Deadline Trout

It’s tough to know where to chuck a fly on big rivers that are impossible to cover. I stood knee deep in the Lower Sacramento River where it slices through the town of Redding and drifted a tandem of nymphs. There were a couple of drift boats around, and one had beached on the opposite shore. It looked like a boat from The Fly Shop, which is where I had to be at two to try on waders for a friend. Well, I didn’t have to be there at two, but that’s the deadline I set for myself. I saw the client across the river get into a fish. Then a drift boat motored not 30 yards from shore directly in front of me and two clients hooked up in seconds. They worked their double as I stood dumb-founded. The Lower Sac was supposed to be a stop along the way home from the Upper Sac – an excuse to delay the return home.
When those two dudes hooked into rod-arching rainbows, it was game on.
But I caught nothing.
They motored back to the same run. Another hook up.
Another boat came through, another hook up. I worked up and down, switching nymphs a few times. My deadline of two came and went. I pushed back the deadline an hour. All the relaxation that came with catching 14-16 inch trout on the upper section of the river was starting to fade. I tried to focus on the fishing the day before…

strong Upper Sac rainbow

but I was still discouraged that everyone around me was getting into fish and I wasn’t. I checked the No. 14 poopah I bought at The Fly Shop. It looked fine.
Then…

Just in time

I looked at my watch, it was 3:00. I released the fish and left the river.

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