I thought it would be fun for any who care to profess/confess to tell us all about your funniest fishing experience. If its embarassing, that's even better.
Mine happened fairly recently, back in March. I was fishing at Colorado Bend State park which is above Lake Buchanan in Texas' Highland Lakes region. The river and bank arrangement was quite unusual there. I hiked in about 2 miles from where I parked, looking all the time for a place to fish where the bank wasn't steep and muddy. This perplexed me, because most all of the rivers in that area have low sloping banks that are some form of gravel. I eventually found an agreeable spot and carefully went down the bank and got into the river.
I was perplexed yet again to discover that this river that was about 40 yds wide was 2-4 feet deep and limestone bottomed all the way across. This isn't unheard of in that region, just not what I expected after dealing with a steep muddy bank. Fishing was productive but not outstanding, and the 25mph wind sent me packing earlier than usual. When I got back to the bank, that's where the fun started.
Many of you already know that climbing up a steep muddy bank can be much tougher than going the other direction. I was aware of this, but was about to get a refresher course that was like doing a semester's worth of organic chemistry in two weeks.
I made about seven futile attempts to get a good footing on the bank, and felt like I was on a stairclimber machine with every step. I then found a better spot and was able to use a combination of ledges, roots, and grass clumps to waddle about six linear feet up the bank. Right then I actually had the thought, "wow, it sure would suck if I slid back into the river!"
I bet you know what happened next. One foot lost traction, then the other, then I started sliding down that bank and doing the goofiest dance any white boy ever attempted while in rearward motion. I managed to stay remarkably upright during this sliding samba, and only had to catch myself with my hands once my feet reconnected with the limestone.
Nothing in me, on me, or with me was broken in the process, although the ego suffered some hail damage. If I could get it, a video of that slide would be my wife's favorite gift of all time.
Better yet, call it True Confessions ... I think it is good for the soul to finally fess up to Great Failures I have Known...
Back in the old days when the World was young and so was I - It was the time of the Ancient Fish Gods and *******s (for which I qualified) - there came a time when my conceit really came into play...
Come back with me now to those days of yesteryear when men were men, fly fishers were fly fishers, and some were idiots...
The time - early summer, 1957 ... the place - a high country lake just south of the Alaskian Range ... the reason - to show two friends the beauty of the Artic Grayling ... the results - a dismal failure.
We fished throughout the night (day) and well into the next day. While I had strike after strike, I couldn't seem to make a solid hookup. My friends had nothing to show for their efforts. Convinced that luck would change if I could show them a fish, I tried even harder and, as you might expect, failed.
I was fishing an old wet fly called the Silver Doctor, one of my all-time favorites ... the trouble was my fly had broken off just behind the first curve ... And, I had never bothered to take a close look at the fly throughout the day. Little wonder that the fish were having a free lunch...
As friends do, they forgave me for the vast "expertise" I had offered them. You see, I had forgotten
the basic command in Airborne training: "Check Your Equipment!" For the good or bad, this story remains one of my greatest learning experiences.
That is a tough question because I have so many indignities to choose from.
Most revolve around falling, personal injury and equipment breakage.
Here are 3 from which you can choose:
1. Nice Hole.
Just about this time last year I tumbled down a scree slope into the Black River. On the descent, I smash and broke my spool while puncturing my shorts on some thumb size driftwood. Besides opening a hole in my shorts, I also added a second to my hind end. Before I could compose myself to change spools, I had to remove the driftwood from my posterior manually.
2. Look Mom! No Belt on My Waders!
Quite a few years ago, with rod in hand and waders on, I was admiring some deep swift current in a snowmelt swollen stream. Unknown to me, the willow lined bank was deeply undercut, if only temporarily.
It is amazing how quickly you can think to yourself “Boy, I’m an idiot for not putting a belt on these here waders” as you are deposited into fast, ice cold water over your head when a bank collapses into the current. I came to this reality that day.
At the expense of a snapped rod, I lunged for a branch still attached to the bank and rescued myself as the water began to make an anchor. Good thing too, since my fishing partner was of no help. He was incapacitated from unrestrained laughter for several minutes. It took a while, but I got even.
3. Five ‘till Five.
There is a pool on a stream known to a few of us as Five ‘till Five. Over the years, a few of us have named many of this stream pools for conversational reference.
Five ‘till Five is not the best of these pools, but it usually holds at least one good Brown which holds tight in the shadows up against a large submerged boulder. To cast to this hiding place, one must claw down a steep bank covered in ball bearing shaped rocks.
One day, immediately after a misplaced step, I took the accelerated route down to the casting spot and a little beyond. This resulted in a twisted knee, which gave me a limp for several months. Also, I smashed my wristwatch up against one the “ball bearings”. The watch stopped. It was five minutes until five o’clock on that painful evening.
1: Fishing Willard bay for wipers with a buddy me from my pontoon, him from his brand new double decker tube that was held together with some straps.. As I was busy working some subsurface boils, I hear "NT RAH NT RAH" over and over. I look over and my buddies tube as obviously started to come apart as he is at what must be a 45' angle to the water kicking and throwing his arms about trying desperatly to get to shore. What you have to realize is that my buddy is about 6'2" and 350 lbs..
2: I am fishing with same buddy as noted above on the lower provo in the middle of the winter and the water is probably pushing 40' I slip and land face first in about 3-4ft of the coldest water man has ever had to endure. Rod flys to my left, glasses hanging off my one ear, and what must have been 400 gallons of water rushed into my waders. Can you say shrinkage? My buddy is of course laffing his ass off. He then decides to fish just around the bend in the river above us. The river is about 5 ft deep where he turns the corner nad there is a little over 14" of bank right next to a large wall that you must carefully transverse to get around the corner.. He is belly against the wall carefully working his way around the corner... Just as I look up to see where he is, I see him at yet another 45' angle to the water, arms flapping and the ever sounds of "NT RAH, NT RAH" S-P-L-A-S-H!
