“Why do you like to fish?”
If you’re like me and are totally finatical about fishing, then you’ve been asked this question a time or two. That said, if the person is unfamiliar with fishing, particularly for trout, then save your breath, because he or she that posed the question, will never understand your response.
Over the course of my life, my answer has changed a time or two. When I was younger, I loved filling an ice chest full of those silver wonders. However, as I’ve gotten older, the subtleties of the trip speak more to my soul than the gratification of the catch. From preparation the night before, to feeling the glide of ole’ yellamouth slip trough your fingers as you release her to make babies and fight another day. No matter where you’re at in your fishing endeavor, the response you provide I’m sure falls in the spectrum of the two.
Here is a brief reflection of the 3 things I LOVE about fishing for trout.
1.Feast or Famine: If you’ve been pursuing trout for very long you know what those 3 words mean. It means you can fish for 6 hours with minimal luck and then in desperation and little persistence you stop at one last spot and load the boat in an hour. So what’s to love about that? Everything. Its a microcosm of life personified in fish.Its a precursor that if we choose to put forth the effort, with mental toughness and purity of heart, the reward is iminent and gratifying. However, the pursuit itself is what separates the men from the boys. A lot of people give up on their dreams, they don’t stay the course, however if they only moved “to one more spot”, stuck it out one more day, the reward would have been way more than you could ever ask for. Stay persistent and never give up!
2.The “Tap”: Again if you’re an avid trout fisherman, you know the tap. Its something so light that injects itself so heavy into our heart. Its a drug. It will cloud your mind and decision making, and will cause you to make more poor decisions than good. However, the tap is more than a bite, its the result of perfection, here’s why. Trout, particularly big trout, get very finicky which means presentation is paramount. So when you feel it, it means you’ve embodied perfection, and setting the hook and watching the head shake is the reward. Its something so simple, but through its simplicity you understand the complexities of this world. Its perfect.
3.The head shake: This is my favorite. I’ve been fortunate to catch a few trout in my life, both big and small, and like clockwork, the most distinct characteristic is the head shake. Its a side to side action, with gills flared and that yellow mouth opened wide. With some of my more notable catches, its the thing I remember the most. Its like PTSD for trout fisherman. I sometimes get lost in a 1000 yard stare, and have to physically shake my head to brush off the memory of head shakes that have either ended is success or gut wrenching failure. Without a doubt, I’d have a few more trophies for the wall if it wasn’t for this consistent reaction of a trout, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. If it wasn’t for this action, it’d be like catching redfish, and who wants to do that :-) just kidding!! What I’ve learned the most from the head shake, is that when she’s successful in throwing the hook(s), the reaction is transfered over to you. If its a big fish lost, you find yourself shaking it off, only to get back up, and with confidence know it won’t be your last. Another life lesson of coming back stronger. Without a doubt life is hard, but how we bounce back from those “head shakes” in life, determines our attitude to tackle the next task or embrace those times of success. Again, never give up. Instead, thread a new soft plastic on the jig head of life and get back out there.
“So Chris, why do you like to fish?” For those that share my passion for chasing trout, the aforementioned will do. However, for those who haven’t, my response is simple, “It’s hard to explain.” As suggested in my blog name, trout speckle truth into our lives. Having the wisdom to see it is something we should all seek, but it never hurts to try to catch a few along the way. I wish everyone well...
Tight lines and God Bless!