I mentioned a couple weeks ago that I would be “outta the office” for some time for my daughter’s wedding. I also hinted that we were making a little trip for the wedding and that the fishing gear was definitely going along. Time to give you a report. . . .
That trip was to one of our favorite places, western Nebraska. More specifically, we spent some time at Ft. Robinson. The wedding went great, we had a great time with family, sorry everyone had to go home so soon. Before and after the festivities, my son and I spent some time on the water.
First, let me tell you about the other notable event that occurred while we were there. On the day we arrived, driving to Ft. Robinson from the east, I believed we were driving towards clouds on the horizon. It looked like some thunderstorms were building. As we got closer, it finally hit me, those were NOT clouds. It was smoke, great towering pillars of ugly gray and black smoke. From the looks of it, it was coming from our destination! Here is a photo that one of my nephews took on their drive into Ft. Robinson:
The fire was just south of the fort. If you want to read more about it, the Omaha World Herald had an excellent story. We spent a lot of our time just sitting on the porch of our quarters watching the fire just to the south.
The effort fighting the fire was impressive! The fire flared up just the afternoon of the day of our arrival. By the time we got there, a variety of aircraft filled the air, tanker jets, helicopters, crop-dusters, and more. Likewise, with a pair of binoculars, I could see fire trucks and ground crews swarming the area. Some of our family even witnessed smoke-jumpers being deployed into the rough terrain. The Crawford fire hall is right on the edge of town, right beside the highway to Ft. Robinson and it was packed with firefighters and was a flurry of activity while we were there.
We were blessed with some leftovers from the wedding reception and took them to the fire hall to see if they could use some pulled pork and desserts. The place was packed with firefighters from all over Nebraska and adjacent states. Dozens, hundreds, of sooty, sweaty, tired firefighters milled around while we carried food back to the kitchen. I hope they enjoyed the cream puffs!
Nebraska National Guard helicopters flew water to the fire. They stationed at Ft. Robinson and we had the sound of chopper blades during the wedding ceremony. In spite of the job they were there to do, they took the time to show my nephews little ones the Chinook and Black Hawks. They made the day for those kids!
I wanted to mention the fire, because I wanted to state how impressed I was with effort that went into putting it out. I know, I was there, the wind blew the whole time and it changed directions constantly. The view from our porch was not good the first night, flames leapt from ridge tops dozens of feet into the air. The wind howled that night and I was afraid to see what it would look like the next morning. Fortunately, progress was made fighting the fire all night and all the next day. Yes, our clothes smelled like smoke, but by the time of the wedding, you could tell they had things under control. A huge THANK YOU to all the firefighters and first responders!!!!! You all were amazing!
Of course when we had time we snuck out to do some fishing. Ft. Robinson is a great place to do that, and there is plenty of trout fishing opportunity near by. My first short evening foray produced a brook trout. Not a large one by any means, but a step closer to completing my Trout Slam!
Yes, on the fly rod even! They would not go for the ‘hopper, but I could see some fish activity. Tied on dropper and a bead-head, midge emerger and had a take almost immediately. Then it was time to quit.
After the wedding, things finally settled down and my son and I snuck away for some more trout. It took a little bit to figure out what it took to get fish to bite, but soon enough he had a brookie too.
Not five minutes later, he completed his Trout Slam with a nice cutthroat.
It took me a little longer, but I finally “Got-R-Done” too!
In the process, we caught a few surprises! A very nice, chunky brownie!
A really nice cuttie!
Then just before we quit, a really nice “bonus” fish!
There was some more fishing done while we were on our trip, but those are the highlights. No trout were harmed in the making of this blog post, they are all still there, still swimming.
If you have not discovered by now, the fall bite is ON! More to come. . . .