A couple incidents really come to mind when thinking back on the season and the humorous events.
The first one is when the guy hooks this 10 or 11 inch grayling. He was in the back of the boat and we were just going under Jerry Ck. bridge. I heard him say all of a sudden that this fish was getting really heavy for some reason. Just as we went under the bridge he yelled to grab the net. I always have the net laying across the boat right in front of me where I can grab it quick. I looked back along side the boat and could not believe my eyes. This big brown trout had that grayling in it’s mouth and was not letting go. I grabbed the net, made a deep scoop and got em. Only then did that brown let go of the grayling. It was a 22 inch male with shoulders, biggest brown trout he ever caught. Took pictures and let em both go. Amazingly the grayling survived with just a few hash marks on it’s sides. We laughed about that for the rest of the day. The only thing we couldn’t figure out was if that was considered a legal catch or considered trolling with a grayling. I did get a couple snide comments about that.
The best one was with Charlie and checking for barnacles. We were anchored in shallow water in a braided section of the river and were using the drift boat. Charley was in the back of the boat. His partner got out and was wading up the channel a ways and was hooking into a few fish. I didn’t know it but Charley had decided to get out of the boat and join him. Old Charley has hip or knee problems, probably both. In other words he can’t get around too quick. When he went to get out he put one foot out and had one foot in the boat—-wrong. We were in no more than 2 feet of water and when his one foot touched the bottom the boat swung away like it always does in that situation. Of course when it swung away there went Charley down in the water and then the boat swung back on the anchor and right on top of him. I jumped out, moved the boat and grabbed him lifting him out of the water. He was choking, spitting, hacking and laughing all at the same time. It wasn’t the water he was choking on. Turned out when he went under he swallowed the plug of tobacco he had stuffed in his cheek. While he was doing all this he managed to blurt out “well there ain,t no barnacles on the bottom of yer boat”
Other people would not have taken this incident so lightly but Ole Charley has a great sense of humor. He comes every year with a group of guys who have been coming for many years. That night with cocktails and around the dinner table the story was told and retold about how Red Man almost choked Ole Charley.