Fly fishing has its own dangers to animals. In Tasmania and Australia, snakes are a concern. In North America, fountains of rocky mountains, grizzly bears, wolves and puma are rare but an ever-present concern. If you set out to fly to the famous Arctic trout rivers or the famous trout book in the Hudson Bay region, polar bears can treat you like a Scoobie snack.
One of the first things that draws you into the waters of the New Zealand trout is the propaganda that there are no snakes, no big animals to eat you, and the worst thing that can happen is that you get stuck in a car with sheep and have to wait 45 minutes for two or three thousand sheep to move a few miles in the valley.
The reality in New Zealand is that yellow jacket wasps come in flocks in the beech forests and, like a deadly allergic boy, you hide in your tent when your fish-smelling fishing pants attract two or three dozen wasps as you sit around. campfire.
And then there’s that other creature that grabs your attention, and I can add very quickly. We have had many encounters with these good catchers.
Amelia and I were standing up to the waist in a slow flat of a small tannic branch stream. We were under a heavy willow tent on a particularly dark, cold and rainy afternoon, hoping we could spot a cruise, willow scratches and growing coffee.
It had been a wonderful day as brunettes were not shy on long voyages under cover of darkness. We came to a wonderful 5kg brown and saw her cycle; we observed the low stable point in the run and settled with the tripod and camera about 2 rod lengths down the bottom edge.
Amelia raised the tripod and started filming those wonderful, wandering willow rises of this coffee. After a few cycles, it fell downstream more than expected and we both stood dead and calm as it rose below the top of my rod before slipping upstream. This went on for a while as my tapes lowered to the left, as the brown color accidentally turned left and right, as these coffees tend to do.
Unpredictable sometimes, to say the least. It was 5th or 6th cycle and he again began to fall towards us. Underneath, I heard Amelian saying “Dave, stop it.” I was motionless and replied, “Hey, we have to be quiet. Stay still. “I saw Amelia like a current against me, thinking I was teasing her. I saw her look down. two of us there, Amelia’s point of view was slightly different.She thought I was touching her leg.
She thought I was knocking on the tripod to hit her. But when he finally looked down, woven around the legs of the tripod and then around the right leg was the thick body of a giant eel. She saw the eel head knocking on the inside of her knees. Her arrival on the opposite shore was immediate as she screamed like a girl, uh, well. To be fair, it was the second largest eel we saw on 13 full trips to New Zealand, 4 1/2 feet long with the head of a bald eagle hitting it. For the important part, she dismissed my growing brown color.
Long eels are native to New Zealand rivers and are amazing creatures. They gently go into their food search and cleaning business, really. They are fascinating to look at, pushing so easily around rocks and organic matter in the subsoil of rivers and streams.
If you stay on the spot, working with the growing brown on the island S, you will inevitably find a curious eel that is secretly climbing behind you to see what you are doing, your movements and scent arouse their curiosity . They are harmless, indeed, if you are agile enough to wash them aside or leave. If you really want to see them working, pack a can of tuna at lunch and throw a piece in the water just above a dark shore or a deep pool. Within a few minutes two or three eels will pick up the scent and come to investigate.
As I mentioned, they are curious about both movement and aroma. My last fish on the last day of our annual 3-month trip a few years ago clearly aroused the curiosity of an unprecedented eel. I followed that 10 £ coffee up and across the creek and turned to lower it. Being the last day of three months wearing them, no doubt my pants were a touch of fish and with rich aromas.
I landed that 10 + lb of coffee and got excited, relieved it came into the net. I like to hold large browns from the tail with one hand while holding the weight of the fish by placing the thumb and middle finger at the muscle node of each breast feather.
This leaves my index finger free under water. The moment I was pulling that big brown out of the water, I was oblivious to anything other than a quick camera shot and keeping the fish wet and then headed home. I just did not see the eel coming towards me, under the trout. My hanging figure was just too interesting for that eel. The occasional squeezing of my index finger from a firm mouth with rubber but aggressive sandpaper shook the hell out of me. Stay safe there people!
Article and photos by Dave Jensen, follow along with Dave and his wife Amelia on Instagram @jensenflyfishing.
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