Keeping secret fishing spots secret

Published 11:34 am Tuesday, August 23, 2022

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There are certain questions that you should never ask another person. These include a woman’s age, who a person voted for in the last election, and the location of my favorite fishing spot. I’m not trying to be mean, but if you ever ask me this question, I will only give you a vague answer. It’s just a private matter. 


You may think I’m crazy, but I have my reasons. Unfortunately, in the past, I have bragged about how many fish I caught in a certain place, only to see a bunch of people fishing there the next time I was there to fish. Of course, they were fishing the exact same flies and lures that worked so well for me. 

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I tried to tell myself my big mouth didn’t ruin this spot, but upon asking the folks in my fishing spot what brought them here, I would usually get an answer like, “My cousin knows a guy whose friend told him this guy named Philip caught a lot of trout right here with a purple wooly bugger.”


I’d introduce myself as Philip, and hang my head because I knew it was my own doing that ruined the spot. 


Maybe the spot wasn’t ruined. They still seemed to catch piles of fish, while I went on a search for a new spot that would stay secret. 


I recently returned from a trip to Glacier National Park (I now believe bears exist for those that read my last column). While hiking a trail, I tried my luck in a trail side stream. To my surprise, we caught many good sized trout.


As we walked the trail, I remembered the error of my youth as folks asked us if we caught anything. My responses ranged from,”a few here and there,” to “well, we are having fun in this beautiful scenery.”


I wasn’t lying, just holding my cards close to my chest. We were catching a few here and there, and lots of “fews” here, there, and everywhere.


Not so long ago I fished a section of water closer than Montana, where I caught plenty of good sized fish one morning. This particular day they were eating grasshopper imitations off of the surface. Seeing a 20 inch trout attack a mouthful of foam and fur off the surface is my favorite type of fishing. 


Against my better judgement, I will tell you where I was fishing. In Pisgah Forest, N.C. there is a fly shop called Davidson River Outfitters. The folks there manage a section of river wonderfully. They can limit the amount of anglers on the river giving everyone plenty of room to fish. 


When checking in at the shop, they will let you know what flies have been productive and what techniques may work. If you need more guidance you can even hire a guide to help you catch fish on this section. 


Whenever I am gifted a pass to this section for my birthday or Christmas, it fills me with joy knowing I’ll have a day of fishing a premier stretch of water. 


Since they keep the numbers low, I’m happy to tell you about this favorite fishing spot of mine. My other spots, though, will remain a mystery


The author with a nice rainbow at his secret spot.