Friday, September 2, 2011

Mr. Brown and the muddy details

It just so happens that I might do a little bit of fishing now and then. Casting at any spot that looks like it has a chance my casting elbow knocks on a few fish doors with hopes of pulling in a big fin slapper. Once in a while I actually do catch a fish that is not from the ho-hum section. This is a recent account of one of those times and the muddy details that go along with it.

(Above: No one gets tired of my small trout photos more than me. This is not a “huge” trout by Colorado standards but definitely not as Ho-Hum as folks are more or less used to seeing on my blog. If I catch fish bigger than this on a regular basis I might actually have to tone down the heavy forward holds…maybe.)

This fish came about by checking out a different stretch of river on the eastern slope. Just when I think every scrap of good water has been fished on this side of the big ridge, someone or some water shows me how wrong I am. As soon as I saw this place the pain of a hypothetical boot kicking me in the posterior was strongly felt…”Why haven’t I checked this place out before?” It’s not even on my list even though this Mattsabasser has driven by it many times.

Step to the early morning water and start the exploration casting with almost no wind and clear summer skies. I pull in a 4inch brown trout on the third cast and a 6inch brown trout a few casts later. This is what I more or less expected to happen the entire day and I moved down the stretch wandering between open spots and tall, lush summer grasses. Expectations were set on low and I was ready to play tag and let go with small fish all day long. The stretch wasn’t crowded and there was plenty of shade. Watching small hatches and herds of hoppers I stuck to my game plan ready for anything.

Maybe an hour or so into the day while throwing out one of my usual presentations a heavy thump comes out of nowhere. My rod bends down and the line starts moving upstream into the current. Right away I knew this was a big fish (meaning I panicked the whole time) and held my breath with every turn of the reel handle. At any minute I expected the fish to spit the hook and my left hand adjusted the drag not once but twice during the battle. In and out of the current this fish surprisingly seemed easier to control than the tiny sporadic fish that most consider “bait” (but what I am used to catching most of the time). The weight of the fish kept it from leaping out of the water or diving under rock edges like a smaller fish would. Finally get the fish to hand and roll with the photo op. The photo does the fish justice for once, which makes me friggen jomama-jubilous!

As for the details of the what, how, when and where I have to stick to my usual tradition of muddy details. Wind speed, water temp and even presentation statistics are all things I try to work into the story as opposed to the streamline copy\paste chart that might accompany an actual fishing report. Location is the hardest for me to divulge. A good water hound with determination in their tackle bag will find good fishing in Colorado considering all of the research tools they have at their disposal. Aside from location, most folks in Colorado would simply argue with me on the details anyway. Others might tell me that I am wrong for throwing me some spin gear at trout now and then. Instead I suggest readers soak up the adventure because that is where my writing focus is aimed. Hopefully there is enough adventure, conservation material and other elements that help readers swallow my shameless bragging. It is a work in progress.

Special thanks goes out to Dan (whom I met through a former co-worker) for the invite\tag along situation. It is greatly appreciated. My personal code for fishing other people’s water or the water they share with me is as thus:

  1. E-mail before visiting the location a second time.

  1. Keep the location tight lipped unless otherwise specified and even then a person should think very hard before going all bla bla bla on the location someone offers to you.

  1. Be willing to share a few hot spots with the same quality or better or at the very least return the favor with a follow up trip somewhere else. If they are willing to put up with me again that is.

This is just my personal code but find these rules help smooth out any wrinkles and spare any harsh feelings in regards to something that I view as precious as good fishable water. This is a special spot for Dan and it would be extremely bad form of me to think otherwise.

My name is Matt. If you must take, take from the lake. What is caught in the creek stays in the creek. 


TexWisGirl said...

another nice post! once again, from the first line to the last, well written. :)

deanwo said...

The code of the hotspot -- very nice, Matt. I think it works well.

Cofisher said...

Okay, I won't ask. Put mindreading on top of your list of skills. Nice fish.

John said...

"Take from the lake...."
I like that sentiment.

Bill said...

Nice brown!

Mel said...

Good approach to reporting on what the quality of the trip was like without giving obvious information. Small stream treasures are too valuable to be put through the "hot spot and technique" ringer.