Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Fly Fishing Season Opens!

It's finally here! Time to fish! This past weekend we made the trek to the Lower Owens River, just outside of Bishop, California. While the weather in Mammoth Lakes and Crowley Lake was cold, cold, cold, the sun kissed the Owens Valley in Bishop and handed us a beautiful temperate day for fly fishing.

We arrived at our destination late Friday night under a canopy of stars that was so dense one could hardly pick out the black sky amid the mass of bright lights. It was good to see my fishing buddy, Tim after the long winter. He's a local and we've been fly fishing together for more than twenty years. The two of us have had many a fly fishing adventure together over the years and some of them are documented in my book, Random Acts of Fishing. Now my two sons join me on the trips and I believe the four of us will have quite a few adventures in store for us in the future. We spent the remainder of the night catching up on old times and looking forward to new ones.

Our jumping off point was at five bridges, just east of town. We followed the river as it wound its way through the tall dry grass. We found a nice bend in the river that formed U-turn with a grassy ledge high above the end of the turn. I waded out across the stream entering from fifty yards downstream. My youngest son and Tim decided to initiate the attack from atop the plateau. We tried nymphing for a while but as the sun rose and warmed our bones, a very minor hatch started so we threw some drys at the risers. While standing in the river with leaky waders and my boots filling with cold water, my concentration on a particular riser was broken when I heard Tim yell that my son had nailed one. I looked up to see him lift a nice brown from the icy depths. He was so excited! He went on to catch another beauty several hours later and just missed a third later that evening, while the rest of us came away empty handed!

We took our lunch stream side on the grassy ledge. We were full of stories about the ones that got away and the tale of catching the two browns was recited by my son repeatedly during our meal with the appropriate embellishments, of course! A more pleasant first day of the season could not be had by any means.

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