|High waters on upstate trout streams|
It's been raining big time in upstate New York.
The rain was so bad in one area that my friends had a flood in their basement. And their basement rarely floods.
Despite all the rain, I was starting to twitch in frustration from not fishing. It was time to end the excuses for not going fishing.
I found myself standing on the bank of a small stream near Syracuse. The conditions looked grim. The water was high, fast and the color of café au lait.
Standing on the same stream bank was a young father and his daughter, who appeared to be three or four years old. They were having fun enjoying the day and the water. The dad was also trying to figure out what was happening on the trout stream. He enlisted his daughter in lifting and turning over rocks, to see what kinds of aquatic insects are active in the stream.
All of a sudden, in the middle of this unfriendly water, I saw a large, thick brown trout rocket skyward. It was pursuing a mystery insect. The suddenness of this and seeing the entire fish out of the water, was surprising and galvanizing. The fish was violating the conventional wisdom that trout are inactive in high water. Later, it rolled on the surface to take some other bugs.
Despite a winter of inaction, I was able to cast flies to where the trout had been working the water. But none of my fly choices interested the fish. As the waders filled with water, it was time to go.
Nevertheless, it was great to take home the memory of this fish, even if I did not have the chance to play it and land it.