Yesterday I was sent on a clandestine mission to the local
convenience store to buy some cake making ingredients. It's
my father's birthday. And my father-in-law's Birthday. AND
my sister-in-law's boyfriend's birthday. Their actual dates
of birth are a couple of weeks apart, but we will commemorate
the events with one big party here at the lake house. The lake
is Lake Winnipesaukee and the house a series of rustic cabins
which have served as my wife's family's summer vacation spot
for generations. This is the first year that all three birthday
boys will be here at the lake all at the same time. So, the party
should come as a surprise, though cabin living is close and public.
Keeping a secret of this magnitude while the preparations are
underway is proving to be difficult.
By Dave Pearson, PA
I rode my bike to the convenience store for flour, sugar, butter,
and 'high quality' bar chocolate – not baking chocolate. I was
told that though baking chocolate melts very smoothly, it just
doesn't taste as good as a high quality bar chocolate does. And
this chocolate is reserved for the frosting so it should be
smooth but it HAS to be tasty.
I could find no high quality bar chocolate.
So I brought home semi-sweet chocolate chips instead.
Later, Gillian and I returned to the convenience store for a few
other items and she managed to find the previously elusive bar
chocolate. So, now I sit typing, munching on chocolate chips,
or, as it says on the package, semi-sweet morsels.
Morsel. Something small, sweet, and delectable; tiny bits to be
savored one at a time or gobbled down by the handful. My
vacation here at the lake has been a series of morsels.
I'm not a fisher of large bodies of still water. I'm told there
are salmon and lake trout to be had at depths of 60 feet out in
the beyond of Lake Winnipesaukee. This information is useless
to me. Even if I had a boat, there is no way I can fish those
depths; my floating line is ill-suited to this type of fishing.
I have no interest in trolling. The whole business is too
featureless and too big. Fortunately, there are smaller waters.
Waters that move and are alive with brook and rainbow trout.
We arrived at the lake late Thursday afternoon. I got my New
Hampshire fishing license first thing Friday morning. Dawn
Saturday morning found me calf deep in a cool mountain stream
surrounded by hemlocks. The state calls this a river, but to me
it is a medium-sized stream. The bed is mostly granite, so the
rocks are quite rounded. Much more so than the flatter sedimentary
rocks I'm used to in Pennsylvania water. The grade is steeper;
the water is faster and deeper. The water is clear as can be
and filled with trout. And other wildlife.
I saw no moose, though I saw several signs stating that a nearby
stretch of road was a 'moose crossing' area. I startled a blue
heron who I convinced to fish downstream from me upping my strike
ratio. I saw a kingfisher. And I stepped on an otter(!) who shot
out from under my foot and swam like a torpedo straight upstream
and out of sight. I had to sit down and take a bit of a break
after that one. More morsels.
I caught fish. Colorful, eager brook trout and acrobatic rainbows.
The fishing was tough but not technical, that is, the fish were
feeding opportunistically and presentation was the key. I caught
all the fish on top. And I caught all but one on the humpinator.
That fish, the last fish, the biggest fish of the day, the one
that didn't fall to the humpinator, gave a splashy refusal to
the 'fly of the hour.' But he fell to a beetle.
Here are a few pictures of flies.
First a humpy, Joe Humphrey's style
Next, a stimulator.
Now, a humpinator, Dave Pearson style
And a couple of humpinator variations.
All have been a bit gnawed on. ~ Dave (black gnat)
Dave Pearson lives in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania with his
loving wife, Gillian, and two dogs, Casey and Booboo.
His passion is small mountain streams. He teaches guitar
for a living. You may contact Dave at:
Hemlock Headwaters Archives