We would expect that many of our readership from the angling community will know of the “we should keep a fish today” curse that rears its’ spiteful head and casts a shadow over what could have been an epic fishing day. For those that know not of this curse … it is that moment, in advance of the fishing day that an angler speaks aloud a wish to harvest a fish typically resulting in a “compromised” fishing day. More specifically “compromised” varies in severity, frequency of mishaps and in many instances can compound negative effects but simply anything that could screw with your fishing day. To be fair this is an unbiased curse affecting “harvesters” of every type … from meat hunter to druid and everything in between.
So ya … that happened.
Two earlier 2017 excursions to the Bullshead Reservoir by half the Exploring Alberta Team had reinforced the positive vibe of this great fishery with hard fighting Rainbow Trout. And one only has to harken back to Bullshead Reservoir, Boobies on the Bullshead and Serving Up Candy at Bullshead Reservoir to get a sense of what we love about the place. Having caught and released so many quality of fish that met harvest regulations it was time to satisfy that need to put a couple trout in the smoker. Today was the day and sadly… those words were uttered by (redacted).
The parking lot was slowly filling with anglers as we headed down the trail to fish along the eastern shore. Once settled into familiar territory it took less that 5 minutes before Silvia was into a beautiful specimen of a Rainbow Trout comfortably meeting the 50cm requirement. After a quick photo an “on the fly” decision was made to release this one believing that many more trout would be enjoyed throughout the day.
Strong, cutting winds began raging against our shoreline the moment that lucky fish thrashed its tail and disappeared.
We made as many casts against the unforgiving wind as we could and even managed to get consistently good presentations with all the usual flies and yet not a fish was to be coaxed. Not a bite, not a little “look see” … nothing. We couldn’t even hook weeds. Storms threatened the lake from all sides as they sheared by. Some might say that these weather events ‘put the fish off’, but we knew better.
After 6 hours of unrewarded casting we were unable to stand it any longer we packed up and slowly made our way back home. Vowing many times on the drive never to invoke this curse again. Embarrassingly we have had these same discussions too many times in our past.