Thursday, April 14, 2011

Turkeys, Tail-less Raccoons and One-eyed Trout

Things I learned, saw and thought as I spent about 10 hours pursuing steelhead over the last three days on the Rocky River.
  • My home river is within a 30 minute drive of close to 1 million people, so I shouldn’t be surprised when there are anglers around every bend.
  • I cherish those few spots on my home water that allow me to hook a silver bullet without another angler in sight.
  • A raccoon without a tail is a rather odd looking creature.
  • Even one-eyed trout enjoy sucker spawn.
  • There aren’t nearly as many trout in the rivers of Steelhead Alley this year as in the past, and the fish aren’t telling us why.
  • I hope it’s “still early,” but suspect it’s “nearly over.”
  • Male turkeys on the prowl for their hens fill the dawn air with a piercing gobble. Never heard them on the Rocky before. I look forward to hearing them again.
  • Deer seem to enjoy watching me as much as I enjoy watching them.
  • The moment between the time when you sense a strike and set the hook is pure magic.
  • Anglers are like teenage girls, they travel in packs and they congregate in all of the “cool” places.
  • Steelhead throw diamonds from their tails when they leap from the water.
  • Sunsets lose a little of their power when one is wearing sunglasses.
  • Wet wading boots can really stink up a car.
  • A lot of anglers stand where they should fish, but rarely do they fish where they should stand.
  • After breaking off a few rigs while trying to beach a few steelhead I began to rethink my decision to stop carrying a net.
  • I’d carry a net if I owned this one -- who wouldn’t want to carry Excalibur with them?
  • Strong, heavy fish in strong, heavy current equal a sore arm and a happy angler.
  • The unexpected fish -- such as the one pulled from a winter hole in mid-April -- remind us that nature, like the one who created it, is a mystery.
  • Suckers are ugly.
  • Steelhead are beautiful.
  • Fly rod designers are pretty darn smart. How can four pieces of graphite bend into a “C” without breaking?
  • Some anglers are slobs and oblivious to the damage they do to the environment, but most behave themselves.
  • I am blessed to get to spend an hour on the water before 8 a.m. meetings and a few hours more before dark.
  • I love the sound fly line makes as it slices through the water following a hooked steelhead rocketing upstream.
  • Steelhead like white minnow flies the way I like Snickers.
  • This spring’s steelhead season will end, as they all do, too soon, but it will generate many lasting memories.

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