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Trouts Journal

Be Prepared - Backups are Important!

Ivan Orsic / May 9, 2015

A little over a week ago, I made the decision to take a few hours and head up past Morrison and fish Bear Creek. After checking the flows and loading up my gear, I jumped into the car and within 30 minutes I was gearing up on the banks within the canyon. I assembled my new Winston Nexus 3wt with an Orvis Battenkill II, put on my waders and descended down the bank to the Creek.

Within about 45 minutes, I successfully landed two Brown Trout about 10-12 inches in size. Fast forward about 10-15 minutes later I found myself hung up on something underneath the water’s surface. I pulled to the left, pulled to the right, and even tried pointing my rod directly at the snag and nothing was working. The trusty Rio Fluoroflex Plus Tippet was holding up! I tried pulling to the right one more time and…. SNAP! My brand new Winston Nexus 3wt had snapped into two pieces, directly below the third ferrule.

Now I grew up in the Scouts and “Be Prepared” was ingrained in my thick skull from a very early age. After a few seconds, I remember thinking out loud, “Crap...my backup is at home!” Charlotte, my trusty fly fishing companion, looked up at me and just shook her head. She knew that her afternoon frolicing through the thicket chasing after various wildlife was now over. We slowly walked along the trail back to the car, packed up and headed back to Denver.

Now, let’s be honest my day wasn't completely ruined, but the fishing was good and I could have easily spent a few more hours along the banks of Bear Creek. Sometimes, our travel time exceeds 3-4 hours before we even hit the creek or river bank. If I was fishing the Yampa, the Roaring Fork or the Frying Pan I probably would have shed a small tear. Moral of the story is that fly fishermen and women, spend a ton of time and money planning adventures around the globe. Whether you are fishing locally here around Denver or you're heading to a remote river deep in the Amazon, it’s always a good practice to carry a backup. Zero to Hero, packing a backup fly rod is sometimes all it takes!

Important Note: When I fished Bear Creek last week the flows were around 160cfs, the current flows are now closer to 1000. Please be careful out there and make sure you focus on foot placement when taking steps wading. A Simms Wading Staff might be a good idea this runoff season.

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