Pigeon River Days

We spent the morning today fly fishing on The Big East Fork of the Pigeon River, Dark Prong section, in the Pisgah National Forest in North Carolina. It’s stunningly beautiful, and remote — you need to hike for about a half hour down into a gorge to find just the right spot where the water is a fish’s dream. Not surprisingly, we didn’t see anyone else on the river.

Our morning reminded me if the classic Hemingway short story Big Two-Hearted River, where the narrator painstakingly prepares for a day of fishing. It was a bright day, but we were mostly under shade. The water was so cold you could feel the temperature through your waders as you worked your way upstream, in search of the elusive brook trout. I caught an eight-incher, admired its beauty, then released it, and the world of work seemed very far away.

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