the water's edge.
"I've learned a few things about this place over the years. One of them is that the fish like to lie very close to shore, and often right at the points that people have crushed down to fish from. So you have to approach very slowly and carefully and you might get a shot at a fish right off." He took three steps,
craning his neck.
"There, see?"
A faint swirl showed on the surface one foot off the mashed down hummock which was the standing point.
Dave led me a hundred yards downstream to where the single plank footbridge crossed the river. As is usual in these situations, there were any number of glum, huge fish finning in plain sight, probably stationed there to keep count on the number of fishermen crossing the plank each day. From there we circled back upstream away from the heavier crowds below.
"Just pick a trail leading through the cattails to the water and start figuring it out," Dave suggested, as he ducked into the brush.
The surface was quiet, without flies or rises, and impenetrable with my regular glasses and the overcast sky. My polaroids were back at the motel.
Dave offered no clues as to a fly. I had my own secret weapon to try out. We both tied on our choices forty feet apart in silence.
When I began casting I learned there was more current that I had guessed. It was possible to dead drift the fly and cover water rather than hand strip it in across still water. Dave was peering and poking and making careful casts, obviously spotting fish. I had to settle for reading mostly subtle swirls and a few obvious nosings on the surface. Five minutes of this and my leader stopped. I set back and was into a good fish that jumped four times, ran into the backing, and stayed on right to the end. I released a nice 18 inch rainbow.
"That's about average here," Dave reassured me. "In the old days, five or six years ago, there were REALLY BIG fish in here, 5-10 lbs. Now, with that one fish limit, those are gone. There are bigger fish than that in here, but nothing HUGE."
After fifteen or twenty minutes, Dave began wandering upstream, so I moved as well. I stopped at a stretch of faster current where the creek narrowed. I had spotted one steady riser behind a rock fifty feet away, but only twenty feet from the fisherman on the opposite shore, who was either ignoring it, or
hadn't spotted it. From the dimple in the water I guessed it to be small, but I also know that is by no
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