Postcards from the Swiss Alps
Published Sep 29th 2013
Fly-fishing dreams, a thought about Eve and some postcards from the Swiss Alps
By Daniel Luther
Like a lot of you fellow fly-fishing enthusiasts I was and still am daydreaming a lot about fishing trips or even better: expeditions. Let it be the coasts of the Baltic sea or even better beyond the polar circle or the equator - preferably to magnificent landscapes and unspoilt wilderness full of shimmering, fly eating predators. You probably recognize the pattern - or you are one lucky bastard living in just one of these places.
But why then would you spend time reading other peoples fishing stories instead of doing your home waters justice and grace them with your casts? Most probably this originates from he most profound human flaw - pure and simple curiosity. That one little thing that our creator punished with canceling our membership in the famous Eden Club, where food, drinks and dolce vita were for free. Would have been free. Lifelong actually and without a fee, if you remember the story…
But our ancestors chose the apple and thus the hard way. Struggling along this path we at least piled up quite an impressive heap of achievements including pyramids, parachute flies and barbless hooks. But we still suffer a lot for not being content with what's just there and given. It's that nasty bug in the back of our great little brains. Do you still get excited, when you think about your home waters? Guess what: I do! But then, I am 44 now and my testosterone levels might be involved.
However I reached this new state of mind. I'm starting to discover the appeal of my home waters. I realize how special and exotic they might be for someone not living here. Some of you will recognize that pattern too, I guess.
In earlier years I often thought I got sort of swapped at the hospital and then massively misplaced far away from the seas, the horizons and all those splendid ocean fish.
More and more I find my peace and accept my roots as a fly-fisherman here - and not on a bonefish flat in Belize. This "here" is the alpine foothills of eastern Switzerland. It is true, millions of tourists visit those mountain valleys, the deep blue lakes and the picture book villages. But very rarely do they ask or even think about fishing. So I grew up with the image of living in a non-angling part of the globe. But that's not true. I even regard it as a privilege now to live here with the mountain wilderness literally beginning a good cast from my backdoor.
After two or three hours hiking uphill I can sneak into untouched valleys and fish small mountain streams full of wild brown trout. Of course they won't break your rod with their weight, but some well proportioned alpine beauties have come close to breaking my heart when they turned down my seduction skills. Of course you cannot trust a stranger from a country formerly not known for any form of renowned fly-fishing water.
I'll start with some impressions from my alpine home waters featuring trout and lonely fishermen in Swiss drinking quality waters. And if there's some signs of interest or compassion (OK, he's 44 and needs some midlife crisis distraction. Let him write then…)
I'll be glad to take you on a tour to the widely unknown fly-fishing in the heart of the Alps. And maybe that's going to be a daydreaming issue for some of you out there.
I wish you all tight lines, not tight schedules.