In between camping, golfing and, of course, eating, Nick and I found time to learn how to fly fish on the Elk River in Monterville, Randolph County, WV.
Admittedly, I do not golf. I have zero depth perception and I limit my golfing to be a golf taxi. Most of our camping trips involve golfing and the beach. Since there was not a beach nearby on this trip, a trip to the river was a great substitute!
My fishing skills consist of turning the channel whenever River Monsters comes on. He threw down the gauntlet of a Mother-Son fishing tournament and it was game on from there. I won’t go into the dozens and dozens of people who told us how difficult it is to cast for fly fishing (it isn’t) or how dangerous the waters can be (they weren’t) or how boring fishing can be (fly fishing wasn’t!).
We paid for a fishing guide at the Elk Springs Resort in Monterville, WV to teach us how to cast, fish and locate the fish. Our guide was awesome. He was extremely patient with a slightly bickering angst filled teenage son and frustrated mom while teaching us the basics of fly fishing, baiting our hooks, helping net our fish and unhooking them. We could not have accomplished a day of fly fishing with him. It was great that he was a local and knew these waters well as a regular fisher with his own son. His love of the sport, and patience, really came through.
These waters are practically magical to me. These waters are where my ancestors lived, fished and worked. Just one mile down the road is a hidden cemetery where my 3rd great grandfather is buried and marked by just a large stone. A patriot of the War of 1812 who walked along the same riverbank that I walked with my son today.
This experience taught me to step outside of my normal activities and do something that my son really wanted to learn. I could have left it as an activity for him to do with his Dad but I would have missed out on a beautiful day on the river and a cherished memory that will live forever. Oh, and I caught the biggest fish that day. Nick caught the most fish including the impressive Brook Trout pictured below.