In case any of you are wondering who this gracefull friend of mine is, it is none other than our Curtis...
I am new to fly fishing and I am sure I will have plenty of funny fly fishing stories very soon, lol, but for now I guess all I have to pass on is a regular ol' fishing story from my childhood.
My family and I were camping at Broken Bow Lake in Oklahoma and I was probably 9 or 10 years old and fish crazy. I had been wading out and catching some bass and such but came to the conclusion that my 2 arms and 1 pole just weren't enough and I just knew that I was missing out on some fish. So I came up with the brilliant idea of tying a piece of fishing line around each toe, with a hook and bait on the end of each. Well, that seemed like a great idea at the time but I very quickly changed my tune when a 3 or 4 lb. drum swam by and decided to take my bait! I thought he was going to rip my big toe off and I swear that I was almost in tears before I got that line pulled in by hand, got him off the hook and cut that line off of my toe, lol. After that I stuck to using just my fishing pole and the "toe fishing" idea went back into that place in my mind where I store my "lessons learned".
Had a friend of mine decide that he needed to stand up on the front deck of the drift boat(parked at the time)so he could cast farther, well the wind kicked up and I got to watch him do a 360 degree summersault into the river, luckily the river was deep enough that he did not get hurt and we quickly fished him out.
In an earlier post, I had alluded to having 9 1/2 fly rods. I guess this is as good a place as any to air out THAT story. Last April I went with a friend to fish the Clarion River, outside of Kane, PA. The water was running a little high and murky. My friend was bait fishing so we went in separate directions. I was in the middle of the river fishing the edges as he told me to. On one drift with my hare's ear nymph, I hooked a sizeable trout. I probably fought that fish for 5 or so minutes and had it run me all over my side of the river. Well, ultimately it broke off. My 5X tippet parted. I decided that wasn't going to happen again and since the water was murky anyway, I switched to 2X tippit. It was probably my 2nd cast, with BIG trout on my mind, that I flipped my nymph around a branch hanging out over the river. There was no way to get to my fly so I proceeded to pull straight back in an effort to break off the fly. Guess I didn't realize how tough 2x was going to be. After a prolonged tug of war my line parted - right at that little slip on loop that allows you to join your leader to the flyline. I was pulling with such force that the front half of my rod took off from the ferrule and went flying out into the current with nothing left to stop it. The swift current quickly carried it away. I ended up having to hike downstream 1/2 mile to my fishing partner and get his truck keys, hike back upstream (too far) to the car and retrieve my backup rod which I fortunatelly had brought along. Never hooked another fish the rest of the day. I listened to some good ribbing about that episode for awhile. Moral of this story "Don't trust those slip-on loops".
1.) 3 of us were dropped on the north branch of the au sable and our car was spotted for us downstream a few miles on a warm fall afternoon. We never checked the river and assumed it to be like what we passed at lovells bridge (wrong assumption #1) and walked in and saw that the whole river was choked solid with weeds ---no problem---when we get around the bend we can have open water and endless trout like we had in the spring.(wrong assumption #2)---well 3 0f us jumped in- me first, Gibbs second and the slowest fisher Dick third. Well the weeds never ended and the three of us waded through waist deep weeds for hrs toward the car as the deer flies buzzed our head and the mosquitos nearly carried Dick away---Gibbs and I waded through the heaviest patches and came to an open area and decided to wait for Dick ----there was some humming that I couldnt identify and it was all a dream----huh?---its all dark except for 6 evenly spaced stars---my eyes are open but its dark and after a few seconds ---still dazed and confused i heard dick say "looks like you guys clocked out!"---I sat up and my baseball cap fell off my face and realized we had fallen asleep on the bank and the 6 stars were the vents in my baseball cap. Still better than a day at work!
2.) On the mainstream up from Gates lodge I had just put down a nice brown on a dry near a deadfall. The alumina flotilla hatch was in full swing and I heard the methodical thumping of the fiberglass paddle rapping the side of the finest canoe that Ray's had to offer for 12 dollars---
ok, i said---ill move out away from the fish so to protect him and load my meershaum with some half and half and we will exchange the usual pleasantries----"HEY_YA KETCHIN ANY?---HAHAHA" and my usual "3 bullheads, 2 zander and one nice tarpon"---
this time it was different --- I packed my pipe with my back to them waiting for them to pass----then---
"OH NO____I THINK WE ARE GOING TO HIT HIM"---I was in the middle of a 17' canoe coming broadside at me in waist deep water---NICE---I should play the lotto tonight!
well the mowed me over and I stood up with most everything I went down with (im sure there was some cussin still laying on the bottom there) and said "AT LEAST YOU COULD SAY YOU"RE SORRY!"---they both spun around on the same side and the canoe went over----
I fish with Chest waders mostly. I have a buddy I fish with that wears hip boots. In a particularly deep section of stream we fish, he asked me which path I took to get where I was. I pointed it out without any thought and went back to fishing. He had a few names for me I won't mention here. This same friend and I were fishing a local reservoir in my canoe. We were returning to the source stream and encountered a swift current. We decided to get out. I got out on the shore side in about two feet of water and he "choose" to get out the stream side. He is 6'3" and I couldn't see the top of his head. When he surfaced, given our history, he blamed me. Both stories are best heard when we tell them together.
i was on a fishing trip in minnesota with my two uncles they were slamming fish left and right and i wasnt catching any they said why dont you take off your hat and maybe youll catch something so me being me i took it off and next cast landed a 6# bass