Greener grass?

Greener grass?

Gary Meyer | Tuesday, 27 March 2018

Readers of these “front page” posts have probably noticed that a couple writers are either currently on long-planned saltwater trips or are getting ready for one. I hope the trips exceed their wildest dreams. I cannot help but chuckle over the fact that I am also looking forward to an upcoming trip, but mine is in the opposite direction: away from the salt and up to the sweet water streams where trout are the prize.

I am not sure what that says about us fly anglers. Speaking for myself, I know it is not because I have everything so well figured out that I am bored with success. Far from it! If anything, the saltwater fishing that I do most often is getting more challenging every year.

Maybe it is just a need for some change of scenery? Me personally, on one hand, I’m hoping to extend my stay in a cooler climate. The sun and fun of South Florida is great but it can get rather relentless after 6 months of it or so. By heading north and up in elevation I’m hoping to put off the oncoming heat for a bit longer than usual. A friend recently commented that I was tempting fate by heading to the mountains in mid-April, implying that I might get caught in a late season cold front. I’m not sure why they thought that would be unlucky?


My other incentive is simple curiosity. So many anglers that I know believe trout fishing is the ultimate application of our art. I have caught a glimpse but I am still a bit skeptical of it being the Holy Grail.  Do not most anglers simply target the quarry that is local?


What I do appreciate is the technical nature of the casting. Long ago, a fishing buddy who has become a rather good professional guide down here in saltwater land knocked his trout angling clients as being poor casters. He protested that they lacked distance and made too many false casts, lacking the ability to get the fly to the fish with expediency. Years later, after he made his first trout fishing trip, he sheepishly confessed to not being able to catch a trout: he lacked the ability to present a flyline with enough finesse to achieve a drag free float. There is more to casting a fly than accuracy, speed, and distance apparently.


So, my next few weeks will be filled with tying flies of unbelievably tiny dimensions compared to what I have spent decades making. Luckily, it is reported that the trout in the Smoky Mountains are more opportunists than specialists, so matching specific hatches will not be necessary. I’ll still need to stock up on miniature hooks and new materials. Then I just need to dress the hooks.


 I’ll let y’all know how that goes. Or maybe not.