Gathering of the Clan

A Gathering of Fly Fishermen
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 07, 2018 1:03 am 
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I hadn't fished the Rai River all season and not much at all last season either, so I decided to give it a try today. I got to the river about 8:30 am and walked through a farmer's gate and a couple hundred yards down the river. It was still up a bit from last week's rain but was nice and clear. I started fishing (or at least looking) at a big deep (for this small river) hole. I didn't see a thing and also failed to get a take fishing the in-flow. The back end of the next hole was a blank as well until I started wading out and then a fish shot away from a shaded shallows. While I didn't see it, the likelihood is a brown. On up through the undergrowth. The banks hadn't been grazed or cut back for at least two years and secondary growth was rampant. Trying to get around was an exercise in careful stepping to avoid being tripped up by a vine and clambering over a downed log.

I still failed to see a fish in the main hole so I scrambled around to the head end and saw a rise in the middle. I set myself up into a spot where I might have a bit of a back cast (providing I wanted to fish a narrow part of the stream) and started on the near side gradually working across. Because of the rise, I had tied on an imitation of a passion vine hopper. No interest whatsoever so I changed to a copper bead #16 PT. Nothing on my half of the river but on the first drift 3/4 across I had a solid take. My first impression was a small fish of 10-12" but I soon ditched that for an estimate of 16" and 1.5 to 2 pounds. Fumbled around trying to get my net free (DON'T ASK!) and finally netted a fish of just under 2 pounds. A lovely fat rainbow. Released it and on the next cast hooked a fish of the size I originally thought the first one was. Released that and about three drifts later had a solid take. This evil spawn ran across to some branches on the far side and pulled free.

I then worked on upstream but failed to get a take or see a fish. I was wending my way back to the river after yet another detour into the undergrowth and came upon a hot wire. No problem, it was slack and I pushed it down with my wading staff and stepped over. As I swung my second leg over, the wire slipped off the staff and rebounded to trip me. I made a couple of hops in an unsuccessful attempt to keep from taking a full header. This is where the lush undergrowth was a good thing as I landed without injury and didn't break my rod. Back to the river and started to fish the riffle I had seen. As soon as I got knee deep, I knew I had not escaped the wire's wicked plan entirely. Yep, LEAK!!! I quickly stepped into shallow water and inspected the damage. YIKES! three holes. Two small ones on either side of a proper triangular tear. Not all that big but certainly needing serious repair. I absentmindedly fished the riffle while looking for a place to cross and climb the far bank. I was surprised to get a take and hooked another foot long rainbow. I promptly lost it due to a lack of concentration (who can blame me...other than Gilmore).

Having fished this stretch for years, I knew there was an old cattle crossing 50' upstream of where I was. Waded across at the old crossing and was faced with a few years growth from when the crossing was abandoned. Struggled up, going down twice but then got onto a narrow shelf and started along. Tripped and went down yet again and felt a jab in my left forearm right where the gap in a long sleeve is behind the button. I thought it was a thorn from a thistle for about 10 seconds when the venom kicked in. HOLY CRAP! OK! OK! I get the message. I battled up the bank through tall grass, bull thistles, blackberry vines, etc. to hoist my sorry a$$ over a hot wire and head to the car to go home. I know when to take a hint.

Luckily I am not allergic and the pain subsided to easily manageable levels in 5 minutes.

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 07, 2018 5:13 am 
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Location: Leo, IN.
At least you didn't get skunked..

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 07, 2018 9:36 am 
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I don't want to hear any sob stories today. Last night I had two full houses beaten by 4 of a kinds, a king high straight beaten by an ace high straight and a 10 high flush beaten by a jack high one.


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 07, 2018 10:00 pm 
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Colston Newton wrote:
I don't want to hear any sob stories today. Last night I had two full houses beaten by 4 of a kinds, a king high straight beaten by an ace high straight and a 10 high flush beaten by a jack high one.


Ouch...

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 08, 2018 12:31 pm 
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I don't know what stung me but it is still tender to the touch on Friday morning. I hate to think what the situation would have been if I had been sensitive to the venom.

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 08, 2018 2:29 pm 
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mls wrote:
I don't know what stung me but it is still tender to the touch on Friday morning. I hate to think what the situation would have been if I had been sensitive to the venom.


Not always. I had a good friend who, growing up, never had a reaction to be stings, wasps, hornets...anything...

When he was in his late teens, he got stung three times in a short period, when into anaphylactic shock and had muscle spasm so strong he broke his own back.

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 08, 2018 7:26 pm 
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I'm sure MLS will now sleep soundly knowing that he may be well on the way to total physical and mental breakdown already working itself up to a catastrophic climax at around 2:00 AM NZ time.
Not to worry Michael over 45% of those so stricken return to semi-normalcy in a matter of months...when under professional care and guidance. No alcohol and no sexual activity for a minimum of 36 weeks and warm oatmeal and hot tea every morning. It's a British thing, and they carried it downunder.

Dr. Bux


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 09, 2018 2:15 am 
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The breakdown has been creeping up on me for years. Unfortunately even the (in)famous Dr. Bux's prescription doesn't alleviate the ravages of ageing else he would have a better visage looking back from the mirror.

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 10, 2018 1:45 pm 
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In keeping with the spirit of this thread, I'll report on my day trip yesterday.

A friend and I drove down to Maramec Spring, one of Missouri's trout parks, for a practice day before fishing gets serious. I hadn't fished since October, so I needed a lot of retraining. After stringing up and getting to the water, I fished for four hours. Results were: two trout broken off, and one that threw the hook. The only fly that got hits was the Red Headed Stepchild fly that Charlie S. told me about. The only positive results were that I didn't fall in the water, and my waders didn't leak.

My friend, on the other hand, caught 12-15 on dead-drifted scuds.

Glad that's out of the way, now the real fishing season can begin.

John


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