My last fishing venue was at the end of March and from then on it all went peer-shaped.
Having experienced pain in my left leg / hip for a long time the doctors finally judged that
something had to be done.
It turned out I had to undergo surgery for a full hip replacement even though I was too young
for such a procedure. Off course I asked for alternatives but there were none.
The surgery practically ended my fishing season and even though the procedure was a success
part of a muscle had to be severed so my rehabilitation would take even more time than usual.

The physiotherapy went quite well and after nearly three months I was deemed safe to get
on a bike again.
It would still take a lot of time to get some sort of my former mobility back but at least there
was improvement.

The end of the summer always meant one thing, a festive gathering of my German fishingclub
members and fishing in the otherwise off-limits mill pool.
As every fisherman knows those waters that are off limits have extra attraction.
So I decided to give fishing a try with the help of my buddy who would help me get in my
waders and make sure that the mill pool would not turn out to be my last resting place.

The mill pool

As I looked forward for this venue the whole week I was concerned about the rainy weather
in the week before the event.
The local stream turned to a turbid coffee colored mess in an instant so my fears where 
that flyfishing would not be possible.
The peak flow occurred just one day before the event and my fears came true on the morning
of the event when I looked at the mill pool.

The highlight for me for of this event was fishing the mill pool, well stocked with trout and also
home to a myriad of other fish in good sizes.
While the other club members went fishing on the stream as per protocol I stayed behind due
to my condition and scoped out the mill pool.
Despite the turbid water I spotted a rising fish and when I walked towards the outflow of the 
pool I noticed at least some sort of clarity in the shallows that raised my hopes of catching anything.

Rising fish and the outflow of the mill pool

After a couple of hours the club members gathered again at the watermill where breakfast
was served in the garage of the mill's resident, yes a big garage :-)
Just like every year some of the guys already positioned their gear near the mill's weir as 
it was the deepest part of the pool and usually frequented by the most trout.
My buddy and I where the only flyfishermen and by the grace of god they let us fish the 
least attractive part of the mill pool, the shallow end.

Walnut and apples, fall fruits.

Not that it was a problem for us because the rear shore was covered by thick brush so
no conventional angler could fish there.
The usual modus operandi would be that the anglers at the weir would catch their 5 trout limit pretty
quickly and would head out to the garage for drinks and snacks.
In the mean time we could advance further to the good spots.
Well, not this time ... the wormdrowners just did not catch the fish like usually.

I was hoping for any fish and soon I caught a nice Dace to my surprise.
So the fish where after all able to see my little size 14 gold bead nymph in the murky water.
As the trout where usually not that large in the mill pool I decided to use my new 2nd hand
Orvis 2-weight rod.
A fluorocarbon tippet of 14/100 mill (5 a 6X) was used to get the nymph quickly down to depth.
It was not long before I caught my first brown trout, as per regulation I had to knock it on
the head but the fish was too slippery and got away.
Soon I was into brown trout number two and that one received immediate head trauma.
The elderly couple living in the mill who every year graciously allowed us on their premises 
requested fish and I was happy to oblige.

I got a bit carried away after landing three more rainbows I was soon at my limit
while the rest of the folks where not really catching fish.
This was after all a sort of contest where the guy who caught the most fish would
be crowned fisher king.
It would cost you several cases of beer, you would get that Mayor like neckless around
your head and would have to be present at the start of every venue of the club pouring in a 
strong one.

My last fish turned out to be a little larger than expected, it was a massive brown trout
and put my setup to the test.
I was not expecting to land the fish but in the end I did and as every eye was on me 
I could not slip that fish back so now I had a net full of trout.
As I made it up to shore one of German friends weighed the fish and mentioned that
I would be fisher king for sure ... terror...

Brown trout

As there was still time left to fish I decided to wade back in the pool and help my buddy as he 
was not doing so well.
With some pointers and a move he also started to catch fish.
I told him however to slip back any fish after he had caught three trout.
At the end of the venue I would sneak some of my trout in his bag.
The last hour went by pretty uneventful as the fishing had tapered off considerably.
I still managed to catch two brook trout so my fishing day was pretty perfect.

Brook trout (sort of)

At the weigh in my buddy became fourth while I luckily got stuck as number three.
The deception did not work a 100 percent though as one my friends called me
the secret fisher king :-)

So this first day's of fishing after my "break" was quite succsesfull.
The otherwise off limits mill pool would be open for members of the club the
next day untill the end of trout season with as only condition that a special
day permit had to be bought.
I figured with me being not able to fish for such a long time I had to take this
chance so I asked the club's president to arrange permits for me for every
weekend the mill pool would be open.
The trout would be cleared out pretty quickly but the ease of access and the 
other fish in the pool would be ideal for me to at least have some fishing season.

The afternoon was spend barbecueing and as it was common practice on
such events no one had to be thirsty.
I sneaked away to the the nearby pub where I had not been in ages just 
to show that I was still alive.