Baggage Claim to Brown Trout
After cooling my jets in Austin for a whopping six days, Little Chick and I hopped a silver bird back to Montana yesterday to spend a week with my mother. So far, there’s no rest for the weary on this trip. We landed in Bozeman, drove stright to the Safeway in Helena, unloaded the groceries at the house, promptly ignored all the new groceries, and went to eat at Izaak’s instead. Then we came home for our after-dinner joyride on the four-wheeler.
My mother suggested we take along the 3-weight and check out The Prickly Pear Creek. Little Chick gathered her flybox but was distraught that her beloved corn fly was missing. (She likes her flies big and flashy!) As my lead-foot mother sped the Polaris through a field, we assured her the trout on this creek wouldn’t eat a corn fly anyway and urged her to select something small and brown, somehwat resembling the fifty million caddis that were flying into our eyeballs and sticking in our teeth.
Little Chick dusted off the cobwebs since last summer and made some great casts, drifting through some super fishy spots.
We were losing our light and she wanted me to give it a try before we wrapped up. I got one little fish to eat, but missed him. Then I over-muscled that feather-light rod and stuck two flies in the grass on the oppositte side of the creek. Perhaps a sign to call it quits. Just as we were going to reel it in, my mother saw one more rise, tucked behind a log. I couldn’t resist.
Little Chick selected a little brown fly from her box and I tied it on watching the fish eat in shallow water, protected on three side by submerged branches. I felt like I was watching a tailing bonefish! He was taunting me with that tail upon every eat.
Miraculously I (sort of ) threaded the needle and put that fly up in his world. Only in the vicinity though. Lucky for me, the fish did the rest of the work, performing a summersault and eating the fly over its left shoulder as it passed him downstream.
Squeals of delight from my mom and Little Chick. I have to admit it was a very nice way to return to Montana. Wasn’t I collecting my luggage in baggage claim just a few hours earlier?