Monday, October 7, 2013

The Day Just Went To Hell

The wife had to be at work early (0645) this morning for a class, so I took the opportunity to wander up to Silver Fork of the American River to accomplish a couple things.

I found a map that showed some feeder creeks right around Hells Delight Road (remember from the August 27th post) that I wanted to check out. Got coffee at Cook's  and hit the road. Got to Hells Delight Road and turned left heading up the hill beyond Silver Fork.

Found the first creek (Grand Creek) and it was dry as a bone so I just turned around at that point. If it was that dry, there wouldn't be any fish even in the spring, thus a waste of time to go any further.

Back at the bridge I decide I'd wander down stream (by truck) to a couple other places I had fished before and try them first. I could always fish by the bridge on the way back.

Pulled off the side to park and found this nice pair of woman's sneakers just sitting on the side of the road. They were worn enough that they would only be good to the person who left them there and I did the same. Left them there, that is.

Pink & white = woman's
After gearing up I got down to the creek and snapped a couple pictures.


I'd fished this section before and a Yellow Humpy worked well here. This time I used a yellow Paralyzer, but there wasn't a fish to be found. I did take the water temperature and it was a nice chilly 43.7 degrees. I'm thinking a might cold for the fish.

Since there was nothing there I went back to the truck and drove to another place I'd fished. Grabbed my gear and started down to the creek. That is when the day went to hell.

I apparently walked right across a nest of ground wasps. If you've never seen them before they look just like this little bastard in the picture below. Sorry for the language, but I'll explain below.

Ground Wasp
I had a nest of these little buggers out by my wood pile last year. Had the bug guy come in and dump about 60 gallons of bug killer in the hole. Shortly thereafter I emptied 2 cans of wasp spray in the same hole and they seemed to have gone, died, disappeared, or just moved out. Not sure which.

Back to today. I didn't realize that I had disturbed the nest until I started getting bit. I had on my sweatshirt, fishing vest, and waders so the only place open to bare skin was my neck and ears. Between the left side of neck just behind my left ear and my right ear I think I got nailed at least 6 times before I could get away.

Still I wanted to fish that creek so I moved about 100 feet to the left and started down to the creek again. Well, I guess when they sting you they inject a theromone that says "Sting here". I also guess that it travels more than 100 feet because they started coming at me again.

I didn't get stung that time, but took the hint and got the hell out of Dodge. Of course, in my haste to get out of there, I tripped over something and cut the shit out of my hands when I hit the ground. At that point there wasn't going to be any more fishing this morning.

Now I'm sitting here, in the nerve center of Northern California Trout, and 2 1/2 hours later, the bites still hurt. Tylenol did absolutely nothing to ease the pain. I think I'll go get some drugs.

Maybe I'll try again later in the week.



  1. Oh man that hurts. I don't care what they are, bees, wasps or whatever. They hurt and you can't ever tell when you're going to have a bad reaction. Take care buddy.

  2. Sure hope all ends up well. Health reactions to stings or bites is some bad news, but I guess, I don't need to tell you that right now! Keep us posted, Mark.

  3. Mark
    As we get older we tend to have a reaction to bee or wasp stings. I always carry benadryl with me now when I am out on the trail. It helps with the sting reaction, and helps with the swelling. Get better and I know you will be back out there chasing those trout soon. Thanks for sharing

  4. Sorry to hear about the fall! I hope the ol mitts heal up for you soon.