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lost and found... happy ending

Started by Woolly Bugger, May 26, 2021, 10:40:54 AM

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Woolly Bugger

May 26, 2021, 10:40:54 AM Last Edit: May 27, 2021, 10:07:35 AM by Woolly Bugger

May 25, 2021

Gas $2.99

Partly cloudy.. 66 – 74 degrees

I was headed off to fish, didn't know where I was headed, just traveling down the road. I made a couple of decisions that led me off to a familiar stream. I had not been there in a while and the two weight was rigged with a stimulator.

I was the only one there, but as I hiked in, I realized that the park crew was doing some campground maintenance.

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I wasn't sure how far up I was going to go, I hoped to perhaps reach at least the beginning of the gorge. I underestimated the humidity and despite the cooler temps I was working up a sweat on the hike in. Everything was a lot greener now that all the trees and shrubs had leafed out completely and the perennial plats provided a verdant carpet covering the forest floor. The main creek flowed strong but the feeder branches had become trickles.

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@Dougfish needs to ID this one...

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I started fishing at a favorite pool and caught a reluctant brookie on the tenth cast. I just knew there had to be a fish there, I was about to move on but I was glad I made those extra casts.

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I caught a few more fish, some escaped from my grasp, other threw the hook and one darted under a rock and through a slot to a pool below breaking the tippet on the way. One fly down.  There were only a few options as I traveled with out fly boxes, only carrying a puck which contained one stimulator and several humpies and a royal wulff or two. I tied on the stimi and took a break.

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Then it was back to work up the creek taking pictures along the way. The fish were mostly in the tails of the pools and they would drift back to follow the fly and try and snatch it just before it went over the edge and drop over into the next pool. Sometimes they nailed it, other times they missed or refused the fly.

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I was moving slowly, taking my time as I methodically dissected the stream. I was startled as a group of hikers up on the trail above shouted greetings. I waved back.

I caught mostly brookies, but an occasional rainbow took the fly.

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Some thing caught my eye, it was an out of place shape and I bent to pick it up. I assumed that some fisherman searching for the elusive 12" brookie had lost his ruler.

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I had been fishing for a couple of hours when I missed a strike and flicked the fly and leader up into a tree and then proceeded to make a tangled mess out of the whole thing. I was retying tippet and for some reason noticed that my pocketknife was missing. Oh crap. Keys were in the pocket and that was a relief, but how did I lose the knife. I've lost knives in the past but this one a Case XX Camper had belonged to my brother, and I've carried it almost every day since his passing in October of 2009. I was quite upset about this. I didn't know what to do. I was up the creek a good ways from where I started. I thought about all the places they I had knelt down to release a fish. It must have somehow fallen out at one of those spots. Should I quit fishing and search for the knife? I went back down a way before realizing that I needed to come up from the bottom to retrace my path. So I came to terms with losing it and went back to fishing, thinking about posted a reward if found. Damn it, I couldn't get it off my mind.

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The fishing was pretty darn good, and some nice fish were caught, but I needed to get back down before the light faded further now that the sun was below the ridge. I passed a couple of women on a day hike as they were hiking up the trail, they stepped off to the side with their dog and we exchanged greetings and they commented on what a lovely day it was.

On the hike back down, I spied a red eft, one of my favorite forest creatures to see. Four toes on the front and five on the back these brightly colored creatures always a welcome sight. Having emerged from the stream they live for many years gradually losing their bright colors and turning to more of a greenish hue as they age and return to the water as a mature adult.

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Reaching the spot where I entered the creek I began searching for the lost knife. I studied the creek bed and even stopped to fish a few of the pools. I worked my way up to the spot where a had stopped my first downstream exploration. I turned back, keeping an eye on the rocks below my feet as I retraced my steps. I had envisioned in my mind the object that I was looking for and how dark the sides of the knife are, but I was looking for the shape of it. Then, close to where I had started to fish, I saw the back of the knife shining brightly in the fading light of the day. I was elated. Lost and found. I couldn't have been happier.

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I smiled the whole way down the trail.

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There was one hammock camper set up and I waved hello. I thought that I should probably spend the night there soon too. Reaching the car, I packed up and reached for a beer but all I found were some high gravity items that gave me pause and I hit the road instead.

ex - I'm not going to live with you through one more fishing season!

me -There's a season?

Pastor explains icons to my son: you know like the fish symbol on the back of cars.

My son: My dad has two fish on his car and they're both trout!

Dougfish

Nice. Good recovery.

I lost large Case folder that fell out of its sheath below the campground a few years ago. It was 40+ y.o. My grandfather's. I did not find it. I was seriously pissed.

"Why don't you knock it off with them negative waves? Why don't you dig how beautiful it is out here? Why don't you say something righteous and hopeful for a change? " -Oddball, 1970

"I don't wanna go to hell,
But if I do,
It'll be 'cause of you..."
Strange Desire, The Black Keys, 2006

Phil

My latest lost and found happy ending was at Spring PFF. Left my $500 Recon rod and a 20+year old English made Orvis Battenkill reel beside the road on the BeaverDam.

Drove back down there an hour later when I realized it was gone -- a biker had found it and left it there for me. Whew.


brownhunter

Woolly,

Wonderful story!!!! I felt like I was right there with you. And I am so happy that you found it!

"Why, he wondered, did rich people call it sushi while poor people called it bait?"   -- Same Kind of Different as Me

Yallerhammer

Great story, nice fish, and great pics! Glad you found your knife. I have an old OT77 Muskrat Trapper that I've carried since I was 16 or 17. I would be lost without it. So far, I've made one late afternoon hike to the mouth of Styx branch on Alum Cave Creek, and a forced march way up Thunderhead Prong to recover it from where I left it on a rock cleaning a mess of fish.

Your bloomages are spiderwort and fire pink.

Women want me, doughbellies fear me.<br /><br />Little Debbie Prostaff

Woolly Bugger

May 26, 2021, 18:27:01 PM #5 Last Edit: May 27, 2021, 02:42:56 AM by Woolly Bugger
Quote from: Yallerhammer on May 26, 2021, 17:18:47 PM

Your bloomages are spiderwort and fire pink.

I couldn't id the spiderwort 'cause I was trying to use 4 petals on the app, came right up when i selected 3 -- found this on  the wiki'

The flowers can be white, pink, or purple, but are most commonly bright blue, with three petals and six yellow anthers (or rarely, four petals and eight yellow anthers). The sap is mucilaginous and clear.

This photo shows 3 and 4 petal varieties.

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ex - I'm not going to live with you through one more fishing season!

me -There's a season?

Pastor explains icons to my son: you know like the fish symbol on the back of cars.

My son: My dad has two fish on his car and they're both trout!

greg

Beautiful fish. Glad you found your knife. The one I currently carry has no sentimental attachment but I would be lost without anyway.


joe friday

I'm happy you recovered the knife.  Thanks for sharing your trip.



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