Scary-But-True Fly Fishing Stories from Our Listeners

Sometimes our listeners tell us fly fishing stories that keep us awake at night.

Perhaps that is an exaggeration. Yet their stories make us shudder. Here are three scary-but-true fly fishing stories our listeners have shared with us.

Gary and the Rising River

“I once had a dangerous moment on Chatahoochie River in Georgia just below the Buford Dam.

”When the dam is about to release (which it does a few times per day), a series of horns will sound indicating the need to get out of the river and head to high ground. I was downstream on the opposite bank when I heard the first horn sound. I immediately began wading across the stream to get to safety, but the pool was already deeper than I expected.

“Then the second horn blew.

“I had to work my way back upstream to find another place to cross. I was mid-stream as the third horn made its call. At that point, I had to tighten my belt and swim across deeper pool created by swiftly flowing 45 degree water. I made safely across the pool.

“But the adventure was not over.

”I still had to run through the woods to avoid being cut off from my party by small tributary now gaining depth. After this final test, I looked back at river. It had risen ten feet in just under 15 minutes.”

Russ and the Deer Hunter

“One morning in late October in the middle of my state’s second rifle season, I arrived at my chosen fishing spot on the South Platte River and noticed a truck in the parking lot that didn’t appear to belong to a fisherman.

“As I walked down to the river, I noticed a group of mule deer bucks across the river in a meadow. I looked repeatedly from the truck to the deer. Then I looked at my waders and jacket. I was tan from top to bottom! So I decided to wait in my truck for a bit. Sure enough, right at shooting light, I heard a gunshot from the hills on the other side of the river. While the hunter did everything right, shooting away from the river and road, I’m still glad I decided to play it safe.

“After that experience, I always wear hunters orange while fishing during hunting season.”

Michael and the Charging Otter Fly Fishing Story

“I often fish alone in some of California’s more remote locations, and I have experienced quite a few nerve-racking encounters involving wildlife–bears, mountain lions, and rattlesnakes.

“However, regardless of how far-fetched it might seem, my scariest confrontation involved a river otter.

“I had just exited the river and was hiking back to camp when I spotted an otter about twenty yards away. I became mesmerized as I watched it swim effortlessly against the strong swift current of the Pit River. I quickly moved behind some brush about five yards from the riverbank and froze, hoping to go unnoticed in order to prolong the moment.

”Bad move.

“As it approached the bank, the otter left the river at a run and headed directly towards me. It gave no indication of slowing down! I went from this serene moment of thinking “how wonderful it is to view wildlife in a natural setting” to “yikes, this thing’s coming after me!” The otter kept charging until my yelling and arm-waving got it to stop. It was only two feet away when it suddenly turned and headed back to the river.”

Stay alert and stay safe out there!