Where does the time go?

Me fishing on the Beaverkill

Recently, in an effort to unclutter my desk and the surrounding area in my office, I began a clean up effort.  Most of the litter was easy to discard, and included a collection of photographs, paid bills, and various odds and ends, mostly unremarkable.  But there was one item that demanded my attention.  It was a dozen or so sheets from a notepad that had been stapled together, the top piece bearing a date: Saturday, June 2, 2007.

It turns out that this was a mini diary of a fishing trip I had taken to the Catskills over a decade ago. I can hardly believe it’s been eleven years since that trip, but it has.  I thought I’d share those special memories with you.  I have quoted the diary, word for word (with some notes of explanation).  I think trout fishermen will enjoy it.  I hope the rest of you do, too.

“Saturday, 6//2/07 – Left home 6:45. Passed Harrisburg [PA] around 3 p.m.  Decided to keep going. Stopped around 6:30 p.m. in Pine Grove, PA. Got room at Econolodge.  [I hiked two flights of stairs, making three trips, carrying all my expensive fishing tackle, and what luggage I had to my room]. Ate at Arby’s.  Asleep by 8:30 p.m.  Awoke at 10:00 p.m.  No A/C, no lights. Someone hit a utility pole, knocking out power. Loaded up truck, left motel 10:30 p.m. [The manager said he would be glad to credit me, but couldn’t do it until power was restored. I said I’d stop on my way back, in a week..]

Drove 77 miles to just outside Scranton – Super 8 Motel – Slept midnight to 6 a.m. [This time, I did not unload all my stuff.  In fact, I didn’t take so much as a toothbrush into the room.]

Sunday, 6/3/07 – Arrived Roscoe Sunday a.m. Ate breakfast Roscoe Coffee Shops. Saw Pat & Fred [Pat was former waitress, who, together with her husband, held regular water gun fights with the patrons.  She has since passed away].  Fished Sunday eve, 5:30-8:00 p.m.  Hooked approx. 12 fish, landed 8, all small.

Monday, 6/4/07 – Paul met me 7 a.m.at coffee shop. [Paul and I had been fishing buddies for 27 years. We fished just this one day, before he left to go back home. After this day, we never saw one another again.]  Had breakfast, then off to fish a nice run above the Roscoe Campground.  No fish. Went to Barnhardt’s Pool. No fish. Cemetery Pool –  some size 14 Isonychia showing, couple March browns.  No activity. Around 1 p.m., small gray caddis – some activity. Worked over 1/2 doz. fish for two hours. Several refusals. Finally caught 15” brown [trout] on ovipositing caddis. Nice fish. Had lunch Sunoco Pool. Fished 1 hr. – nothing!  Acid Factory [another pool on the river]. 1-1/2 hrs. Nothing.  Quit 4:20. Back to motel where I ran into old friend R.O.S. [Ramsey Outdoor Store, where I used to work] named Phil.  Took pictures. Will fish with him at 6 a.m. [tomorrow]. Paul & I had pizza at Raimondo’s.  Fair!!  Watched Stanley Cup.

Tuesday, 6/5/07 – Woke 5 a.m. – left 6 a.m. with Phil. Fished Cemetery Pool until 9 a.m. Stopped at Sunoco station for coffee cake & iced tea. [Gap here probably indicated a lot of hard fishing with no results until . . . ]  Fished Acid Factory from 4:30-7:30. Zippo.  Some Isonychia. Had one refusal to emerger. Dropped off Phil & went down to Upper Beaverkill before Junction [Pool].  Took nice, fat 12” brown on Isonychia parachute [fly].  Jumped 3X. Lots of Iso spinners. Quit 8:40.

Wednesday, 6/6/07 – Arose 4:45. Phil and I arrived Peakville [lower end of Beaverkill River near East Branch of Delaware River] around 5:45. N-O-T-H-I-N-G!!  C-O-L-D. Probably 48°.  Made a dozen or so casts with streamers to no avail.  Left around 6:45 a.m. Called David [my eldest son] around 7:15 and talked about his trip [have no idea which trip it was]. Went back to room and slept for couple of hours, then took Kuttner [Frank Kuttner, an old friend, and a repeating character in my Matt Davis mysteries] for lunch.  Returned back to room & hung out until around 4:00 p.m.  Went to Acid Factory & met Steve Donaldson from Mass.  Talked about 1-1/2 hrs, then went down to fish the river. Very patient, but virtually no activity. Sporadic hatching of BWO #14-18 [Blue Winged Olives mayflies], sulfurs same. Finally around 8:00, 1 or 2 fish rose a couple of times, pretty much out of reach. Made some casts, but no takers.  Quit 8:40.  Watched hockey!

