This post is from contributing author, Pat Burke
I debated whether to go fishing today. When I woke up it looked NASTY outside. I decided to spend the morning with my boys and then reconsider fishing in the afternoon. Depending on which weather forecast I was looking at, they mentioned either a cold snap, polar vortex, or artic blast. What does that even mean? Meteorologists are known for hyperbolizing. Was it really going to be that bad out?
At this point in my life with two young boys, I don’t have the ability to pick and choose the days I go out. I’m sure most other places in the state are locked up with ice right now with the last few frigid days. I had the afternoon free so I decided to go for a few hours. The great thing about our limestoners is most of them never freeze and are easily fishable all winter. It’s a virtually never ending fishing season.
There was shelf ice in a few locations but overall the river was free and flowing. I rigged up and started the long walk back to a favorite run.
The fishing was off to start out. On our waters, eggs are a wintertime staple. It’s rare that the fish won’t take them. For that reason, I sometimes stick with them too long when the fishing is slow. I picked up some fish, but it was much slower than last time I was over here.
People like fishing by themselves for a whole variety of reasons. Some like the solitude and quiet. Others like to get first dibs on all the best water. The reason I like to fish by myself is because I can lie and make up stories about how amazing the fishing was when it is slow 🙂 I was beginning to think today was going to be one of those days where I was going to have to fabricate a good story. Luckily things turned around and it wasn’t. I switched over and started tightlining a large stonefly pattern as my anchor, with a caddis on the dropper tag. The fishing picked up and I started to see some consistency.
Oh and the cold… I hardly noticed. It’s amazing how catching a few fish can make you forgot all about the cold. I did have some issues getting my waders off. The gravel guards were frozen solid around my boots. After a few minutes of struggling I finally pried them off. Yep they were frozen solid.