With the summer heat being to a point of demolishing, I haven't been on the water in three weeks now and this fact was making me quite ill.
This morning at six I bid the working girls a good day and I walked out of the convenience store with a hot chocolate. In the parking lot I turned the prairie schooner in a easterly direction and hit the trail.
Shortly thereafter, I arrived at the north kingdom of Blue River. The sun had just peeked over the top of the treeline and I knew time was short before the heat started bearing down.
Blue River amazes me. This part of the country is suffering from exceptional drought. Creeks like Sandy and Travetine have run dry or stopped flowing, but Blue is vibrant and full of life right now.
After taking some pictures I unhooked the fly from the guide and made my first cast. As soon as the fly hit the river something to my left caught my eye. No more than five feet from me was a snake - dark body, almost black, thick bodied, and his entire body was on the surface. This is the kind of snake that will hurt you.
I picked up a couple of rocks and chunk around him hoping he would flush to the middle so I could keep an eye on him, but he never moved. So, I pretty much froze in position and then the darn thing swam into the cove behind me. That really froze me.
I couldn't get back on the trail without crossing the cove and I wasn't about to do that at the moment. Moving down three or four feet I continued to try and fish. Make a cast and look behind me, make another cast and look behind me. The cast and look behind thing cost me a couple of opportunities at fish. However, smallmouth were taken although they were on the small side.
It wasn't long until I seen the second snake of the morning. Same variety with the full body on the surface. This told me that I was near a community of these nasty bastards and that was enough to send me packing.
My entire time on the river this morning was less than 45 minutes and it was discouraging in light of the fact my plan was to spend several hours.
On the way out I noticed the landscape like Charlie did this past Monday. Even though the river is healthy, the landscape is crispy to say the least.
There is a lot of felled timber in the river in the north kingdom at Blue and that's prime snake habitat. Think I'll try the south wilderness on the next trip.