"In every species of fish I’ve angled for, it is the ones that have got away that thrill me the most, the ones that keep fresh in my memory. So I say it is good to lose fish. If we didn’t, much of the thrill of angling would be gone." – Ray Bergman
I don't think any of us can say that we have never lost a fish. I myself am a perfect example of this and trust me when I say that today's trip to the Arkansas River was filled with some of the most heartbreaking losses of my short fishing career. We have been experiencing some rather unseasonal weather the past week with temps dipping down into the teens and 1 to 4 inches of snow depending on your elevation. The change of weather seemed to have drastically changed the feeding patterns of the fish, and we were really only able to hook up in short narrow deep runs with extremely fast and white frothy water. The fast and deep water was holding some decent sized fish but they weren't hitting my stoneflies with any "gusto" and I struggled to get a good hook set and as a result lost at least 5 really good sized fish including one rainbow that went well over 20". The loss of said fish may or may not have led to an epic temper tantrum such as the Arkansas has never seen....
Regardless of the missed opportunities, I still consider every day that I am able to spend in the outdoors a gift, and I will cherish the memories of these days afield for many years to come. I am blessed at this point in my life to be living in one of the most beautiful locales that this country has to offer and days like today remind me that it is not always about our successes but the journey to these successes that is truly important. And I for one plan to enjoy the hell out of this journey.
One of the few that I managed to get to the net today.