Sunday, May 24, 2009

Fly Fishing in the Heart of an Ancient Volcano

12,000 years ago a series of cataclysmic events unfolded 20 miles southeast of present day Bend, Oregon. In the wake of these events Newberry Caldera was born. At 4x5 miles in diameter, Newberry Caldera is massive. It boasts one of the world's largest collections of cinder cones, domes, lava flows and fissures in the world. It has also been a gathering place for humans for centuries. The earliest documented gatherings in Newberry Caldera were by Native Americans, some of them travelling very far, where they traded goods for arrowheads. These arrowheads were masterfully crafted from obsidian harvested from the vast lava flows that snake their way through the landscape of this area. Also left behind were two lakes, East and Paulina. Modern day gatherings within Newberry Caldera mostly revolve around these lakes. My story takes place on Paulina Lake.
Scott and I arrived at Paulina Lake before the sun had made is appearance over the rim of the caldera. The water's surface was glassy smooth and there was a calm in the air that charged the feeling that today could, indeed, be an epic day of fishing. The mind is awash with tactics and techniques as we rigged our rods. The engine sputters and coughs as it comes to life and warms. The anticipation is building. Today could be great.
As we idle our way out across the lake we go over our game plan. We will start by working the shoreline on the southern end of the lake. At the dock I had readied my rod with my "go to" lake system. Tandem Buggers. Keep it simple. It didn't take long before we found a willing pod of trout. Fat, feisty Rainbows eager to take our offerings and equally as eager to get away. Working the shore further, we encountered more hungery Rainbows. The count was starting to add up but we still had not found what we were hoping to find, a large yella bellied Brown Trout. It was time for a location change so we headed off for the opposite end of the lake. There are hot springs on this end of the lake and we were thinking the warmer water would bring in the smaller fish and, in turn, the larger bullies of Paulina Lake. More trout were caught but we still did not find the prize. This is how it goes on the lake that gave up the almost 30 pound state record brown trout. Don't get me wrong, we caught alot of fish and they were all great, beautiful fish but when you know there is a behemoth Brown Trout cruising through the weed beds you can't help but be a little sad that you didn't connect with one. It also can haunt you. Insuring that you will return. Standing on a dock on a calm morning thinking today could be the day.


bobby savoy said...

sweet blog, mate. keep it up.

flynbird said...

Thanx Bobby. Glad you like it. I will surely try my hardest to keep it fresh.

dave lindsay said...

beautiful fish and a great read thanks