Connection | Fly Fishing the Au Sable River | Pure Michigan
In that quietness, in the waiting, in the
anticipation, even though it’s still and quiet and calm… inside the way that you
feel about what could happen it is like electric. It’s a fire that’s
like, “Oh my gosh.” That’s the level of excitement that I have every time that I
go fishing. You know you go from level You know you go from level zero, you’re just sitting on the river, and in this case we heard and saw a big fish rise. Oh did you see that? All of a sudden you’re at a very
heightened state. You’re tuned in to that fish. You get in position, and at this
point your heart’s going and at the time all you want is to hook the fish, but
what’s actually occurring is the best part. That this special dance occurs it’s like sitting in at playhouse, and you don’t
know what the play is going to be or if there’s even gonna be a play, but every
once in a while the lights come on and it’s spectacular. And so when that connection happens
and you set the hook and that fish is there it’s amazing. This thing is wild.
We’re connected. Once you open that door, there are very few people that are able to close it. You’re pretty much down the rabbit hole and you’re in love with the river. My friend Kali and I are fishing on the Au Sable today. The only rivers I’ve ever fished on are from my hometown, just smallmouth bass. I’ve never
fished for trout before. Fly fishing is like an escape from it all stressful
things in your life. Yeah you’re really just thinking about fishing and you’re
not thinking about work or school. With a bobber at least you’re just sitting there waiting so you’ll like check your phone and see what’s going on in social media
whereas here you’re just thinking about where are the fish what kind I want to catch a big fish. There’s like a serenity but also it’s like a challenge. I think a lot of people think fly-fishing is going to be one sort of activity and they’re
surprised pleasantly when it’s a different sort. And they quickly open up
something inside of them that they didn’t know they had When you see it on a catalogue it’s
somebody smiling, casting, or you see it on a commercial, they’re casting and that’s the
excitement. It’s just, “Oh I just love this.” “Casting.” But they get out there and they
see the river and they either see a fish take something out the surface or they
have a fish come for their fly and they realize, no no no this is this is hunting.
Immediately they went from something where they thought they’d just be
standing in a river going like this to, “I’m trying to catch that fish.” And then they come in the shop and their questions are different. They take that back to the
river and maybe this time they raise the fish but they don’t hook them and they go,
“What’s wrong with a hook set?” And we get to walk them through that and it can really take off for people. Yeah each time you’re like, “Oh I did this wrong so I’m gonna
alter this with my next cast.” And once you catch a fish you don’t want to stop. Yeah.
Like you want to just keep going. You’re like, “Okay, I know I caught one and it was small but there’s more.” Never satisfied.
No, you want to keep going. There’s a puzzle there.
It’s like someone who likes to play crosswords. They know they can solve them.
It takes some time, maybe they won’t get it done before they have to go to work,
but they still love it. What keeps me coming back to the Au Sable… the mystery of it is what drives you. It’s the excitement that just stays in you. At the end of my fishing career — hopefully that’s a long way from now — one of the things that I’ll be most proud of with that is that my friends and family have all had really cool experiences and have all caught great fish sitting in
the front seat of my boat. My dad, my uncle, a lot of my friends, you know, some of their best trophies and their best nights have been with me on that boat. I’ve been fortunate to fish with my dad
and my son for the last few years and we take a Father’s Day float I just I’d
love to see that continue on where you know future generations are going to enjoy the same things. At the end of the day, it’s about camaraderie, you know, being
with people that you love. This trip was awesome and just being with the group we
had, it was super fun. I finally caught my first fish while fly fishing so…
It was awesome! Yeah.
Like, I’ve never… The feel and everything…
Yeah I’ve never held a trout before and it was cool. I want to catch more fish. I
want to try different areas of the river. it’s always like, “One more cast! One more
cast!” That that’s how it is with me for fly fishing. It’s it’s the the procedure
of it is ingrained as something I truly enjoy. So after I put the kids to bed,
even though I have to get up at 6:00 in the morning. I’m going fishing.