We spent four days on The Missouri and almost every rising fish we found was tight to the bank – and I do mean tight to the bank. We’re not talking out in the parking lot or loitering on the steps of a local community bank. These fish weren’t handling petty cash in the lobby with the tellers and day-to-day customers. Oh no, they were locked deep inside the vault of the main branch, well-behind ironclad doors that required seven passcodes and a retinal scan in order to gain access.
These treasure trout were always tucked in close, about one inch from the edge, behind a rock, and under an overhanging Russian Olive tree. Miraculously they also seemed to benefit from a rogue branch dipping out onto the water about one foot upstream, as well as a curiously timed burst of wind that repelled any shot at a quick Smash-and-Grab.
Time to rob some banks.
We were stealthy in our approach, casing each joint in hushed tones, casting from crouched and seated positions. We covered for each other by feathering the oars and gently letting out anchor rope. We threw everything but lit sticks of dynamite at those banks, feverishly trying to penetrate their heightened security and make off with at least one aquatic hostage from each spot.
Good Lord couldn’t we find just one dumb hungry fish chasing caddis emergers in the middle of the river? Just one blind elderly woman with her wallet hanging out of her purse on the subway?
Apparently not. And of course that made it all the more fun once we caught them. Or hooked them. Or…..at least got them to eat before we rowed our getaway boat on down the river.
Like any legendary bank robbing spree, reality eventually catches up bringing it all to a crashing end. But it sure was fun while it lasted! Enjoy the following
evidence slideshow from The Great Missouri Trout Heist.