Writing on the Fly
By GEORGE LISET
January is a tough month to fish. The weather is cold, the rivers are freezing over and you have shorter days of the year.
There is no time to fish before or after work and the weekends are busy catching up after the Christmas season. Here in New Hampshire we have closed seasons on various bodies of water at certain times of year. The reasons vary from alleviating fishing pressure to allowing fish to spawn in peace. This is usually the time I start going through all my gear to see what I need for the upcoming season.
I am fairly organized. When I say organized, I don’t mean really organized. I am more like give me five minutes and I should be able to put my hand on it. I have plastic containers with all my fishing line and backing in it, my tippets, my flies, cases for my reels and pack baskets for my rods. I have bookcases and shelves for all my books, as well as an antique machinist tool box for all my fly tying materials.
I also have “The Box.” “The Box” is where all the odds and ends that I pick up during the year go. I have to organize “The Box” before I do anything else. This is a chore because I store everything in it. The reason I do this is because it is convenient and quick. All my other containers are stacked on top of each other, but “The Box” is conveniently located so that all I have to do is open the lid and drop.
The problem arises when I don’t get to organize and go through it which means twice as much work. This also means that I end up purchasing things I already have, tippet for example. I go through tippet like Jiffy goes through peanuts, so every time I see tippet at a good price, I pick it up and throw it in, you guessed it, “The Box.”
Everything goes in the box, flies, hooks, leaders, scissors, knives, bottle openers, weights, bobbers, fly boxes, line, old fishing license holders and anything else that will fit.
Everyone needs a box. It is the gift that keeps on giving. I started out with an old wooden cigar box that I really liked. I soon outgrew it. Then I used an old fishing creel that had a strap so I could hang it up. Then I outgrew that. Soon I started using the maple syrup box and the creel. I would put smaller items in the box and the larger ones in the creel. That worked well for awhile until I ran out of room.
Now I have decided to organize my box and creel to make room. So I have gone through them both and organized my collections of materials and paraphernalia.
Having done so, I realized I don’t need anything. However, it is after Christmas and there are a number of great sales going on. You never know what you may find. Maybe a bigger box.
A writer from Dover, George Liset writes about all things Fly Fishing. George has worked as a lobsterman, lifeguard, wrangler, boat captain, fishing instructor, and has traveled in most of the lower 48 states. Upon graduation from Wheaton College, Illinois, George began his teaching career and currently teaches in Dover and has coached Track and Field most recently at UNH. Liset has been published nationally and internationally in the area of track and field and coaching.