The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA


April 12, 2014

Ken Maurer outdoors column: The angling brothers

— We are finally getting some long overdue warm weather and it feels good.

The other day I stepped outside and the warm sunshine hit me. It felt so good after the drudgery of winter that I felt like running through my meadow, leaping up and down for joy in my skivvies.

Instead, I took another sip of coffee and went back inside to listen to the weather guesses.

I did actually make a few casts for trout last weekend. I bummed a couple of kids from my nephew and hauled them out to the trout streams.

I used to drag my nephew around when he was a little guy. Now he has little guys and once in a while he lets me drag them around.

Ashton is 10 and Ayden is 6, and talk about the apples not falling far from the tree, those two are a classic case. Austin is older and had the sense to stay home this time, though he did join our crew for a trip to the Thousand Islands a few years back.

They are serious, down-to-earth 40-year-olds, jammed into kids’ bodies, and they don’t miss a trick.

I picked them up at their farm and we had to take  big bucket and a cooler along. They have a pond and we needed that stuff to try to bring some fish back to put in the pond.

All loaded up, we headed to the creek. I had already crossed the Mahantango and the Wiconisco. They were running high and dirty and not worth going back to, so we headed to the Armstrong. That one was a little too high and dirty also.

The Powells was next and that had a better color, but it was bank-full and moving too fast.

Over the mountain and on to Clarks we went. It also was high but nearly clear. I figured we were this close, we might as well check Stony. Stony was high but in decent shape and we finally found a spot to fish.

After about an hour with no bites it was time to head back to the Clarks. They have a great kids’ section there and even though there were quite a few kids fishing, there was plenty of room for us.

It didn’t take long to start catching fish. Ashton was pretty much on his own and I helped Ayden cast. They both can handle a fishing rod just fine, but I helped Ayden with the casting because there are lots of tree branches along the creek.

Pretty soon, Ashton got the drift figured out and started picking them off. Ayden and I hooked and lost several and he did land two.

Ashton managed his first limit and to tell you the truth, I don’t think I could have outfished him if I had tried. He’s going to be trouble for his local fish population and Ayden won’t be too far behind.

Ayden made me nervous because he wanted to do everything himself, including getting his hook unstuck from a tree branch that was sticking out over the fast-rushing water.

“I won’t fall in,” he said as he scampered along the bank and over the tree roots. He didn’t, but I kept a close eye on him.

Later we moved to another spot and Ayden said, “This looks like the spot I fell in last year.”

He said it so matter-of-factly that I had to chuckle.

It was time to leave when Ashton needed one more for his first limit. He lost one, then landed one and the afternoon was complete.

We made it back with nobody falling in, some trout in the cooler, and memories that won’t likely be forgotten.

Ken Maurer, Herndon, is a licensed fishing guide and a regular contributor to the outdoors page. Email comments to

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