Is it Sleeping, or Catatonic

After running the dogs on snowshoes, I drove to my home waters to have a look see. I had been harboring a rising notion to throw a line into a particular run in order to shake hands with a certain rainbow trout of monstrous proportions that stole one of my flies last year. I know he’s still living there lurking beneath the surface and tree fall shade and certain he knows I’m still thinking about him and our last encounter. I figure that because just as I had him in my hands that day and just before a mighty twist broke that stressed tippet–he looked into my eyes with one of his and telepathized me with, “nice try fella, but it will take more than that to own me”. I’ve only been telepathized one other time by a trout, so it took me back a bit, to the point of doubting the experience for a few days, until my reason returned and I quit the denial.

Anyway, it may of been his suggestion that changed my mind or the fact that the river is so iced in, but I decided against it and took a few pictures instead.

Deadlocked in a New Hampshire winter is my home waters. Sleeping nearly catatonic and yet still suggesting the warmer weather, open water and awakening that is to come. When I look at that uninviting cold dark water within a fortress of ice and snow, I still can’t help but see in my minds eye, the green and warmth of spring and the first swimming nymphs, flatheads, the speedy isonychia, crawling stones and the tiny blue winged sulfers.

My mind reaches through the remaining months; into still cold fast water, to turn a stone for finding the plentiful grannom. The river is sleeping now and maybe catatonic, but the wakening is soon to come and my home water will be inviting once again. And maybe between now and then, I’ll overcome the suggestions of my friend the rainbow and brave the fortress that keeps him safe and sleeping.

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~ by John McGranaghan on January 31, 2011.

3 Responses to “Is it Sleeping, or Catatonic”

  1. Well said John. The long sleep before emergence. I enjoyed your story and look forward to the awakening along with you…

    • Hey Jimmy–its good to hear from you. I’m really looking forward to fishing together again this season. I’m hoping for more snow and then a real slow and gradual thaw come spring to keep the rivers from washing out, but nice and cool longer. Broke down and got those boots, cleats and waders.

  2. thnx bro

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