|M's first trip - 2013 (4 mos. old)|
Things didn't go according to plan. As a baby, M demanded to be held and walked around almost all the time. It was exhausting. I thought he might be distracted enough by the sights and sounds of nature for me to catch a fish or two. I had only made a few casts before M cried. He didn't want to be in the carrier. He wanted to be held, just like at home. So much for my brilliant plan.
After the first trip, I decided to wait a bit before trying again. A few months later, a stroller trip to Connecticut's Salmon River ended pretty much the same way. After that, I decided to pull the plug on fishing with M in year one. In his second year, we made a couple successful trips to the Naugatuck, largely due to the novelty of a toddler carrier backpack. By the time M was old enough to run around, he had gotten sort of wild, that way little boys often do. He was too wild to bring fishing. It just wasn't enough action for him and it would have been dangerous to leave him on the bank. I fished on my own for the next two years.
...Fast forward to last Friday. The weather had been warm enough to make a local Quill Gordon hatch a possibility. I had a much needed day off and had planned on fishing alone that day. However, my plans change suddenly, as they often do. I called an audible and brought M back to the original river. We returned to the pool he last visited when he was four months old. I told M that I would do the casting and he would fight the fish, just like we had practiced in the basement two weeks prior (on the rod and reel he claimed were his).
Bingo! It wasn't long before we hooked up in the tail of the pool. I handed the rod to M. He reeled the wrong way at first, but got it right after I offered some expert advice. It wasn't long before I netted M's first trout, a nice little brookie. Unfortunately, the fish slipped out of my hand when I tried to take its picture. Shortly after the excitement of landing his first trout, M dropped my 20-compartment dry fly box into the river. I fished it out of the current with the tip of my rod.
|M's second trout|
We had to leave shortly thereafter, so we packed up and headed out. I took off my soaked socks and put on a pair of flip flops. After putting M in his car seat, I congratulated him on a job well done, catching two of the three species of local trout. He whined loudly, "But I wanted to catch a brown trout, too!"
|The lucky fly, set aside for safe keeping|