Middle River Dispatches is a gumbo of posts about fly-fishing, conservation, politics and days afield.

Counting coup


It is not always the best time for fishing, at least in the mountain streams here in Virginia. The water levels can be iffy and more importantly the brook trout are going about their biological imperative. Don’t want to upset that apple cart!

So with time on my hands I like to go scout out some of my favorite streams or pick a new blue line to investigate.

When I am fishing I tend to get a little tunnel vision. I am looking through the water so hard that I sometimes forget to look around and enjoy the view. I probably know my location on many streams by what the bottom of the stream looks like rather than what the banks or surroundings look like.

For me fall is a great time for hiking and sight (site?) seeing. I still look at the water but I really have a chance to see what is surrounding all that water. A chance to see where I am fishing not just what I am fishing.

Of course I tote my tenkara rod and a few flies. And while I am not looking to fish, if the brookies happen to be rising then I just might decide to float a dry their way. But in the fall I like to just count coup on them.

How to count coup

During the year some of my flies will get the hooks broken at the bend. I keep the Adams’, BWOs or ¬†Wulffs ¬†and use them in the fall. I am not trying to catch the fish, just trying to get them to take the fly.

Counting coup.

Kind fun and let’s them get back to the more important business of reproduction.

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