Farmington River, Crowds, Ettiquette, Divine Intervention [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Farmington River, Crowds, Ettiquette, Divine Intervention

05-05-2006, 08:51 PM
Farmington River, Crowds, Etiquette, and Divine Intervention--I couldn't make this up.

Had some business in southwest Connecticut this week so I had an opportunity to fulfill my annual pilgrimage to the Farmington River on Thursday. Stopped at the Up Country Shop to get my license. As I was looking at some Hendrickson flies to purchase the shop keeper asked me where I was going to fish. I was going to start at Ovation Pool and then head to the campground. He said it was best to fish in the Peoples State Forest or up river. He said Ovation Pool was worth a try but I should be very patient. I went to Ovation at about 9am and tried patiently til 10:30. A few fish rose but know takers. I tried streamers, nymphs and dries. Proceeded to the Peoples State Forest. I could not believe the crowds. Cars parked at every pool. Church Pool may have had 8 or 9 fly fisherman surrounding the pool. (this ones always crowded but it was a week day!) Decided to keep heading north. Stopped in Riverton and found a pool with no one in sight. Waded out to the middle of the stream and cast one of my new Hendrickson emergers down stream. boom! a hit! stripped in a nice 14" rainbow. Made a few more casts and thump... another rainbow ...same size. This was heaven and all to myself. Then I saw some fish rising so I switched to a dry Hendrickson that I had just purchased.

Slurp....another hit. another 14" fish although this one was a little feistier. I reached down to grab the 7x tippet and the rainbow broke off. Everyone says don't grab the tippet but I did and lost. Started to tie on another tippet and noticed an old man standing up on the bank watching me and the fish rising. I finely tied on another hendrickson but fouled up my cast. I created one of those bird's nest that seem to gather on the surgeon's knot. It was a mess so I had to start over. I must have been nervous with the old man watching. Preoocupied with tying on my tippet and fly, all of a sudden he was casting spinning gear from shore right in front of me and everywhere he could reach in the pool. I finally tried another dry fly but by this time the fish had gone down. none were rising. I began to seethe at this old man. What kind of courtesy was this? I decided to go back to the emerger.

Instead of putting on a tippet I tied it the fly to my 8 and half pound leader. after finally tying it on I started to cast. Tried the far side from the old man and then right in front of him. after several casts I cast down the middle and counted to 15. thuwumph! A fish hit the little bug. Then I saw 6 inches of the back of the fish swirl up out of the water and still no belly. The old man yelled, "That's some fish." The fish pulled hard back and forth for a several minutes but then started to come up stream to my right. I said to the old guy, "for a big fish it is not fighting that almost seems it doesn't know it is hooked." At that minute it took off downstream ....ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ! Ah yes. Got the fish under control. there were two young guys fishing behind me noting the fish. I said I forgot my net; one of them went to get his from the car. I worked my way over to him on the shore thru the boulders to get the net. I then tried to net the fish for ten minutes but couldn't control the fish. decided to go to shore to land it. Eddie finally netted it for me and commented about the liitle fly on its top lip and how the line had worn the rainbows nose to a light pale white. Eddie said "Don't you have a camera? You should take it to the firehouse." I said I was going to put the beautiful critter back so it could make more rainbows.

Grabbing its tail I moved it back and forth and it bolted toward the shore winding up in a three foot wide pool surrounded by rocks. Half out of the water it rushed back at me and turned over on its side right at my feet. "Gosh it's not ready." I grabbed its tail again and after a ten strokes it slowly took off into deep water. The old man yelled "That was my fish that you got, that is what I was casting at." I couldn't believe what I was hearing. I had been there long before he arrived. He said it again "that was my fish" Finally he walked away saying it again "that was my fish, that is what I was casting at." All I could do was smile. The old man cuts in front of me and cast everywhere in front of me. Knocks down rising fish. I had gone from cursing this guy from under my breadth to one of the happiest fisherman on earth. The fish was at least 24" and with its girth it looked like 8 to 10 lbs. It was like a little striper. All I can say is God works in wondrous ways. I will go back to the Farmington again.


Dble Haul
05-09-2006, 08:33 AM
That's a great story, and good on you for not losing your patience with that guy. It sounds like poetic justice that you caught that fish.