Another big day for fishing early April. Fortunately, I wore rain gear. Got to my hole early but soon someone else was standing near me with basically the same access. You know how it goes… However, the rain started about 10 minutes before the start time of 8:00. And it was a steady, straight-down kind of rain. Fortunately, not cold. I pulled my hood over my head and stayed dry while waiting. The guy near me did not plan so well and possibly thought the rain was just going to be a short sprinkle. It wasn’t. He left because he was getting completely drenched. Got my hole back!
I think it was the second or third cast with a butter worm and ‘bang’! It was big. An 18-inch brownie. Wow! So glad it didn’t get off. Major fight for such a small stream. Connected the trout to my stringer and Stick-in-the-Mud and kept fishing. Caught two more beauties in about 25 minutes, then things stopped. Had three but wanted five. After trying several lures and worms, I decided to move down stream.
There were other fishermen down stream but I passed them and went to an area where no one was and not easy to access. I could see a few riffles where fish were coming up. Had no idea what they were or the size. Seemed like they were feeding just about five inches below the surface and made just enough of a swirl to disturb the calm water that was about 5 feet deep or so. The rain had stopped at this point and the water was green with a touch of brown.
I figured that I didn’t need a heavy split shot that would send my butter worm directly to the bottom, after all the fish were not down deep. I actually figured that this was a perfect time for the right fly but that was not the equipment I was fishing with. So I reached for a very small split shot that I hoped would get me a little distance and slowly sink the worm. From shore to shore it was about 35 feet so it had to carry at least half that distance.
As I was working to change the sinker and put on a fresh butter worm, I saw some small movement under the leaves on the other side of the bank. Turned out to be a frog. It showed itself directly opposite from me. We stared at each other for a minute then it hopped into the water and disappeared. I continued getting ready for my first cast into where I saw the last swirl. Then the frog popped up about mid-stream. We exchanged looks and it disappeared again. In about another minute, the frog reappeared about three inches from my boots and near my stringer where the fish were keeping alive in the water. The frog swam a perfectly straight line from one side of the stream to the other! It even stayed near my feet for two casts then casually hopped on. Never had a frog keep me company while I fished before. It wasn’t too long until I caught two rainbows about 10 inches. Had my limit.
It’s too bad that statistics show that fewer and fewer people fish and hunt. I’m sure it’s due to many reasons. Addiction to cell phone and computer use triggers the same part of the brain as alcohol addiction (a fact). And then many parents are always working with no time to take kids out, people just too ‘busy.’ No time, etc. But those of know that going fishing does not always equate to catching fish any more than going hunting means we bring home a deer, grouse or turkey every time out. It’s very much about the experience we have when we take time to observe carefully, are quiet and patient and see nature as it is. Outdoor experiences, like the one I had with the curious frog, will always last longer than a fish dinner.