For those who fish daily, the routine resonates. We are part of the pattern, not mere observers of the design.
We have time to learn and grow, to breathe deep and sigh with satisfaction. We’ve the time to stand tall, to rise from the constant crouch and the intensity of a fisherman, to take in the surroundings, not once, but regularly. It’s the ferns, the sun and the rain, the trout in the water and the birds on the wind. It’s everything . . .
We can recover slack in three ways: by stripping, by raising the rod tip and by leading the rod tip downstream. And while these are basic skills, the heart of advanced nymphing is in the critical ability to recover slack in all three ways . . .
Troutbitten leaders are back in the Shop. There are some unique features to Troutbitten leaders that make a big difference. These are hand tied leaders in four varieties: Harvey Dry Leader, Standard Mono Rig, Thin Mono Rig, and Micro-Thin Mono Rig. Standard Sighters are also available, and they include a Backing Barrel. The Full Mono Rig Kit contains each of the three Mono Rig leaders, three foam spools and a twenty-inch Rio Bi-Color extension.
All Troutbitten leaders come on a three-inch spool, making long leader changes a breeze . . .
Will climbed up the mountain path and out of the canyon. He walked through the back door and into the old sunroom to sit at his grandfather’s wooden desk. He paused in thought and then put pencil to paper.
When he’d finished, he looked up through the sunroom glass toward the fading orange October daylight. Will walked to the porch and felt the cool stone under his feet as he scanned the landscape of his life.
The last ten feet can be the hardest. So, get the fish upstream, lift on a direction change, keep the head up, and spread your wings. When it’s close enough for the net, those are the keys to landing the biggest trout of your life . . .
The goal is to stick the landing on the sighter — to end in the final position perfectly, rather than struggling to find it after the landing. The best anglers learn to adjust the amount of slack — and therefore, time to contact — within the cast. That’s the art of a good tuck cast. So we tuck and then stick the landing on the sighter at an angle and depth where we expect to catch that contact . . .
Did you know that breathable waders only effectively breath when they’re underwater? Fun fact, right? The permeable membranes can only pass water vapor while submersed. Not such a big deal when you aren’t producing much water vapor (evaporating sweat), but it’s a messy, clammy situation when the mercury climbs and the water drops. Amiright?
What to do, then? Wet wade. Good wet wading has nothing to do with a pair of old sneakers and cargo shorts. Don’t do that. Instead, here are the elements of a good wet wading system . . .
Dawn to daylight. From the dim, sparkling haze of first light, to the breaking solar rays across tree tops. These are the magic hours.
A clean slate. A fresh-faced river. New light and raw beginnings for forgetful fish. Recently out of the darkness, the trout’s guard is down. He trusts more. He worries less.
The new day is a blank canvas — an unwritten chapter of events and plans. Not your plans, but the river’s plans. Because such decisions are not for any of us to choose.
Walk deep into the backcountry one day, cut through the darkness before pre-dawn, and experience this. Arrive before first light to a place untouched for some time. Feel the newness, the virginity of first light among the surrounding hills . . .