It was reported today from informed sources
that the latest increase of drivel foisted on
the boob-tube-viewing public has anglers running
in droves to their favorite book emporiums. And
for good reason. Make that, 'reasons,' sorry.
"When was the last time you read of our hero
screwing up netting a fish? Slashing at the
entangled denizen trapped head first in the bag?
Or, did you ever read of him about to release a
fish only to have it leap from his uncontrollably
shaking hands and plop 'kerplunk' back into the
water? Never happens in print. Did he ever bust a
multi-hundred dollar rod by pointing it backward
while fighting a monster? Of course not. Our warm
and comfy friends of the print world always get
Not only do these shows make us, the 'commoners'
look good, but they inject a comic-relief element
into our drab little lives. So goes our T.V. viewing.
It has a place. But, now take books. And they are
in record numbers these days. And you know what?
They are not all of the 'How To' type either. A
lot are, but many, many are not. They are on the
nature of 'Why To' and 'How things were a few years
And so it goes. We are searching, looking, learning,
advancing, and for some, remembering. Quality will
always win out over quantity. Some cases in point.
I can not remember ever using certain combinations
of terminal fly set-ups. Just didn't appeal to me.
But, many of you have used them and still do. In
fact, they are your favorite methods. For instance
this from my dimly lit past on the South Branch of
Michigan's Au Sable river.
I wanted to see if I could get some brookies to hit
a nymph if it was running about a foot in front of
a small streamer. Simple enough to set up, a dropper
from the tippet knot, one end left long to the nymph
and the streamer on the end of the tippet. It cast
like crap, wanted to twist and tangle on nearly every
cast, but I just had to find out. Did the fish take
the nymph so they streamer could not get it? Did I
create some competition? Who knows, but the trout
were always on the nymph except for once. Big brookie
took the streamer...and the nymph too!
Do I fish the rig today? Heck no, never did after
that weekend. I was curious that's all. What did
I prove? Not a darn thing, who knows what devilment
lurks in the noggin of a trout, especially a brook
trout. We all seem to be after different things from
this game we play, sometimes to our emotional detriment
too. In our desire to help educate and share with our
fishing comrades we sometimes forget these different
goals such as they may be.
I only fish dries for trout these days, just do, that's
all. I like to do it that way. Am I wrong for not using
nymphs and streamers, and emergers and wet flies and
skaters and combinations of some of each? No I am not,
I fish the way I do because it is the way I like to
fish! And so do you. And so do your buddies. Each has
his own rewards he seeks, once found, he repeats the
So, when I am tempted to try in some way, to influence
you or someone else as to a method of fishing, I probably
shouldn't be. We are all after something different, most
have found it, a few are still searching. Fun isn't
it? ~ James Castwell