Judy's First Trout

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gate photo

Judy grew up in Cove City, a small town in North Carolina. Life was not very complex. Fishing was simple as a kid. A cane pole, bobber and some worms. Then you catch-em, kill-em, cook-em, & eat-em.

Then she married me. Fishing is now very complex. There are hatches to match, phases of the moon, weather fronts, open season, closed season, delay harvest.

And then there's that fly rod. She did not know what it cost nor did she want to know. But a quick look thru the slick glossy Orvis catalog that I lusted over was enough for her to not want to be in the same room as that fly rod for fear of damaging it.

Shortly before our wedding I got her a spinning rod and real and she took to that real well and put the cane pole behind her. On our honeymoon we went to North Carolina for her first trout fishing experience.

The first day we were on the Cherokee Indian Reservation in an area I had fished several times before I met Judy. I rigged her up with a couple of nymphs behind a clear spinning float. The stream was only about twenty feet wide so she was able to work the water fairly well. We had gotten her a vest in town but were not able to find any waders in a small enough size for her. So I put her in an old pair of Red-Ball heavy duty rubber waders I carried as a spare. They were my very old waters and must have weight 15 pounds. They came up under her arm pits and the suspenders could not be shortened up enough so I cut the back side of the suspenders straps off very short and using a couple of small nuts and bolts and flat washers I bolted the suspender straps to the back of the waders.

Well we no sooner get into the water and she latches on to a fish. Judy lands a nice 14 inch rainbow. She is so excited. She wants me to bring her the "stringer". I say, "This is catch and release only. You have to throw it back". Now to me that seemed "normal", to Judy that was not going to happen. It was her fish and it was going back to the cabin and on the dinner table tonight. And Why the hell are we fishing if we have to give the fish back ?

The more I tried to explain the catch and release concept the dumber I sounded. We finally agreed that for every fish she caught and threw back we would then go to the fish farm down the road and she could catch and keep one from there.

Judy got three nice trout that day and then three fat boys from the pond at the fish farm.