Jared Lane is a stay at home Dad, with his PHD in Musky Hunting. As a devoted Husband and Father he splits his time between Wood Working, Estate Management, and Family, when he’s not on a river or lake with Fly Rod in hand. He is about as close as you can get to “Granola” without being crunchy! Living in the woods, growing and Hunting his food to provide for his family.Like myself, he is a member of the PostFly Box Prostaff, and an avid outdoorsman.
In the yesteryears of (fly)fishing stories, a man was measured by the tale he could spin, not the length of the fish he lied about. Today, modern technology and Instagram have ruined that. Computers and phones have erased the mystique of fishing, the honesty of catching, and we are all now limited to the amount of yarn we can spin to a fellow angler, or unfortunate bystander, because every one wants the proof. No imagination, no thrill of the tale, just instant gratification from a “quick insta pic”.
I am a predator (fly)fisherman. I throw flies that are bigger than trout. I have never, until now, stood in shoes(waders) that would even come close to classifying me as anything close to a trout fisherman. I use a hard and brash casting method, that Orvis, and its followers frown upon. I committed to broadening my horizons this year though, and there I stepped off the snow covered ice, into the freezing cold stream. Narnia. A magical world I knew less than nothing about, but was willing to greet with roll casts and wind knots.
I knew enough to shoot for riffles, current breaks, boulders, holes, and the like. I knew enough to not take my 10wt, or the accompanying flies. I didn’t know how to not feel awkward in my waders, or even what to expect once I hooked up, but I did know I was ready for the ride.
I lost myself; surrounded by the ripple of the stream, entranced by the setting sun. I even thought to myself for a minute, thinking that trout fishermen (cough) had it figured out. I was experiencing nirvana. I was ready for a fish. A trout. A big ass brawler of a brown trout. The 1 in 5, over 15″, that the DNR said was in the river, statistically. I knew a replica of my first fish was going on the wall. I was as ready as I didn’t know I could be.
There was a big ice chuck, hung up on a flat, over hanging a pool, and I let my fly drift aimlessly by. BOOMZING, is the best way to describe the immediate sensation, and galoofly, I strip set that little sucker like it was a 50″ musky. Barbless hooks -1, the not trout fisherman-0. I waded down river and let flies go where they wanted; picked the errant bastards out of the brush, and sent them back towards a riffle.
I saw the dark mass. I read it like a trout fisherman. I squatted behind the brush, and built a false squiggle cast to play perfectly across the hole, right from the top. BOOOOOMZOOOOM ZIIIIING ZAAAAANG CLUUUUG CLUUUUG. I knew I had the brown of a lifetime. I strip set that wall hanger like it was a tarpon, and realized, I was in nirvana, trout fishing. I kept tension, and let the line play out. Tight lined, I whooped in excess. A river ran through my soul. Brad Pitt high fived me, and we ran down river chasing this dream fish. The first trout I ever went to battle with on the fly. The trout that made trout fishing even matter to me. Its zigs and zags magnified any feeling a predator on the fly ever gave me, and my 8ft 5wt was getting a work out. I was in heaven. I was a trout fisherman.
Head shakes across the river, one side to the other, my rod pounding in my hand. This exact moment, being everything that fly fishing is made of. What every fisherman’s dreams are made of. Tip up, tip down, side to side, riding the zig and the zag, for the fish that wouldn’t play out. The end of my fly line finally came into view, my fluorocarbon leader invisible to the dream, I saw the warrior, the wall hanger…
I saw my trout fishing career for what it was at that moment. I am not a trout fisherman. For several glorious, orgasmic minutes, I battled…a Nerf football sized chunk of ice, that I hooked dead center on the side. Physics kicked my butt on the river, and made a trout fisherman out of me. I will fight until I get that big ass brawler of a brown. I will fight for it until Brad Pitt is running down the river with me giving out high fives. I will fight for the legend, and the story. Until then, keep your lines tight, one way or the other.
As always thank you for reading! I hope you enjoyed!
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