Monday, April 27, 2009

The one that got away.

I left the brook feeling a bit dissappointed in myself the other day. I haven't yet prepped a stock of barbless hooks for this fishing season and so I have been fishing with a barbed hook on the end of my line. That, in itself is bad enough but it gets worse. I was fishing along a small brook and was having very little luck. It was an overcast day and rains the days before had the brook running fast and murky so I was not expecting to catch anything. I threw a half hearted cast into a pool that had a back eddy that would likely provide reprieve for a trout tired of swimming against the current. I felt a slight tug and at first thought I was just feeling the current pulling on my line. I pulled the line tight and then I felt what I knew now was a trout biting. I kept the line tight and waited a few more seconds before setting the hook. The fish fought and got itself under the undercut bank but I managed to keep the line taut and out of danger. Shortly I had the trout, a chunky 10", in my hand and worked the barbed hook out with relative ease. Then it happened. The trout flopped and I dropped it. I'm sure this has happened to every angler at some point or another and I know you can relate. I was standing on the bank and the trout lay flopping at my feet and as I moved to pick it up so I could release it I stepped on it. Now I didn't kill it when I stepped on it and I didn't step on it hard but next it flopped itself into the brook. I couldn't stop it and it had no time to revive and it started floating more than swimming downstream. My heart sank as I likely killed the trout. It was an accident but nonetheless I felt I should have been more careful. I hope that the fish survived and now I will have to release a trout I may have otherwise kept in that system.

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