I went all the way to Montana to be Nice…

by Rebecca on October 26, 2010

in Fly Fishing

~Say Hello To My Little Lips Friend~

…To Whitefish

Last year, on December 30th I made my one and only New Years Resolution for the year 2010. It was a risky pledge, one I thought might tumble into disgrace at one point or another, so for public accountability, I wrote my resolution…here~~> I Resolve, To be Nicer to Whitefish in 2010 or, for the quick refresher I wrote the following:

I, Rebecca Anne, lady who wields a fly rod, hereby swears not to cuss, kick water, roll my eyes, yank in or otherwise throw an un-lady-like fit when she discovers a whitefish has ruthlessly grabbed one of her flies in the year 2010.

And then, remarkably, I didn’t catch a single whitefish all spring…all summer…when usually the little buggers torment all my fly fishing trips. The absence of whitefish became a great mystery to me, almost like reverse karma. The more I got angry with them last year, the more they enjoyed toying with me. This year I pledged to be nice and suddenly I was off the catch rotation. I got lulled into a false sense of fly fishing security…I forgot about Whitefish. Completely.

And then I drove to Montana last Wednesday. And Thursday morning I hit the Madison River. When I felt the first tug of a fish on my line, a smile as wide a Montana broke out on my face and a minute later my smile turned into a grimace when I hauled in a Whitefish.

They found me! There was no escaping them on this trip and I hereby swear, I was nice to them. I even took a picture, so that’s a first and should count for bonus nice points.

So, basically, I drove 500 miles to catch Whitefish……..oh, ‘scuse me, Mountain Bonefish.
(ok, I caught other fish, but I’ll write about them later. Whitefish handling deserved it’s own entry)


{ 20 comments… read them below or add one }

Glynn @ A Reel LadyNo Gravatar October 26, 2010 at 5:47 pm

I throw fits when I catch perch. They are far from lady-like. You are not alone. :)


Functioning FishaholicsNo Gravatar October 26, 2010 at 6:56 pm

Up here in PA if you don’t catch a Bluegill you aren’t fishing… I used to get mad at em but then I realized I’d rather catch Bluegill all day than nothing at all (:


Emily B.No Gravatar October 26, 2010 at 7:13 pm

You are to be commended for posting the picture of “Little Lips”…maybe this will be the karma that you need to keep them from following you!!! And I’m sure that they were just the appetizer to the main course… : )


BillNo Gravatar October 26, 2010 at 7:14 pm

Catching whitefish has to be better than catching creek chubs. Talk about going from the highest of highs to the lowest of lows. Nice you stuck to your resolution.


KirkNo Gravatar October 26, 2010 at 8:41 pm

When you tried to not catch Ytfish, you caught them. When you quit trying to not catch them, you didn’t catch them. Apparently you’re back to catching them so you must be doing something right, or wrong.

Oh, and you shouldn’t swear.


MelNo Gravatar October 26, 2010 at 9:53 pm

You gotta’ love them Rocky Mountain Bonefish! Those dudes can mess up a great day on the water, and, on some cold days in the winter still provide something to pull on the end of your line. Sorry, we missed each other on your way through town. Come again and we can exercise some more of those Rocky Mountain Bonefish!


JeffNo Gravatar October 26, 2010 at 10:32 pm

so… on my first outing with this gal i’m getting to know, she lands a sweet brookie and i land a whitey. if the price i have to pay for fly fishin with a smokin hot gal is catchin whiteys i say… bring the suckers on!!! thanks for sharing Rebecca. hope your next trip up here to Montana is more fulfilling. keep it reel!


troutrageous1No Gravatar October 27, 2010 at 8:03 am

Look at that face…that little bugger deserves a bit smooch. Fish are fish to me, I’m happy catching anything – but I certainly understand the frustration. Glad to see you kept true to your resolution.


RobNo Gravatar October 27, 2010 at 12:55 pm

Now..now! Be nice…it WAS your New Years Resolution.

Now if I can do the same with the evil and always cunning lizard fish.


Kentucky JimNo Gravatar October 27, 2010 at 2:36 pm

Went to the river yesterday. Water was high and off color. Caught a “Sacramento Sucker” on the very first cast. I hate when that happens…


ShoremanNo Gravatar October 27, 2010 at 5:17 pm

OK, Jim. I’ll bite. What is a “Sacramento Sucker”?

Rebecca, you are a woman of restraint. After spring and summer without a whitefish, excuse me, Montana Bonefish, you didn’t lose your cool. Kudos.



WolfyNo Gravatar October 28, 2010 at 1:52 pm

Apparently it’s just me (since none of the previous commenters have said anything , and I KNOW Kirk would have ) but…

When I look at the photo, it looks like your thumb and fingers are touching together, literally squeezing the life out of the poor, helpless whitefish. Hmm – maybe you just THOUGHT you were being nice, when, in fact, the anti-whitefish sentiment that dwells deep inside actually made its way to the surface, causing a case of “Temporary Whitefish Insanity”

Or, maybe its just the picture



KirkNo Gravatar October 28, 2010 at 9:52 pm

Damn, Joe- you’re good. I missed that, and you’re right– I’d have called her out on it had my perception been acute. Maybe Rebecca was trying to purge its stomach contents to see what it was eating, so she could switch to something else.


RebeccaNo Gravatar October 29, 2010 at 9:46 am

Wolfy & Kirk,

IS that why that fishes eye looks so buggy? Perhaps I was squeezing it? Can’t say that I noticed. All I remember was saying outload — “look little dude, you’re getting a proof positive picture whether you want one or not so hold still…damnit”


BarryNo Gravatar October 29, 2010 at 5:30 pm

Rebecca – You had me laughing. The way you describe things and your terminology are awesome. Keep up the good work. I was also laughing because I’ve been there. Every year we go to Lake Erie for a walleye trip and the stupid Sheep-head won’t stay off our line. It just becomes a joke after awhile and we have fun cussin’ em and then throwin back in the drink.


ZachNo Gravatar October 30, 2010 at 9:18 pm

Dang. I was on the Madison the day before you. We just about crossed paths!


texasflycasterNo Gravatar October 31, 2010 at 8:20 pm

I saw a good recipe for whitefish recently. Does look like you’re putting the squeeze on the poor little thing.


Owl JonesNo Gravatar November 29, 2010 at 10:08 pm

I’ve got $50 if you can come down here and pledge to be nicer to creek chubs and horney heads. ;)


campnowNo Gravatar January 16, 2011 at 8:50 am

Were you squeezing the life out of the poor little w/fish? Naw….it just looks like it! lol I know what you’re going through, it’s like fishing for silvers and catching a northfork minnow! Grrrr


mel @ fishing guideNo Gravatar January 19, 2011 at 6:12 pm

Wow, what a photo. As to the resolution how long did you manage it? Love the humour a great read and fantastic to see a female fly fisher women writing about her adventures.


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