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The End of Summer

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Ronan's report


Wednesday 21st October, 2009

It happens every year, but in different ways for different people.

Something happens out there that signals the end of summer. Mother Nature tells us that we'd better get ready for the cold, the wet, the long darkness.

Sometimes it's a light whisper on the wind, the changing colors on the maples, the smell of smoke from a woodstove on a cool morning. Subtle hints.

Since I moved to Oregon I spend most of my time listening to Mother Nature while standing in a steelhead river, where the subtle hints can be a flock of geese headed south, a wave from a friendly deer hunter, or (best of all) a colorful buck steelhead already a couple of months removed from the salt.

This year Mother Nature was not subtle with her hints. The evening before I was fishing in a light shirt and ball cap, swinging flies on light lines. But overnight it all changed. By morning the water temperature had dropped into the 30s for the first time since last spring. A dense overcast hung low in the valley. Out came the wool gloves, hooded sweatshirts, and heavy sink tips. Half way down the first run I felt the soft pull of a chilly steelhead as the fly eased into the hang down on a slow seam. I couldn't entice it to move again to my fly, and a few minutes later, a heavy, wet snow began to fall.

The End.

Fish On,
Matt

PS - Happy Birthday, Dad. Wish you were out there with me on Sunday.


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