We’re back today with another edition of our ‘Weekly Fish Stories,’ where guides and guests from our lodges share a brief snapshot of memorable moment on the water. Today, our own Jason Whiting shares a quick story from a day of trout fishing with a fishy father-son duo, Ted and Dean Tsandes, at Alaska West.
Weekly Fish Stories – That Fish
We’re blessed here at Alaska West to fish for what we think are some of the most beautiful rainbow trout in the world. Although, to set a goal to catch a fish more beautiful than most, on a mouse, may have been a little overambitious when looked back upon.. But we went for it anyway.
The day started off as any other. The plan was to fish trout in the morning, and then catch the early afternoon tide for some king salmon. But the trout was the goal. I had a few places in mind to fish and only half a day to hit them. So, needless to say, we needed to make the best of our time.
The morning progressed amazingly. After all, when both anglers make the decision to fish a mouse fly, you know you’re in for a good time!
And then I saw it… While walking around a bend, my angler made a cast in front of a small tree hanging into the water. Immediately, a smaller trout came at full force to destroy the mouse, but all I saw was the unmistakeable red stripe a trout only a few feet behind, too timid to leave his home for such a ridiculous offering. Needless to say, we had to give it a few more casts, but nothing.
The fish just seemed too shy to come entirely into view and leave the comfort of his downed tree. “Ok, well he’s not going to get away that easily,” I said, “ we’re going to put on a sculpin to draw him out.” But, still nothing.
So finally, somewhat disheartened, I decided to keep moving. “But first, let’s take that sculpin off and put the mouse back on.”
As we stood there switching flies, it was like it was meant to be.. Slowly creeping out of the sticks – A nose, a nose and a gill plate, and then the red stripe I knew I had seen earlier.. Then, with a quick double check of the knot, it was time for Mickey to go for one more swim.
And that’s all it took! The perfect cast, a few feet ahead of the fish, just beneath a branch, and CRUSH! With what seemed like an instantaneous explosion, the trout dashed out of the branches, crushed the mouse, made some awesome jumps, and settled into the net!