Sunday, June 8, 2008

I'd Rather Be Fishing

This week I got to spend two days in the Uinta Basin doing field work. Do to a lack of hotels in the area, my co-worker and I stayed in a fishing lodge near Flaming Gorge that had fish and jackalopes (they do exist...) on the walls and served heaping plates of warm hearty food. The weather most of the time was less than congenial, but duty called so we headed out that wet and chilly morning after a quick meal. The restaurant was still full of fishermen ordering their second and third cups of coffee, and their wasn't a single boat on the water. As I stepped outside and zipped my jacket up tighter around my neck I thought: I would rather be fishing.

Spring flowers
Flaming Gorge

Luckily for me my dad had just sent me my grandpa's fly rod and a few other fishing supplies to help me achieve my dream of learning to fly fish. Friday I went to the store with Melinda and searched through drawers of flies to find some that looked the best. Tricky business as I had little idea of what looked yummiest to a trout.

Saturday, my birthday, came and I had scenes from "A River Runs Through It" flowing through my mind. I took out my latest library books, new flies, and rod, and reviewed the basics on the living room floor. It only took a little reading for me to decide that a bit of practice in the park was needed first. I didn't want to be the laughing stock of the other fly fishers on the river.

After an hour of making pieces of grass wizz through the air and getting weird looks from children at the park I decided that I was ready to go to where the fish were: in the water.
Later that afternoon, with fishing gear in my pack, I rode my bike to Provo Canyon. From what I have heard and read, Provo River is not the best place for a novice fly fisher, but it was near and I don't have a car. Riding along the Provo River pathway I scanned the river for a suitable section. The main criteria was a shortage of fly-eating trees. Just above Bridal Veil Falls I found my spot. Here the river widened out and a bit of careful wading would leave me standing on a small grass island in the middle, far from the tree covered shore.
I couldn't help but smiling as I began lengthening my line, aiming towards a small eddy where I imagined large trout to hang out. I was doing it, I was fly fishing. To the trained eye it might not have looked like much, but I was thrilled. After two hours I had made a yellow headed trout rise to my fly several times, but was still fish-less, and had sacrificed a fly to the vegetation. Very happy, and with freezing feet and a head filled with questions, I waded back across to my bike.
Beware fish, I think I am hooked.


Whitney Hardie said...

This is awesome! Katie, your life is full of adventure and I love that you live it to the fullest.

Bennett Family said...

Katie, you are SO awesome and very inspiring! I LOVE reading your blog. I spent hours looking at all of your pictures on Face Book on Sunday. Thx for the words of encouragement...that quote is PERFECT! And so was the talk by Pres. Faust. Are you still planning on climbing Rainier this summer? If so, we'd love to join you!