April Fools' Day, and it's Opening Day on one of the local lakes, one you call Early Lake. A whole bunch of fools, you included, decide that, out of everywhere they could be, and everything they could be doing, they want to be there fishing. They're fools for fishing.
Spring is busy opening things up at the lake. New leaves are filling in the landscape.
The inlet stream is rushing into the lake, filling it with snowmelt.
The tube is ready and waiting. So are the stockers, you're told. Time to launch for the first time since Halloween.
The lake has a charm of its own here at the west end. It feels good to be roving over the waves again searching out fish.
You troll a bead head prince nymph, stretching out your long-unused kicking muscles. The sun is warm, and the water is pretty.
You cover a lot of lake, kicking against the stiff wind. You try nymphs, woolly buggers and leeches. You get one bump.
You really would feel like a fool if you got skunked.
Then evening comes, the wind sits down, and you see a flash on the far side. A fish jumped.
You kick over and find a smorgasbord of midges spread on the water and hundreds of hungry stockers making the most of it. Where have they been?
Soon pods of fish are cruising and rising everywhere. There must be thousands. You catch plenty on little dries, but they aren't pushovers, and they don't want to have anything to do with the net.
When you decide to head for home they're still busily feeding.
You probably haven't made your last trip to Rocky Ford, and there's a cutthroat lake down there that's calling your name. Once Trout Lake opens up at the end of the month you'll go there. But it's nice to know that you can get back to this lake in just 20 minutes any time you get the urge to catch a few trout on a dry fly.
That's a good thing for someone who's a fool for fishing.