April and I’m beginning to believe that spring is actually here. In about three weeks the annual trout opener will arrive and it’s something to look forward to. Truth be told, I won’t make the actual opener, “She Who Must Be Obeyed” hosts her lady friends at the cabin for the Shorts Brewery Anni-Party which is always the last Saturday in April. I suppose I could crash the hen fest, but 53 years of marriage taught me to pick my battles. At any rate, I’ll get there a couple of days after the actual opener.
Snow can still be seen in and amongst the trees, but where the sun reaches, the snow is gone except for where the snowplow created a wall. I’m not sure how high or fast the river will be this year, but I’m sure the flow will require careful wadding.
The next few weeks will require careful planning of what to bring. Years ago, it didn’t take any effort at all to get ready. I just grabbed the only rod I had, a pair of leaky waders and a couple of badly tied flies I was determined to catch a native on. But age brings the acquisition of “stuff” that sounded and looked better than it actually turned out to be. But, like the saying goes, “The difference between men and boys is the price of their toys” and the sheer number of them.
The only practice I still follow is, Gus stays home. I know he’d stay around me while I’m wadding, but at 35 pounds, I worry the current could take him away like the fawn I saw being carried downstream years back. The doe followed it along the shore and eventually when the fawn reached a sandy slow moving part of the river around a bend, it was able to get to its feet under itself and make it to the bank where the doe was offering encouragement. It was a sight I still have ingrained in my mind.