This past weekend I when home to PA, amish country PA. This is the place that I learned to fish and then taught myself to fly fish. It is where I had my first small stream, back country style fishing adventure. My friend Brian and I were tipped off to this stream by his father we figured this past weekend it was close to 7 or 8 years ago(sounds like a long time and honestly it was) was the first time we ever took it on. Well the plan was while I was home we would fish it. So Saturday morning we loaded up the jeep and got there as early as we could. Like most back country spots we were on dirt roads, but unlike the back country roads I drive here in GA these I knew. I found the spot as easy as I did when I lived in PA. I was excited to be there and almost bubbling over then I pulled up to the old bridge, I might have even forgot to pull the parking break.
Brian and I hit the water and then I remembered just how challenging this stream really was. We dug deep in our minds to figure out the last time we were on the water here. We came up with over 6 years before and my brother Jason was along(he landed what was most likely a 7 inch fish that day). Jason was always catching fish when we were younger, and honestly he still holds his own today. I've gotten better over the years, but looking back I don't know how I ever got anything out of this spot. This spot holds native brook trout(native meaning these fish have always been here, never been stocked unlike the term wild where the fish were stocked then reproduced). This stream is small, clear and as Brian says is unique in geological sense, and in the way you approach it as a fisherman. We were constantly getting hung up on this trip, but as we knew from the past it only takes one hole and a perfectly placed fly to pull out a good fish. For those of you who never fished for native trout a good fish can be 2 inches all the way up to 8 or 9 inches. Sounds small but well then you are fishing a trickle you can step across in most places it is a monster. Well we spent most of the morning sneaking ahead in the woods and scouting a hole of the other guy who would fish it.
We did that through a section of long runs with few bends, but then found our selves in big S turns. We then took on a different rhythm leap frogging each other. We were fishing two very different fly patterns but both getting strikes. I missed a lot of hook sets and so did Brian. He missed a couple that were without a doubt trout but I on the other hand could not say for sure if it was trout of stream chubs I was missing. He was working one section of stream and set the hook on a fish that splashed and carried on for what felt like forever only to throw the fly and get away.
Then it happened, on an over hanging bank Brian laid down beautiful drift it was just a couple inches from being under the over hang and like magic a fish hit. Brian wasted no time setting the hook and even from around a bend I could tell he had a nice fish. His light weight rod bent and he had a smile from ear to ear. He got the fish to hand and we both payed our respects to the stream and the beauty that had just taken place by just looking at the fish and the hole it came from . We took a couple pictures and let it back to its hole to get bigger and live a couple more years. We were both beaming for a while after that and it really threw us off the groove we were into at that point, but I was happy for him and us and he was over joyed for a while. Before we left I got a small fish maybe a little smaller then my pinky finger and even that little guy had amazing color, and that is why native fish are so addicting(no picture of my fish at this point). I miss my home turf and hopefully one day Sarah and I will be settled enough and live somewhere long enough that I can have new spots to call home turf.
For now this was a great weekend with my family, sad that Sarah couldn't be there but there is always next time. Next time I hope to go to another native spot further up in the woods there will be hiking involved to get to that one. Also I am going to keep pressuring Brian and brother Jason to come to GA to fish with me. I really just want to show these guy that even if I'm not fishing every night, or at least 4 or 5 nights a week that I'm not loosing my touch. Hopefully my next post with Brian in it will be from GA. As for the week ahead its back to the grind of work, but Sarah and I have been seeing the hummingbird a lot more lately so I will be trying hard to get a picture up soon. Until next time remember to 'do the best you can'.