Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Weekend with Norland Day 4

I awoke early Tuesday morning with great anticipation of fishing the big river.  Monday afternoon’s unexpected success up at the damn rekindled my spirit.  This coupled with the fact that the river conditions were improving exponentially as the hours passed had me awake before any bone rattling screams permeated from the alarm clock.  The cabin was cool but nothing like the morning prior and I took this as a positive sign of great things to come.  I threw on my slippers and made my way towards the kitchen to get the morning Java brewing when I saw it…Everything outside was covered in 6-7” of white.  The snow was still falling and the wind was blowing.   Every so often the gusts would blow large amounts from the snow laden trees resulting in whiteout conditions. 
It caught me off guard and for a brief moment I was speechless.  “That’s it for this trip” I exclaimed to myself as I filled the coffee maker with water.  I notified Norland and got little to no surprise response.  “Of course it did!” he proclaimed as if he knew there would be some form of giant disappointment lurking around a corner awaiting a small window of opportunity to crush his spirit once again.  We settled down in the great room sipping our coffee’s and watching the wood stove recuperate from an evening reprieve.  I worked on the Mondays photo’s while WFN ran via the satellite dish on the TV.  Over the course of an hour or so the winds seem to diminish and my desire to fish seemed to intensify as it often does while going through my photography.  The snow accumulation was nearing 8” now and still falling.  I could see it was of the giant fluffy variety that is so much more manageable than the heavy wet disappointment we typically get back home. 
I stood up from my seat and proclaimed I was going to make a run for the river and give her one last shot.  I fully expected Norland to tell me to go fornicate myself as a look of unsettled horror came across his face.  Perhaps he was still somewhat unconscious or perhaps just totally ill prepared for what he heard but he hesitantly stated he would join me.  I’m certain it was something like “Whatever…I’ll go” but certainly nothing like “Man that is a great, great idea!”  We geared up in the cottage and hit the garage to grab the rods and clear off the truck. 
My standard window brush wasn’t going to cut it so I grabbed the push broom from the garage and made short work of the mountain of snow blanketing the truck.  Looking at all the accumulation on the ground had me thinking about Sunday’s 2-3hr snow pile mitigation exercise and how ironic it was that the piles were going to return once the avalanche comes off the garage roof.  I decided it would be wise to pull it all off with the roof rake and shovel it all out while it was still light and fluffy versus next weekend when it’s all compacted ,heavy, and ice laden.   
We made short work of that effort while the truck warmed up. We then made a b-line for the access.  I was certain under the now blizzard conditions that there would not be a single soul on the river but those sentiments were nothing more than wishful thinking as we arrived to one vehicle leaving and one still present  in the parking lot.  We quickly made the descent only to witness two individuals parked directly in our favored run.  “Par for the course!” Norland proclaimed…”This is my life!” 

We shook it off and I set Gene up lower in the river  on the bar.  I gave him the play by play of this section of water and within 5 mins his rod was loaded up and the surface of the river exploded with a large fish.  It was a great moment as the winds continued to scream pelting us with giant snowflakes.  After a worthy battle with some nail biting drama and some illicit threats Norland swung the giant Buck into my awaiting grasp.  It was a big deal for him and I was very happy that it all worked out.  It was a big deal to me as well.  It’s nice to see people win once in a while and he deserved this fish more than anyone on the river this morning.  We gathered our necessary photos and bid our fond farewells.  I waded out on the bar and made a short throw to the bucket slightly down stream.  My float dropped and I set up to a fish but quickly had the door slammed in my face. 
I continued on picking away at the lines to no avail while I progressed further and further out onto the bar.  I then made a long throw into the slack towards the far side of the river.  The float dropped and I set up on a small 2 lb Jack.  We continued to hunt for some more players over the course of the next couple of hours but found no reward. 

It didn’t matter as the morning was already complete with Norland’s fish.  We hiked out of the river valley and headed back to the cabin to warm up, have some lunch, and pack up for the long ride home. 

It was a great trip and it never ceases to amaze me just how quickly time flies when you are having fun.  Four days of quality Steelheading under extreme conditions...  We put a few fish on the bank, told some lies, shared some laughs and had an overall outstanding good time.  Can’t ask for anything more than that…Ultimately, that’s what it all about!

1 comment:

Trotsky said...


Good times.

Thx again shitstain

I may have to get me one of those Stormy Kromers to go with my Stormy Chromer.