Catching a Break

I had come to terms with the fact I wasn’t going to get out fishing for a while. It’s already been two weeks and I figured it would be a few more. But around 8pm last night, a few things changed. I was released from prior obligations and suddenly my busy day off became “my” day off. My mind started racing with ideas. I knew I was going to have to hurry with whatever I did. Main problem is my piece of junk truck isn’t running right now, so we’re down to one vehicle. In all fairness, if you take out the transmission and engine, it’s a great truck. 🙂 So the plan was made to head to the river after I dropped off my wife at work.

I gathered together my gear, and had everything ready to go. I went outside to get the kayak trailer hooked up and….lightning….thunder….the smell of rain. In my haste and excitement, I had forgot to check the weather for the coming day. Uh-oh. It’s 9:30pm and i’m almost completely ready for the morning. And then the rains came down. Feeling a bit defeated, I slowly put away my gear, all the while trying real hard not to say any discouraging remarks about this precious rain we are always praying for. So it rained. And it rained. And it rained. 2-3 inches in some places. I came to the conclusion it wasn’t meant to be.

This morning I woke up and slowly got myself together. I checked the weather, and came to an abrupt realization. The storm that blew through last night, did just that…blew through. Sun was out, and no wind. But at this point I have less than twenty minutes to get everything together before we have to leave the house. It took about 2.7 seconds to make the decision. I’m going fishin’!

Remarkably, I was able to get everything ready. The trailer hooked up, the kayak strapped on, and my gear thrown in before my wife said, “we need to leave, I don’t want to be late!”

I knew I only had a few hours to fish, and the river is 20 miles away. So I sped…um, I mean, I hurried to the river. My only thoughts were, “how much rain did they get down there, and what if the river is up?” There were a wide range of amounts reported. Anywhere from a half an inch all the way to 4 inches. I crossed my fingers, kept the pedal to the floor and hoped for the best.

My drop in was free of debris and people, but noticed the water was up a few inches. That can be good for less dragging. The water was slightly murky, but I could see bait fish, so I knew it would be just fine.

pic 1It was amazing that once I pushed off from the bank, all the stress seemed to go away. It was like I needed to be out there.

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I knew I was short on time, but I wanted to enjoy it while I had the chance. For me, the fishing is only a small part of why i’m out here. Catching fish is awesome, but so is just being in the middle of nowhere. No phones, no internet, no people. Just me and the river. I enjoy challenging myself to, not only be creative, but come back with something that I will always remember. I’m a photographer before anything else, so sometimes I spend more time looking for shots than looking for fish.

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That’s not to say i’m not a hardcore fisherman. I definitely am. I just have to find a balance in the things i’m passionate about. And that balance usually varies on the day.

This morning I was able to find a middle ground. The fishing was great. I managed 7 fish total. 4 bass and 3 sunfish on the fly. Definitely not bad for a little over 2 hours on the river. Also caught 2 of my personal best . A four foot wide oak stump, and a metal fence that somehow tied my line into what looked to be a complete surgeon’s knot. Rather impressive on back to back casts. 🙂

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I guess the rains brought everything out and about. The spiders were out like mad. The birds were singing, and the river was alive with action everywhere you looked. Even had a tag-along for a little bit.

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Here was an interesting log I came across. It looked like a helping hand. Although my first thought was, where was that helping hand when I stepped in that hole a while back and messed up my back?

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Soon I was getting that “pressed for time” feeling, so I turned back and started to head for the car. It was a great time and I left there feeling refreshed and a little less stressed. I was able to get some decent photos, some decent fish, and some decent piece of mind.

Thanks for coming along,

Scott

 

 

Scott Gartman

Scott Gartman

Scott Gartman is a photographer and filmmaker. He is also an avid fisherman, kayaker, backpacker, and overall outdoorsman. His accolades are too many to list, as with the many streets and towns named after him. He's a legend in his own mind. Check out his home page at www.flyrivermedia.com

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