I finally got a much needed night on the river. I finally took out time for myself. The only one I could blame for not doing it sooner was myself. I knew the river would be busy so I chose the Thursday before Labor Day weekend.
My plan was to set out some limb lines. My bait of choice is chicken livers but for some reason chicken livers are hard to find but through perseverance I finally scored. I also picked up a box of crawlers for tight line fishing. I got a late start but was able to salvage the day. I paddled up river to my favorite spot to set up camp. Once I reached my destination I busied myself setting up camp. I got busy starting a fire. We had a couple days of rain and dry wood was hard to come by. I managed to get a fire started with my magnesium rod and cotton balls impregnated with Vaseline.
When the fire was going good I set out to set my lines. When I got them all out I come back and baited them all with chicken liver. I returned to camp and started preparing supper. After I ate I threw out a tight line baited with a crawler to see what was hungry. I was disappointed that it was relatively quiet. The bullfrogs weren’t even in the mood to entertain the silly human. There was a full moon but the sky was cloud covered.
Around 10 pm I heard a lot of splashing going on in the direction of one of my lines. I jumped in the kayak, shoved off and headed that way. I shined my light on the limb and I could see it dancing. I had a pretty nice fish. I pulled along side of the line and could make out a nice channel catfish. I grabbed the line and got it in the kayak. It was a 24 inch channel, around 5 pounds. I rebaited and headed back to camp.
It seemed as if it was going to be a good night or so I thought. Little did I know that would be the only catfish of the night. I had my pole out and baited with a Canadian night crawler. I was sitting there watching my pole when all of a sudden the rod bent signaling a bite. I grabbed the pole and set the hook. The fight was on and I finally landed it. A 22 inch sucker.
I got a few perch after that and they shut down. About two hours went by and I hadn’t got a bite. I went to reel in my line so I could check my bait. I started to reel in line and it felt like I was hung up. Finally it started moving and I began reeling I knew it wasn’t a fish, I finally landed it but to my dismay it was not a fish. It was a softshell turtle probably almost 2 feet across. While I was trying to get it unhooked it broke my line and made a quick return to the river.
Later on while sitting on the river bank I noticed a snake’s head zigzagging in the water headed for shore. What the heck? Now I have had a few encounters with snakes on the river like the time I grabbed a limb to tie a limb line on and found 3 foot water snake wrapped around the limb but nothing like this. All of a sudden it is headed my way. It came out of the water onto the gravel bar like it was on a mission. I hit it on the head with my rod and it couldn’t get out of there quick enough. The rest of the night was pretty quiet.
Sadly my night on the river was coming to a close. I had hoped to catch more fish but it wasn’t meant to be. I couldn’t complain though. The time alone on the river was very much needed. It was so peaceful. For a night I felt like I was the only one on earth. I was able to savor my thoughts without interruption. Life is good.
4 thoughts on “Much Needed Night On The River”
What’s that line? “A bad day (or night) of fishing is better than a good day at work?” It’s like your About me page quote Wayne “Many men go fishing all their lives without knowing that it is not fish they are after.” — It’s about the connection with nature or more accurately, our re-connecting with nature. Mankind, for most of our existence, lived in nature, with nature, side by side.
How sad that in today’s modern times, most of us have forgotten and have lost our connection with Mother nature. It truly is, our original home. But you get that Wayne, what I like, is how you try and get others to — get that! And that’s why I love your nature trip posts. In a way — it takes me back home again too! Be well Farrier!
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Thanks for such a wonderful reply. It’s nice that some one understands. Even if one person decided to reach out and discover nature it would be great.
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Thank you for another beautiful night along the river. I’m so glad your soul got a much needed recharge. The snake encounter was so real, I shivered…been in water when snake started swimming my way, once…not a favorite memory, but I’m sure you set a new water to land record. 🥰 Thank you for sharing your night and for taking me with you.
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Thank you for taking the time to read and reply to my blog. No land record. When I saw the snake wrapped around the limb I just eased out slowly and went on setting lines. As for the other one I was sitting down on a stool and when I cracked it on the head with the rod tip it almost came straight up out of the water and got turned around and was heading for friendlier waters.