Monday, March 18, 2013

Having the faith


The Western Lady Hopper.  Pic from www.hopperfishing.blogspot.com
Anyone who has fly fished for more than one summer know how important believing in your fly.  Steelheaders know this to be an absolute truth, and it has a great impact on your trout game as well.  I have seen many days in the boat where only one angler has the faith, and consequently catches most of the fish.

I know few anglers that have more faith in a single fly than my friend Ralph and The Western Lady Hopper (WLH).  Excellent anglers, Ralph his wife Kim and I get to fish together every summer, and after the very first day we spent on the water I was convinced of the mojo that Ralph and his fly have.  About half way through our first float together, Ralph asked if he could tie on his own fly, The Western Lady. Were he in the bow of the boat he likely would have seen me sigh, roll my eyes, and then politely say, "absolutely, I love trying out new patterns!"

After one big bend in the river and 3 fish I was convinced.  It was not until this summer though, two years since my introduction to the western lady, that Ralph came full circle with proving to me how believing in your fly can make a difference.  During these two years I dedicated one small spot in my hopper box for ralph.  In that section sits half a dozen western lady hoppers that only get used one day a year, by Ralph.

Me, firmly believing in the WLH

This past summer, towards the end of another day that started, fished and ended with a western lady on Ralph's rod (the only day a WLH gets fished in my boat, I don't have the faith) the best fish that I got to see caught in my boat all year got fooled by the WLH.  Ralphs persistence and faith in a fly that I never fish proved to be all that was needed (and maybe a really good cast and drag free drift).


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