I couldn't help it: temptation raged inside me like a violent winter sea. A new Rascal Flatts song played on the radio. The lyrics "You gotta go deep, way on back, cross a few creeks, and a couple little shacks... You gotta get lost, way on out!" were belted out as proudly as can be, and my judgement finally surrendered as my desires broke loose, resembling a pack of wild dogs running for freedom (figuratively speaking of course). I speedily cruised the winding hills of the far reaches of Fort Collins, gradually building up anxiety as the river entered my plane of sight.
Similar to the undisturbed focus of a child perusing the walls of a candy store, my dedicated mind drove every action as I dodged the punches of my only enemy: the clock. My waders were on and layers assembled before my lousy opponent could bother to reach minute five; a tremendous personal accomplishment for 7:30 in the morning on a sunday. Rods had been rigged throughout the week: a product of fishing almost every day after school. A trusty wooden net was strapped to my waist as I descended upon the section of water, hoping for the best. Scanning the surface and its structure below, it didn't take long for my tired brain to realize what was transpiring before my eyes. Bicyclists stared in wonderment as I jumped up and down in celebration of the midge hatch (admit it ~ you've done it too), bringing seemingly every fish in the river to the glassy surface.
Approaching stealthily, a single riser attracted my attention, and a few quick casts produced a wily brown trout: something that would become common throughout the day. Glaring at me as the hook that pinned him tightly to my tippet was removed, I carefully set him free to continue feasting himself on the buffet of midges now drifting down the delicately flowing river. Continuing upstream, one rising fish after another was targeted, and as the hours drew by, several willing fish were brought to hand. Time after time, the low-riding dry fly danced elegantly amongst the complex currents, only to be rudely (but welcomely) interrupted by the tug of a hungry fish below.
|If you look closely behind the gill plate, you can see the scratches from where this little guy almost became a snack...|
By high noon, fish began to descend into the depths of the abyss, and my satisfied self returned happily to the car. "Take that, clock" I muttered under my breath, slowly removing my cold waders, and leisurely placing my gear back into the trunk. I had all the time in the world it seemed, and it had been a good day. Every once in awhile you have those day where everything just happens to go right, and while this was not exactly one of those days, it was pretty close.