Sunday, February 8, 2009

One Fish.. Two Fish.. Red Fish.. Blue Fish

Last fall, before I'd ever even picked up a fly rod, Seth took me fishing up on the Ogden River. The Ogden River is another one of my favorite places to fish because it's so close by and it's easily accessible. There are a lot of trout in the Ogden River, but because they see so many fishermen, they are very smart. It's pretty tough to actually catch fish there.

On this particular day, Seth was fishing upstream from me. He was close enough that I could still see him, but not close enough to talk back and forth. I was standing in the middle of the stream fishing with a worm on my cheap Quantum spinning rod when I looked over and saw something underneath some branches that were overhanging the river.

I saw what looked like a bright blue fish. "It couldn't be," I thought as I slowly maneuvered closer to the oddity. I got pretty close, not more than a yard away and looked down in the water. There sitting between the fork of a downed branch was a giant blue fish. I thought it had to be some weird reflection, but no. From its head to the tip of its tail, that fish was as blue as a Smurf. It was one of the craziest, most beautiful things I'd ever seen. I had to show someone! I tried to motion to Seth to come over but was afraid to yell for fear of scaring the thing away. Seth looked at me like I was nuts and kept on fishing. Here was this amazing thing and nobody would ever believe me. "Maybe I can catch it!" I thought. I put my worm down in the water and drifted it past several times. Nothing. I ended up just dangling it right in front of its face until it got spooked and swam off. I don't know where he went after that.

Of course when I met up with Seth awhile later I told him about the amazing blue fish I'd seen. He kept assuring me that he believed me, but I could see the doubt in his eyes. I knew from the look on his face he thought I was crazy. "Maybe it was somebody's pet carp," he finally said just to get me to drop it. "Maybe so."

Months and months went by. Every once in a while I'd think about my blue fish. I'd decided it was a magic fish. Had I only caught it, it would have turned into a genie and granted me three wishes. I constantly wondered if it could still be there.

More than a year after my blue fish sighting, Seth and I met up with one of his old buddies, Travis. Travis just happened to be in the fish hatchery business. Naturally we talked about the different fish he'd stock in lakes and all the crazy experiences he'd had doing so. After holding back for awhile, I finally piped up and mentioned how I'd seen a blue fish once. I'm sure Seth was sitting on the couch next to me thinking, "Oh great, here she goes again with her blue fish story... now everyone will know she's crazy." But, to my surprise, ol' Travis came through for me. Not only is there such a thing as a blue fish, but a blue TROUT! Not somebody's weird pet carp!
Apparently blue trout are very rare, just like albino trout. However, blue trout cannot reproduce and so they cannot be raised in hatcheries like the albinos are. They usually don't get very big because they are so easily seen by predators, but my fish was at least 18" long if not more. It was huge!

So there you go. I'm not as crazy as you think. There is such a thing as a blue trout, and maybe one day you'll get to see one too!