No sleep season
The thing that keeps me interested in trout fishing, specifically in northern Michigan is that put simply- it’s a fickle cunt.
Want dry flies? You’re going to get a hard rain 2 days before the weekend and every trout in the river will find his or herself a softball size worm ball to keep theirselves fat and happy for the next several weeks under their grassy undercut. No rain? Perfect, the only issue is it dropped back down to 34 the other night and killed every fragile dun in the trees. Streamers? Sure, if you’re ok with catching nothing for 4 days straight. Sometimes I think I’d have more encounters with musky. Good bug conditions? I hope you like mosquitos, and a lot of them. The big kind that somehow evolved without anesthetic— that put their hand over your mouth at night, threaten to slip their stinger down your spine, and whisper “you come back here one more
time and I’ll slit your throat”.
If this were a few years ago- I woulda said something like “but the thing that keeps you going is when everything lines up”. That’s proven to not be the case however, because everything in between the good nights is what I find myself thinking about when I’m home, and far away from a quiet river. Not the blanket hatches, but the focused quiet in the middle of a swamp with the symphony of tree frogs and crickets kept on pace by the just-off-beat bass provided by the bullfrogs. Conversation halts and you’re listening more than your seeing at this hour. Hoping for a quiet sip just on the back edge of that root wad, under the willow.
What was a ‘tough’ dry fly season ended well a few weekends back. Getting 2 hours of sweaty sleep in my 95 degree hammock made the end bittersweet instead of just bitter. But that’s ok, because I’ve the rest of summer to sleep when it’s dark outside.