Sunday, August 21, 2005
THE FAMILY THAT FISHES TOGETHER....
Our fishing trip last weekend was just about perfect. We couldn't even complain about the rain. When you are smack dab in the middle of a drought, it's not a good idea to complain about a gentle soaking rain getting in the way of weekend fun.
We got down to Bennet Springs Sunday evening and still had time to get in some fishing.
Jenni was the first to catch a fish. This is her "catching a fish pose". From every fishing trip, we have photos of her like that. She always looks so graceful. She did NOT get that from me.
Tim caught the next fish that night. As I had mentioned in an earlier post, this was the first time he's fished since he was five years old. He wanted to release his trout, but it had swallowed the hook and we didn't know if it would make it. He was initially concerned about that; we called it his "Phoebe moment". If you've ever watching Friends, you know what I'm talking about. Jenni made an agreement with him that they would put it on the stringer, put it in the water and if it recovered enough they would release it. It didn't recover. Jenni ended up cleaning it.
She later suggested to Tim that he use a single hook without barbs instead of the barbed treble hooks as those are easier for "catch and release". He opted not to because they would be harder to catch. He had apparently gotten over his "Phoebe moment."
That evening, Jenni caught two, Tim caught one, and I didn't have any luck. Dad opted to sit and watch.
A fog rolled in and gave the stream a mystical appearance.
We had some visitors that evening in the form of a blue heron
and an otter.
OK, you're pretty much going to have to trust me on the heron and otter. But they ARE there. If you click on the photos you can see the heron; and you can see the wake the otter was making in the water.
The next morning, we had to get into our rain gear. We make quite a fashion statement, don't we? Check out the kicky boots.
Tim was the only one whose hair benefitted from the weather.
We were in the water by 6:50 am; waiting for the siren to blow. We never heard it but Dad and the guy he was standing next to looked at their watches, saw it was 7:01, and decided it was time.
Every time I go trout fishing, I dream of catching a fish on my first cast. It's never happened to me. It happened to Jenni this time. A few minutes later, I did get my first trout. I love that feeling when the pole jolts. I tried to reel him in, but he wouldn't get any closer. I knew it was a trout and not the bottom of the stream or a branch, because I could feel him move. I wondered if he was just so big that he was stronger than my reel. He did jump out of the water at one point, and I saw he was a good sized fish, but no lunker my any means.
So I beached him. I slung my rod over my shoulder and walked up the shore and drug him onto the beach.
A few minutes after that, I had to land my second trout the same way. Obviously, something was wrong with my reel and I was going to need to replace it. But Dad came over to show us he'd caught his limit (at 7:20!)
So I used his pole. It has a left-handed reel, but it worked for me.
Jenni was the next to catch her limit, but she started cleaning her fish before we got any pictures of her stringer.
I was next...
....and then Tim. This is him netting his fourth trout; a good sized one. Jenni started cleaning his fish when she was done with hers, so we didn't get a picture of his stringer, either. I never could get her to clean her room when she was growing up, but she's a demon when it comes to cleaning trout.
But we did get a picture of them with their cleaned trout.
All four of us had caught our limit and had them cleaned by 10:00. That has NEVER happened before...for us. It did help that the limit was lowered to 4 from 5 trout, but it was still a good feeling.
We were able to pack up, get on the road and get back to St. Louis in time to have a fresh trout dinner on the table by 5:30 that night.
It was delicious.