I could probably start every trip report with something that sounds like "had a great day with _____ today...!"... and every one would be as true as the last! Today, without exception or fail, ranks as one of the best trips this season!
I lucked into a trip today with one of the coolest young women I've ever met. Kelly was open, eager, crazy smart, receptive...and FISHY!
We worked our tails off early in the day and weren't getting the rewards that hard work usually produces. We made a few good decisions, went to a new location on the river, ate up a bit of our day walking, and went back to "work". Kelly was among the hardest workers I fished with this season and finally all that hard work was rewarded. I lost count on her hook up's but know we were deep into double digits. She was hooking so many fish I didn't even have time to light a cheap cigar and enjoy the show! She was landing a proud percentage of her hook up's and giving my net a genuine work out (as the pictures below will attest). Toward the end of our day the fishing slowed down but there was still a very, very, very big fish eating emergers and Kelly was as obsessed with him as I (not too secretly) was! As guides we sometimes argue that certain approaches trump others...my opinion has always been that presentation and sihlouette will bring more fish to hand than the exact right size, color...fly. Part of a good presentation is hard work, it's diligence, it's staying creative...and Kelly nailed all of the above. After about a dozen unproductive casts, she hooked him! A big, strong, male Rainbow! "We're probably not going to see this fish..." Sadly, these were the first words out of my mouth. This was a BIG fish. I only uttered this otherwise discouraging comment because that it took about a millisecond for her reel to scream and this fish to find itself in a deep hole about 80 feet from where she hooked it! If you ever wonder at dropping a few extra bucks on a good reel...Big fish don't come easily. Not many things worth their salt do. We were on 5X TroutHunter tippet and this guy was pretty energetic. After a long and well fought play she got him to within about 20 feet from the net before this big fella straightened our hook.
Sometimes the ones that get away are our greatest teachers.