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futuramille 08-12-2009 07:04 AM

Moment of zen
Having spent the last three weeks ernestly tying flys for an outing with a close and long time friend and my son, we packed our gear and headed off to do some summer trout fishing in the South Carolina/North Carolina mountains. I had tied sulphers, caddis and Duns in a full range of sizes. Many terestrials, black and gold stones in various sizes and patterns, wet flys and streamers. I basically had a ball with it and made up two nice fly boxes of 50 flies for both friend and son.

the weather was slightly overcast and cool, streaching the morning feed later into the day. As the afternoon came around, tempratures rose and the fish activity died. I had been fishing about a half mile from camp down the Chatooga river and the action was light but constant with three brook and two bows in the 9 - 10 inch range. the river was freshly stocked per the report and it seemed that way.

Coming back to the river from camp after getting some more water, I spot my friend and sneek to behind a tree just overlooking his fishing hole. His knees had been bothering him so he had stayed in the general 200 yards close to the camp but also had caught a handful of fish through the morning. I emediately saw his prey from my vantage point. About 6 trout, hanging in a deep trough about 20 feet down stream from him. He would cast into the fast water and was bringing a wet fly down and across but wasn't getting down into them.

I tied a #16 brassie only my line and went to give him my rod. While he fished it, I tied a fat #10 golden stone onto his line and traded his rod back to him. I returned to my overlook and settled in to watch.

His first cast was long but his second fell into the middle of that school and it was like electricity had been applied to the water. All the trout were whipping around this nymph for a half second and then out from under a rock shot a 13 inch Rainbow, took the stone and the fun shot into high gear.

After he landed and released the big rainbow I realized that the event had been a moment of zen for me. The only thing better than tying my own flys and catching fish is tying flys for others and the ensuing smiles on thier faces.

tight lines all,


mcnerney 08-12-2009 08:41 AM

Re: Moment of zen
JJ: Great fishing report, thanks for posting!


HuronRiverDan 08-12-2009 08:57 AM

Re: Moment of zen
Great story... One of my fondest memories was watching my son work a rainbow when we went to Yellowstone. He made the cast and the fish came up and looked, but refused the fly. He changed flies, another refusal. He went to his fly box, selected a deer hair ant I tied; made a cast and got a perfect drift. The trout came up and took, and he landed him quickly and released it without saying a word; he didn't know that I had watched the entire show...Zen indeed.


futuramille 08-12-2009 11:33 AM

Re: Moment of zen
...interesting note, presentation of that stone was rather unorthidox. It had swung across and in about three feet behind the small school of trout. My friend did two slow strips to bring the fly into the trout from behind them. The trailing one noticed it and went nuts..allerting the others who followed suit. the fly was suspended in rather slow moving water so no dead drift etc. it was the third strip of about a foot that pulled the larger trout out from his hiding.

My friend had been doing this same presentation with a drowned royal wolff (wet fly) all morning with about the same results I had down stream sweating dead drifts, multi fly rigs, indicators...everything I could think of as the situation called for it... The "orthidox" approach

That big rainbow was the largest I saw or heard of from anyone we met over the two days there and most likely wasn't a freshly stocked specimen. I left thinking that technical streams present special circumstances where simply different presentations (outside the norm) can bring results. A far different trick to learn than the (BFE rarely if ever fished before) streams of my past in Wyoming.

Interesting challenge!

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