A Second Morning In the Stream

A Second Handsome Rainbow Trout

A Second Handsome Rainbow Trout

I have returned to my home and studio, tired, but fulfilled from the past two days’ excursion.  I entered the Lower Mountain Fork River a second time yesterday morning, having awakened around 7:15, rested and refreshed and ready.  It was 35 degrees, and with the added layers of clothing, I still remained uncomfortably cold, yet stayed in the stream much longer.  After fishing for about 30 minutes with no luck, I pulled in my line and found that I had lost my nymph!  Talk about disgusted, fishing with an empty line for that long.  Embarrassed, stupid–I could not find enough words to describe myself, freezing and wasting my time.  I tied on a #20 Ruby Midge and drifted for another thirty minutes with nothing.  I decided I had given it long enough, I was cold, and ready to call it a day, grateful at least for what had happened yesterday.  I began reeling in the line, absent-mindedly.  By the time half of the line was on myspool, a large rainbow struck, surprising me.  I held him for about 15 seconds, and then he broke off.  I got a good look at him–comparable to the large one I had pulled in yesterday.

Well, I couldn’t stop then!  I tied on a #20 Olive Midge and went back at it again.  Thirty more minutes passed, then I tied into the nice rainbow photographed above.   This one took quite a while to get into the net, but I managed, and this time measured (I was too excited and thrilled to remember to measure the one from yesterday).  This one measured 18″ and was very fat, like the one from yesterday.  Another freezing thirty minutes went by, and a 12″ rainbow got on.  Of course, it took very little to get him into the net, and I didn’t bother photogaphing.  My hands were raw from the cold and wet.  I don’t think he minded not getting his picture taken.  Another thirty minutes.  Then my strike indicator suddenly vanished, and I felt a monster on the other end.  This one I worked a long, long time, clearly bigger and heavier than the others.  I got a good look at him.  Huge.  I never got him near the net.  He broke off.  I just took a deep breath.  At least I got to see what was on the other end, a very handsome rainbow.  Thirty minutes later, nothing, and then I knew I had to get out of the stream.  I never did get comfortable with the temperatures.  And I’m glad I had something to show for the time spent.  I finally took a picture of the guy on the other bank who stalked me the entire time I was there.  No kidding.  As I moved upstream, he always took the same number of steps, always staying opposite me.  There were more than a dozen other fly fishermen all up and down the stream.  They all laughed, wondering the same as I, why I was the one the bird decided to accompany.  He did bring luck.

My Fishing Companion (or Competitor?)

My Fishing Companion (or Competitor?)

Thanks for reading.

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