When I started fly fishing maybe ten years ago, there were plenty of fragile moments. I couldn’t cast ten feet, I hooked everything behind me. I caught no fish. After maybe a half dozen trips, I almost made a promise to myself that if I didn’t get results, I’d end this self-taught disaster. Naturally I caught a fish and have never looked back. But life usually doesn’t usually give in to ultimatums.
It’s unreasonable to assume you’re going to be good at something without trying - unless you’re LeBron James and it’s dunking. We have to work to get the results we want.
Tomorrow I’m going to get hopped up on coffee and head to my favorite trout river. All that I’ll say is that it’s in Alaska somewhere between Barrow and Metlakatla because I don’t want everyone going to it. The trail is so lightly worn I can be delusional enough to believe that maybe not so many people know about it.
Anyway, it’s not my favorite because I get the biggest fish, or the most fish, though both of those are possible. It’s my favorite because no one will be there but me, I know what to do, and I will get the results I want thanks to my previous work.
I survived the frustration of being a beginner and have ascended to a level I like to call, “advanced average,” one step below “sorta expert.”
Give me a few years.
Jeff Lund lives in Ketchikan, Alaska. He is a co-founder of LMT. Follow him @lmt_lifestyle on Instagram.