Friday, July 22, 2011

The Plan for a Farmington River Grand Slam

The three of us met early one Friday morning, way before the crack of dawn and made a plan for a Farmington River Grand Slam. We could tell from the weather conditions that the fishing was going to be just perfect. Bright blue skies were headed our way, the temperature was headed for the mid 80's and the flow rate on the Farmington River was pretty good, not too low and not too high it has been held at a constant 350cfs for almost a week now.

The bugs were plentiful and included such delicacies as caddis, isonychias, march browns, midges, a variety of emergers and the ever tasty ants. Fish just love ants on hot summer days and it is usually the Chernoybal ant that gets the most attention. Despite all these tasty morsels the fishing was going to be tough and to get the Farmington Grand Slam you were going to have to work at.

So after our early morning meet and greet it was decided that we would split up and one of us headed up to the dam pool while the others headed downstream to another favorite fishing hole. We were waiting patiently and the day was looking just great when all of a sudden B. Rookie was hooked. Yup, he fell for one of those #10 partridge and orange wet flies on the swing across the riffles just below the dam on the end of a Scandi line. He put up a valient fight, but at 6" long B. Rookie could not resist for too long before being he was quickly released back into the cold water. In a couple of years Rookie is going to be one heck of a good looking fish; with his white edged fins and coppery orange body he was already a beauty to behold.

The day wore on and the fishing was still tough. There weren't many bent rods to be seen this day. Eventually the sun was heading over the western horizon and bugs a'plenty were popping out of the water. There were times when we would torpedo up to a fly only to decide at the last minute, "Nahhh. It just isn't floating as good as it should be. See that? Too much drag on that one. Oh, what the heck is that suppsed to be, a caddis? What do they think we are, stupid just because we have a brain the size of a pea?"

Eventually Bowie was spotted as he was slowly rising for some Isonychias. He would flip his tail, go to the surface, sip away and then sink back down. Rise, surface, eat and sink, just as we had planned. You had to have good eyes to see him. Meanwhile, I was making a big splash in ankle deep water. Ever the show off, I will perform these beautiful barrel rolls in water that doesn't seem deep enough to hold me. I like to tease anyone trying to get the Grand Slam, an almost in your face defiance of, "Ha ha. I won't fall for that stupid fly."

After numerous flies were presented along Bowie's feeding lane an old and beat up Isonychia #12 was tied on and presented in such a fashion that with a big splash Bowie was hooked up! Man, he went straight up for it too. I tried warning him as he went with mouth wide open and then that big ol' stupid look on his face as he tried to shake the hook out of the corner of his mouth but it would not budge. I watched as he was gently pulled in, adored for his beautiful pink and silver coloring and then released. He did look sheepishly at me and gave me a warning that he had heard the angler say, "Wow! What a beefy rainbow,about 12"-14" long. Thanks buddy, you are beautiful. Wait a second, a brookie, a all I need is a brown trout to get the Farmington River Grand Slam! Now to head back to where I saw that nice brown and...."

I never heard the end of Bowie's story because just at that same instant this big ol' March Brown came floating down and with a WHACK I took a hit at it.

Too late. I fought like hell by shaking my head and trying to hide behind some rocks but to no avail. After 12 hours of fishing our plans for a Farmington River Grand Slam came to an end after I was briefly admired and released to return to my hidey-hole.

The quite content and happy angler then headed on home with our parting gift of her first Grand Slam.

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