Wednesday, June 20, 2012

My Daughter and Taking Her Steelheading

No matter who you are, life brings changes and like most when you have children it is not always easy to go fishing. Being able to work in a profession that allows me to have four days off a week has always been a blessing, but recently as well as over the last two years, things have really changed in my life.

Today life has been more about my daughter and though you all think of course when you have kids, its a little different for her. Recently and due to a long painful process, my daughter Lillian has returned to my home. Being someone who thought I would never get married or have kids and believed would become some kinda fish bum with a day job had his life changed 6 years ago when Lil entered my life. Though I never thought it would happen, it indeed has changed my life for the better.

Through the years I have taken Lil fishing, but never took her steelhead fishing. It just too hard and something you do not do with young children who have short attention spans. But recently with a new raft in the garage, a daughter who is out of school and keeps talking about wanting to catch a big steelhead not to mention perfect  weather conditions, I had to try it.

So this morning a good buddy of mine brought his daughter out with us and the four of us floated a short stretch of river. Needless to say we were not the only people on the river, but got some good water to swing. Instead of fishing, Lillian was content playing on the boat and on the banks. I was not sure how she would do and when I stepped into the first run, I found myself swinging to the sounds of giggling girls on the banks. After literally a few casts and paying more attention to the little ladies in the boat, my line stops and without setting the hook, feel two head shakes and then off. Not a big deal since I was more concerned with Lil then the fishing.

A few hours later the gals were still enjoying themselves and making a couple casts into another run found a player. I got a good grab, good set and a feisty chrome rocket was melting the Hardy. Though I did not land this one either, Lil got to see the fish wreck me, running, thrashing and jumping everywhere. The girls were  excited to see it all happen and a few minutes later I hook and land a large pikeminnow. Nothing special and anticlimactic for you and I, but the gals just loved it and were extremely excited to see it and hold it. It did not matter what species it was and the smiles on their face were priceless.  Lil also made a big deal about letting it go and I was happy to hear her say those words.

By noon we were having lunch in town and found the trip a great success. There are still bugs to work out like trying to teach a young girl how to pee in the ourdoors. Not an easy task for a dude, but I have confidence she will have it down by the end of the year.

Lillian and I on Father's Day, not a steelhead but her first fish on her new pink rod. I am so excited to see her excited to get out the door and cast a rod and enjoy the outdoors. I failed in teaching her mother the importance of fishing and how I sought to do it from the standpoint of why I do it, and not just the process and the fish. I hope Lillian learns this, or at least learns about her father along the way.


city said...

nice posting.. thanks for sharing.


great write up! Mike,
you are a super father!

Just call me Gamby said...

Dude, THAT is what it is all about...

Next time, Me and My lil girl will tag along.

northernbliss said...

She has an excellant teacher - and as far as peeing outside, don't worry, when you gotta go, you gotta go - she will find a way that suits her. I did.
But I like to see girls fishing - as I've said - we need more of us out there on the streams, rivers and lakes.