On the Fly: Merry Fishmas | AspenTimes.com

On the Fly: Merry Fishmas

Catching a 10-pound trout is no easy chore, but the reward of landing one is immense.
Kara Lewis/Special to The Aspen Times

All I want for Christmas is a 10-pound trout. Preferably on a dry fly, even better on a size-24 midge dry fly.

A fish this big will change you. Ruin you, if you aren’t careful. Landing a trout this size and bigger (yes, bigger) can turn your on-again, off-again love affair with fly-casting into a full-time, gut-wrenching obsession. Love hurts. Love is all you need. Love on the rocks, it ain’t no big surprise.

Most fly fishers have hooked a trout of this magnitude; few get the opportunity of landing such a specimen.

A 10-pound trout has learned a few slick tricks over the years. How to saw your fly line back and forth across the rocks. How to alligator roll until the fly pops loose or the tippet breaks. Or my personal favorite, charging straight toward you kamikaze-style to create a slack leader. Rarely does the angler come out on top in this scenario.

There are plenty of trout bums (and CEOs, for that matter) here in the valley only casting at the big fish. They may only cast three times in six hours astream, but those moments are filled with adrenaline, anticipation, and often despair. Much like love. We romance these fish, woo them with offerings tenderly spun of deer hair, peacock herl and cul-de-cunard.

As far as little fish are concerned, we love them, too, and treat them gingerly, with kid gloves. Even when they annoy us by lunging toward the fly we were casting to their bigger (often significantly bigger) brother or sister. The little ones some day will be the big ones, ready to break our hearts or send them soaring over the moon.

Truly big fish stay with us, live in our hearts and never have to pay rent.

This column is provided by Taylor Creek Fly Shops in Aspen and Basalt. Taylor Creek can be reached at 970-927-4374.

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