I got out to the "river" just north of the base today, took the 2wt, and tied on the soft body foam popper I built. Almost didn't make it to the water (about 100 yard hike), grass is pretty high, so I was using my rod tube to move foliage so I wouldn't step into a deep hole or knee deep puddle (been raining everyday for a week)...just when I thought I could tromp through and not worry about it, I spread the weeds apart to find a whole mess of wasps. I don't know what they were doing, must have had a nest down there or something. Not sure how many, didn't really spend any extra time looking at them, but there were more in one spot than I've ever seen before. They didn't get riled up at all, so I let them be and moved around them with a wide berth. Brought back memories of the last encounter I had with yellow jackets in Maryland when I was fly fishing one beautiful October afternoon...then got stung and ended up taking an ambulance ride. First time I ever had more than swelling at the site of a sting and ended up having a case of anaphylactic shock. FYI, Epinephrine is synthetic adrenalin that they use to fight the symptoms so you don't die from not being able to breath...laying on a hospital bed having trouble breathing, worrying about suffocating, and getting a dose adrenalin shot straight into the blood system can also induce a serious case of anxiety!
Anyhow...I'm fishing within a casting range (40~50 feet) of what looks like a little island of cattails. A few fish splashing every once in a while, some of the splashing actually sounds like it is coming from inside the cattails. Since I had a good ten foot high embankment behind me covered in grass and weeds, my back cast was seriously hampered, but managed to get near those reeds a couple times. Only got may back cast snagged on the weeds one time, but it was enough to put some kinks in my leader, so that took extra time to get straightened out. What do you use to get kinks out of leaders?
I usually just draw them through my fingers to build up enough heat and tension to straighten them, but it wasn't working real well since the leader was wet and it was crazy humid from all the rain.
Just as I start getting back to fishing it starts sprinkling...no big deal, I'm not gonna melt. Raindrops start getting a little bigger, then it happens. Boom! Crack! Rumble! Thunder directly overhead. Get the lightning rod (graphite 2wt) pulled apart and put back in the tube and head back to the Jeep...luckily the grass and weeds are still laying down from where I tromped in, so I had a clear path around the wasps (or hornets?) and back up the hill. No more than get in the Jeep and the sky opens up. Can't we have a day without rain? Apparently not. I only got to fish for an hour or so, and didn't catch anything...again. Still haven't landed a fish on the new rod.
So I drive back to the base and proceed to the Class Six (convenience/liquor store), pick up a case of beer and head back to the house. Had one of the leaders on that my buddy back in West-by-God-Virginia tied up and sent me. Before I goof it up and loose the "recipe", I decided I better build my first leader from scratch, with the Umpqua "leader kit" I got a few weeks ago. Turned out pretty good, but I can't seem to get it straight at the perfection loop that connects to the fly line (see the bend in the picture
). Any idea how to fix that?