By GEORGE LISET, Writing on the Fly
It’s Fall. Well, not officially, but there are signs. Hurricane season is a sign that Fall is around the corner. As I am writing this I am waiting for Hurricane Lee to make some noise. In my earlier years, I spent some time living in the Carolinas where hurricane season is a little more significant.
Hurricanes in New England are usually no more than a good Northeaster, although there have been a few exceptions over the years. As long as you have a couple of candles and a Coleman stove you are usually good to go. Another sign that Fall is upon us is Septemberfest at Kittery Trading Post (KTP).
Going to Septemberfest at KTP has become a family tradition over the past 23 years. It started when I needed a bigger canoe to entertain my growing family. I had at the time a twelve foot Great Canadian. I loved that canoe. It was easy to transport and to maneuver. However, the last time I went out with my son Reed, I found that we had no freeboard. It seemed every wave we encountered ended up inside the canoe.
I then headed over to KTP and found a nice 16-foot Old Town Discovery that would hold three adults. The sales associate informed me they only had two left and that if I came back on Labor Day, which was the beginning of Septemberfest, the canoe would be on sale. The sales associate also told me I would have to come early and sit in line if I wanted to ensure I would get one of the two canoes because they were a popular model. Then he mentioned that the first fifty people in line would get a free KTP t-shirt. I was sold.
I got the canoe and the t-shirt and have been going ever since. I always go early for the free t-shirt but have been able to get some great deals on fly-fishing gear. This year was no exception, I am a “Gear Hound”. I could not tell you how many fly rods and reels I have. Most of them were great deals. The Douglas rod I found this year was no exception.
I found an eight foot, six inch four-piece, five weight Douglas fly rod at about 50 percent of the regular price. I put it together and it felt so great in my hand. It was balanced and light. I have a few Douglas rods and enjoy them thoroughly. I put it in its case and carried it around the store debating on whether I needed it. I finally convinced myself that I would use it so I headed to the checkout and headed home.
As soon as I got home I texted my son Reed and sent a picture of what I had purchased. I was giddy like a kid in the candy store. Reed texted me back and said, “You already have that rod.” I texted back “Are you sure?”
Reed replied “I am sure. It is the rod that you found in the back of your closet that you let me use up in Pittsburg. It’s the one I caught all those fish on.” Still not convinced, I asked “Are you sure it was a Douglas?” Reed then proceeded to text me a picture of the rod with a laughing- until-you-cry emoji!
I sadly returned the rod and decided to take a ride up north to fish. I hit one of my favorite rivers in Alton. The water was still too warm for salmon or trout. I did get into a bunch of panfish on my light rod. There was a light breeze which caused some leaves to fall. The leaves were beginning to color up and looked like so many sailboats during Quincy Bay race week. Another sure sign that Fall was around the corner and that the fishing was going to pick up.