Sometime in January every year I start exchanging emails with Feral about the upcoming trout opener and we will discuss with great déjà vu where we should do the opener and our choices always boil down to the Pine River in Lake County or the Pigeon River area near Vanderbilt. Someday we might break out of the cycle by trying something new but for now both places are like old clothing, comfortable with plenty of holes. Feral and I started doing the opener on the Pine back in the late 70’s so there is a lot of history there with good catches of brown trout, memorable camp fun and antics, good guitar jams, and memories of people that would camp with us for one or many years. Another nice thing about the Pine is we finally know where to find morel mushrooms after years of fruitless search. There’s nothing like frying up a bunch of those after dark and knocking down an icy Labatts.
The Pigeon River area has its own set of enticements, namely, larger trout potential, and more miles of river including the Black, the Sturgeon, and the Pigeon. Also we might meet up with Mike and Denny and then there’s a little competitive spirit about the fishing, a bigger bonfire, and maybe some lake fishing over at Pickeral when the sun goes down.
It doesn’t really matter which place we go. We always have a great time. Our souls seem to renew with the spring air. Only 15 weeks to the opener.