Bucket fish

Saturday is the opening day of trout season in York County. Opening day is almost a holiday. Fishermen, women and children will don tall rubber boots, bundle up in warm clothes and wade into their favorite stream to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with other fisher people trying to catch a fish that has been dumped, unceremoniously into the creek from a bucket.

For those who know me, I am an avid trout fisherman, but I haven’t taken part in opening day for at least five years, maybe more, the only reason I have in the past 15 or so was for my kids. I prefer fishing wild mountain streams alone or with a close friend or two. I love wild trout, no ugly stocked fish with missing fins and flat noses for me. And never, ever will you catch me with worm or corn baiting my hook.

But yet, for some reason I always get assigned to get a photo to promote the first day of trout season. In years past I’ve done multi-media pieces about bamboo rod builders and behind the scenes at the trout hatchery. I’ve gone to streams open year-round and photographed fly-fisherman catching and releasing wild trout. I’ve made countless photos of people buying fishing gear at the local sporting goods stores. This year I just got lucky and received an email about a last-minute trout stocking that featured a dozen or more kids dumping stockies into Beaver Creek.

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