|Last bird I went looking for before the trip. (Northern Saw-whet Owl)|
I told my dad what I was up to, and he mentioned that he might want to join. I blew this off with a "yea right." I got my tickets and emailed the itinerary to him, and to my surprise he booked his flights that afternoon. The plan was that I would go for the first half by myself and then would pick him up and we would travel around the second half and fly back together.
I was looking forward to a day of fishing with my dad and Stu, a guide we had booked when planning that leg of the trip. Eager to learn what I had been doing wrong while fishing on my own and excited to see some more clear water.
The day finally came, we met up with Stu and hatched a plan for the day. It was blowing wind, so for the first half of the day, we would fish a river, and the second half we would fish a lake. I am not sure whether my dad would consider himself a fisherman. He goes fishing with me 1-2 times a year. Usually one of these times is with Jesse and I for a Winter Steelhead mission. My dad doesn't practice casting (although I give him a rod during the summer so he could); instead he chooses to do a lot of visualization. Visualization wasn't quite going to cut it in the wind, so for the morning I just fished the river.
After having my own issues with getting my cast to straighten out in the head-on wind, and blowing opportunities on 3 of the biggest fish I'd ever seen, I finally put a moderately good cast out there. The fish turned and followed the fly all the way into my rod tip. Can you guess the fly? Yep, a worm variation, of course! This happened one more time and I didn't get the hook set on either. I think I was too busy watching the leviathans cruise straight at me. And then I was too slow when the "set" call came from Stu. In hind-sight, I should have made the casts a bit longer, then the fish could have just ate it rather than following, but it was wild to see that reaction to even a misplaced cast.
Finally I made good cast with a good drift and the right fly, and lo and behold the fish ate, was fought and was landed. Weird how that happens.
|1st and only NZ Brown landed|
After returning stateside and enjoying a Thanksgiving feast, I hopped in my truck and drove from Seattle to New Jersey. Time to do some more figuring. Thanks for reading and I hope all is well.