“There is nothing on this earth more to be prized than true friendship” – Thomas Aquinas
On October 9, my long time friend Mark and I finally got together for a float on the Big River. We have been trying to get together for a float for 3 months now. It was well worth the wait. The temps were in the upper 70s, and the water was clear. It was overcast with the sun popping out from time to time. All in all it was setting up to be a great day.
I brought along 3 poles and Mark had brought only one. I use ultra-lights with 4 pound test line. We launched our yaks at Mammoth access and planned to float to Merrill Horse access. I believe it is a little over 5 miles.
The leaves on the trees were starting to change colors but unfortunately their colors hadn’t matured yet. It was quite breezy however we were able to handle it. The river was low but we never had to get out and pull our yaks across shallow places.
“Rivers run through our history and folklore, and link us as a people. They nourish and refresh us and provide a home for dazzling varieties of fish and wildlife and trees and plants of every sort. We are a nation rich in rivers.” – Charles Kuralt
The fish bit real well for a while and then they shut down. While they were biting they weren’t picky. We caught them on a Rebel Wee-Craw and Floating Minnow, Pig and Jig, and Plastic Worms (two different colors). We caught perch, largemouth and smallmouth. The length limit of smallmouth in Missouri (on the Big River) is 15 inches. I choose not to keep smallmouth because it takes one 6 to 7 years to reach 15 inches.
“The River…It’s my world, and I don’t want any other. What it hasn’t got is not worth having, and what it doesn’t know is not worth knowing. Lord! the times we have had together!” – Kenneth Grahame
Everything was going smoothly and then it happened. My paddle broke and we still had some swift places to get through and without the proper paddle they would have been difficult to navigate. This is why one should always carry a knife with them.
Well I think Mark and I would be classified as country boys and maybe a hillbilly tag on myself. So we went to work and fixed the paddle good enough to get me back to the boat ramp. McGyver would have been proud of us.
It was a good day. I always enjoy my time on the river and it is nice when a friend goes a long to enjoy it with you.
Thanks for taking the time to read my blog. I hope you enjoyed it. Be kind to one another and spread the love.