Fishing alone

Soft light filters through the mist and trees. I pull up to my chosen spot. I hop out of the car and take it all in. Its good to be here. After a few minutes I start setting up. I chose a fly. The car door clicks and I make my way to the river. I make my first cast, the fly drifts down the current. Repeat. Virgin water lies ahead of me. It will be the same all day. There is no rush. No pressure. Its just me, the stream and the fish. The fish aren’t playing ball yet. They will. After an hour or so, a few fly changes, the first fish comes to hand. I take a photo for the blog. Another fish soon follows. Another shot. The blog job is done. Now I’m fishing just for pleasure. The camera packed away for the day unless something spectacular happens. No distractions. Just fishing. Just the way I like it.

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As the day rolls on, my mind almost goes blank. A calmness overtakes me. Completely alone. Its good. The birds, the stream, the trees, the bugs all the company I need. I’m content. Fish come to hand consistently. After an especially pretty little brown I sit on a mid stream rock. Still. Silent. Taking it all in. For 10 or so minutes I do nothing, I just sit. Without too much thought, without a making a conscious decision, I am back fishing. Its easy now, almost automatic.

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A little later, the fish stop playing ball and my brain kicks back into gear for a while. The sun is now high in the sky. The fish are rising less willingly. I tie on a nymph. The fish start coming again. None of them are big, but thats not what todays about. Today is just about being here. Casting, fishing, experiencing. The little jewels coming to hand are just a bonus. I don’t spend much time with each fish. All fish after the first two are released while in the water. Today isn’t about trophies. Its about moments. The cast, the take, the fight, the release. Each of these moments punctuates the day.

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At some point during the afternoon, I’ve had my fill. Again, almost unconsciously I find myself packing up and  starting the long walk back to the car. I throw my rod in the back and hop in the car. I turn the key and start driving home. Back to normal life. Happy to be returning, better for the few hours of peace and solitude. A much needed reset.

When I get home I crack a beer. It is perfect. I’m also starving. I haven’t eaten anything all day. It was a good day.

Cheers

Hamish

flickandflyjournal.com

Hamish Webb, Dan Firth, Graham Fifield and Lee Georgeson have been fishing the south-east Australian region since 1987. Since then they’ve become avid sportfishermen who are constantly looking for new ways to challenge themselves. They are all scientists and conservationists who are passionate about the long-term sustainability of the ecosystem in which they live. They promote understanding and appreciation of the complex socio-political, economic and environmental issues surrounding fish, fishing and fisheries, while never losing sight of the various motivations that keep them coming back. In English, that means they love all things fishing and have a damn good time on the water, and that’s all that really counts in the end!

8 thoughts on “Fishing alone

  • March 24, 2015 at 9:41 pm
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    I have a beer now. I didn’t eat all day. It never really seemed important at the time.

    Reply
  • March 26, 2015 at 9:57 am
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    Hamish that was a great post. I wish I could settle and pace myself when fishing. My fishing pursuits have become so rare that I find myself racing through water in order to consume every possible minute on the stream. In fact I actually string my rod the night before and wear my waders while driving to a stream in order to ” not waste a moment”!

    Reply
    • March 26, 2015 at 1:01 pm
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      Thanks Tim! I admire your efforts to maximise every moment! Thats some dedication right there 🙂

      Cheers
      Hamish

      Reply
  • March 27, 2015 at 9:54 am
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    And Hamish you have captured exactly why we all love those little streams and the solitude of what they bring. Great read. B
    Best Rex.

    Reply

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