Fly Fishing on Skis

“Skis?” you say.

I say, “Yup, that was me out there in a snowmobile suit, a fly rod and a set of cross-country skis, need I mention on some very thin ice on Fox Lake.”

You see, some of us can hardly wait … That was my case; you see, the ice just could not clear out fast enough to suit my hunger for fishing.

You might ask how the fishing was.

Well, it was great until the edge of the ice started to sink. Ever have one of those moments when you realize you are about to do something really foolish and wonder if anyone is watching?

Well, that was me. You guessed it: skis are hard to back up with, especially when the ice is starting to slope before your very eyes. About that time I recall saying this could be cold – very cold. I might further add, here, that it was terribly cold.

Now envision this for a moment, just before I slid into the water and sank like the Titanic: ski bindings are hard enough to get off, on most days, let alone in eight feet of water and wearing a snowmobile suit that is likely to hold 50 gallons of water.

Well, one thing for certain, I was not about to let go of my fly rod. You see, according to Yukon logic, the skis would float once I got them off … but an expensive fly rod wouldn’t.

One thing I can tell you: the shock of the cold water certainly sped things up. In the end it was those two skis, once laid sideways and upside down, so the bindings could dig in, is what likely saved my cold, wrinkled hide that day.

It was a chore getting myself, my fly rod and my now-very-heavy snowmobile suit out onto the ice again. Next, I learned that material freezes quickly to the ice. To top it all off, I had a grayling that decided it was a good time to swallow my fly.

Men: we do some crazy things to test the limits of whatever environment we are in, all for the sake of saying we did it.

Well, this is one that nearly did me in. Can I laugh, today? However, you can bet that back on that day, all you could have gotten out of me was a halfhearted smile if I had been busted by someone, especially someone that knew me.

Well, the picture would have been worth a thousand words, for certain. Where is that camera when you need one?

The moral of this story is that vans gets hot in no time, clothes dry, skin warms and fly rods do not float. Oh … by the way, the last grayling I caught on skis was the best-tasting, I think, that I ever had …

Amazingly enough, I live to tell you about it.

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