeding fish we saw in a slick area. I tied on a popper as soon as I saw it. The 19-inch fish immediately sipped in the bug and put up quite a fight!
“Our trip was a 12-mile float in a drift boat, no wade fishing. Our tackle consisted of 6 and 7 wt. Sage rods with floating Rio lines. The weather was per¬fect all day. Will grew up on the Kanka¬kee River and knows it very intimately. He is an excellent guide who know all about the ecology of the area and serves a good lunch as well. I added this trip to a business trip to Chicago. It made for a near-perfect add-on. I am already looking forward to next year’s trip and will probably make it a couple of weeks later in order to have more top-water action.
Postscript: Taylor gives the cost of the day of guided fishing as $375 for one or two people.

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