… even if a day fishing is bad, it’s better than a good day in the office. But if the day fishing is great … WhooHoo!
Robert and I met his friend Bruce at Sweetie’s donut shop in Sattler with anticipation of a day attacking trout on the Guadalupe River. Bruce is a most affable fella, as is Robert, and they were a lot of help to me in this fly-fishing adventure.
You see, I had not touched a fly rod in 35+ years. Trout had been stocked in the Guadalupe just last week so we knew fish were there … but would we catch any? We got all rigged up at one of the Guadalupe River Trout Unlimited sites and began to fish. Well, sort of (on my part). I initially was really whipping that rod back and forth throwing all the shoulder into it I could muster. Had that fly not been inert it would have been wanting off of that line! With some good coaching by Bruce I began to get the hang of this and through the day came to feel pretty comfortable with it all.
Bruce caught the first fish, a really (really!) nice one:
and not too much later I managed to catch a nice fish, although not near the monster Bruce had. This is my first fish of the day: and I hooked a total of 4 and landed 3.
Here’s the second one:
Needless to say, I was pretty pleased with those results. My casts improved during the day (according to Robert and Bruce) and I found the sporting of fly fishing to be outstanding. At the risk of a pun, I have to say I’m “hooked.”
The river was beautiful even with the stark winter grey of the landscape as you can see from this shot looking downstream at our last hole.
Bruce has a really nice website (troutpad.com) all about fly-fishing that bears a lot of study and perusal and I’m sure I’ll learn a lot about the gear and fishing techniques.
Robert has offered to loan me a fly rod with which to practice, and I need a lot of that. I have to get away from the bass-casting mode where all the weight is in the lure and let the fly line do its work. Once I began to use the forearm and wrist, and to be patient on the back-cast and let the line load the rod, my casts got much better. I plan to take him up on that and spend some time down on Backbone Creek and get the technique smooted out some.
Here’s a close-up of another of Bruce’s fish. These are fat and beautiful fish, and all were released.
And here is a shot of my third fish which I just photoed and quickly released. We tried 4 different spots during the day and caught fish at each of them. GRTU has parking spots leased with access to the river which makes it really nice to be able to get to this wonderful outdoor treat. Texas, unfortunately, has very little public land. Something on the order of 97% of all Texas land is privately owned. Most of the western states have huge amounts of public lands with access for fishing, hunting, hiking and other outdoor sports. I fear that the day is coming that few people will have experience to serenity of wading in the cool (well, cold!) clear waters of a cypress-lined river. There is nothing quite like it and I can’t wait until spring when the trees again look like trees and, hopefully, there is a bit more water in the river.