Birthday Weekend on the South Toe River
Casting dry flies to native brook trout and wild ‘bows’, upstream fashion, onto the crystal mountain running water, with Mt Mitchell looming high in the background.
High-sticking while bringing line in as I watch my dry fly drift with the current, below the white waterfall, towards me.
Dropping a dry fly, just fractions of an inch, from the downstream side of an exposed boulder. It settles long enough for a possible quick strike, from beneath, before being swept away by the converging of water just a foot or so downstream.
Laying the tippet with the dry, in a length of pocket waters, in between cross current of tumbling riffles, and watching with an itchy hand. It floats to the near end of the pocket, a sudden flash and splash at the dry and…..
Pin-pointing the dry fly underneath the outreaching laurel branches with a sidearm cast, cross creek. The dry imitation lands within the shadows and sets there, for a second or so, upon the slow flat water. The leader just begins to slowly pull on the dry. The movement appears real. A sudden attack on the lifeless dry….another trout is fooled.
Sprinkles of rain fall from the sky but there is no stopping now. The hungry wild trout are still eager to snap at a fluttering natural or quick floating imitation.
The fishing ends with a small birthday party get together in a cabin high tent, sheltered from the light rain. Blueberry pie is presented to me with lit candles as I enter the tent. The ‘girls’, my grandson and my two sons sing happy birthday.After the ‘girls’ and my grandson leave, we take to the campfire that sprouts flames within the darkness. Giddeon, Jesse Pete and I drink beer and pass a bottle of Jim Beam Black to toast to my birthday. We talk among ourselves about whatever comes to mind. I smoke a Carolina Cigar Company hand made stogie, one of my birthday presents, before turning in.
Sunday we rise and decide to fish the hatchery supported section of river. The colder weather and wind makes for tough going, the fish not wanting to feed. We all catch a few trout, Giddeon hooking up more times, but we all have a delightful day within the solitude on the South Toe River within the mountainous region.
One catch that comes to mind was watching a trout rise, from a deep depth, snapping twice at a fluttering March Brown being blown across the surface water. The March Brown reached the bank-side safely and flies away. I immediately tied on a bushy March Brown dry and with a good drift, towards the recent riser; the trout doesn’t hesitate to take my imitation. The custom 4wt flexes with excitement.
After noon we fish downstream further. I only catch one brown trout on a woolly bugger in the windy, rainy conditions before driving down the road to find the boys; I find them fishing within talking distance. I sit on the bank enjoying watching my two youngest sons fly fishing towards the far bank of the river.
Monday, after a late breakfast, we go into Asheville to the Carolina Cigar Company store. It was like going into a micro brewery only cigar aroma filled the interior. Cigars were displayed in open boxes on shelves in the walk-in humidor. Their three distinct banded cigars, Four Blend, Reserve and Cabinet Select, are displayed in different sizes and styles. I wanted to start sampling them right there but it was a cigar store and not a brewery. I buy $45.00+ of cigars with good intentions.
Upon leaving my son’s house we bid my family good-bye and Teressa and I start our 10 hour drive home. A couple cigars, one being a Reserve reddish Corojo leafed torpedo blend, made for a relaxing drive homeward.
It was another memorable birthday weekend, wild trout fishing, good beer, family and a few good cigars. Oh, and my blueberry, candle lit, birthday pie!
My son Giddeon is a License guide in North Carolina. He lives in Asheville and guides in western North Carolina for wild trout and stocked waters. He knows how and where to catch them. He can help you to fly fish and/or just guide you to them. He loves fishing dry flies. He knows the hatches and what the trout are taking throughout the year. As you can see it will be a memorable good time!
Here is his web sight to get ahold of him;