Monday, December 15, 2014

The Mis-Clip

The take was great, ripping the running line out of my hands.  I was running a solid skunk and had begun to question just about everything I was doing.  Wrong fly, wrong tip, etc.  What was really going on was that I was steelhead fishing, and the mind bender that it is was taking a grip.

Everyone has been there, it was just my time to go through it.

One small jump followed by several nice runs and the fish was at hand.  Beautiful 8-10 lb fish with fire in her belly, but a question to her origin.  All the other fins were perfect, and the fight in cold water made me think she was born in river gravel

The first thing that came to my mind when I saw the adipose was a mis-clip.  The razor blades at the hatcheries dont all ways make a clean cut.

But still when you're on the bank ready to make the bonk or no bonk decision, that doubt came creeping in and the last thing I needed was the grey area causing me to get a ticket.

More research after the release leads me to believe that I would have been fine to keep it, but it was a snap decision on the shore that had to be made that put the fish back into the river.

Hindsight is 20/20 and that fish should be in the smoker but I'd rather find myself on the right side of caution

Which leads me to another question.  What would have you done?


  1. Good call, looks and sounds like a wild on. This time of the year jumping and running brats are few and far between. Hell even in October, that can be really easy to tell apart on the end of the line. Clean dorsal too? Yeah, better safe than sorry. I don't think you'd get a ticket.

  2. You made the right call. Better safe than killing a wild fish.

  3. My age is a sort of guide with some experience. I have always been of the mind to enjoy the moment savor it and sit back with a sandwich or cup of coffee and enjoy it in my mind for a little while. with doubt and a great fight and reassurance at a time when you doubted yourself........ a good release is a wonderful thing to remember. If you use a log make note of the fly, it worked!