"Many men fish their whole lives without realizing it is not the fish they're after."
-- Henry David Thoreau

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Let the Blogging Begin.

In the weeks to come, check in for details on the next adventure.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Why we fish.

To many who don't fish, an enthusiasm or passion for the sport can quickly be stigmatized as nothing more than an obsession. In response, I've always found it difficult to explain why fishing provides so much allure [haha]. Last week, I had the opportunity to fish the gorgeous Blue River while driving west on i70 through Colorado. To my own satisfaction and maybe yours too, I think I've found an answer.

I was about an hour into my peaceful pursuit of rainbow trout. My mom patiently watched while reading a book from the bluff above (what a trooper). The weather was great! Fishing weather that is--slightly overcast, and cold enough to delay the runoff just long enough for me to tap into some great fishing :-). However after an hour, I was still fishless.

I had been fortunate to attract a few fish on my size 10-12 stonefly nymph and various beadhead droppers, but couldn't set the hook effectively. After finally realizing that my strike indicator was set far too deep, I was hopeful that I could land a few of these hungry fish. I was drifting my flies through some nice pocket water, when I finally got what I was looking for.

Quite honestly, I wasn't sure what to expect from the river. It was a fairly good size river, but I didn't expect monster rainbows to be hiding in the depths below. Boy was I wrong. As soon as I hooked into this fish, I knew it was something special. You see, if you fish long enough, you'll start getting dejavu...similar fish, similar situations and your mind races to past rivers or experiences. As soon as I set the hook, I was swept back to the Deschutes River in Oregon last summer. I pictured myself in a similar pocket, watching a MASSIVE rainbow devour my size 12 Normwood Special. As the fish approached my fly, my eyes lit up and I set the hook with a cautious but firm action. Immediately, the fish made a run and my anxious hands couldn't give her enough line. SNAP. Away went my flies, my fish, and more importantly my heart. It sunk to the bottom of the pool as I watched the fish of a lifetime rush into the swift current of the Deschutes.

As I set the hook this time, I remembered my past failure. She took a run downstream and my anxious hands were sure to give this fish some freedom. Its like when you've done something awful (relative term I guess) in a relationship. Sometimes the best thing to do is loosen the drag, and let your catch go. And so I did.

I patiently fought this beauty for 15 minutes when finally I felt like it was time to bring the fish to my feet. With my forearms burning, heart racing, and mom documenting it all in the background, I carefully brought her too the surface. A MONSTER! I wasn't sure how large, but surely the biggest rainbow I'd ever landed. The fish approached my feet. I kept the rod tip high, and went down to possess my rightfully deserved prize. As I did so, my weak 6x tippet snapped--the end of the fight. The fish won by knockout as I ungracefully fell to my knees. So close.

I tell that story to ask this: What if we fish because of the big ones we've lost? Or maybe it is because of the fish we are yet to catch? I can tell you, the opportunities come sparingly. Whether you loose a big one or even land it, we fish in anticipation of these great moments. Every cast is a reminder that there are always bigger fish to be caught and more battles to be had--I think this may be why we fish.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Words not my own.

Came across Dave's blog today. . .

AFOOT and light-hearted, I take to the open road,
Healthy, free, the world before me,
The long brown path before me, leading wherever I choose.

Now I see the secret of the making of the best persons,
It is to grow in the open air, and to eat and sleep with the earth.
-Walt Whitman


I'd say old Walt has it right.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Cobus Creek

Saturday we headed out to a peaceful stream close to home. Cobus Creek, right behind Great Grandma's old house provides some of the only natural trout fishing the state has to offer.

Arriving at Uncle Dave's house, we were overwhelmed by the excitement he had to offer. Waiting patiently in the window, he leaped from his chair and flew out the door on his bum knee (well supposed to be bum coming fresh off a replacement). His enthusiasm and fish stories made it seem like even the most amateur fisherman had a shot to slay the weary trout.

Uncle Dave warned, that the trout would be weary and patiently work every hole up and down before moving on...his advice seemed to be quite accurate. The first hole was a gem, but guarded by overhanging branches. Casting proved to be difficult, but after a few nice false casts, I found a way in. It took about 40 casts to the same spot before I could entice a bite!

Small brown trout are exemplary of what you'll find in one of Indiana's only cold water spring fed creeks. Uncle Dave says that in a particular deep hole, a 29" humdinger awaits the fisherman with enough patience to fool the wise trout into attacking your fly.

The day ended with 2 browns in about an hour and a half. The fish were nice, but not really what we were after. Fishing this Saturday proved to be a peaceful and symbolic end to a sorrowful weekend--just the therapy an troubled heart calls for.