Last weeks rain events sent my brain into Steelhead mode... the only thing playing with my conviction to head out had been these beautiful " Indian Summer" conditions we have been experiencing as of late. My mind was set on a location none the less,and at worst it would be an excuse for an alternative workout . The weeks leading up to this outing had been filled with family obligations. Truth be told I didn't mind as I was not really in the mood to go tramping all over a river in search of a fish or two that might have made its way in with migrating Salmon. Although I did check the lower section of a river one week earlier... what can I say Steelheading is a powerful drug. I'm addicted. In my defence it was on the rise.
Right at the peek of my constant feverish thoughts of Steelheading came a text message from a good friend, Gil. Seems great minds think alike. Last minute plans were laid for an early outing. A couple days dragged by and finally I was at the access waiting for Gil to arrive. Lights came over the hill and a wave of panic hit me...could it be someone else is going to make the trek in the dark to have a crack at this Run we were planning on hitting??? Luckily It was Gil. We had a quick chat and began our hike down the trail. Walking down the trail I stayed a step ahead of Gil. I'm sure Gil understood it was because the trail was only wide enough for one. The real reason however was that if the legends about the Wendigo were true, I figured if it jumped out from the dark woods it would grab Gil first and therefore I would be able to make a safe escape... Scared yes, but alive and unharmed. Finally out of the dark tunnel through the woods, Gil listened to me ramble about this and that as we navigated deer trails through the tall grasses. Oh and I should note if it were not for Gil leading me back to the rivers edge a handful of times, the walk could have been easily half an hour longer. Thanks Gil. Deer trails are for Deer.
The light came and before us flowed a low river, a little stained and fishable, but still low. surprising enough the water temps were favourable for our game and we started at it. Although the river was low, we still felt optimistic that this run held some Steelhead. An hour passed and Gil decided to move down to a nice little dig. I stayed put and continued to fish with no success.
Gil returned about 40 minutes later and had lost a nice fish on his trip. Finally I hit a fish and promptly broke off. We both watched as the Steelhead jumped several times fleeing downriver obviously stung by the hook. I felt as though I had blew my one chance. Funny how I need to learn this lesson every year... Check you tippet and re-tie. Gil made his way to the top of the run and I set myself below. It wasn't very long until the indicator zipped under and the rod was bent with a fish. After a couple nice runs and some spectacular jumps the beautiful Steelhead was tailed by Gil.
We fished late into the afternoon but we both sensed that with weather conditions the way they were it was a morning and evening game. We made the long hike out and said our farewells.
Sharing the day with a good friend looking for fish was a perfect way to kick off the Fall season. Gil, thanks for the day. As always the pleasure was mine. I look forward to our next outing.