Water. Motion. Grace. Strength. Depth.
The trout can’t fight the water. So they wait in the still pockets of the river. As the water flows behind rocks, there’s a small pocket of still water.
A deep cut in the river, a pocket of still water.
The river bends. The trout wait in the still water of the eddy.
The river cuts away the soil at the edge of the bank. It exposes tree roots and grass. The trout find solace in that still water.
The water protects the trout from the birds. It brings food and air. They wait.
The light dictates the season. Not warmth. The first day of winter is not the coldest day, but it is the shortest. The first day of summer is not the warmest, but it is the longest.
The light signals the bugs. They live in the water all year, clinging to the rocks. The trout can’t get them on the rocks.
Some of the bugs like not much light. Midges. They move and hatch all year long, even in the winter.
Stoneflies. The early spring bugs. Huge. Ugly. Black.
Mayflies. Caddis. Tricos. Long days. Morning hatch, evening hatch. Mid spring and summer bugs. The bugs know the trout can’t eat them all if they all hatch at the same time, so there are thousands of bugs all at once. The trout feast, but the bugs live on.
The bugs that end up in the water by chance. Grasshoppers. Crickets. Ants.
And a mouse isn’t a bug, but trout will eat them. Along with anything else that can fit in their mouth. Smaller fish. Sculpins. Leeches. Crawfish. Eggs.
Fishing isn’t about fishing. You won’t realize that right away, but fishing is about water, and light; bugs and waiting.
Psalm 42:7-8. NIV. Deep calls to deep in the roar of your waterfalls; all your waves and breakers have swept over me. By day the Lord directs his love, at night his song is with me—a prayer to the God of my life.
Joel K. Douglas