It’s only a matter of days and hours before the woodland trees become fully filled with leaves and the forest floor gets overgrown with buckthorn and nettles, mosquitoes and flies will emerge and for the most part the woods will take on a jungle like structure, but before that happens there is a brief time when the colors of Blue Belles and other wild flowers reign, and morel mushrooms pop up through last years fallen leaves.
This a special time for Sue and I, and when conditions seem just right we try and get away to visit the Root river area located by Forestville and Maple Springs Campground, to just photograph, fish and reflect.
A school of lamprey held our interest for a while.
Today the water was almost crystal; the Blue Belles weren’t as thick as I have seen in past years but still plentiful. With low vegetation walking was fairly easy, and so after crossing the stream a couple of times and with just a short hike even the old van and road had completely disappeared.
The area is less than an hour away from the city of Rochester, but the high sentinel cliffs that define its borders filter out the noise and urban hubbub and minimize the traces of civilization to cow pastures and a few fences.
The opportunity to get out on a weekday with Sue is rare and usually limited due to her supplementing our dreams of retirement with a nightly process of pounding a keyboard, so there was only an hour or so for great pictures. Pictures of not just today but of the past as well.
There was a spot by a high bank where my youngest son and I caught our first trout fly fishing, a bend in river where a good buddy who now wades distance streams; landed his first trout, there’s a tree limb where a client hung eight lures in a row trying to make the perfect cast, and a set of rapid water where on a cold March day; I lost my footing while trying to cross in high water and ended up swimming about a hundred feet before I managed to get to the bank.
So while Susan’s camera clicked away and with the canyon walls echoing from the sounds of a thousand memories, I took my place once more at streamside and made another first cast.
With the limited amount of time I was fishing the water I had and not the water I wanted, but even though this section of stream usually held only a few small fish, today I was surprised at seeing my large spinner being chased by several very nice browns.
Two casts later and I was styling in front of the lens of Mrs. Spindoctor’s picture taking machine while holding up a fair sized brownie.
About fifty minutes later Susie and I were in the van heading north, she had a camera full of photos; I had three fat browns in the creel, enough for super. We left behind a stream full of trout, a valley decked out in spring beauty and stacked high as the cliffs with memories and topped off today with just a couple of more.
Until next cast.
Keep it low slow and with the flow, and don’t go without your Bow.
For all your Bow spinner needs, please visit the following fine bait and tackle merchants: Minnesota
Gone Fishing in Rochester
Elba Valley Express, Elba, in the White Water area
Curt's Bait and Tackle in Preston
Magnum Sports in Chatfield
Root River Outfitters in Lanesboro
Tri-State Bait & Tackle in La Crescent
River Valley Outfitters in Wabasha 651-565-2326
Maple Springs Campground and Country Store by Forestville 507-352-2056
Marine General, Duluth 1-800-777-8557 Wisconsin
Anglers Nook in Lancaster
Captain Hook's Bait & Tackle in Genoa, 608-689-2800
Jack's Tackle Shop, 923 main St. Cashton, 608-654-7775
Schnitzler's Sports Store, in Sparta, 608-269-2686 Iowa
And now at SPORTSMEN’s UNLIMITED located at 866 Allamakee St., in Waukon, Ph-563-568-4955Illinois
Franks Bait Shop, 621 North Dixie hiway, Momence, Ph-815-472-6638 Colorado
Jonah’s in Jefferson, 719-836-0289
Three Rivers Resort in Almont 1-888-761-FISH
11 Mile General Store of Lake George, 719-748-3424
Pomeroy Sports in Aspen, 970-925-9589
American Hunting & Fishing Supply in Salida, 719-530-0725
River Bend Resort on the Big Thompson River by Drake
You can also see and purchase these fine spinners www.eggersspinners.com