Read the first episode: I'm Calling it a Sports Injury.
|Sunset view from camp|
My New QuestBlack was the color of the sky as we pushed our way back towards Hood River. An extremely long day capped off with a lengthy four hour drive through the night had turned into a challenge just to keep the eyes open. Our neck of the woods was still ninety minutes away when we were both forced to pull over our rigs for a power nap, caution won out over the thoughts of sleeping in our own bed.
Getting home at four AM, was it worth it I wondered as Mike’s rig turned off towards his street and I finished the drive back to my house. A cooler with a seven pounder and two five plus pounders, battled on a fly rod, sitting on a bed of crushed ice was the answer to that question. I counted the days; no make it the hours until I could point my truck south to be out on the waters of Davis Lake again. It was my new quest...
Waiting with patience that every good fishermen possesses I waited the next morning until daylight before jumping out of my tent grabbing a quick coffee and heading out. I would give the southern hole one more try before moving to a new area in the hopes that another big lunker has taken over the territory that my stringer buddy has vacated. Before lunch two more fatties had joined with their cousin and I was a happy smiling fisherman. Three is a good number, enough to make a good meal with friends without having to worry if someone wants seconds. I can go home with three, so I pulled up the tent pegs and broke camp this time enjoying the drive long before the sun faded.
The voices in my headBut then it happened that powerful urge overcame me two days into my work week. It wasn't the “should I go back” voice inside my head arguing with the rational voice side. It was the two of them in cahoots planning and deciding on my departure time. I couldn't tell you what happened those next three days at work before I left as in reality they went extremely fast. Tent up, boat launched, two days and another thousand cast using the Redington 11’8 Switch rod and once again three large fat boys were chilling in the cooler. Okay I told myself on the drive back, there are plenty of fish waiting around the Gorge to be caught, no need to come all this way when the home waters are full of fish, this is the last time for Davis this year or well maybe in the fall, but for now I am done.
And back againWow I am at Davis, how did I get here? This must be a dream. Well since I am here I might as well get in a little fishing. That is what I told myself five days later as my truck nosed its way down the dirt road leading to the lake. The routine camp set up now done using auto pilot allowed my first cast to plop the large foam frog just as the sun started to dip below the western ridge. By now I was looking for that WOW factor fish. That big monster bass who had been hiding from my switch rod as he told his little friends I didn’t get this way by being a sucker for cheap perfume and flowers or was that the ex-wife challenge. I had seen him swimming with a few friends in a small narrow curving pool no more than 15 feet wide, rocks on one side and tall reeds on the other. This was a tricky cast that I was failing to master. If you get too close you spook the fish into hiding back in the weeds. Too far away and you lose another foam frog to the tangle of the cattails. Nothing worse than seeing the fish scatter knowing you have blown it once again. Both mishaps result in spooked fish that then steer clear of this little hole for twenty to thirty minutes before their noses ease out of their hiding spots.
|What a Fatty|
Rowing back into the close edge of the pool I tossed my last foam frog to the far corner near the rocks. With flippers propelling the boat slowly backwards I let out gobs of line until frog was just a tiny speck floating on the water. And I waited and waited and wait for it, waited some more. What felt like an hour wasn't more than twenty minutes as I eased the line tight then twitched the frog. OH F#%@! Massive take, the water had exploded. There was no time to think of anything but kick with all you got, to yank this fish out of that pool and into the open water. Yeah that was me yelling, okay I may not be smarter than a fifth grader but I am one step above a bass, as big daddy bass been outsmarted. This approach worked two more times over the next few hours each time bringing that fish catching grin we all own to my face.
|Ouch, ouch, ouch...|
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