February 8th, 1999
"Fishing With Dad in North Idaho"
by Andy Cottrell (aka SE)
The sun rises to start another day of hunting
for the "golden" trout. I ask my dad (I am 13) if I should
get into the car. He says I should, so I go. I wait anxiously
for our trip to begin. My dad finally gets into the car and we are off.
The spot we have chosen today is a small
falls high up in the mountains (we usually fish small streams and
rivers) called Snow Creek Falls. The site is and hour and half away and
the road to it is way out in the country.
During the car ride my palms are
sweating because of the excitement of going to the river.
My Dalmatian, who usually comes along is carefully
watching the countryside pass. I assume he is trying
to figure out where we are headed.
As for my rod, I use a 7-weight Custom
Made (a small company) fiberglass rod. I have a Field
and Stream fishing vest filled with all my hand-tied flies.
I tie my own flies. As for my reel I have one made by Elite.
I have never heard of this company, but I use it since
it was a gift (also I can't afford another one.) All of the gear I
have was handed down to me from my dad.
After a long ride up windy roads of the mountains,
we finally arrive at our destination. We have to get all our gear
together and hike down a half-mile trail before we get to fish.
This site is a Forest Service tourist site so the trail is well maintained.
Even though it is a Forest Service site, I have never seen another
person there, probably because it is so remote. The trout here
are small but are native and the area is not stocked. Even though
the fish are small, it is still extremely fun.
We finally arrive at the end of the trail. The trail
empties out onto a platform there to view the falls. We put on
all our stuff and equip our rods with gold hare's ear nymphs,
either #12 or #14.
These work well here because the stream
has many big rocks. Many pools are formed, and there is a
strong current too.
I slide under the rail and start my journey
through the fairly dense forest downstream. I go about
quarter mile away from the platform and I work my way
upstream, fishing the pools.
The journey there is very slippery. We have
to walk on a slope and the ground is covered with moist
moss and dead trees. As I go along to my spot I see a rabbit
jump from the bushes and bolt of into the woods.
Seeing this makes me wonder how many more rabbits there are.
Finally I arrive at my destination and move as quietly as possible to the waters
edge. I attach my strike indicator (I am not very good yet without one)
and pull out a little line to sling-shot my fly into the pool. I can't do a
full cast because the area is too tight.
On the first cast I land the fly just at the top of the pool.
I follow the fly down the pool watching the strike indicator
intently. At the slightest motion of a bite, I am ready to hook the fish.
After 2 or 3 casts a fish finally hits the fly, and I am able to
successfully pull the fish in and admire it. It is a 7 inch native
cutthroat tout. It is a work of art. After admiring it,
I carefully release it back to the stream. ~ Andy Cottrell
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