Tuesday, May 15, 2012
Pay attention trout snobs! Throughout the seasons there are many a seasoned angler that slander the Mountain Whitefish. In the eyes of these prejudice anglers who elevate themselves above one of mother natures creatures, we have borne witness to the whitefish’ seemingly amusing retaliation. The local angler and western trout guide accustomed to sharing a day catching trout and mixing in a few whities enjoys the bend in the rod and realizes that cursing this creature will only yield greater nuances.
Although the whitefish does lack the coloration that seems for most anglers one of several justifications to believe trout are superior. Other justifications include the fact that they are not as acrobatic in their battles when hooked and are discriminated for their smaller mouths. Held below the trout for feeding off the bottom, the whitefish does indeed eat dries throughout much of the west. It just seems that the Colorado cousins prefer to feed along the bottom. Overall, the whitie seems to shake off these slanderous remarks. However, it should not go unmentioned that the whitefish does not completely ignore these remarks, especially when it seems to be carried on to an unnecessary degree.
There are many local anglers and guides that can bear witness to some of the whitefish’s fantastic displays of evening the score. To sourly curse the whitie to extent can oftentimes invite their wrath that in most instances could have been easily avoided by keeping quiet. It seems as if the Whitefish, by no small coincidence grows tired of the verbal non-sense strewn by the prejudice angler and mischievously indulges in a variety of angler insults. Quite commonly witnessed and very predictable when among an angler or anglers bashing the whitie, we all know how that day will end up for those individuals. How the whities senses and singles out the individual within the group is hard to determine. Quite possibly the negativity irritates their lateral line or maybe they simply grow tired of hearing their species being slandered.
Without hesitation the whitie spreads the word downstream and unselfishly they eat, foul themselves and intercept the prejudice angler’s flies. Wrapping rigs around bottom hazards, cutting in front of trout to intercept this angler’s flies and often foul hooking themselves. Only relinquishing a scale to keep such an angler wondering what was on the end of their line before the hook pulled free. With the world class whitefish that reach 3-5lbs, our local rivers leave the angler guessing whether that was one huge trout! Interestingly, it needs to be mentioned that the anglers that do not slander the whitie will catch vast numbers of trout and the largest ones of the day. Since the whities are pre-occupied with the foul mouthed angler’s flies, their cohorts reel in trout all day. The whitefish separates and distinctively distinguishes the non prejudice angler’s flies from the prejudice angler’s flies. At the end of the day with few trout landed this superior angler, frustrated from hooking so many whitefish has the worst to come. Now one must endure the heckling and joking that follows off river over cocktails. This incidence will re-surface many times over when fish stories arise, promising not to escape this angler! Comments like the whitie catcher king and Joe can’t catch a trout will resonate in this angler’s mind for awhile. If only one was quiet and humble.
It is known that even hard core trout snobs have been seen smiling with a whitie on the end of their line on slow days. This smile will quickly vanish and be denied upon approach or when questioned by a fellow angler. Just remember that the whitefish is a worthy adversary and can bring great joy to kids, beginning anglers and to anyone having a tough day. They live amongst many trout and can be encountered throughout the west, so be careful of how and where you comment upon this fine species. Thankfully they can’t perceive your thoughts.
Written by Will Sands - Taylor Creek Fly Shops
Photo courtesy of Kirk Webb - Taylor Creek Fly Shops