River Valley Outdoors
Open-water fishing season happens to be off to a snowy start – can anyone imagine grabbing a fly rod, donning waders, and heading down to the river.
As I write this column, the first day of April, a fresh blanket of heavy snow fall steadily drops on the River Valley. This is no April Fools’ Day joke; I would need snowshoes to access any of my normal fishing locations. Does this deter me from dreaming about fishing most of my waking hours? No.
Plans have been made all winter long for this new open-water-fishing season. Like most anglers, improving my fishing abilities top this summer's bucket list. Several ideas take my fishing to the next level, both increasing my angling skills and increasing my enjoyment on the water.
For sheer pleasure, the first thought revolves around spending more time wading and fishing the many feeder streams that pour into the main body of the big Androscoggin River. Fishing from a boat can be great, but stalking streams and brooks gives an angler a closer look at the aquatic life and surrounding habitat. There’s nothing like stepping into the water up to your chest to get an up-close and personal look at a fish’s world.
L.L. Bean’s AquaStealth wading boots offer a sole that grips wet rocks and slippery logs – the perfect ticket for a stream fishing adventure. One of their five-weight, Silver Ghost fly rods would also round out the fishing quiver this year.
This fast-action rod certainly proved speedy when I had a chance to cast it at the Maine Sportsman’s Show last year. The feisty little rod should work out just fine this year on the water.
Another item to entice anglers this season, a Hobie Cat Mirage kayak, looks to be a real winner with anglers and recreational kayakers alike. The Mirage has a unique peddling system that thrusts the craft as if you were riding a bicycle, and moves the kayak faster than you can with a traditional paddle.
At some point before the snow completely leaves the River Valley, I’ll take a trip up to L. L. Cote’s in Errol and check out the line of Hobie kayaks. An angler can outfit this craft with numerous accessories to make fishing more enjoyable. I want to see some of the various models available, and figure out which accessories are actually necessities.
All in all, my biggest endeavor involves just getting out more often. This season the grass may grow a little longer at times, and the garden may grow more weeds than usual… an angler never knows when the new snow season will start again. I just might start this season right now before it fades – grab my fly rod, slip on my waders and snowshoes, and climb over the snow bank to the river. See you on the water.