It’s good to have a hobby. In the case of the Captain, fly fishing is no longer just a hobby, it’s … well … to use his father’s words, “an obsession.” But when you’re obsessed with something, and you do it a lot, you get to be good at it. Fishing from the beach in the fall when the cohos are hovering nearby, is one of the big thrills of the Captain’s life.
Here is a coho, thumbing his nose at the Cap, just after the line has been laid. Chances are good that this very salmon might swim near where the Cap has gently landed a fly he has tied. The coho won’t be able to help himself. He’ll snap at the fly and then wonder why he is being dragged slowly towards the shore, no matter how hard he fights to swim the other way.
But things are not always so easy. Sometimes the Cap arrives at his favourite beach to find that it is already occupied. It’s a family having a picnic. Mama Bear is near the shore, easily turning over 70+-pound rocks with one flick of her wrist, to expose little rock crabs that scurry for cover after they get over the shock of the sudden daylight. Mama Bear grunts for her two cubs to come have breakfast. See the second cub way over on the right, by the big log?
This day, the Cap putters on a little farther in his skiff to find another beach. Mama Bear can get a bit tetchy over unexpected company coming near her cubs.
The Cap gets up very early to take his place on the beach, but apparently bears get up even earlier, and since they are bigger than he is, he abides by the well-known saying, “Discretion is the better part of valor.”