My trail companion and I took the morning to fish a small trout stream. I would not be fly fishing today as the vegetation grew to the narrow water’s edge, leaving no room for a cast. Walking to the bottom of a steep waterfall, I dropped my line into a deep pool created by an old fallen tree. I was lucky to lift two 8-inch brook trout out of this hole and over the rock ledge to my net; I put one in my creel for lunch and released the other to grow larger.
Working my way downstream, the ledge ended and I was able to crawl along the bank. I would swing my line back and forth like a piano’s pendulum to accurately place the worm where I thought the fish would be hiding. I caught many more small brookies this way, being careful to stay low to not be seen– I was glad they were not telling their friends about me as I enjoyed seeing their speckled patterns and colors. I kept one more fish that swallowed the hook too far for a healthy release– she would not be wasted as we were planning on catching meat for both upcoming meals. By this time, I think the black flies were having as much fun with me as I was having with the fish, so my trail companion and I decided to build a small fire for some relief and to cook up a fresh trout for a light lunch.
Check out the rest of the story over at Boot & Canoe to see the trout cooked with a Woodsman’s Fish Weave.
Author: Peter Patenaude grew up plying Maine’s streams for brook trout, hardwoods for partridge and softwood cover for snowshoe hare. He has always had a strong connection to traditional skills and his family’s heritage, which he shares with you in much of his writing. He currently resides in his family’s original farming homestead overlooking the Kennebec River in the same small, French community settled by his ancestors five generations ago. In 2009, he obtained his guide’s license and began Boot & Canoe Wilderness Guides, a service specializing in historical Maine routes taken by past hunters, fishermen, loggers, fur traders and literary figures. Read more from Peter at Boot and Canoe.