Posted by: Mario Carr | May 18, 2010

The moment — First trout on a fly rod

By Mario Carr

There is something magical about catching your first trout on a fly rod. Especially with a fly you tied yourself.

For me, it was an experience that I will never forget.

It was one of the hottest days of the year, and I left work early on an August day to join the rest of the members of the Izaak Waltan Fly Fishing Club at the Glen Haffey Fly Fishing pond.

I left work at about 3 pm from Mississauga and arrived at Glen Haffey about 30 minutes later.  So close but yet it seemed an entirely different reality because it seemed that I was way out in the wildernesses.

That is the beauty of living in Canada, nature is not very far away.

As I drove down the dirt road, I saw the sign for Glenn Haffey and made the turn into the Fly Fishing Club.  Weaving through the dirt trail I finally arrived at the pond.  The club has two stocked ponds, one with rainbow and the other with brook trout.

I parked the car near the pond with the rainbow trout and took one of the boats out into the pond.

I rowed the aluminum dingy out to the centre of the pond and dropped anchor.  I tied one of the many assortment of flies that I made while at the monthly fly fishing meetings and made my first cast.  Nothing.  I tried again and still nothing.  Not even a nibble. 

Hours went by but still nothing. 

Other anglers that day had nibbles, some had even caught fish but not I.  Determined to catch my first trout I stayed in the boat casting and trying different flies still nothing.

The day was slowly drawing to a close.  The sun was dropping over the pond and the orange light from the diving sun reflected off the pond.  It was a perfect ending to a beautiful  summer day.  Then there was a hatch coming off the water.  Trout were stirring and jumping to catch the emerging flies.

It was getting darker and I thought to myself that this is it another day that I will be skunked.  I prepared to pull the anchor and row back to shore but then I thought one more cast and that is it.  I pulled out a leach pattern and tied it to the end of my line.  I remember that it was so dark that it was hard to tie so I was tying mostly by feel.

I made the last cast of the evening and then it happened.  I felt the sudden tug and pull of the trout.  He was a lively fellow too. He was not going to be caught easily though.  He was going to make me work for the catch.  He pulled the line every way under the boat and across my stern.  He even made my four weight rod bend at the tip and I thought for sure that it was going to break. 

He gave a good fight and I slowly managed to real in my line. I had finally caught him.  He jumped as I tried to get the hook out of his mouth but I finally did it. 

I could tell the he was exhausted.  I don’t blame him because he gave a good fight and I was exhausted too.  When I finally carefully pulled the hook out of his, he just stayed there in the water looking straight right up at me for a few moments.   While looking straight into his eyes I felt as though we were sharing a momemt.

I said to him you are free to go and thanks  for the fight. And then it seemed he was preparing to say good bye he quickly swam away inot the the blackness of the ponds depths.

I rowed back to shore smiling because I was so happy and the moment stayed with me for months.

The fly fishing day was a reward to all of us that contributed to the annual Izaak Walton Fly Fishing Forum in Burlington, Ontario..  I was responsible for the event’s promotions and it was a success despite the recession.  We actually managed to raise some money for the conservation local streams and rivers in Southern Ontario.


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