Preference is inevitable. Chocolate or Vanilla? Cubs or Sox? Star Trek or Star Wars? Beatles or Stones? Ketchup or mustard? Fly or Cast?  Bass or Trout? You can’t love both. You can LIKE both. But, one will always sit a bit higher than the other on the podium. How exactly do we best explain this? Duh, with ice cream of course.
Are you familiar with the “DQ doctrine?” Let us start from the beginning. You’ve been outside in the summer’s heat where the pavement is bursting and the brick is bubbling under the sun’s watch. Standing in the river for 12 hours, working it like the dedicated angler you are. A few sips of water here and there but we all know the best anglers only fish in the stuff. If you’re really thirsty, then you ain’t fishin hard enough.
The sun is casting its shadow against the bank and you realize it’s time to head out of paradise. As you begin the trek back, your partner stops to look at you and you do the same. Without a word, without a nod, you have both decided… to go to Dairy Queen. The mother of all that is creamiest. The protector of the cold saturated fat. The redneck cousin of Ben and Jerry. The runner up for all heartbreak spanning from your high school sweet heart to your third divorce. You’ve been without food, without water and without cold for the whole day. The only thing that can put out the fire is a milkshake. A Dairy Queen Milkshake. But you don’t just order any flavor. Oh no. You order your heart’s desire. You order your habit of choice. Right when you think you’ll try something new, you cave, and go with your safe, reliable, ever so delicious, and glutton quenching [Fill in the blank].  
Like we said, preference is inevitable.  So, due to over flooding, we head to a smaller stream called the North Branch River in North Branch Wisconsin. Access was tight, but we found a parking spot close to a bridge and stuck close the water line as we waded in. You can only imagine our surprise when we expected and preferred to catch smallies, where instead we caught that and just about everything else. 
Yes my friends. While AC caught about 4 decent sized small mouth, Dad caught 5 small mouth, 2 steelies, 1 trout, 1 northern, and a bottom feeder. A cornucopia of fishellaneous catching and reeling. From one cast to the next, we were’nt sure what was going to bite.
With temperatures in the near high 40s and the sun beating down we spent a good 12 hours in the river and hiked back along the highway a good mile to return to our car. What did we use? What didn’t we use. From the steelies hitting Dad’s black and yellow glitter meps to the bass hitting AC’s white softbelly with yellow crawdad leg patterns. From the northern hitting Dad’s chartreuse spoon to the well, another bass hitting AC’s red bellied softbelly with fast action swim tail on a white, red eyed jig head…

Pre River- Bundled Up
With 2 sweatpants, one under armor with a t-shirt and wind breaker soft shell, AC was prepared to brave the chilly 40 degree weather.

Post River- “like Dad, so not in the mood right now”
Dad Hooked on Something
Netted Trout on Mep 

A Beautiful Brook Trout
A Graceful Release

AC’s Country Home

This northern is lucky to be alive. Notice the gash it has from escaping predators
Poor Northern…

Bridge Bum…AC caught her smallie just off the corner here
The Riverbums about to walk under a golf course bridge..

Now that’s a tree house!

Wading Out After a Great Day

So, as much as we prefer smallmouth bass, a great pint of guinness, and one hell of a Dropkick Murphy’s concert. Sometimes, switching it up can be fun too. A trout, a glass of fine chianti, and Eric Clapton unplugged live. What can we say? We will always have our favorites, like Dad’s vanilla and AC’s cherry ice cream. So, the next time the person at the DQ desk asks, “what can I get you?” Try something new, take a chance. It may be cold out there, but a top water might just work! Sure, it’s not what you usually prefer….but tastebuds change my friends, oh do they change!

Cast Away,

AC & Dad

8 thoughts on “Fishellaneous

  1. Let's see. DQ, the best soft serve in the world. Personally I'm a chococherry blizzard kind of guy. Here's a DQ story. Long before you (you young thing) and before your Dad (seems young, but a bit older than you) my brother worked at DQ in Deerfield Beach, Florida, about (now I'm telling my age) 1955/1956. DQ has been around a loooong time before Ben & Jerry.

  2. Nice write up. I had to chuckle a bit as I sit here reading your blog and sipping my Chianti, for I too enjoy vanilla ice cream. And why is it I never ever take food with me on my long wade outings? I always tell myself I will but I never do. No time for food when fishing I guess. HA! (sips chianti)Looking forward to more posts from the RiverBums.

  3. Thanks so much! Love your response! Good to see other Chianti drinkers. DQ and Starbucks should give us angler membership cards for the amount of business we give them on our fishing trips. 🙂

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