Monday, July 9, 2012

Out and About

On short notice, we made plans with friends from New Hampshire to come and spend the weekend.  So they loaded up their 2 kids and the new puppy and made the trek down to our place. Mike, my fishing partner on the Battenkill trip, was eager to try out his new Echo Carbon 5wt and I had just the place for us to go. After some strategic negotiating with our spouses - the girls ended up with dinner and a movie on Saturday night - the boys ended up with early morning and late evening fishing on Sunday.

I wasn't overly excited to get up at 4am on Sunday morning however, the prospect of introducing a friend the Farmington was enough to wake me up. We fished from 4am til about 10:30 before heading to meet our families for a day at Stanclift Cove. Early on we were chucking some big ass streamers and we were both having issues with hook sets. Switching to my nymphing rods, we hit some fast water in search of some playmates. Initially, I introduced Mike to many spots that are familiar to me however, after a couple hours I gave him the option of water that was completely new to both of us or more of my go to spots...he opted for new water.

I had always wanted to check this one particular area out and today was the day. We fished some of the faster water, both hooking up quickly and both losing our first hookup. I proceeded to worked the run rather fast and landed a couple nice browns. After working the run, we wandered up the length of the back channel to the base of the dam. The back channel provided an opportunity for 1 great bonus fish. While walking upstream, we happened upon 2 spots, within 20 feet of on another. Being the gracious host, I suggested Mike take the first one and I would grab the second spot. Both areas were slots that you would only drift once or twice and you would know, immediately, if there was anyone home. We both dropped into position and, first drift, a decent sized brown struck my woven nymph.

bonus catch
We wandered around a little longer and ended back at a familiar run with a nice mix fast and slow water that is usually good for some feisty Rainbows. Mike was still eager to land his first of the day and, after a few adjustments, he was into a beautiful bow.

In the process of landing this one, Mike lost his net and it was quickly carried away downstream. As we continued to fish, another angler, walking the road above us, yelled down that another gentleman had found his net about 200 yards down stream so Mike quickly beat feet to retrieve his net. Our thanks to both anglers for their assistance.

Later that evening, around the backyard fire pit, it wasn't looking to good for the evening run to the water. However, our understanding wives could see that we were both chomping to get back out for the evening hatch. Gear up and squealing tires let the girls know we were off...26 minutes later, we were walking into a nice long stretch of smooth water just as darkness approached. Fortunately, we had about 30 minutes of light left and this allowed us to get acclimated as it grew dark. We both settled in and, after 2 fly switches, I was into the first of several nice browns.

camera shy
For the last 18 months, I have really been in love with euro nymphing, almost to the point of neglecting other methods. This summer I have enjoyed a return to the absolute rush of your fly slipping below the surface and the bend of your rod that follows. This is made even more exciting when you add in the element of darkness. In past years,  I was usually off heading off the river around 8:00. Perhaps it was a lack of confidence in my skills however, this year, all convention is out the window and trying new things is the order of the season.I have been amazed at the volume and close proximity of rising fish, the quantity and SIZE of the bugs that come out at night and finally, secretly in awe of the absolute solitude provided by the absence of the sun. I have had many a peaceful day on the river however, there is something about nocturnal fishing that heightens the senses. The early morning and late evening of fishing left us both exhausted as we arrived home to some cold beer and pizza. Sadly, as I drove home, the thought occurred to me that I won't be able to wet a line for 8 days due to work and family commitments...damn...as usual, I'm glad that's one of my worries these days...life has been kind to me as of late and I am always mindful of that fact! Whatever your current status, working, retired, young, old, single, married, divorced...enjoy what you have in front of you - do not pine for what you wish for as you are likely to miss out on what is right in front of you.


  1. Replies
    1. Thanks Pete...hope we can get out soon!

  2. A fine outing guys.
    That first pic is a familiar spot for me. I have some great memories there.

    1. Thanks Alan...seems like it might be a good streamer area??

  3. Excellent advice at the end and a great post.


    1. Thanks Mark...by the way...enjoyed your book.