Expectations were high going into Sundays fishing adventure and rightfully so. Weather had been gorgeous all week and Sundays high temp was a forecasted 65 degrees. The increase in temps and perfect river levels would surely get the trout hungry and active. After 3 consecutive fishless outings the streak would end on super bowl Sunday. Not a doubt in my mind.
WRONG. Not even the slightest nibble. Absolutely zero indication that any fish around was even half tempted to take my fly. Not for lack of trying on my part. We hiked, climbed and scrambled 7 1/2 miles around a remote stretch of river that had been very productive in the past. Had the entire place to ourselves and conditions were perfect. Through process of elimination the only logical conclusion is that I am not a very good angler. It’s been so long I dont think I can even remember what a trout looked like.
If my friend Tim that had joined me hadn’t hooked in to one that threw the hook I’d start to wonder if trout ever even existed at all or if they were a figment of my imagination. Well they are very much real and I am very much not catching them lately. While these extended periods of inactivity can cause the flood gates of self doubt to open they are also more likely to get me to return to the river as opposed to the easy days. One of the things that I love so much about fishing is the endless amount to learn. You can always refine techniques, be more efficient, more educated about fish behaviors throughout the seasons.
So for now I will be patient. The days of productive fishing will return and until then I’ll keep venturing out. I like to fish the entire year and while winter is not nearly as productive (or enjoyable) I still prefer a few hours on the water over any other hobby or activity. Cold feet and all. No day out is a day wasted even when it stinks like skunk.