Live is filled with platitudes.
“Every day fishing is a good day”
“Its just good to be out on the water”
“Good things come to those who wait”
“It was meant to be”
“Early bird gets the worm”
“If you’re lucky enough to be (Insert item here), you’re lucky enough”
Tonight, I find myself thinking of another, equally annoying and overly positive one… “every day on the water is worth remembering.” Ugh. Give me anything and I can romanticize about it.
That being said, I was lucky enough last Monday to do everything right. I hit perfect stream conditions. On a stream that, when fished in the afternoon has you constantly casting more shadows than flies and is also almost ALWAYS running clear, we found a milky stain. And, as a fly fisher who always seems to pick the wrong presentation tactic, I was handed a fly after mine broke off and just decided to dead drift the streamer. Something I almost never do because nymphing is one of my worst skills (in my mind, at least).
I was rewarded right away. I brought several browns to hand. This, in itself, was unique to me as I had thought this upper section of the stream was primarily brookie water. Major flooding at the end of last year had totally transformed this stream, however.
Then things began to get strange. Confidence started pouring into me. I knew I had the right tactic. It was only a matter of putting the fly where I knew there would be fish. I couldn’t see them of course due to the stain, but fish live in predictable places.
Watching my line stall and dip on a drift, I lifted my rod up in case it was a light take and the line began to pull. It began to move harder. My eagle claw featherlight was all of a sudden a Godsend when a 21″ (which I was sure was more like 30″) began jumping out of the water. 5 times she extended her full body.
Rainbows in the driftess are almost alway stockers and when they are this big, presumably brood stock. Either way, this was my first 20+” trout. I had joint the club. After a few photos and a quick release, I thought I should just quit.
The thing is, I knew there were brookies in the stream. We were moving up and my chance and a brown, bow, brookie day was almost a reality.
At a fmailiar hole, my buddy and I took turns, and, again, with the same lazy presentation, a subtle take turned into the biggest brookie of my life. Maybe another brood stock. Who knows. She was hefty and gorgeous. I let her go and for sure called it quits.
Sure, sometimes it is just good to be out on the water. Many days are worth remembering. I think we might be more grateful if we felt like every day was worth remembering.
But last Monday was truly a day to remember. Walking back to the car, we joked, I should probably stop fishing for the year.
That won’t happen of course. So maybe, I will make a conscious effort to be thankful of every time I get on the water for the rest of the year. I’ll think of it as a delayed New Years resolution.
So raise your glasses to day worth remembering. Hopefully at least a few of them on the water.