An unexpected day of casting practice


October 15, 2016

The cool water of the Merrimack River in Allenstown NH is crystal clear this morning as we launch our 14’ Jon boat loaded with all the fishing gear we need to stalk our quarry. The lack of any recent rain has made sure that there is no sediment flowing in the water to cloud the visibility of the varying currents. I love water where you can clearly see into its depths and know what’s down there. You can see the natural structure of the river… the curves, the humps, the holes, the large boulders left behind the river’s glacial beginning, and if you let your mind go, you can almost imagine the birth of the river.  I drift within my thoughts, imagining the infinite weight of a thousand year old glacier digging the trench that will one day become this beautiful stretch of river. The clarity of the water makes me want to go swimming but even though the steam rising softly from the surface is a telltale sign that the water is warmer than the air, it is not enough to entice me into a swimming suit.

The fishing is hopeful as the weather is supposed to produce a wonderful day with clear skies and warm sunshine being dropped all around us. We begin by going upstream to the Dam building where you can usually find a fish or two. We found nothing.dam-2

Then we cast into the rapids below the dam where you can always catch fish. We didn’t though.falls   dam

Next, as we drifted downstream we came across a couple of foam patches. Foam creates a great hiding place for fish, but for us there were no fish hiding there.

foam-1   foam-2

We tried at the lee of the boulders sticking out of the water where current curves around them, bringing food to the fish. But it seems the fish weren’t hungry.


The only wildlife we were going to see today was the group of Cormorants (affectionately known in the area as Shitpokes) that were watching us and giggling with amusement at our empty casts.

birds  heron

At least we got to experience the beauty of the area.


Before we knew it and without even thinking about it, our casting changed from trying to catch fish to seeing if we could get our casts into the spots we were aiming. We would call out our casts as we sent our lines under overhanging branches and between limbs of fallen trees sticking out of the water. We may not have had any luck with the fish, but it was still a heck of a day to be out on the water with my brother practicing our casting.

remember: good company + good fishing = great memories.

tight lines, the Amateur Angler

3 thoughts on “An unexpected day of casting practice

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