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This was a day of firsts. It was the first time this year I got to the river early enough to make a long afternoon of it. It was the first time I waded in first below the bridge. The river is down; that made it easy.
It was the first time this year that I could feel the warmth of the sun on my face, even when facing into the teeth of the wind.
It was the first time in three trips that I didn't hook up with a Steelhead on this sweet glide. My guess is that the low levels have made this stretch just too shallow.
It was the first time this year I ranged on upriver and fished all the way back down to the glide.
And this is the first trout of the year. That's worth two portraits. It took a big nymph while I was stripping it back for a cast. Good to see they're still in there.
Even better than that, if you can believe it, is that today I saw the first swallows. I tried for a group shot, but they just don't stay in one place. This one, though, expresses all their combined joy in his leaping flight. I confess; I felt joy, too, watching them.
That makes it official for me: the new season is here.