Monday, September 20, 2010

In Over My Head

My new work schedule has me working every other Saturday.  So this Saturday I worked and decided to bring a rod and some flies to fish after my work day was done.  I ended up putting in ten hours Saturday and when I clocked out I was hungry and tired but decide to hit the river for a couple hour anyway.  I was hitting a spot I went to early in the spring for trout, but with the river water being near the highest temperatures its been all summer it is shoal and smallmouth bass time.

With little gear I headed out.  Just a fly boxes, an extra leader, nippers (other essential tools), a phone, and a camera(to capture the action to report on here) .  Well I didn't put the phone or camera in water proof bag or box because these add bulk to my gear and I was very sure about this spot not being too deep(famous last words).

I got to the spot where I needed to start wading out into the river.  I was headed for some rocks that stick out of the water.  I had been on them before and remember it was a deep wade but remember the water being just above my navel.  What I failed to think of is the fact that this spring we got a couple good rains which made the river swell a couple different times and ultimately altering the bottom.  Normally I am a smart confident person on any water, and my memory of different waters is really good too.  I have always been able to remember where rocks, logs, and different pockets are on the bottom after being on them only once.  Even on a new body of water I have a good eye for tells that will show me where is safe and where to stay away from.

Looking back on this trip I should have called it when I stayed at work two hours extra.  I was rushing and pushing to get to a spot where I missed a big bass in the spring.  Seeing the rock just 30 yards out was distracting, the angle of the sun made it hard to seen underwater rocks. I was wearing my keen sandals because I left my new wading shoes at home.  These are all things I have been factoring into the next moment in time.  I was on a rock with the water about thigh high I remember it being a chest high wade to the rock I wanted to be at.  My very next step had me chest deep, and anyone who has walked in to cool water chest high knows it takes your breath away for a second.  I gave my body time to adjust and decided to feel out in front of me with one foot to see how deep the water was, but slipped.  It was not a fall forward because when the test foot hit the rock in front of me I was underwater.

Underwater in a river I know well enough this should not happen, instinctively I pushed off the bottom and was back up I gave a couple leg kicks and was back to a knee deep rock.  Wet, from my feet to the button on the top of my hat.  When I got to my final destination(rock)  I took the battery out of my phone and camera, took my shirt off and squeezed the water out.  I only fished for about a half out and headed home pissed off and wet(25 yards down the water was knee high all the way to the shore).

Once I got home and changed into dry cloths I set up the hair dryer on low and started drying things out.  I took my camera apart and took a canned air to it.  The phone I put together after a couple hours and it was fine.  I have a motorola tundra for this very reason, because I am hard on on phones.  The camera on the other hand well I waited till the next morning to get it powered up.  Amazingly the camera still works! The screen has a water spot on the bottom right, but I am okay with that.  So my advice to anyone who uses an older point and shoot camera and it gets wet.  Go ahead and take the shell of it apart, get the canned air on it to get most of the water out.  Then its a hair dryer on low for a couple hours and cross your fingers when you power up.  If you smell a lot of wire burn smell power down and dry some more.  Also if it feels hot just consider it done, but it is worth a shot.

Thanks for the tool set dad it comes in handy a lot!  I use it all the time for small things.

Here it is camera drying out.

This is the tundra I was not really worried about it but wanted to be safe so I dried it out also.

Anyway my pride still hurts from this mistake.  I have been kicking myself every since this and just want to get out and have some luck on the river.  Part of my problem is I've been getting blanked out there lately and I just want to get a couple fish to hand.  Now the river is playing games with my head and I just need to get out on it and have a good day.  Lets hope this coming weekend can provide a good outing.



  1. You should do a blog post about your phone.

    And perhaps we could photograph all of the non Army-proof phones that you've been through.

  2. I have the casio brigade. I does internet and email, and it's bullet proof. I sank it in a glass of ice water to prove this. I wash it when it gets dirty. I love my phone.