Rivers are an ever-changing, complex ecosystem of life, water and land. They are influenced by weather, surrounding community development and sometimes the anglers themselves. Nothing is static. Nothing is truly predictable. But there’s also no denying the habit of trout. And once you spend time wading with these fish, observing their habits and watching how the changes affect their behaviors, then time itself finally stacks in your favor. The observant angler becomes part of that ecosystem. And we begin to predict the paths of trout by instinct . . .
A steady and balanced sighter is important from the beginning, because effective tight line drifts are short. But there’s one overlooked way to stabilize the sighter immediately — tuck the rod butt into the forearm.
Here’s how and why . . .
There are plenty of ways to build a drop shot rig. This one is built for finesse. Rarely is much weight required, because the rest of the leader is literally designed for getting the flies down — to allow light weights to fall quickly . . .
The rewards are in that work. The enjoyment is in the journey. But it’s also pretty sweet to be standing midstream among the best hatch of the season, with a precision casting stroke carrying the fly into the ring of every rise. Set the hook, and you know that you’ve earned it.
Prepare, practice and enjoy the payoff. . . .
Fast, heavy, deep runs have always been my favorite water type to fish. I can spend a full day in the big stuff. I love the mind-clearing washout of whitewater. No average sounds penetrate it. And the never ending roar of a chunky run is mesmerizing. I also enjoy the wading challenge. The heaviest water requires not just effort, but a constant focus and a planned path to keep you upright and on two feet. Constant adjustment is needed to stay balanced, and one slip or misstep ends up in a thorough dunking. It reminds me of the scaffold work I did on construction crews in my twenties. I always enjoyed being a few stories up, because the workday flew by. When every movement means life or death, you’d better stay focused. I always liked that . . .
Hi. I’m a father of two young boys, a husband, author, fly fishing guide and a musician. I fish for wild brown trout in the cool limestone waters of Central Pennsylvania year round. This is my home, and I love it. Friends. Family. And the river.