Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Plans on the Fly

Today's High Country fishing plan had been to float the South Fork of the New River and flyfish for smallmouth bass. Then came the rain. Yesterday afternoon's rain showers turned into thunderstorms that kept regenerating and continued into the morning, and the normally clear South Fork turned into chocolate milk. Obviously that the river less pretty for floating. More importantly to our plans, it tends to put the fish in shutdown mode until the water begins clearing at least a little bit.

The plan was for us to go to the RiverGirl Fishing Co. outpost in Todd, North Carolina, which is right on the South Fork. Instead Kelly McCoy, RiverGirl founder and namesake, came to our group, and took us trout fishing farther up in the New River watershed. Even well upstream, the water was higher and more stained than what McCoy had hoped to find. That meant different flies and a bit of added challenge in wading conditions.

She also hadn't planned to try to guide three people on a single smallish stream. She adapted exceptionally well, though, taking everything as it came, and taking time with each of us to make sure we were doing all that was within her control to catch some fish.

I caught a few fish, a brown and a couple of rainbows and brown, and one of the rainbows definitely was a wild fish. (That one flopped out of my hand before I could get a photo, of course.) As important as catching fish, I learned a lot that I can apply for future stories, and I really appreciate McCoy adapting to accommodate us.

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