Seasons

It is 49 degrees this morning in Crooked Eddy. I closed up the windows in the house last night but neglected the two in my tying room. Suffice to say that my light sweatshirt feels a bit too light as I write, though it is invigorating. Next week’s forecast tells a tale of autumn, with daily highs in the sixties and low seventies, and nights in the forties and fifties. I wouldn’t be at all surprised to see a bit of red and gold appear on the mountainsides.

Fishing is changing too. The trico’s have been sputtering, though they might return in better numbers for a day here or there; another of those right place at the right moment scenarios. I have done best this week with little olives. My Olive Rusty Dun is my homage to the late great Art Flick, and a chance to use the beautiful rusty dun cape in my Charlie Collins collection. I love simple flies. Sparse, beautiful and effective, the Flick Blue Winged Olive is perfect for these dainty mayflies. I tie them as simple as possible, eschewing dubbing for a body of tying thread, my two ingredient duns maintain the slim profile of the naturals.

October’s low water offers a beautiful challenge!

Cool days and nights will finally bring our water temperatures back to hospitable levels, opening up a wealth of opportunities that summer denied. Small flies will continue to reign supreme, though it pays to have a couple of Isonychia and October Caddis in the vest for a change of pace!

I would love to see rain, as I enjoy the prospect of an early autumn float. I am not a boat dragger, and I don’t care to draw the ire of wading anglers trying to force the issue by drifting at low flows. To me that destroys the beauty of a quiet float and a hunt for autumn trout.

It is hard to believe that we are just more than two weeks from hunting season. I’m looking forward to the chance to walk the mountains again. My legs have grown used to walking against currents, so I must re-train them for the challenge of elevation. Friend John and I have been talking about all the young birds he has seen this summer, and vowed to uncase the shotguns and break some clays before its time to chase those grouse o’er the thickets and briars. My favorite months have always been May and October. Both quicken the pulse and enliven the senses, offering their own distinct flavors of exquisite natural beauty.

September is a time for summer goodbyes and anticipation for October, and the last great flash of light and color before the bare season comes. Farewell to verdant riverscapes, and a welcome hello to the uplands; a touch of melancholy at the loss of summer’s daily fishing, balanced with the heart racing promise of the gunning season.

I have never lived, never spent any time in a region devoid of seasons. I am quite certain I couldn’t bear it.

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