We all know that steelheading is a competitive game that consumes us all. In addition it grows in popularity every year with fisherman traveling far and wide to enjoy the fruits of this sport.
This morning I smiled as I got to the access spot and there was not a car in sight . I made my way to my chosen spot with my head lamp on only to see see two or three head lamps glowing in the distance like fireflies.
My next option was to move to a pool below my chosen spot and reassess my situation after I thoroughly worked spot B. As I made my way to pool, one of the three head lamps sprinted to pool B ahead of me and set up at the head of the pool.
I released a few grumbled curse words from my mouth and worked my way down stream. As I was 20 yards from spot C and thinking I was finally alone in my solitude, I saw two kids sliding down a steep cliff to get a jump on me. MF'ers, I was not going to get blocked a third time this morning so I sprinted in the first light through brush, boulder , and burr with lungs burning to get to my spot.
F... them I say.
Yes it's a little juvenile to sprint to a hole but its gets tough out there sometimes. I wont low hole people nor will I jump into their pool and crowd them out.
But I do want room to play and room to play alone.
The two kids Heckle & Jeckle to their credit left me to my own devices and made their way down stream. I then tried to relax and calmed my self down.
I did not hit fish right a way but in my journeys I got into some good fish and lost a fine 12 lbs buck who wanted nothing to do with me today . And later I got my revenge on those first two spots that I did not get a chance to fish at first light. Though I was probably fishing third water as they say, the fish were buying what I was selling and I wacked them.
I guess competition keeps us strong but I remember days in the early nineties when you might run into three people all day on the water.....I am getting old.