The drive takes about 5.5 hours from Cincinnati, but it isn’t too bad a drive. Once we got off the highway, we both enjoyed the landscapes that spread before us. Elk Springs is located just about 30 minutes from Snowshoe Ski resort. I am already thinking about a combo ski/fishing trip.
We were greeted to a new, well-manicured, and rustic lodge/restaurant surrounded by spring fed pools containing “pet” trout of all different sizes.
|Everyone seemed to enjoy hanging out on the deck.|
|Louisa loved watching the pet trout.|
After checking in and getting acquainted with our accommodations, we got into waders and headed for the river which is no more than 50 yards off the deck. Many guests were already here casting to rising trout as clouds of mayflies began their evening ritual. We fished for about an hour before taking a quick dinner break in the restaurant. The lodge if fine with guests wearing waders and boots into the building which was very convenient. After dinner, we headed back to the river and even though we both had several fish hit our flies, we didn’t land any.
|Not kidding, 50 yards off the deck.|
After driving and fishing till dark we were pretty tired. We went to bed early ready for the next days adventure. We awoke to a light rain and a bit of fog, but took the opportunity to enjoy the sights.
|Looking like a fisherman|
|A stone fly we found hanging out on the porch.|
We met our guide “Wild Bill” later that day. He pointed out all kinds of insect life that could be relevant to us as fly fishermen. Seeing bugs like coffin flies and stone flies was pretty cool. We started with some casting practice to determine our skill set, then we spent some time fishing on the spring creek that winds through the lodge’s yard. This provided a great place for Louisa to practice presentation and fighting fish. I also needed some practice setting hooks after the previous evening.
|The first few fish were a bit of a challenge to hold onto.|
After a late lunch we headed to the river to fish. Great looking water and lots of bug action.
|Louisa caught the first fish. I was super proud.|
We had been waiting all day for the hour before dark when the bugs would really starts hatching heavily. Unfortunately, just as the hatch was getting underway and the fish were throwing caution to the wind, a little storm rolled in. It rained, thundered, and threw lightning bolts for about 20 minutes before clearing up. We got back in the water, but the hatch had gone on pause and neither of us had any luck. After dark when everyone was finished fishing, the bugs began hatching to the point that entire light posts were covered in mayflies.
All in all, it was a great mini-trip, but we both know we need to go back and give it another shot. Something tells me, a few more people will ride along next time. If you want to learn more about Elk Springs, give me a call at the shop.
I feel so fortunate to get to spend a few days like this with one of my great siblings.