Friday, February 3, 2012
The Fishing Underground
For these anglers 16" fish are respected, 17" fish are coveted, and 19" fish... most people are lying about. In this elite group of anglers 4:30 am is considered an acceptable starting time. If a friend shows up late, you simply leave him behind. Holes are often drilled in a clover leaf formation to allow for viewing of your shallow water prey. When a big fish approaches the "berry pickers" or novice anglers often panic at the sight and blow their opportunity. The true underground member however keeps a steady hand. Often working his jig with the precision of a puppet master.
Growing up on Minnesota's North Shore, trout opener fell right behind the opener of Wisconsin's Brule River and ahead of Christmas on the priority list. We went to lakes that you'd later lie to your mother about in fear she might name drop at the office water cooler. We went to places that had to be packed down with snowmobile to allow for gear to be hauled in. Places where we'd bring chainsaws to clear trail on the way in to allow travel. I've broke thru thin ice wading in bogs to reach otherwise inaccessible trout water. I've fished trout opener with sinus infections. I was once blindfolded and brought from Two Harbors 45 minutes to "lake x" to chase giant brookies as colorful as a kaleidoscope. If asked to go again I'd leave in a moments notice.
So why you ask do grown adults go to these measures to catch a fish. Is it the tradition of winter trout opener? Is it the allure of the unknown and what one may catch? Is it the adventure? Or maybe just a great time to get together with friends, talk smart and chase the elusive trout. Should you ever come into contact with a member of the fishing underground be sure to ask. As for me I digress, what fishing underground;)