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Floating on the St. Croix National Scenic Riverway, we did not see a single home the entire float.
As we rounded a bend, a giant bald eagle swooped overhead and landed in its aerie. The boys found binoculars and watched the eagle’s head emerge from its enormous tangle of branches and debris as it surveyed the area.
Fishing had been slow. After the initial bass, I had a few strong takes, but nothing more.
Kathy kept casting.
Breaking a long silence, Kathy whooped: “Ohh! Ooooohh!! Oooh!”
Kathy lifted her rod and the tip arched toward the water.
“I think I got a hit!” Kathy said as the rod tip darted around.
It occurred to us that we never prepared Kathy for what to do if she actually caught a fish.
“Now keep pressure on the fish,” Wendy said. “Good. Good.”
It quickly became clear she hooked something much bigger than a decent bass.
After a brief fight, Wendy netted Kath’s catch: a 28-inch pike.
Both boys were enthralled with Kathy’s giant and toothy catch.
We took a couple quick photos and Wendy released the fish. The boys looked over the side as it swam back into the glimmering depths.
That night, we had dinner with Wendy and Larry and one of their guides. Wisner and his wife, Janice, joined us.
Fresh from the river and telling stories about the day, Grayson and Zach were already talking about coming back next year. Wisner and I made plans to float Wisconsin’s Chippewa River before fall.
A week later, Kathy stood in our neighbor’s yard with friends, practicing her casting.
Baird Helgeson is a political reporter at the Star Tribune. His family owns Tom Helgeson’s Great Waters Fly Fishing Expo.
|San Diego||12/12/13 7:25 PM|
|Washington||12/15/13 12:00 PM|
|San Francisco||12/15/13 12:00 PM|
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|Green Bay||12/15/13 3:25 PM|
|Cincinnati||12/15/13 7:30 PM|
|VU of Lynchburg||78||FINAL|
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|West Virginia Tech||42||FINAL|
Poll: Should the lake where the albino muskie was caught remain a mystery?