Jonesy’s River Ramble

I stand quietly above the river. Relaxed…. Watching…

My eyes are searching, but focus on nothing specific. In the late afternoon sun it is difficult to look for fish. The riffles shimmer and diffuse the light in all directions, the broken surface only momentarily allows random visions of the river bed. I look for the motion of a tail, the quick opening of a mouth as a fish takes yet another insect. All of these things are links in a chain that should never be broken…..
I climb from the road down to the river bank, picking my way through the rocks, looking for other predators. I understand that I too am a predator, but I am not here for food, I am here for release…..the prey I seek is too valuable to waste, but still…. today I am a a hunter.
I leave the river bank and enter the water slowly, placing each boot clad foot in deliberate steps, looking for the next likely step. I see some steps, others I feel with my staff, or with movements of my feet, always careful, but always watching, looking for some movement that its out of place in in a river that never ceases to move.
There! Something not really seen clearly catches my eye, and I stop, almost motionless, watching. Perhaps I the subtle gurgle of a meandering current, perhaps the quiet take of an unseen insect, a reflected glint of light from the broken surface. I am focused now…..Again! This time I see the rise, I am sure. I have not seen the fish, but my mind tells me that he must be there. The pieces of subtle evidence I can put together triggers my instinct, and I let my entire world constrict to this small soft spot of river perhaps fifty feet up and across from where I stand. Ah, I see the motion clearly now and I am spurred to unstring my fly and pull out some line from my reel. I set my feet in a more comfortable position. Mentally calculating the distance, I begin the ritual of false casting, working out the line. Without conscious thought, I gage the breeze, the current patterns, the exact spot I need my offering to land. It is a long way for the light rod that have in my hand, but this rod is like a good friend. We have been here before and know each other well…..

The rod grows heavy as it loads for the cast and I see the line form that candy cane shape as it unrolls on its way to the target. I add a small mend and, having committed to the presentation, I wait for the fly to land above the prey, and I again stand motionless. Watching, waiting…..
I see the rise clearly and the fly is no longer visible. The tip of the rod has moved no more than it would if I had moved a finger on the grip, but I know…...I have not yet felt the tug of line, nor has he came up hard against my reel, but I know the fight is about to begin. He and I will begin our dance of predator and prey. Unchanged for centuries, and there will be no sacrifice, but the dance is still the same. It is primal to us and for some reason satisfying, needed, win or lose.
The watching, the wading, searching, climbing down to the riverbank, the cast,  all of it is as one single motion. I am the conductor of a symphony that plays this music that I have written….And while I realize that none but myself can hear the music, I hear it clearly and it sounds sweet. For a brief moment I lose connection to my life and am transported to a place where I have lost all thought of who I am. I have no other place in this world but where I am at this very moment. I have no future and no past, there is only now.
I need not know why or how, but this one moment in time has somehow cleansed and recharged me.  I understand this concept of “The catch IS the release”. Perhaps because I have worshiped at the Church of the Eternal Cast…..
I reflect on these things and many others as I clamber from the river and begin the climb back to the road. I look back at the river as I reach the top in order to complete the memory of that moment. I mark it well…I will return here again…

J. Morgan Jones

Posted by Jack on 06/27 at 02:22 PM in (0) CommentsPermalink

Seth gets it done

Seth and Scott hook up 4 very nice local summer runs. Fish are in, waters percect, and you can get to them within an hour of home. No excuses…go get yours!! 

Posted by Jack on 06/23 at 09:16 AM in (0) CommentsPermalink

Deschutes Goldens Still Kicken

Deschutes Report:  June 12th 2012

    Don’t give up yet, the trout are still looking up at big bugs!!!  I floated Warm Springs to Trout Creek with Nick (Pictured here) and Heidi Calley Tuesday.  Although I wouldn’t say fishing was outstanding, it was certainly good.  We rose or caught fish on Golden Stone and Salmon flies at every stop.  If you’re willing to go where the guy in front of you isn’t, you will still catch fish on the biggun’s.  This fish was caught on a “Bow and Arrow” cast deep in the trees.
    Don’t just rely on Stones; the Caddis, PMD’s and PED’s are out in full force.  Less we forget the occasional Drake sightings.  If you’re on a piece of water and the Green Drakes come off, better have a few, the trout get a little tunnel visioned when they’re about.


Posted by Jack Hagan on 06/14 at 09:35 AM in (0) CommentsPermalink
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