January 4, 2012

The First Miss of 2012

Each of the last two years, Mother Nature has been generous enough to provide wonderful weather to serve as the backdrop for New Year's Day fishing.  2010's outing featured multi-tasking via spinning tackle & Tenkara USA rod on some brookies on Stony Creek, and in 2011, the Fountainhead Caddis found itself catching some Valley Creek browns.

2012 Licence...check!

Surprisingly, the weather was even nicer for New Year's Day 2012; a mild 55 degrees, sunny blue skies, puffy white clouds, absolutely gorgeous...

Picture perfect

Being a little fatigued from a 16 hour drive from Orlando, Florida back to Pennsylvania the entire day before, I wasn't really in the mood to spring out of bed and hit the water right away.  Instead, I kind of lounged around the house a while, hung out with Lilly, and did much of nothing most of the morning.  However before I knew it, it was 2:30 in the afternoon and...well...it gets dark around here early these days!

Tossing on a hoodie and darting out the door, I hustled down to Valley Creek with Sakura Kongo in hand, determined to get 2012 off on a good note.  Wadered up and in the water by 3:00 PM, I had my my first fish, a really colorful brown trout, hooked by about 3:20 PM.  Unfortunately, said fish also decided to release itself about 3 feet from my wading boots as I reached for my net.  Didn't get it to hand, so I guess it didn't count.

What happened in the next 15 minutes, well...I think a higher power was trying to tell me something.  

C'mon rain, are you kidding me?

As soon as that fish kicked the hook, those puffy white clouds turned grey, as did the sky around them.  Then the rain decided to start. The rain wasn't falling that hard and there was no lightning, but it reminded me of Caddyshack.  I tried to fish through it for a bit, but honestly, wearing just a hoody, I wasn't dressed for the weather and without the benefit of the sun any longer, the temperature started to drop quickly.  And let's be honest, I'm not badass like Kent Klewein.  

The goal being to catch a fish on New Year's and not pneumonia, I decided to pack it in and head back to the car.  By then, it was almost 4:00 PM and I spotted the Park Ranger doing his slow cruise of the nearby parking lot in his car, a not-so-subtle suggestion that people should be leaving.

So New Year's 2012...one fish hooked but not landed...and an upper body drenching.  But don't mistake that for complaining.  I'll take 45 minutes of fishing any day of the week.  Oh, and I finally got to use my boot bag.  And yes, they did fit inside.  More to come on that...

Had to remove the puppies though....


  1. seriously chilled out there now...
    sounds like the New Year started off great.
    Fly casting really hurts if you have pneumonia.
    I'd call it a catch with an asterisk.
    I think Kent was channeling Chuck Norris on his day out. But, he found his net. ;-P

  2. Quite remarkable how this picture perfect day turned into a dark and dreary day in one hour! It must have had something to do with that trout wiggling away from you! He just wanted to get back under cover... : )

  3. Not a bad start T!. I likewise did an abbreviated trip to kick the year off, though I had blinding snow to contend with. If you're releasing the fish anyways, you can probably count that fish.

  4. I missed my New Year's Day window this year. It was nearly 60 degrees on Sunday in Northern Virginia but combination of a champagne-induced headache and the chance to watch my Redskins lose one final football game was too strong to get me off the couch. I thought that I'd have a chance on Monday, but the winds picked up and now it won't get back above freezing for several days.

    Thanks for the reminder that I have to renew the licenses. Where did you pick up that snazzy zip-top pocket?

  5. Way to get out and give it a go Mike. Not sure I woul dhave made it after a 16 hour drive the day before.

  6. That's some dedication to get out there after the long drive home...funny you mentioned "Caddyshack"...I don't know how many times I've looked up and said, "...I'd keep playing..."

  7. Yup, rain can put a damp..er on an otherwise good day. Yeh, that was a joke. We'll make it Mike 1 - Fish 0 for New Years Day.


  8. Love the report. Nothing wrong with a long distance release on that trout. That fish just wanted you to keep your hands warm

  9. long distance release...I've never heard that before (yes I'm serious). That's good.

  10. And to Mike, your dedication beat me out for sure. I had a 5 hour drive the day before (vs your 16), with no kid (or wife) in the car. Still haven't been out (fishing or hunting) in the new year...won't be long though.

    Love the license pic - every time I print one for any sport, any state, I feel like I'm printing a ticket to Disney World...only better.

  11. Very nice pictures! Sorry to say that here all fishing spots have frozen and the remaining is armchair fishing and tying flies for the coming season.
    Have fun,