Why do I do the things I do? Grab a chair and give me five minutes and I will tell you why. There are times in life that might be difficult and challenging. I have these times sometimes on a weekly basis. And you might also. I believe that all of us experience times when the very fabric of our world tears at the seams, leaving us feeling alone, frustrated, and adrift. Yes, it has been several weeks since my last post due to a few struggles health wise. But, when you decide enough is enough, well... you pick up the fly rod and head to the river!! Well, in my case, you do. My aches and pains somehow subside for a few hours when I'm out on the water. So... that is where I go. I learned a few things the last couple of times out.
We don't always have to be in a hurry. Catching trout isn't an easy thing sometimes. We need to be precise with our cast and take our time in planning our game plan. So many times, I get into this big ol' hurry. My casting gets repetitive as I just shoot out line time after time. And it starts going offline from where I want it to land. On my last fish of the day yesterday, I took the time in between casts to watch the water and what the fish were doing. When I did this, my next cast was more precise and on the money. It hit the inside seam of the small run coming downstream and pow! Job done. So, sometimes we just need to slow it down.
Here fishy, fishy!! I'm coming to get you... Oh, you knew that already by the shadow that scared you to the other side of the river! Try to face the sun if possible. (My sunburned face proves that I followed that rule yesterday!) We have enough challenges in netting a fish and don't need to make it any more difficult. Approaching that hole to fish can be done smartly and your stealthiness can raise your chances of landing a fish.
I'm trying to do my best in catching and releasing fish to let them live a longer life. In doing so, I am trying to keep my fish in the water until that camera is out and after that quick click of the camera, it is back in the water. And I'm only taking pictures of those that meet certain criteria. Maybe those that have exceptional color or size. But, most of my fish are now going out of the net and into the water without much handling.
The one thing that scares fish as much as motion is sound. Not that I am going to be one of "those" fisherman that cringe as you pass by when you say hello because it might have scared off a fish. But, when we yell across the river to our friend, we have just alerted the trout that a more than friendly fly fisherman is in the vicinty. Noise travels farther underwater. So, when I was shuffling my feet to get my balance on some rocks... yup, the trout probably moved a few feet farther from me. So, one more thing for me to improve on. Since I wear cleats on my boots, I already have one strike against me with underwater noise. So, I need to tread as lightly as possible. When I do make noise, I settle in position for 5 min or so. That seems to help the fish get adjusted to my presence. Hey, just ask them... Haha. Like I know. At least I am hoping so!!
So, this is why I do the things I do. Through the many times out on the water, I keep learning and hopefully getting better. One thing is for sure. I am going slower and enjoying it a bit more. Not because I feel it helps your game in netting a fish, but to give my old bones a rest! There are more challenges as you get older and if I'm going to help myself stay healthy and feel good, I am going to remember one thing... It's not a race. The fish will be there tomorrow. I want to be too...
I was just talking to my wife yesterday about being old. I used to be able to go out and work on the property 4 or 5 hours a day. Now I can only do 1 or 2. What I've found is that I can still get done what I want to, it just takes longer. As far as your "old" bones, you're still a babe in the woods compared to this old Geezer.ReplyDelete
Mark ~ I'm catching up quickly... lol. I guess that I have been going non-stop on my fishing cause I'm afraid that I might not be able to do it someday. But, lately, I have come to realize that I actually enjoy my fishing time when I take it slower and breathe in and out once in awhile!Delete
What Mark said and I'll add this old saying. "I'm not as good as I once was, but I'm as good once as I ever was."ReplyDelete
Howard ~ I would hope that I could be as good once as I ever was... I think. Wait a minute... was I ever good at this? Ahhh,,, flyfishing. Just enjoy it.Delete
Sound advice that all of us as we older need to realize; fishing too fast is one of my enemies when I am on our local tailrace. I have learned that I don’t have to land numbers of trout to have a successful day on the water; just being outdoors and able to stay 4 or 5 hours wading is a plus for me. I really got a boost the other day on our tailrace when I talk with an 80 year old still wading and trout fishing; I guess that proves that there is hope for all of use youngsters. Thanks for sharing
Bill ~ Sorry for the delayed response. Computer down for a few days. 4-5 hrs max is what my new schedule is. I don't have to land enormous amounts of trout to have a good day either! = )Delete
Great advice for fishing and for that matter great life advice as well. Appreciate the deliberateness with which you write and how you fish. Glad you found the time to get out and hope that your health improves. Looking forward to future posts as always.ReplyDelete
Thanks, Atlas! I appreciate you reading the blog. Slowing down a bit and smelling the roses has made a difference for me.ReplyDelete