View Full Version : Ol' Wierd Bob In The Fly Fishing Shop.

2011-Jul-13, 03:37 PM
So my good friend and life long adventure buddy Ol' Weird Bob has decided he's finally too old for poke pole fishing, being in his mid-fifties. Especially since they made his most productive fishing spot a protected reserve. And fenced off the route to his second most productive but still legal to fish spot. Said it was a sign God doesn't want him to do it anymore.

For those of you who don't go poke pole fishing, you fish with a long 12 to 20 foot pole with a stiff wire leader about two feet long at one end and a large baited hook. You stand in a rocky, tidepooly area and push the bait anywhere you wouldn't put your hand.

When something eventually bites it, you pull the pole hand over hand and you deposit some thrashing sea creature into a burlap sack that you wear like a postman's bag over your shoulder. The mouth of the bag is held open by a D-shape frame of wicker or wire.

Points not obvious in the above narration.

Two week-ends ago my brother, Bob and I are adventuring around in San Francisco proper and there is a seriously high end flyfishing shop and club within walking distance of the BART station.

My brother and Bob both have an interest in flyfishing and so they had the polite and enthusiatic salesman's attention. He told all the wonders of flyfishing, the lessons they give and on what days etc.

And how relaxing it was.

And Bob, just being Bob starts telling why he's quitting poke pole fishing. All calm like he was talking about delivering newspapers.

One of the reasons his favorite fishing spot was his favorite fishing spot was previous generations of poke pole fishermen had set large metal eyelets in the rocks at strategic points fairly far out in the rocky surf zone and at the right tides, in addition to your waders you would wear a climber's harness and carabiner off to these eyelets to fish. About once every fifteen minutes or so a wave would inundate you and this helped keep you in place.

Sometimes the sleeper waves cover you deep enough you feel a distinct pressure gradient before it retreats. You find yourself thinking, "Any day now..." with your cheeks all round from holding your breath.

Then there's actually catching something.

The two most sought after prizes in these forays are monkeyfaced and wolf eels. Go ahead, look 'em up. I'll wait.

Pretty gnarly beasties huh?

They have teeth and jaws that reflect the fact that they eat pomegranite-sized sea urchins for a living and you are pulling them towards your face while still very much alive and in waist deep water.

If you don't bag them with just the right timing (and hesitate with the fish billy) the eels will utterly slap the crap out of your face and chest with their tails. I've seen Bob come back from some of these trips looking like a domestic violence victim. Livid bruises on his chest even with all the clothing and gear you would wear standing in fifty degree (F) surf.

He had the fly fisherman's attention. The flyfisherman mentioned you really never get too old to fly fish. And almost never get beat up by trout.

Oh, the eels in question are utterly delsci...deles...delisc...yummy. Enough to make the endeavor worth it.

2011-Jul-13, 04:13 PM
And almost never get beat up by trout.

Unless you spend a lot of time in old-school IRC chatrooms.