Welcome back … and here is hoping that 2021 is much better for you than 2020! I have to say that the start to the New Year is rocky at best. Like most of you … I spent Wednesday of this week watching a horrible scene in our Nation’s Capital. Still can’t believe what I witnessed, but frankly, wasn’t surprised by it either. As many of you know, I spent 35 years teaching special needs kids at our high school and one of the things I had to do, like it or not, was get along. Get along with people that often were much different than myself; teachers, parents … and especially administrators. I am a terribly honest person and have always felt that honesty was the best policy. Be honest … then take some time to think, and talk things out. If not, agree to disagree … and move on. That is, in fact, what makes the world go round. We are not clones but vary incredibly … and all within one country. I think we need a quick kick in the butt … by ourselves. We, America, need to disagree, if necessary and then move on and learn from the other side. I am not usually, or have ever been too political on this site, but please pardon me for a quick rant … now, let’s move on to fly fishing.
Vickie and I are now retired … and it is the greatest thing, period. We loaded up our camper and made the 6 hour drive to Bennet Spring State Park where we set up our camper (we were the only ones here) and I proceeded to get my gear ready for the Friday catch/release (8am to 4pm).
I strolled leisurely onto mid-stream in zone 1 at about 8:15am, stripped out about 40 feet of type one sink tip line, tied on one of my own trout candy flies and made a long, upstream cast. I allowed the line to swing and began stripping 5-6 inches at a time; bang, a tug on the other end. I immediately strip-set … but missed the fish. Two casts later the same scenario happened and this time I was hooked up with my first fish of 2021.
Bennet is a special place. I have said this many times before. I love everything about being here … but I especially love being here in winter when the crowds are down (or almost non-existent) and the fish are eager to eat. There is truly nothing like the tug of a trout on the other end of 3X tippet. OK … a rooster pheasant flushing over one of my pointers is pretty good as well!
As I made my way down the stream, towards the dam, eagles frolicked above and the clean, clear, cold blue water really put a spell over me. I took a few moments to enjoy just being out in nature … and knowing that in the past I was within my classroom. I landed 6 nice trout in about 90 minutes and had another 20 or so on (my reflexes weren’t at peak performance). When I made it to the dam I was ready to head back to the camper … to see my gal and get warmed up.
As you watch the video I hope you can glean some information that might make your trip to Bennet a better one. If you are new to fly fishing, there is NO better time to learn than during the catch/release season here at Bennet or at any of the other trout parks in Missouri.
If you have questions you can forward them to me by using the question box located below or by emailing me at email@example.com. I will, as always, do my best to get back quickly and give you an honest answer. If ever there was a time to pray for our country … this is the right time! Here is hoping that your 2021 fly fishing year is the best ever!