Sunday, April 20, 2014


I lost a fish last night that I never saw. Unlike the hundreds of bass* that come to hand every year, this one went straight to the reel, took lots of line, and fought like a big fish: dogged, heavy,  slow and in control. I never saw it. I played my only card, backing up ready to bully the fish onto the shells. She was almost there when the line came back with a piggy tail - a failed knot.

This was the second night at The Mouth, and I can't complain. The first night stripers were rolling on the surface a rod's length away, swirling at whatever fly was dapped over the surface, even on my inappropriate sinking line. Dozens* of bass were caught as the spring migration kicked into gear.

As is often the case, the second visit saw bigger fish in the mix (I have no idea why). Todd got the first keeper of the year. We helped him land and photograph it - a celebration all round. The fishing was very good, but we agreed that the sunset and migrating birds were the best thing about the whole sweet relief of winter's departure. A spring estuary is one hell of a place to be on the opening day of trout season. Some of us said we should leave the rods and just bring cameras next time, and I'd like to think we could do that if we wanted to. 

We took these photos. The best ones - and probably some of the finest I've seen from this spot - were shot on a phone by my pal Tommy Baranowski, local fly fisherman and guitarist. Phones are getting better at being cameras, but don't be fooled. Tommy is good at this shit.

It was great to see Joe again.
By Tommy B.

Tommy B.


Or not TB (though this was TB).

Fly by TJ Brayshaw (as they all were).

English Jonny shoots the boys.

The Norwegian with a keeper.
*Dozens is more realistic. Think about how many trips per year you would need to make, and how many fish you'd have to average per trip, to make it "hundreds" of stripers.

Suppose you went twice per week from April 15 to November 15. That's seven months, or about 28 weeks. Twice per week would be 56 trips. Two stripers per trip would put you at 112 fish for the year. That's more than 100, but does that make it "hundreds"?  And do you fish for stripers twice per week for seven straight months? And what's a reasonable per trip average?  Sure, a few days at the mouth of the Housy could net you many dozens of fish, but even so. Think of the number of trips that turn up no fish at all. Do you not have these?  And doesn't "hundreds" imply multiples of 100?  As in, maybe, 200 or more?
Think about that. 



  1. Everyone knows a fishermans math sucks. the BIG fish is usually a smaller Blue

  2. "The BIG fish is usually a smaller Blue."

    Not at this spot in mid-April !

    1. Congrats on the great day. I've been out trying/scouting about ten times with nothing. Your post was hope that next night out might be better.

  3. Thank you Mr. Swamp. Good luck to you.