|McLeod and backdrop|
Some days it seems like all the bad luck comes at you at once. Friday, May 14th was one of those days. I've had some ill-fated trips but this one was so bad its almost funny.
McLeod lake is only 20 minutes from my house, and its a 5 minute walk from the road through the woods in the Hancock Tree Farm.
Again, I decided to take a Float Tube, this time my largish Fat Cat 4, which had just come back from the repair shop.
The comedy of errors began immediately upon my arrival at the parking spot.
- I open the back of the truck only to find that I'd forgotten half my fishing gear. Fine, so I drive 20 minutes home, get the rest my stuff, stop for a smoothie, and I'm back to the parking spot at noon.
- While pulling on my waders, something goes POP in my back
. I'm overcome with a paralyzing pain. I can't breathe; I'm thinking "this is it, I'm dying in the bed of my pickup with my waders half on, just like I always knew I would.
" Eventually the pain subsides enough for me to breathe and move, very, very slowly. Should I go home? No, Amy is having a girl party and I don't want to crash it. Besides, I took the day off, and I figure, if I can get to the lake the water will support my weight and I'll be fine. So I finish getting ready, very slowly, and proceed to walk to the lake.That 5 minute walk takes 35 minutes
as I have to stop every few feet to rest my aching back.
- At the lake now. As I put my float tube down I hear a "POP-fssssssssssssssssss
". The float tube seam has popped (again) and air is rushing out. I will not be floating in this float tube. Look up the sky. "God, am I not supposed to be fishing today
?" No answer. Well, I did bring a spare tube, and I did take the day off. So I begin the painful trudge BACK to the truck to get the spare tube.
- The round-trip to the truck, which normally would have taken 10 minutes, took almost 60 because the wrenching pain. I sit down and put a fin on my left boot. SNAP
, the strap that holds the fin onto my boot breaks. That's never happened before. I decide that if none of the above things was going to stop me, then a missing fin wouldn't either. I'd kick around with NO fins if necessary at this point.
Four hours into the trip and I'm just getting wet!
The good news is that once in the water, I felt no pain. The water suspended me and I forgot all about my back. Fishing was extremely slow, though. I caught one fish, on a large snowcone about 12' under and indicator. In fact, it was very nice fish
, one of the largest I've ever caught in the tree farm. McLeod can make them bigger than most of the lakes up there for some reason.
I took a picture of the fish.
But I lost my camera somewhere on the way home.
Of course. What a trip!