Last Sunday, Evelyn (my 9-year-old) and I set out from C.S. Lee for a little daddy-daughter time on the river. The river was BUSY, not with people fishing, but with folks enjoying the warmer than average weather on the river. We fished the mouth of the Econ for about an hour and found no takers, so we ran upriver towards Culpepper Bend and stopped at my shady spot for lunch. We enjoyed some ham and turkey sliders on Hawaiian sweet rolls, chips, potato salad, and a frosty beverage (a Light Sky for me, a Sprite for Evie.)
We fished a few turns on the way back down river but the fishing was slow. That said, I was impressed with Evelyn’s “stick-with-it-ness” this year, as she fished each spot for at least 15-20 minutes before putting the rod down to explore, dance, sing, or play in the sand. Last year she was just happy to be on the river. This year she was happy to be on the river, but definitely interested in fishing. I could not help but notice how much more mature she was since our trip last year. It was neat to see how much more patience she had, and that her attention span had grown substantially.
We took a break from fishing and had a dip in the river to cool down before returning to where we started for the afternoon bite. After some helpful encouragement from Dad on how to make an efficient cast with the tiny 1/32oz jig using her 4-foot Zebco rod and model 33 reel, Evelyn made a perfect cast to the middle of the river, got a bite, set the hook, and proceeded to play the running, jumping fish like a pro, right into the net! It was a proud Dad moment, and she is already asking about the fly rod!