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WbranchSeptember 1st, 2018, 2:20 pm
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2733
I went up to my cabin on the WB Delaware on Monday afternoon to meet with some very close friends on Tuesday evening and take them to dinner to help me celebrate my 75th birthday.

Tuesday morning my very best friend of 55 years and I decided to do an early float from Shehawken to Buckingham. There was mist all over the water and I thought I would do something with streamers. My buddy only had to steer the Hyde at 3000 cfs but while I threw streamers in all the likely places I never turned a trout. We saw a few rising fish but even in that high water as soon as we put the anchor down they stopped rising.

We were well down river in the float, actually in what is called "Russ's Run". It is the next pool below Knight's. I was just sitting in the bow seat and he was fooling around with my 9' #7 rod with a gray over white #1 Clouser. He does a lot of Atlantic salmon fishing in Quebec and New Brunsick and was trying to throw the entire 90 feet of line.

I told him "John you are wasting your time, the sun is very high in the sky, it is hotter than Hell, you just can't raise a fish in these conditions. If you even hook a fish I will buy you dinner". (I was going to buy him dinner anyway) So he said well if I do you give me this rig! Yea, right.

Well he isn't even paying attention to the line and is actually looking down at the nail knot I tied between the end of the fly line and the backing and he says "This is a very neat nail knot Matt". At that very moment he starts shouting "I've got one". I thought he was just kidding, I looked at the tip of the rod and sure enough it was bent and he had a fish on. After a few minutes he brought a big 16" chub (Fallfish) to the boat. We were both laughing about it. It taught me to never say never about anything related to how fish act! and no I didn't give him my rig.
Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.
Jmd123September 1st, 2018, 7:09 pm
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2611
HAPPY BIRTHDAY Matt!!! You are an inspiration to us all. I just hope I'm still fishing as much as you do when I turn 75 (turning 55 in November!).

Nice fallfish! Our equivalent, the creek chub, doesn't quite get that big but I have seen 12-inchers. I did catch a nice 10" hornyhead chub in Missouri while trying to get some rainbows to take a nymph...and an 8 inch golden shiner on Reid lake a few years ago on a grasshopper imitation. Sometimes those "other species" can provide some needed entertainment when the trout are not cooperating!

No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
AdirmanSeptember 2nd, 2018, 3:26 am
Monticello, NY

Posts: 505
Yes , happy birthday Matt, sounds like you lost the bet but shared some quality time w your friend 😊
WbranchSeptember 3rd, 2018, 12:39 pm
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2733
In my minds eye 75 is the new 65!
Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.
Jmd123September 3rd, 2018, 12:47 pm
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2611
"Old" keeps getting older, Matt! People have finally realized that youth isn't everything, a little older age is wiser and more experienced. Remember that old saying? "Young, dumb, and full of...", well, you know. Wisdom replaces energy, which is fine because with wisdom you know how to use your energy more efficiently. "Work smarter, not harder!" as one of my buddies put it.

BTW, I was thoroughly entertained myself by a bunch of chubs yesterday! Plus one brookie, which made the day even sweeter...some of the chubs were running 9-10" so they were bending over the 3-weight good! Couldn't get much out of Clark's Marsh, it's about 80% weeded over so it's hard finding enough open water to drop flies into...still got one nice pumpkinseed and saw some pretty wildflowers & fungi. And no damned deerflies this time at either location! Fall fishing, here I come!

No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
PartsmanSeptember 3rd, 2018, 1:44 pm
bancroft michigan

Posts: 420
Happy birthday Matt, yes you are a inspiration to some of us younger guy, and I hope you keep it up for many more! My question to you is about wading, IM 61 and wade pretty well, but sometime balance is bit tricky, I bought a wading staff and it really helps get up and down banks and some tricky wading, but do you do any thing different in your wading now that you may not have done 10 or so years ago?

Happy Birthday, Mike.
WbranchSeptember 3rd, 2018, 4:11 pm
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2733
Hi Mike,

but do you do any thing different in your wading now that you may not have done 10 or so years ago?

Yes, I use my drift boat more!! Seriously I just know my limitations and wade accordingly. I used to be a wild wader in my 20's to 40's and took a lot of spills and some were serious where I was wondering if I would be able to survive and get to shore.

Now I never try to cross a stream or river if the flow is over my knees and fast. We all can judge flow volume and depth pretty well so we pretty much know what kind of water is going to get us in trouble. Also ever since I hurt my sciatic nerve in my left leg in September of 2017 I have had severe peripheral neuropathy in both feet. It makes it difficult for me to really "feel" the bottom and therefore I don't wade any deeper than my crotch and then never is swift water. For some unknown reason when I am wading and looking straight ahead I feel fine but whenever I look down to change a fly I have a feeling I am going to fall forward. It isn't like I have vertigo it is just this sense that if I get involved with either changing a fly or tying on a new tippet I am going to fall face forward into the river.

So even though it is a pain in the butt every time I need to change a fly or leader I have to get out of the water and walk over to shore. It is a bit of a nuisance but it is surely better than taking a header into the river and maybe not having the strength to get back up!
Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.
MartinlfSeptember 4th, 2018, 5:49 am
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3233
Happy Birthday, Matt!
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell

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