So the last few days of my OP trip are kind of a blur of wet, soggy, dark, fun. Casting and floating, and dealing with the rain. Everything I expected from a winter steelheading trip.
Hanging with Troy and getting out of our comfort zones and targeting a different fish and kind of fishing was awesome. Something I wanted. I don’t get my ass handed to me very often with trout these days so getting humbled by swinging for steel was something I was looking for.
Talking steelhead, trying to figure it out, getting fish to smack things and fucking it up…it was a blast. Sure would have been nice to land and harvest fish but that’s not it was all about or I would have thrown gear. No I want to swing up steel or salmon and I know my patience will pay off…it has in the past with those salty critters.
Camp life was awesome. Campfires, cooking, tents, set up, tear down, the rambling and rolling of river life. Oh did I miss that shit! Damn it was good. The OP was warm, wet but still board short weather for me. We had one day where we were really in the suck when it rained all day non stop and everything from us, the boat, our gear, every fly, my beard, tents…just soaked and wetted out. We did the super early day, bounced around with all the other boats and anglers, got a little bit of that Forks Wa culture. Just a good trip anglers. Really good.
Being back on the homewater is great but I will want to be back before to long. Left my boat over there and everything. It has been a long time since a river and a place has called out to me so loudly but the OP has and I will go.
I also got to spend really amazing river time with Troy and share in the experience with one of the best fishing partners and people I have ever met. Fish or no fish that made the trip worth it. The last few days of the trip were some of the most memorable moments I have had on and off river and I feel ever fortunate that fly fishing brings my life these amazing people and experiences and makes my life richer beyond measure.
See ya riverside anglers.