View Full Version : Non-fishing report (no photos)

07-08-2010, 10:53 PM
Early Spring….

Water is high. My skis are still on the porch with the skins draped over them from this past weekends’ trip. I refused to buy a pass because I didn’t want to support the ski industry…I’ll “earn my turns”, thank you very much.

It is hot in town, but the higher elevations offer relief. Flow is up on all streams…runoff. The streams should peak soon. Too bad I sold my boat after my trip on the Colorado down the Grand… Had I not f@#$%d up my shoulder kayaking a few years ago, I’d be on the river, rowing my heart out! Maybe I’d be fishing too.


I’m slammed at work. Water is over-bank. I dream of fishing, and…hunting. I applied for my archery tags…antelope, deer, elk. In the meantime, I’m tying flies and watching the NOAA and USGS web-sites for a cold spell and consequent lull in the runoff to cast some feathers and fur. Maybe I can offer to row gear on the Salt, or an early season Cataract Canyon trip…I am ready for that, right? Or, am I? I should probably fish, or ski…Think local. I hunt antlers. I also cast dry flies to the streams pre-maturely. I find enough antlers to keep me from realizing my fishing doesn’t involve “catching”. I resolve to return when the water subsides.


I have no idea what’s going on with run-off. I’ve fished the high alpine streams and caught a few very healthy browns. I’m disappointed…They’re not native, and they didn’t recover quickly. Am I to blame – I fished a 1 wt. – Am I stressing the fish? The water temps are higher than normal – way higher… I should know better, or should I? Where did the cutthroats go? Maybe they migrated upstream…

I’m shooting my recurve at a foam-block target 30 yards from my house. I’m launching over-engineered arrows at this mock target – I want an ethical and efficient kill. Am I on-the-mark? Will I get a clean kill come Sept.? Will my arrows have a different trajectory with my broadheads? Do I care as much about fish as I do large mammals? I don’t sharpen my hooks like I do the broadheads…should I?

Five hours on the stream and a few trout (and a lot of suckers) later, I’m hiking out on a game trail. I catch scent of a herd of elk. I slow, crouch, and am in predator mode. I get to within 30, 27, 20 yards… I’m within range of my recurve, and I spook a cow on alert. She barks and her family move quickly through the timber. I give chase and am in the game again. Not likely come September.

I grow tiresome of false mews and chirps and descend back into the valley and tie on a small yellow stonefly. I cast to the grassy banks. Twitch, pull…the fly lands clumsily on the water and a small trout rises to inspect it… he returns to his feeding lane, deciding my offering is suspect. I breathe, finally.

The sun has conceded to the moon. I find the game trail and hike back to my truck. I don’t belong on this trail, but it returns me to the meadow I’m familiar with. I gather my thoughts, collect my wits, and hike out to the road.


I haven’t fished in a few weeks – nearly a month. I’ve been busy at work. I’ve been busy with my family. I haven’t committed enough of my energy to either. I’m angry, upset….what’s going on? Balance?

The stream is in my thoughts. The antelope, deer and elk are in my thoughts. The non-native brown trout are in my thoughts. I long for native fish. Some day. I find solace in launching arrows from my back porch towards my foam block target. I pour over maps and aerial photography late at night. I tie flies. I speak to no-one. I long for the river, the stream.

07-08-2010, 11:46 PM
I felt that one, you earned your turn.

07-10-2010, 04:15 AM
Wow, good but busy report, I feel your excitement; and continuous thought process! - seems like I'm also continually thinking of fishing the stream!