Thought I'd share an embarrassing moment of my outdoor life with you fine folks. I was fly fishing once,,years ago,,wet wading and was on the bank. A fine run with lily pads on the opposite side of the stream and I KNEW there was a nice small-mouth in there. Just had to be. Cover, feeding lane, nice oxygen..hell,,it made me wanna be a small-mouth living there!
Anyways, I ease down the bank and start to position myself for a cast in and round some briers on my side. There were just a few lily pads on my side also,,just growing in this brackish water. I had to ease out in that brackish water for an angle for the cast.
Now, let's pause for a moment. If you have ever examined the stalk on a lily pad,,it's quite reptilian looking. Honest they are. Keep that in mind. It was out of mind for the next few moments.
I felt something bumping up my legs,,I was thigh deep in the backwater,,and felt this 'thing' come searching up my leg. Well that got my attention, but what happened next sill makes me wake at night crying " Holy Mary, Mother of God. pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death!"
The 'thing' that was bumping up my leg, made it's appearance about 3 inches below my crotch. What I saw was NOT a stubble off of a lily pad that my foot had dislodged, but the neck of a big , hugeee, snapping turtle. (actually is WAS the section of lily pad stalk that I'd dislodged).
I won't really elaborate on the situation more, except to say this. I am a devote Christian, attend Mass regular as a Swiss watch and believe the scriptures without question. So, yes, I am in awe that Jesus walked on the water.
See? That is probably the biggest reason I am scared to death to fish from a float tube, at least in the lake I like to frequent. I have seen too many of those darn things watching me and I wonder how many I don't see.
“Many men go fishing all of their lives without knowing that it is not fish they are after.” –Henry David Thoreau
“Time flies like an arrow but fruit flies like a banana.” –Groucho Marx
Once when I was wet wading I had river otter shoot off the bank and between my legs before I knew what was going on... startled the heck out of me. Now, there was no gaping maw lingering by my bits in pieces, but it's still enough to freak you out when something unexpectedly rubs up against the inside of your leg.
I'm not a big fan of snapping turtles. I was teasing one with a stick once, when I was about 12 years old. Out in the 'Glades, they grow big and ugly. The stick was about as thick as my wrist, and he turned his head and snapped that stick in two with one bite. Instant respect. He didn't move away. I did.
Wading with snapping turtles ? Can you say " cast iron athletic supporter " ?
This thread reminded me of a fishing outing a few weeks ago. I was fishing on a small brook trout stream near home that is a max of about 10 yards wide, and was picking my way through a rocky area when I (thankfully) noticed that one of the "rocks" on the bottom right ahead of me was a snapping turtle that looked way too big for such small water. The next spot that I wanted to cast from was right where he was sitting, so I grabbed a 6' stick from the woods and pestered him until he swam away back downstream into a jam of sticks and other debris.
All was well and good until I was moving on to the next spot and slipped and fell forward in some pretty fast water, spilling a couple fly boxes and a tippet spool out the front pouch of my chest pack. I scrambled downstream to catch up to everything and grabbed the fly boxes pretty quickly after they hung up on that jam of sticks and debris I mentioned earlier. I had been rooting around in the sticks trying to find the tippet for about 30 seconds before I realized "Oh $%&#, this is where that snapper is sitting!" and jumped backward a couple feet. I don't like leaving litter in the stream, but I figured it was better than leaving a couple fingers!
I'll bring an extra plastic bag next time I go there to pick up enough of other people's trash to more than make up for my tippet spool...
Sounds like you almost cranked the Heisman on that turtles.
Snappers freak me out too, and we've got some HUGE ones around here. I was fishing one time on a small dock-like section (maybe about 6ft long) that jutted into one of my local ponds. I hadn't noticed, but a 50+ pound snapper had come up next to the dock because of all the bluegill I was pulling in and tossing back. During my next cast, my fly hit the tip of a branch and it fell to the water. As soon as it hit the pond, I heard a blood-curdling hissing noise as the water exploded next to me.
The turtle had mistaken the branch for a thrown-back fish and had instantly attacked it (head the size of a grapefruit). I nearly fell off the dock trying to figure out if I was being attacked.
Family canoe trip years ago, it was a scorcher, so we decided to go swim off a rock in the middle of a large bay. After about an hour, we got back in the canoes, and as we were paddling away, a large snapper swam out from the rock we were on. :O
Then while spin fishing for cats in the red river in th e middle of winnipeg where I live, my feet were just in the water, I looked down and saw a big one right beside me looking at my toes. Yes, I jumped out quickly and not very gracefully.