Chris and I were stoked to do a float on the Bitterroot this weekend. Everything was set up perfect. The weather was looking perfect, the fish (last time we fished) were very active and we even set up our dry fly rods in hopes of finding some rising fish. But even when everything is set up perfectly and you're expecting to have a great day on the water, the complete opposite can happen. As much as I'd love to give a full report of todays trip, I'm going to do mostly a summary of today, due to the fact that today just plain sucked.
We launched around 11:45 am, only a little off schedule. Our float would be about 6 miles and I expected we'd be done around 4 pm. We began fishing the first couple runs with no fish. I broke off one of my best streamers a few minutes later and had a tangled mess of sinking line. Chris had also lost a streamer. The only downside of streamer fishing the Bitterroot is that you'll probably lose a few flies. A while later Chris came downstream to where I was fishing a bend and told me that he had snapped his TFO 6wt. Long story. We moved on to fish the next run......
I had 2 fish in the run trail my fly, only to turn back into the current only feet away from me. It was a tease and I was really getting frustrated. While rowing in the next run my seat back for my pontoon boat that Chris had recently repaired for me, snapped. Its now officially/forever broken. In the next run I heard Chris yell something and I looked downstream to see what was up. All I could see was Chris frantically rowing to shore, against the current. He was going nuts for some reason and I just couldn't understand what the problem was. "What the hell is the problem!?" I yelled to him. The words "your fly rod!" came out of his mouth as he continued to row like a mad man. He had gotten snagged on a log and the rod was ripped right out of his hands. I thought for sure the rod was a goner because we were on a deep fast flowing bend. After looking for a while Chris found the rod still snagged on the log. I guess things didn't go completely wrong. A lost rod and broken rod would be the worst day ever. After breaking another fly off and getting another birds nest in my sinking line, I called it quits. I devoted the rest of the float to watching Chris fish and enjoying the views of the Selway-Bitterroot Mountains.
Now that I think about it, it wasn't a terrible day on the water, even though almost everything went wrong. However, that marks the last float trip I'll do this year. Floating is a great way to cover lots of water but at this time of year I think it'll be much more effective to work the water thoroughly rather than skip over good looking water.