My dear friend Charlie Marra

Thursday, 6/7/07 – Rose 5:30, overcast & cool (55°).  Met Charlie at coffee shop 7:00 a.m. [Charlie Marra, my dear friend, has since moved to Michigan, and it remains to be seen if we’ll ever get to fish again].  8:00 Acid Factory – fished ’til 11:00 a.m.  Nothing!!  11-12:00, got Charlie checked in [at motel]. 12:15 to 3:00 –  fished Willowemoc from Stewart Ave down to Junction Pool.  K-I-L-L-E-D!! All small. Hooked approx. 30, landed 17.  Charlie same or better.  Ate lunch/dinner at Cairn’s [Pool]; nothing happened. Got to Cemetery Pool around 4:30.  Absolutely nothing ’til 8 p.m.  8-9 smorgasbord, but no luck. [At least a dozen different mayflies and caddis flies were hatching. The smorgasbord was for the trout, which fed voraciously.]

Friday, 6/8/07 – Arose 5 a.m.  Charlie came by 6 a.m.  Started at Peakville around 7 a.m.  A couple of fish barely working.  I waded upstream of island & pricked 2 fish.  Charlie stayed at pool & caught really nice 14” fish.  Left water around 10:00, went for breakfast.  Fished by 191 boat ramp [a section of the West Branch of the Delaware, along PA highway 191]. Hooked & lost 2 small fish. Went back to Peakville around 1:30, stayed ’til 3:00.  V-e-r-y hot!  Drove to Peakville. Fished 10:00 ’til noon. Large fish taking small #16-18 olives. Guy caught the largest rainbow I’ve ever seen!!  Probably 22”-26” – 2-1//2-3;1/2 lbs.  E-N-O-R-M-O-U-S!!  I raised several good fish, but couldn’t hook up. Got hot dog around 12:30.  Back to motel for nap. Knot under left shoulder blade.  Got to Willowemoc 3:30.  Fished until 5:30. Hooked 7 fish, landed 3.  Last fish, best of trip, 14” – 15” brown. Nice jump. Beautiful colors.

THE END”


This was typical of the fly fishing trips I took every year, from the time I moved to North Carolina in 1999, right up until last year.  I have no trip planned for this year, but I pray to God I can resume the tradition in 2019.  I may live in North Carolina, but my heart and soul reside amidst those beautiful rivers of New York’s Catskill Mountains.


 

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About AuthorJoePerroneJr

I am a former professional fly-fishing guide, and I write the Matt Davis Mystery Series, which presently consists of five books: As the Twig is Bent, Opening Day, Twice Bitten, Broken Promises and Deadly Ransom. The series is set in the real town of Roscoe, NY, in the Catskill Mountains, where I guided for ten years. I love fly fishing, movies, cooking (and eating), and music. To learn more about me and my writing, please visit my website at: http://www.joeperronejr.com.
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14 Responses to Where does the time go?

  1. Lee says:

    Joe, I really liked your story (non-fiction) and can imagine how much you miss those special times on the creek. I’m a fly rod fisherman for fresh water bluegills and bass, and hadn’t been for the past twenty years, then last week an old high school friend invited me. Man, trolling along West Neck Creek as the sun broke the sky and allowing muscle memory to return me to fly fishing, then hooked the first nice bluegill was priceless! We’re going again on Friday. Buddy, the serenity and test of skill and good conversation is hard to beat, not to mention the beauty of that creek. I hope you’ll get back soon! Thanks for the story! Keep smilin’…and fishin’…

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Lee. I’m glad you enjoyed it. The largest bass I’ve caught on a fly rod is about five pounds. He actually towed around the john boat we were fishing from. Glad to hear you are a devotee of the long rod. 🙂

      Like

  2. allenrizzi says:

    The soul of a fly fisherman is never free from the waters of time. I still love my beloved Black Canyon on the Willamette in Oregon but i doubt I will ever see it again. But who knows? That’s the hope!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. balroop2013 says:

    Memories are a bliss as they help us relive moments we enjoyed in the past! Nice ones Joe. Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Allie P. says:

    What a nice trip down memory lane.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Richard Fuller says:

    Even though it was a washout, it was worth it. Just being on those beautiful streams is close to heaven.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. yolanda gernant says:

    I wasn’t going to read your trip diary but did and I enjoyed it. Time does fly! Really hope you get there in 2019.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Bruce Pfeffer says:

    Hi Joe, really enjoyed your reminisce of a special time and place. A great travelogue, but it was your special talent for capturing the heart that made the story so enjoyable. I guess that’s what authors do automatically. I imagine that Heaven will be a compilation of these wonderful times with good friends. But without the aches.

    Liked by 1 person

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