What is fishing anyway?

It’s Friday afternoon and I’m finishing up the last few reports I have for the day. Work friends start the usual conversations of “what are your plans for the weekend?” and before I can answer on my turn someone says “let me guess, you’re going fishing?” The rest of the group lightly chuckles because for years now that has been a pretty normal response for me.

Then someone asked the question, with a slight annoyance is his voice. “I don’t understand, how can you go fishing every weekend? It’s just boring to me”.

This question and distain in their voice ruffled my feathers a bit. I’m used to the “What do you mean you don’t keep the trout you catch? Give them to me!” comments.  I have my many canned responses for that one, but this one is different.

To this co-worker it’s “just fishing” and what is his version of fishing anyway? Is it a trip he remembers camping with his family when he was 10 years old watching his dad put a worm on a hook and endlessly watching his bobber while polishing off his 12 pack?

Fishing for myself and the boys here at WTLGT is more like therapy than it is a sport/hobby/addiction etc. Some people would say it’s cheaper than a therapist, but if you saw our garages and the gear hoarded in them you might think twice about that statement.

In all honesty, fishing calms me down, centers me and helps put what’s important at the forefront of my mind. With the daily routine of waking up before it’s light out, drive to work, sit in front of a computer all day, leave work when the sun is going down, pick up the kiddo and get her dinner and in bed a few hours later, there isn’t much time to just decompress and give your brain a siesta.

In comparison to the daily routine there are some similarities on fishing days. I regularly wake up even earlier than I do on workdays and it isn’t uncommon to come home and unload the fishing wagon long after the sun has set.  But the time-spent in-between is worlds apart.

Pulling up to your fishing spot before the sun has shown it’s face and taking that first deep breath of cold crisp air is as addicting as any drug on the street and once I get that “first hit” life’s problems and what’s important all fall in place. After that it’s rigging gear, tying knots, casting, jigging, trolling, bull shitting, laughing, ball busting put on repeat until the rotation is paused by the universal adrenaline producing war cry of “FISH ON!”

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I imagine some of you behind your PC’s and smart phones nodding your heads agreeing to the above statement. That’s because you’re anglers. But to the guy at work that has no clue what that feeling is, how do you explain that to him?

Now back sitting with that group at work, I calm down before answering his question. “You wouldn’t understand” is what I responded with. With the tone in my voice I think he realized he annoyed me and didn’t follow up with anymore questions. Which I was completely ok with.

Now I could have invited him out and tried to share the experience with him, and if he had showed genuine interest I would have. But not this time. This time I knew that he wouldn’t appreciate it and I wasn’t going to use the little amount of time I had on the water the following day for anyone other than myself. Selfish? Maybe. Did I lose sleep over it? Absolutely not.

The next day was exactly what I was hoping it would be. Kelly and Matt met at my house early and we headed towards the big alkaline lake looking for sea monsters.

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We watched an amazing sunrise and met up with a friend CJ who has been known to land some monsters of his own. We fished a few hours, had a handful of takes and had 2 to hand.

The weather man was wrong as usual, the 50 mph winds were supposed to hit around 11am but within minutes of the clock hitting 9am the winds picked up and gave of all a sand blasting so we called it a morning.

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But going back to the main point of this post. What is fishing anyway? Is it the act of pursuing fish or actually hooking up and landing one? Is it just an excuse to get out of the house and hang out with good friends? All of the above?

I guess you can only answer that question for yourself. I think it’s different for everyone. But I will say I’m happy to share this pass time with the people who have that same passion for it as I do. Let the rest of them out there think we are crazy, keeps more people out of our “secret” spots!

See you crazy  bastards out there, keep those lines tight!

-Dave

Pyramid Lake…The Land of Giants

The 2014/2015 Pyramid Lake season officially opened last Wednesday October 1st. It’s like a national holiday to us here at WTLGT. We all had the day off of work which had been requested months ago, actually some of our bosses know that we’ll be taking that day off of work without ever having to ask for it.

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What is there to say that hasn’t already been said. Pyramid Lake puts out the biggest cutthroat trout in the world. It’s only been a week since the season opened and already several 20 pounders have already been landed with countless in the 10-15 pound range. Here’s an awesome video from our buddy Brad Stout of Epic Trout of his first 20 pounder of the season. Knowing Brad, there will be many more to come!

It used to be that a 10 pounder would be a trophy fish and something to brag about. This year that’s a different story. I mean we are still talking about a giant cutty at 10 pounds, but the game has changed in recent years.

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With the re-introduction of the Pilot Peak strain of Lahontan Cutthroat Trout (LCT) 10 pounders aren’t the trophy’s they used to be. People are now saying “15# is the new 10#” and I can’t really disagree. With these fish growing 1/2 inch a month and estimated to live 16 years, if the fishery keeps going in the direction it’s going we could be saying “#20 is the new #15″ in a few short years.

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This is just a quick update of many more to come for the 2014/2015 Pyramid season. For now the surface temps are still in the mid/high 60’s, fish are sitting between 20-40 feet of water gorging themselves on the school of tui chub.

Currently boats have been doing better than shore fisherman. But if you are fishing from shore, keep an eye out for cruising bait balls, the trout will be there also.

We have been mostly vertical jigging around rock structures or near bait balls from the boats, but Jason and I were landing some nice trout fly fishing from the boat using Jan Nemec’s “Hook Up” in grizzly.  Which is available at his online fly shop at Mimicflyfishing.com

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Our friends Doug O and Gilligan are hosting their annual Pyramid Lake Clinics on October 25th and November 8th which is a great way to learn about fishing this Lake we call home. So if you’re interested links to their pages are to the right on our blogroll. Here is a great video out friend Donald from Catch,Snap & Release did on a clinic Doug and Gil did last season.

We’ll be out again this coming weekend with more updates to follow. But get out there and enjoy the great weather we’ve had so far this October. You know those -5 degree mornings with knocking ice off of your guides is right around the corner!

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Tight Line, Strong Knots and LOTS of backing if you’re heading to Pyramid!

– Dave