The trip started with a stand of deep red, round leather chairs on the loveseat. Next to them, a large window to a roped-off area where we waited for a wave to surge across the water. We’d been waiting anxiously for what felt like a decade, but once we heard the crack of the water underfoot, it was over in seconds.
My neighbor, a Spaniard, pulled out his massive reel with its packaging of wires wrapped in nothing but brightly-colored tape. He went out to his own small electric motor, attached a miniature fixed-die engine to it, and raised the motor to a nearly 90-degree angle. A crackling hunk of metal launched the line into the waves. After a few minutes, the motor slowed, and its black line dropped like water from the earth.
He put the reel back in his pocket, eyed me, and said, “Finally.”
Very often we spend our lives waiting for something to happen. It seems we work ourselves to exhaustion just to have an opportunity to do something, but once we have that, everything that can go wrong does. So we’re always prepared to be made to wait for the absolute last thing. But finally, you get to do something, and the weight of the world falls off your shoulders.
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We’d been here eight hours. Our test hole was finally plugged. We’d only had our average 5 inches of rain, but a good river will usually get another 1 or 2 inches of light rain.
The height of the day was in the evening hours, as we were only going from one size of boat to another. The sun was only just setting, but the sound of it was blocking out the wind and giving us a brilliant light on the mountains. This created an excellent ambiance to catch the inevitable trout.
On this particular outing, the top priority was to have enough room to work the hulls. They also happen to be our best hunting ground. What is the overall effectiveness of a fishing rod? A slender rod and a good hook will allow for exceptional contact and excellent trout harvesting.
As a fisherman, you have to be smart to know the best areas.
Ruling out your targets can be difficult. One number is often a good indicator, but sometimes an expert rod-wielding angler will think they can make a better choice, or the fish won’t be there, so he’ll go ahead and leave the angler playing catch-up. You have to do your research. A good lead also means the fish won’t be looking for a better choice so they’ll simply leave. Or it can also be frustrating, knowing what you’re shooting at are no-nos.
I was always very wary about anchoring, whether to do it or not. From a traditional standpoint, anchoring a boat against the existing fishing lane allows you to avoid and alter the current, making it more favorable to the fish.
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Another thing you have to know is how to hold the rod. You might have to change your hand positioning on a once-in-a-lifetime experience. While holding the rod with all 10 fingers, I could feel my balls on my other fingers vibrating with excitement. Holding the rod with five fingers resulted in more vibration, which was frustrating. I figured my nerve had completely gone out of whack.
The trick to casting is keeping your rod down. It might seem like a simple rule, but an angler who doesn’t know this would be grossly incompetent.
With the sun going down and more people coming by, we packed up the boat and went ashore, changing from fly into crawdad. The weather had been cool toasty all day, and we were comfortably warm. Our rods were full and the stand was filled with leaves and logs. The oaks around us were in full-on fall foliage, and the sea was filling with clouds. It was truly an unmatched perspective.
Time is the most precious thing in the world, so when you’ve got it, you want to spend it doing something you enjoy. It’s easy to spend your whole life in a deep traffic jam of mindless thinking, but that’s not what you want.
The thrill of fishing is all about the opportunity to see and hear and experience the world around you. It might be the same bag in an entirely different place.