We discussed a trip the day before and what was working, while we pushed the drifter off the trailer and into cool clear water. We rowed past other anglers and headed to the first stopping off point, a small shoal in the midst of chaos really. People wade over, row over and walk past this shoal throughout the year. We fish it and catch a fish most every time. This little jewel of a shoal, on most days, gets the skunk out of the boat and has been known to hold some nice fish. Howard dropped a nymph above the shoal, the fly settled, then a quick hook set and he guided a stocker rainbow to the net. From there it was on...
We fished through the morning boating a rather large number of fish. If Howard wasn't sticking a fish in a 5 minute span we would simply move on and assume there would be more fish in the next pool, on the next shoal or around the next bend. The river did not disappoint and neither did the nymphs we were fishing. After a productive morning we stopped for lunch. This day we dined on BLTs with all the "fixins" and as is best lunch was in the shade.
Howard is an excellent angler who enjoys being outside and on the river. He wants to catch that big fish almost as much as I want him to catch that big fish. We were floating along toward a log jam and on most days we don't even get a shot at this fine piece of water. This day the water was up just enough to drop a nymph in several seconds before the boat slid by the log. Howard turned a big fish but the hook didn't stick. We even stopped and went back but the fish wouldn't respond again. We did bring his little brother to the net but not the trout we wanted. We won't pass that spot again without fishing it though.Being on the water we see some interesting sights like moths that have gotten onto the water surface and can't lift off again. The moth spends a lot of energy trying to get themselves airborne again and usually their wet wings prevent this from happening. Anglers who are watching the commotion spend a lot of time waiting for a large fish to come up and take the moth off the surface. As we floated toward the takeout we witnessed a moth that was trying to get off the water. We could see it from upstream for several minutes too. We were a good mid-length cast away form the moth when a large void opened and that moth simply disappeared.
We didn't see a nose come up from the water, nope there was a boil and then the moth was just gone. Howard and I were thinking the same thing at about the same time. We knotted up a bulky fly and I rowed the drifter back upstream. We fluttered our own pattern, making lots of noise, but the water didn't open up for us. Not this time. We marked yet another spot we will fish the next time we are trying to put the big fish in the net.