Lighter Side
What is life if there is not laughter? Welcome to the lighter side of flyfishing! We welcome your humorous stories here!
May 3rd, 1999

A Fine Art, Part 2

by Charlie Kroll

From Pools of Memory published by Frank Amato Publications.

It may surprise some amateur anglers to know that the exercise of immersion can be carried out with its initial stage completely out of water. The most satisfactory approach is to walk to the edge of an attractive pool, placing feet firmly upon a part of the bank that is suitably undercut by the current and then gaze hopefully out over the river.

Some years ago I achieved a notable performance of this Vertical Sink technique while fishing the Yellowstone River in Montana. The bank gave way, the water was deep and I was wearing chest waders. This is a beautiful and graceful fall. You descend slwly into the water allowing plenty of time to throw away the rod and extend both arms to clutch at the bankside sagebrush; at the same time emitting a bloodcurdling yell. Provided the water level is sufficiently near the top of the bank you descend over the tops of the waders, allowing them to fill, which is most refreshing. Getting out again is difficult and exciting with the added spice of danger should the sagebrush you are clutching come out by the roots.

Alan Pratt cartoon
A variatiion of this fall can be found in the Vertical Collapse, wherein the fortunate angler suddenly disappears in a grass-covered beaver hole. Timing is important here as the collapse should be syncronized with the attention of one's companion being directed elsewhere so that upon receiving no answer to some idle comment he turns around, only to find empty space or at best a hat lying flush on the grass tops.

My research has lead me to carefully observe the tactics of other anglers dabbing in this art and I have been privileged to witness several brilliant exhibitions. One of the finest was performed by my friend George, who confirmed his already versatile form by falling expertly through a small hole in a dock into eight feet of water. Although I examinded him carefully, not a single article of dry clothing could be found. On the way back George made a shrewdly judged detour and, with impeccable timing, shattered the tip section of his bamboo rod with a stumble, followed by a karate foot stomp. I was full of admiration, knowing full well that I was observing one of the world's greatest performances.

On another, perhaps even more noteworth occasion, George, in hopping about preparatory to slicing into his waders, accidentally stepped into a large and singularly fluid keepskae from a previous occupant of the streamside meadow. George rush to the water to launder his sock. As he reached the edge he curled a deft toe under a tone and performed an exquisite variation of the Standing Forward Roll, entering headlong. This was achieved in what must be record time and in light conditions that were far from idea. It makes on humble just to think about it. ~ Charlie Kroll

Concluded next time!

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