I’ve been tying lots of flies. I’ve been working in the yard, spending time outside. I’ve been watching YouTube for fly fishing videos, fly tying ideas and instruction, and fly fishing tips and entertainment. There are lots of good resources and entertaining channels. I’m texting with my friends and fishing buddies, some who can still fish in PA. I love the text message describing Mark’s fly fishing. I’ve been missing being able to go fishing. My blog and my connection to the fly fishing community has been great. I am learning how to use social media, which I’ve stayed away from before, because I struggle with maintaining privacy and feeling exposed. But I find myself excited from seeing all the good fly fishing content and by getting messages from people I’ve admired through YouTube. I’ve been trying to be responsible, trying to keep social distancing practices, trying to keep being productive and keep others productive at work, and trying to be the best Dad I can be in keeping my kids active and on track with school. I’ve also followed guidance in Maryland and not gone fishing.
Missing fly fishing and the pressure of life during this period of isolation gets to me. I was talking to my wife and texting Mark and Brian about what I should write about this week. My wife and my friend Brian both stated simultaneously that this is the time to dream, this is the time to prepare for future adventures. Where do I dream about fishing? What am I looking forward to about fishing after the Covid-19 outbreak is managed? While I’m staying connected tying flies, what am I preparing for next?
My ideas on where I dream of fishing came flooding to me after hearing that feedback. My ideal places to fish revolve around a few ideals. The first is places that I’ve been before that I’m fond of or that hold some sort of magic for me. The second is places I’d like to go because I have been skunked there, and I want to get the skunk off. I know that’s at least partially my ego talking. The third is places I’d really want to go to but have to travel significant distances. The places to travel are based on movies I’ve seen and stories from people I know.
So the first category includes the area around State College, PA. I have fished Spring Creek and Penns Creek and they hold some magic. I’ve been twice, once with my wife and once with my friend Mark. I have had camping trips at Poe Paddy State Park each time. It is a great place to be, close to the stream and it feels far from development. The first category also includes the Delaware River, where I took a boat float trip with my step son and caught my largest brown trout. A great trip on a wonderful river. Each of these places feel like somewhere I want to get back to soon, I can drive to, and they each are fantastic places to fish.
The second category includes the Savage River and Big Spring Run. I’ve fished each stream and struggled. I haven’t had great success with pocket water; the Savage River below the reservoir is mainly pocket water. Big Spring Run is a very clear spring creek with very spooky fish. My casting skills are not refined, and I need to work on my presentation skills too. It hurts when I think I’m growing as a fly fisherman, and I go somewhere and can’t put it together to catch a fish. I know conditions change day by day, and everyone has those days, but it stinks. It also feels like a challenge I want to overcome.
The third category includes places I need to travel longer distances to reach. The first in that category is to fish the Yellowstone and Madison Rivers in Montana. I’ve read and heard so much about these fabled rivers. Most recently Steve and Dave, from the Two Guys and A River podcast, blog and website, tell great stories on their adventures fishing the Yellowstone, which adds to the mystique. The second is the Green River in Utah, mainly due to videos I have seen and the praise that the guys at Fly Fish Food heap on the experience fishing there. I’d also love to fish the Henry’s Fork, a tributary of the Snake River, in Idaho. I’ve heard it’s an incredibly technical river to fish with amazing hatches. The last two places on my list include going for big brown trout in the White River in Arkansas and monster brook trout in Labrador.
All these places are my fishing dream locations. I know I need to develop more knowledge and more skills to be able to advance my fly fishing skills for saltwater fly fishing, but I hope to broaden my fly fishing world to include saltwater locations as well. I also feel like I have such a big world to explore in freshwater fly fishing. I am grateful to have learned as much as I have, and I am looking forward to my journey ahead. When I look through all these daydreams, I also see that I am so fond of the experiences where I have camped and fished. Spending full days around rivers, not just fishing, but spending time with friends and loved ones in addition to fishing. What I look forward to first is being able to camp and fish in one of the more local streams in MD or PA and share that time with friends and family.
What are your post COVID-19 Day Dreams? Fishing Trips or otherwise? Post a comment or send me an email if you want to share!
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