Our friend Rob arrived this afternoon and we whisked him off to one of our favorite creeks as quickly as he could grab his gear out of his car.
A pair of pants torn on the way over a barbed wire fence....a waist deep bog....nothing was going to stop us from getting to our destination. Even when I realized that I'd left my lanyard with all of my flies and tippet and other tools in the car....nothing was going to slow us down.
I came up along side Sid as he found a pool with a huge fish in it, though it had refused his offerings a couple of times. I had a different fly rigged, so he had me go ahead and give it a whirl. I cast once or twice and was met with a great strike. I took a couple of steps away from the bank to get my line tight on the fish as Sid shouted, "Wow, have you seen the size of this fish?"
I indeed did, as it turns out it was chasing the brook trout that had eaten my fly. I got the brook trout to shore and safety before the very large cutthroat trout had a chance to take a bite. The cutthroat was definitely large enough to eat the brook trout, and yes, fish do eat other fish. Sid snapped a shot of me and the fish before I walked him to another stretch of the stream for a successful release.
I caught this beauty a bit later on as well. You can see all of the magnificent yellow, red and blue spots indicative of the brook trout.
But little did I know that I'd hook my largest beast of the day right before we were going to leave......
Normally, we fish hooks with the barbs mashed down so that it's easier to release the fish. In fact, on this stretch of water, it's actually a regulation, but as I mentioned, I'd left all of my tools in the car, and while I'd borrowed a couple of flies from Sid, I didn't think about mashing the barbs down, or didn't realize until others were far away from me.
Of course, that's karma that I'd stick myself like that today. I tried to remove it myself unsuccessfully, so Craig came over and used the method of wrapping some monofilament around the hook, and then applying pressure parallel with the shank to pull the hook from my finger.
I didn't keep my finger straight enough on the first yank, but fortunately, the second effort removed the hook from my finger. Later, as we were walking back to the truck, Craig retorted, "Well, I'm sure I loosened it up real good on that first pull."
But despite impaling myself with the fly, and the fishing not turning out quite up to the level we'd hoped, it's really too much like our own little, well, actually, pretty darn expansive "Field of Dreams" to let any of that put a damper on our day.
from left to right: Rob, Craig, and I