Wednesday, April 04 2012 @ 08:38 AM EDT
Contributed by: Ian Roberts
Had a request to place this on this board.
I guess it all started back when my Grandfather had asked my dad to turn up the garden area with the pitch fork while he was at work. Wouldn’t you know it! When my Grandfather arrived home he found the pitch fork stuck in the ground with 1 turn of earth removed and my dad no where to be found. Damn that boy!! He found worms!
As my dad grew older he became more involved with fly fishing and tying and by the time he was in the service, he was stationed in Mountain Home, Idaho.
To anyone who has ever been out west, I’m sure you know how this part of the country can excel one’s fishing ability. This being the mid 60’s and me taking a trip out 13 years ago, I can only imagine how it was back then. My dad was not an exclusive fly fisherman, however he loved it and having fished places like the Snake, Salmon, Wood, Blackfoot, Henry’s fork and his favorite hang out Silver Creek, you can imagine he was an accomplished angler.
My brother and I would go on day trips to our local river only to be humbled by his ability to hook and catch fish. I once watched him hook and land a 5lb pickerel from a river on a 2oz jitter bug with 2lb test. I myself at this time of my life would not have been able to cast a 2oz anything with 2lb test without snapping he line.” I was amazed!” He was amazing!
As a kid I use to look at all the Polaroid photo’s and listen close to all the stories of big sturgeon and coolers of rainbow trout traded for lunch and beer’s at the local watering hole on the there way home. It sparked a will in me I’m not sure my dad realized until later on in his life. It made me pick up my first fly rod at the age of 9. Going down to the local pond to catch Bass and Sunfish off the spawning beds with cow duns or any other wet fly I could sneak from his lifetime supply of fly’s. I would go out back in the marsh during winter months to practice my casting. He saw the love I had for fly fishing and showed me how to tie fly’s using his fingers to do a whip finish not a tool. He use to tell me there was nothing more important than a properly per portioned dry fly and a drag free drift, Then bought me my first graphite rod when I was 16 or 17. It was a 7’ 4Wt. (purchased because it was the perfect rod for Little Ossipee river) He set me up with a glass 9Wt rod and old reel he had so I could go Striper fishing and after he saw how addicted I was, Purchased me an Orvis set up for Christmas, He taught me everything I know about my old user name on this site. (“The 3 P’s”, Patience, Persistence, Presentation.) And at times would post himself under 3 P’s dad.
He was a believer that anything in fishing or life could be achieved if you could exercise these 3 principals and did his best to instill that in me. I took him to the rapid when I was in my late 20’s or early 30’s with Lee G. and he had told my Mom fishing with his son was humbling! I never found this out till this past year!
We lost “John” My dad, back in Aug of 2011 from liver cancer. Came on fast and unfortunately ended his life fast. Guess in all rights it was a blessing it was quick for he would never had let an animal or fish suffer himself. He was an extremely intelligent man with and exceptional since of humor very much a wit! He will be missed dearly, but will live on not only in my heart but at the end of my arm as well.
I have now inherited an arsenal of equipment most people could spend a lifetime trying to acquire. I will also spend every fishing day this season using this equipment to catch the fish he wanted to catch on them and never did. A Orvis 9’ PM-10 8Wt w/DXR reel, and spare spool w/sink for my striper fishing, A 8 ½’ HLS 4wt w/Battenkill 3/4 and spare 3Wt spool, 7’ Small Stream 5 Wt w/Battenkill 5/6 and spare spool w/sink, a Cortland GFR1000 6’ 4 Wt (like my 1st graphite fly rod he purchased me only in a 6’) w/ medalist ¾, And all his tying stuff.
I am not sure as what prompted me to write this other than perhaps some closure for myself. I will forever be grateful for all he did for me and his family. My family!
“I” like (Norman Mclean) will also be haunted by waters!