OK. At the time of this writing, I am sitting at my in-laws computer in western Ohio. The air temp outside is hovering around 25 degrees. The wind is blowing somewhere around 20 miles an hour which means the windchill compensated temperature feels like about 11 degrees Farhenheit.

Most of you already know I am a SoCal boy born and bred. Though the sun is finally shining, the world on the other side of the double insulated glass is … shall we say, stinkin’ cold and disorienting to a guy like me.

The sun is out, it should mean shirt sleeves and wet wading, right?

Between the in-laws house and the hotel where my beautiful bride and I are staying there are several small, interesting rivers. As we drove over them today, I glanced at the dark, swirling waters and my thoughts were not of potential Trout nestled up in the eddies and holes behind the bridge abutments but rather, images of Clarence, the angel character from the movie, It’s a Wonderful Life, flashed in my mind. Instead of picturing myself landing a massive Brown Trout, all I could see in that brief instant was me in water-filled waders flailing helplessly, screaming for help and hoping that a man of George Bailey-like character was nearby.

It was a sobering image.

After a hardy Ohio style breakfast of eggs and bacon (yeah, I know, but it is Thanksgiving weekend) complete with ketchup (appearantly there are only three spices in Ohio kitchens: salt, pepper and ketchup) I felt a little better and went outside in an effort to come to grips with this new-to-me phenomenom called stinkin’ cold.

I was doing alright until I ventured over to my father-in-law’s pond and saw his fish swimming beneath a sheet of clear ice.

I retreated back into the family home, grabbed the biggest cup of hot, black coffee I could wrap my numbed fingers around, waited for my earlobes to regain feeling and sat down in the comfort of the computer room.

Whilst thawing, I came across an interesting article written by a fly fishin’ Buckeye (that’s how folks from Ohio refer to themselves) which included a nice summary of fly fishin’ etiquette.

After noting the condition of my sister-in-law returning from her Black Friday pre-dawn shopping raid (rural America can be brutal), it seemed only appropriate to pass along such a timely article on the fundamentals of human behavior as it relates to our chosen passion.

Now I realize that this set of guidelines doesn’t include tips on what to do in the urban setting like what to do if you stumble across a drug deal or how to safely skirt a cultic altar or how to disguise your car to look like a homeless encampment rather than a mode of transportation but it is a useful set of rules that we, as fly folks should always strive to practice.

 So, with that in mind     


Stream Etiquette

By The Fly Fish Ohio Curmudgeon-in-Residence

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