Fishing on the Pecos River

13 Jun

A Slice of Life

By Bill Lites

I grew up in a Southwest family of hunters and outdoorsmen.  Every winter it was the deer season hunt and every summer it was fishing in New Mexico’s rivers and lakes.  As a teenager, I really enjoyed getting away from town and out into Nature for one of our family hunting/camping trips.

This particular trip was a fishing trip in the mountains along the Pecos River.  My dad and I were working our way upstream, fishing as we went.  We had caught several nice Rainbow Trout and had them on our stringer, moving them in the water as we progressed from one likely fishing spot to another.






We finally came upon a bend in the river that flowed around a huge group of rocks, causing a nice eddy pool as the water coursed around the rocks.  It was a perfect spot to let my bait drift around the bend with the current into the eddy pool.

  I climbed up on one of the rocks and cast my bait into the upstream current, letting it drift around the bend.  Sure enough, I got a strike about half way around the bend, but didn’t hook the fish.  I repeated the process several times with the same results.  This must be a wise fish, I thought, but I can be patient, and tried again.

Finally, on about the seventh try I hooked that wise old Trout, and boy was he a nice one.  My attention had been so focused on catching that fish and getting him in hand that it wasn’t until I turned and started to jump down, that I saw a snake right where I was going to land.

Our fish stringer was at the edge of the water, and the snake had moved in and was trying to figure how he could get one of the fish in his mouth.  With my last touch of my leap from the rock, I catapulted myself as far over that snake as I could.  On the way down, I must have let go of my rod and the fish I had just caught, because when I hit the ground I instantly picked up a rock and bashed the snake in the head.  I pounded him with several more rocks, until I was sure he was dead, before I was able to breathe.

Now I can handle coming upon a snake if it is a few feet away and not a surprise.  But, because I was traumatized by a snake bite as a six year old,

and now, to be almost in mid-air and realize that you are going to land right on top of “What Kind of Snake?”   That was too much for my mind to deal with in the time available.  It was probably a harmless water snake hoping to enjoy a free meal, but that’s not what my mind saw while I was on my way down.  I learned from this to not be distracted, better to keep your mind on the task at hand.

Psalm 116:6

3 Responses to “Fishing on the Pecos River”

  1. Bongo June 13, 2012 at 2:35 pm #

    Great story – I’d probably react the same if I was about to land right on a snake,- and I love that you have a Bible reference at the end. Thanks for linking to my post.


    • oldthingsrnew June 13, 2012 at 9:09 pm #

      I’m new at linking. I’m never sure how the other person will feel about it. I am always pleased when someone links with us.

      I enjoyed Bill’s fish story too.


  2. DiVoran June 13, 2012 at 8:52 am #

    This story is so refreshing, I can hear the tumble and rush of the mountain creek and smell the pine, but when things get tough, the tough get going.


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