I was feeling pretty good about things on Saturday morning. The temperature was 13 °F when I started fishing the Swift River, but I was armed with my winter fly-fishing essentials and felt comfortable.
Trout were willing to take flies. Old flies worked. New flies did not. Tightlining rocked. Indicator nymphing completely failed.
The action was quite steady, and there were some aggressive takes from larger fish, which was fun. Amazingly, there was no ice build-up on my micro-thin Euronymphing leader.
Soon, a good-sized ‘bow crushed a dropper fly and tore far downstream amidst the strong current. I couldn’t chase it, but, slowly, I was able to edge it up and get it above me.
As I was sliding it into the net, I heard a loud snap sound and knew the inevitable had happened again. My fly rod broke. Luckily, I still landed the fish.
Of course, this was the only outing I can remember for which I had not stowed a second fly rod for insurance. As I loaded gear into the car Friday night, I decided to bring just the one. “What are the odds?,” I had thought.
Oh, the irony.
But, all was not lost. It felt great to power through the cold and see some beautiful trout. And, rather than sulk, I decided to brush it off. I reeled up. I visited Cabela’s on the way home and hit Blue Ribbon BBQ for lunch.
It is easy to get down when fly fishing isn’t perfect, or, on good days, to get a bit greedy. I don’t want to be that angler. I want to be the guy who is just happy to be fishing, as opposed to the person who is surrounded by beautiful scenery…and is frustrated or pissed off.
Thankfully, looking at aisles of fishing gear and eating BBQ more than made up for the snapped rod and short outing. The staff at Cabela’s was helpful and cheerful. The St. Louis ribs were succulent and moist.
Life was good.
Regardless of our particular circumstances at any moment in time, whether we are happy or sad, feeling satisfied or owed, starting that day with a glass half-full or half-empty, it is a real blessing to be on the water, no matter how brief.
A happy holiday season to one and all….