Living a Dream...

Nice - fourth time in the Canyon in less than three weeks? All that clean living must be paying off for me....

Actually, my schedule has had me close to home for a bit, and it just so happens that I've had a little extra time to hit the river.

And believe me, when I see an opportunity like that, I'm going to grab it and run like hell - just like Orpah with your Twinkies.

Now, I've been trying to get some leeway to go fish the Gunnison area, but it's looking like that won't happen, now, until the end of July-er-ish...or there about.

In the meantime, however, I can go back to some familiar haunts and torment the fish there - and we all know that they have it coming.

I think deep down inside their fishy little brains, they know it, too. Which is why they always have that look of 'fake astonishment' on their little fish faces when you get them to net - not unlike small kids when they know you've busted them.

"Hey now! Why'd you do that?" is what they appear to want to say, their eyes wide with disbelief. At least that's how I filter it through my distorted take on reality.

Or maybe I've just spent far too much time alone, on the water, with creatures that have no eye-lids.

Anyway, you know the drill - pack and stack on Thursday...blah blah blah...up at 3 am on Saturday, yeah, yeah...Alpha Male needs meat...so on and so forth.

Having used the literary version of the WABAC(forward?)-machine above, I'm now at the water's edge with far less writing than previous posts and, after saying farewell to Sherman and Peabody, ready to start re-living my own Improbable History segment.

And now that we're at the water's edge, the first order of business is to study the river:

"Water? Yup...its still there and, by the Gods! it's WET just like it's supposed to be..." Yeah, I'm a finely-tuned angling machine.

Once that tedious task is out of the way, its time to roll up the proverbial sleeves and get to work dishing out servings of punishment, Colorado-style (which comes with your choice of red or green chile).

Now, today, the flows were up quite a bit from last week, and the current of the water was moving a helluva lot faster - which had me a little bummed out. High, fast water means adjusting the fishing tactics and using heavier weights. Ugh.

So, I load up the line with some split-shot and drift my fly through a happy bunch o' fish and POW! right in the kisser! And I thought to myself, '...eh, maybe today won't be so bad after all...'

Wrong. That would be the last fish I netted for quite some time and by about 11 am, I was 1-9 and getting a little antsy.

Granted, I was sticking some pretty hefty fish - plus, they were really active and aggressive today, so when you did hook one, it was a serious fight: lots of running and jumping and quite a bit of name calling, crying and ruined mascara, to boot.

Losing a few I can handle....but 8? IN A ROW? Plus, a couple of them were really sweet fish which makes it all that more painful. They would either shake the hook after a tussle, snap the line, bend the hook (twice) or, in one instance, snapped my fly like it was made of plastic.

Also, as the morning ground on, the hits were harder to come by - I came roaring out of the gates early, but by chow time, things were moving at a snail's pace.

So I decided to take a break, eat some lunch, and then decided that if I went 1-10, I would raise the white flag, flee to the comforting shelter of my home and, once there, wallow in my suffocating misfortune while I plotted my revenge.

And maybe do some laundry. You know, multi-task...plotting/laundry....that sort of thing.

Now, for the 'final' attempt before my planned walk of shame, I decided to go old-school, and attached a #20 Pheasant Tail (a solid TMC 2487). I also decided to go Medieval and changed out to 4x. Yeah, I know....Medieval Old School....someone stop me before I hurt someone...

After that, the fish started to roll on in...nice fish. Big fish. Pissed off fish. That 4x was about as harsh a mistress as money can buy (not that I would know.)...and the Pheasant Tail? They were hitting that fly like it was a speed-bag.

And they only wanted the #20 - I lost one fly, and tied on a #18, and got skunked. Digging through my pack, I found two more #20s and, tying one on, was back in business in no time.

I managed to take a few from the deep runs, but where I really did some damage was in the flats above the Family Pool, where they were piled up like the skeletons in my closet.

I turned that section of river into my own personal fish farm and there was nothing they could do about it.

The icing on the cake was that the 'crowds' were not an issue - where I was, I saw 3 people all day. It was the kind of day that dreams are made of...provided you dream about fishing, and not about being chased by rabid clowns, having your teeth fall out or, God forbid, Carrot Top.

So, having narrowly averted a stint in the 'Cone of Shame', I can rest easy now. But that doesn't mean I still won't plot against them while doing my laundry.


Bigerrfish said...

Wowzers!! Ron, those are all Big ass trout, I will totally understand if you dont make it this way, heck if those things are laying there like that.. why would you leave..
Well done, and good thinking on the fresh 4x bend that rod and put it to them..

Midgenut said...

That's an amazing little thing that Mr. Sawyer came up with isn't it! Really glad you had a good day....

Colorado Angler said...

@ Bigerrfish - I feel lucky to have such great fishing so close to home...and to think that there are a lot bigger ones in that river!

Nah...we're going to shred some water...

@ Midgeman - classic fly and one of my all-time favorites. I'm thinking of actually trying some of Sawyer's original design, with just the wire.

I love the old-school stuff - simple and uncomplicated, so it would be fun to see if I can't get some fish take that original pattern.

SM said...

i see your still using the live bait and canot hold a fish. ran into squeegie last week and he asked if i had talked to you. still full of get rich ideas! later.

Colorado Angler said...

You know me - a fan of the live bait and chunking lures! Yeah, they were really wiggly this last outing...something in the water I guess.

Good God...Da Squeege? HAAAAAAA!

Rebecca said...

I was happy to read you didn't need to perform the angler walk of shame after all. I don't know about you, but a day being skunked is still WAY better than a day doing laundry.
It's good to see I'm not the only one who dialogs the fish. I have no doubt if they could talk, they'd be talking shit the majority of the time.
Well done ~

Rebecca said...

Ohh...and what's up with the 3 am? Are you one of those anglers? You know, the type I used to be that liked to be on the water at daybreak but somehow outgrew that desire?

Colorado Angler said...

Yes, Garlock, I am one of THOSE guys that prefers to be on the water at first light.

I can usually sneak up on a sub or two at that time, which is what drives me. I LOVE sticking the big ones...even if I don't get them in.

Ah geez...yeah, gotta have a two-way with fish. And the bushes. And whatever else there is...it's from spending too much time alone in the hills since childhood...eventually I'll become one of those eccentric, bearded mountain men with burrow in tow.

Not that I'm complaining...

Bill Trussell said...

You are another Western fisherman I really envy, because of the awesome places you have to fish out there. I would love to get my wife to agree to leave the south when she retires and move that way. Enjoyed the post.

Colorado Angler said...

Thanks for the comment Bill - sometimes, it takes a message like yours to remind me how fortunate I am to live so close to great water.

Having lived in 5 different Western States, I've had the opportunity to fish some incredible rivers and can't imagine myself living anywhere else.

And being able to say that my 'home water' is Cheesman Canyon is beyond incredible.

Retirement aside, there's always time for a visit, and if you do, you know that any one of us out here would be more than happy to put you on some great water!