"He wants to dream like a young man
With the wisdom of an old man
He wants his home and security
He wants to live like a sailor at sea"
Last night I was making the final check and squaring away of my fly angling gear for opening day of trout season at Blue. I was working on the said task while answering the calls by the front door from the ghouls and goblins that were seeking Halloween treats for their bags. Although there wasn't a heavy turnout, I had a good sort of mysterious creatures. There were wizards and warriors, sorcerers and witches, clowns and creeps, and a varied collective of nightmare maker hopefuls. As I passed out the last bit of candy, I turned the porch light off and made my way back to the handiwork I had scheduled previous in the evening.
In my harbor home there is a small room that serves primarily as a fly tying studio. It is a place where creativity comes alive and possibilities are born. For me... it is also a vessel of amazement and wonderment as my mind often travels freely here. My dogs love to be in this room laying at my feet just so they can spend time with their master friend and that is certainly a two way enjoyable avenue. As I looked out the window at more trick or treat spooks walking down the street, I realized that in a hour or two I would begin my sixty-fourth trip around the sun.
I am confident that I have assembled a fine, fine corps of mariners. As I surveyed them in the fly box I realized they are an impressive lot. Each will gladly answer the call to go to sea and serve their duty. I expect all to actively engage the waiting trout that have now chosen their lies from which and where and of course when... to strike.
My gifts... the pretty, colorful, shiny and believable offerings... will fool many a trout and result in a dilemma, or to phrase it "between the devil and the deep blue sea". At least I am hopeful of such an outcome.
This morning I pulled anchor and sailed from my harbor home at least two hours before the sun would peek over the eastern horizon. As soon as it became light enough for this angler to navigate the river I struck out downstream toward the Island. There were southerly winds this morning that had a slight bite...nothing vicious at all.
I first called to duty the brown bugger who would serve as the top column fly and sister zebra midges who would take the trailing position. Standing at a fairly fast chute I sent this combo out to sea with an upstream cast, held the rod high, and watched for the strike. On the first strike the sisters would find a feisty little bow, but in the end at the chute the brown bugger would find nine bows and the sisters only two.
It was time to wade upstream to the Island and once here it was easy to see the current condition of this river - low and clear. For the disciples of the fly there will be many sight fishing opportunities until nature decides to make a change. The river is clear as pure grain alcohol.
At the Island I relieved the brown bugger and sisters of their sea duty and called a Walt's Worm to serve. Walt's Worm has an incredible fall rate and this seems extremely attractive to the trout. On the first cast came a bow and within a quarter of an hour a dozen bows would come to hand courtesy of the fine seaman I chose to serve.
It has become a tradition for this angler and Scott Dittner, as fine a seafarer as I know, to always fish together on opening day. Although, we met on a trail we did not angle next to each other today. Activities outside of fly fishing would call my day on the river short and I bid farewell to Scott along with Steve Wolf and Ralph Fullenwider, both seasoned brothers of the fur and feather.
The river was quite busy today with probably 30 or more anglers in the crossing area alone.