Sandbagged!

Sandbagged!
Photograph by Steve Barnett

Tuesday, 17 July 2012

Fainting Fit...

In Victorian times, whenever a situation was becoming burdensome to a lady, it was quite acceptable for her to have a touch of the vapours, swoon and "faint". This would immediately bring the awkward situation to an end and simultaneously win her the prize of being the centre of everyone's concern for her well being.

Here's another puzzle, this was from last night's short session with the PPS after the spinner eaters and it was solved by "fainting"...


Across the river is a slack current, the head of which is nicely protected by a willow's branches. Therein a trout was eating spinners with impunity.  Between the trout and the angler is a strong current that whisks the line away promptly and so drags the fly away from the feeding trout.  Throwing a snaky line has no effect as the current is so swift the whole lot gets dragged in less than two seconds.

The remedy was to get opposite the feeding fish and cast the line with what would normally be excessive forward force, abruptly stopping the line so it falls into a swoon and faints into a pile of leader and tippet.  The line is dragged away instantly as before, but the leader and tippet, if long enough, are straightened out taking just sufficient time for the fly to have drifted at the speed of the slack current for a few moments and to trick the trout into rising for it.

The trout was just behind where that willow shoot is diagonally going down into the water.  Getting the line to swoon and faint into a pile here was not easy as the overhanging willow stems meant that the line had to be cast with a sideways, chopping action to get under the willow and it needed to be done with quite a bit of force to make sure that, when the line was abruptly stopped, the leader and tippet would still fall in that vital pile, even though it was not being delivered vertically, which is usually much easier to do.

The reward was a lot of satisfaction and a smallish, but lovely wild brown trout whose headquarters really should have been impregnable.  Forgive the bleached out photo as the flash went off and it would not have been kind to mess this trout about anymore with another snap...

Is there ever such a thing as an uncatchable trout?


Regular Rod


10 comments:

  1. Your persistence paid off. I would have had a fit of my own for sure. I can see it play out in my head.... I would have lost a half dozen flies in the thicket, gone through about ten yards of tippet, and scared away that fish. Great catch!

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  2. But you can just climb in the river, wade up to the easiest place to cast and catch the fish? What's drag btw?

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  3. Did you laugh to yourself when you hooked it?

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    1. A smug smile perhaps but no actual laughter. My voice was being used to keep Henry from "helping" me...
      :)

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  4. I once had a group of friends who laughed at me for becoming fixated on a little ten inch brown that had taken up residence in small channel that ran along the backside of a small island on the Big Thompson River a few miles from my home. He was a wild little stream born fish that had inherited all the instincts to pick a feeding lie that was in effect a soft open little run that ran beneath a tunnel of overhanging willows. He and I did battle for a whole summer with him coming to the net three times, but he cost me a dozen flies left in the willows and the utter humiliation of sensing my stalking him more times than I’d like to admit. In truth he was the fish of the season for me. There are a great many folks in our sport that have no idea that sometimes the duel between and angler and a trout far exceeds the number of inches in the net. You will remember your little adversary and the difficulty of collapsing that long leader long after you’ve forgotten bigger fish in your net! It’s the true nature of the sport!

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    1. You are so right Midgeman! I was just this minute remembering that little trout having wandered past that same willow in our winter conditions...

      RR

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  5. I can't help but get a smile on my face when I see someone do something like this. I love the possibilities of fly fishing.

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