"That looks nice." I said, and turned away from the river to gear up. Although I can appreciate a nice scenic view, I would much rather be smack-dab in the thick of it all rather than watching from the sidelines.
"Oh man, that's cold." Dean concurred after his first step into the ice cold water.
The first step into icy water is always the worst, but the second and third steps were not any better. I felt like the T-1000 as it stepped through liquid nitrogen, and I was waiting for the moment when my feet would shatter into icy shards as I crossed the stream.
"Oh, I forgot about that." Travis said, following Dean.
They both kept walking down to the deep spot to cross, and all I could think was, am I the only one of us that didn't want to go waist deep in this cold-ass water?
"Why don't we go upstream?" I asked in a desperate attempt avoid what was about to come.
"The spot we are headed to is literately the best spot we have found on this river." Dean said.
"And it has produced the biggest fish we have caught here." Travis added.
"That's right!" Dean remembered, shattering my hope to avoid a waist deep crossing like a gun shot aimed at the frozen T-1000.
No way, could it be?!
Two other anglers were already fishing the very spot Travis and Dean were charging for. I had never been so happy to see someone else in our "great spot". The warmth of this sight melted my frozen, shattered heart, and it slowly converged and rose my spirits just like that same T-1000.
"Come on, guys! What's taking you so long?!" I yelled to Dean and Travis with my fly rod held high, displaying the first fish of the day.
After I had let my fish go I saw that Dean was fighting a fish, so I ran over to see if he needed help landing it Dean, on the other hand, needed no help at all. He scooped up his fish and removed the hook promptly to quickly get the fish back into the water. If I hadn't had my camera out and ready, I would have missed the one-time shot he allowed before lowering his fish into the water.
Travis looked over my way and gave a most distasteful glance.
"Oh..." I said, as if I hadn't known the answer, "...how embarrassing."
"The dry fly activity just isn't happening..." I said, just as a fish came up and nailed Travis's fly.
"What, Erik? Nothing to say? I mean, you are THE EXPERT!"
"I hope you lose that God damn fish!" I spat.
Travis was bringing in his fish, but it was putting up a great fight. It was a sizable fish for this river, and if Travis kept fighting it like he was he had a chance of losing it.
"Well are you just going to stand here watching, or are you going to help net this fish!" Travis snapped.
"You can't handle that little fish?" I said, and walked over, unhooking my net.
"Whatever, you wish you could catch a fish this size."
"That is a nice fish." I admitted, and went to pull his dry fly out of the fish's mouth?
"What the hell is this?!" I inquired, holding up a size four black streamer.
"Oh yeah..." Travis laughed.
"Well they were not hitting dries, so I figured I would throw a streamer." He said, as if he had not just testified his distaste for my switching to a wet fly.
"So you just forgot you were stripping in your fly instead of letting it drift?" I asked.
"Could we focus on this fish in your net, ERIK! I'm sure you're stressing it." Travis said, in an obvious ploy to distract me from his choice of fly.
"It's been underwater the entire time." I said, and tipped the net up, allowing the fish to escape. We then stood and walked up to
Dean. who was fishing a beautiful drop off.
"Anything on the dry?"
"Mind if I fish downstream from you?"
"Go for it." Dean said.
I felt like a slimy worm as I hooked into a few fish in front of Dean. I wished as much as the next guy that the fish were nailing dries, but they just weren't.
"It's because your stupid." I said quickly.
"Yeah, Dawg!" Travis yelled, as he set the hook on a trout the size of a key-chain. The little fish hopped out of the water in a hopeless attempt to escape that was almost cute. The fight was over before it had started, and Travis unhooked the fish unceremoniously and it darted away.
"Well so much for the spruce moth hatch." Travis said as we walked back to the car.
"We did see two of them." I reminded him.
"Two is not a hatch."
"Very true, but it was still a good day for... some of us..." I said, glancing at Travis as we got into the car.
Travis went on to explain how catching less fish with his choice of flies made him a better angler, or something. I wasn't paying attention, as his explanation took up the entire two hour drive back to where we were staying.