A buddy called over the weekend and wanted to see if I'd tag along to the Ohio River on Monday morning. I know that I am going to receive some ridicule from him when I break out the fly gear on his boat...I do it anyway. We had no solid plan for the day, sort of "whatever seems to be hot" would dictate what we would do. We started by looking for bait and active fish near a riverside industrial plant. The hope was we would find some skipjack and that would give us fresh bait if we wanted to try for cats. No skipjack were caught, but I did pick up a little smallie that was busting bait near a piling. No skunking, so that's off the table. The fishing there was slow, so we decided to try for cats with the frozen bait he had with him. The cats were not cooperating where we were, probably more of a location problem. We decided to give the rocky shore below the tailrace some attention. There was a lot of bait there, and fish were busting it often. Most of the action seemed to be small skipjack, but every now and then there would be a more violent, bigger boil. I started pounding the bank with a streamer and quickly came tight to a solid fish. Nothing huge, but a solid fight and a chunky fish. Good fun, even on the 7wt. As we fished along, we kept seeing a lot of feeding activity near a little outcropping of rock off the bank. I had to make a long cast to reach it, but got the fly where it needed to be. Strip-bang. I hadn't moved the fly a foot and felt a strong grab. I set the hook and said "good fish." I knew it was solid but had no idea how big it was until a split second later it jumped, clearing the water. I looked back at my buddy and shouted "Holy ____!" The next several seconds saw some strong surges to the rocks followed by an aerial show. I didn't count, but there must have been 6-7 jumps. I got the fish near the boat several times and it would surge back down. My buddy was not able to get a hand on it, but when I got it back near me on the back of the boat, I was able to quickly get down and lip it. My mind was blown. She measured at 21" on the button. I, personally, had never seen a smallie this big in Ohio in person. I have never seen a paddle on a smallmouth that big, either. CPR'd and released to go make more. It's still hard to wrap my head around the way that happened and the show that fish put on for us. Incredible experience. And this was the fly that caught her. Same pattern, same color combo, just bigger. These are size 6, I was using a size 2 version.