It was a rushed week and I was sick of rushing. It had been to many weeks since I had fished my home river. The plan was to wake up early no matter what and get a stretch on the river before everyone showed up. At 4:30, I rolled out of bed with a sore throat. I was moving slowly. I ate some food with a quick check of email. My body wasn’t quite right, but that wasn’t going to stop me from fishing. I got dressed and put on my waders.
It wasn’t the nice sunny day we had the day before, but it was warm enough. With overcast skies, I parked the car and geared up. I was going to hike in far from any parking spots, so I could have plenty of this small spring creek to myself. I lazily cut my own path through the brush in the new light as most of the paths were overgrown.
About halfway to where I would start, I sensed something. I stopped and looked six feet ahead. Frozen in my path with its body sideways to me was a furry statue. The groggy opossum didn’t make a sound. If I would have kept going, I would have walked right into him. I back stepped a few feet, thinking this isn’t the healthiest creature to run into. He climbed a young tree to about my height and couldn’t go up anymore. I was fumbling to decide what to do. I tried to pull out my camera and he tried to go up, but fell out of the tree. He wandered into some thicker brush, and I was happy to see him go even though I didn’t get a picture.
I ran across another fisherman and we talked for a short time. I told him to look out for the grumpy opossum. Reaching my point of entry, I was surprised to see how muddy the water was, but I decided to use it to my advantage and it worked. I tied on my own variety of the killer bug in size 14. I was happy to be out on my river, and I didn’t notice the changes my body was going through.
I worked every area over for this small creek and I kept my eyes and ears open for rises or bugs. Wild trout were everywhere and they were hungry. In a few hours, I had caught 20 fish, and most were greater than 10 inches. I finally saw a caddis fly bouncing above the creek, but no rises. I gave a caddis pattern many tries in all the right spots, but it was the killer bug that owned the day. Around 25 trout, I started to feel super tired and my throat ached like Darth Vader had a hold on it.
I told myself that at 30 fish, I would quit and head home. It was then that the pull of home was starting to take over. I was starting to slump through the water. I was missing many strikes. The next four fish broke me, and that is when the trout started rising. I was spent. Home…Home…I had caught number 30 and was going to pack it up and then a larger fish rose right in front of me. I cast to it and on the second cast he took my caddis. I released the fish and headed home.
At home, I hit the bed after finding out I had a fever and twitched and moaned my way into a slight nap. After tossing and turning for so long, I gave up and wrote this.
I needed to fish and I think I got that out of my system with 31 trout, but I’m paying for it now. Back to bed…