Monday, April 24, 2006

Brown Trout, who art in heaven...

Stowe, Vermont is a lovely place in any season. My wife and I went up there in the fall of 2004 and we loved it. Absolutely loved it. We decided to return in 2005, this time with the kids. I must thank my sister for convincing me to try a winter resort for a summer vacation. We stayed at the Grey Fox Inn, which has a deserved reputation for gargantuan breakfast pancakes.

Stowe may be a skier's paradise, but there's great fishing in the little streams that weave through the town. During our 2004 visit the fishing would have been great--if only I had brought my tackle. Although I didn't forget my fishing rod in 2005, the deep pools from 2004 were reduced to mere trickles in 2005. That's what a summer-long drought will do. Discouraged but armed with a non-resident Vermont fishing license, I nonetheless decided to try my luck at spots that looked even remotely promising. In most places the water was shin-deep and hardly trout-worthy.

After walking about a mile downstream somewhere in Stowe, I saw a large tree shielding a modestly deep and slow-moving pool of water. There's a silent creed among fishermen suggesting that a good fishing spot should only be defined as being 'somewhere.' I reasoned that this 'somewhere' was the best-looking spot of all, so I tossed a silver-and-blue Rooster Tail spinner about 100 feet and right under that 'somewhere' tree. Instantly, a brown trout of about four pounds slammed the shiny lure.

I'd like to say that this trout fought gallantly and forever. But then I'd have to go to confession, and I haven't been in such a long time...
In reality, the poor fish succumbed after a two- or three-minute tussle. A sad ending for such a magnificent fish. A much better ending would have been for my Salmo trutta to fight proudly, pose patiently for pictures, and then swim off into the sunset.

Alas, it was not to be. Please bow your heads in prayer.


At 1:36 AM, Blogger Greg said...

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