Winter fishing can be so unpredictable, "predictable" it's almost so hard to explain. We fished a stream yesterday, the same one I fished Sunday. Both days were sunny and bright but that's where the similarities end. The days since Sunday have been colder and each day a strong wind was present. The stream had its stones exposed and were laced with ice, pretty from a distance but dangerous. Fly selection would be easy and presentation not a worry, the key would be to keep it near the bottom and fish it slow. I was a bit surprised when the fly I was fishing took a strike not more than 18" from where I was standing. The brown was on briefly but swam away rapidly.
We moved along fishing likely areas where the trout would be found. The wind picked up and the ice was forming on the guides. I suggested we take a break and visit a store and warm up with a cup of coffee...man that was good. Fishing for about another hour or so I did manage to get a nice brown to take my offering. Bringing a fish to hand in winter is so rewarding. We came to that point when fishing was not what we had hoped it would be this day and we packed it in.
Spirited wild brown...look at that tail.
Driving home my thoughts were of a crock pot venison stew I had made the day before. When I got home the first thing I did was heat it up and enjoy some internal comfort and joy at the end of this January day.