But I forget that and so when Bob Jenkins
told me his
vanity license plates read "SALMO T," I expected to run into someone who spends all his
free time fishing.
It wasn't true, he
is just like I was before this Fishing America project started and that is a person who loves fishing but work is one level above fishing.
Bob is an ichthyologist at Roanoke College who specializes in non-game fish.
has spent extensive time studying a fish called the Roanoke Bass.
pointed out a place where a semi-truck driver couldn't manage the bend in the road.
doesn't like fishing for stocked fish.
I said, "You are going to fish for Brown Trout which are not native to the Smith River."
corrected me, "I'm talking about wild fish, not native fish.
walked farther up the creek and he
was soon out of sight around the bend in the creek.
I had just put one of the crayfish on my hook and was trying to catch a Smallmouth Bass when I noticed Bob
slowly walking toward me dragging a fish that was on end of his
was close enough to show me he
said, "This is a Roanoke Bass."
unhooked the fish to release it, but it was apparently too worn out to swim right away and hung out by Bob's leg for several minutes before slowly swimming back upstream.
walked down to the Smith River and started fishing for wild Brown Trout.
said, "I think we did incredibly well.
Not only did we catch a Roanoke, I caught and released several Brown Trout."
was ecstatic, "I love those trout. %&*# love those trout.
After a pause Bob
said, "Even though the trout on average aren't giants that's one hell of a stream."
We talked more about my fishing project, "I'm trying to find a person in Kentucky who is named Kenneth Tucky.
Then I'm going to see if Kentucky Bass live in Kentucky Lake and if so I'm going to see if I can fish in the state of Kentucky for Kentucky Bass in Kentucky Lake with Ken Tucky."
After a little laugh Bob
told me Kentucky Bass is a local common name for a fish, "You're perpetuating a misnomer.
The correct name is the Spotted Bass which occurs pretty much throughout the Mississippi River Basin."
I asked, "What else is it called?
Maybe I know it by some other name."
"I don't know of any," said Bob
, "You're dealing with all these common names and when you write your book I won't know what the hell fish you caught."
We were almost through eating when Bob
said, "I think fly fishing is an art; good flies and well made casts."
said, "Every time I've encountered Carp when I've been fishing, as soon as the fly hits the water they turn, they bolt, they're gone.
is a neo-Deadhead since 1987 and has been to several live Grateful Dead concerts.
In the morning Bob
fixed breakfast as we listened to more Grateful Dead concerts and he
talked more about fishing, "I'm a specialist.
I've been in contact with Bob
since and his
book has been published after being reduced to about 1100 pages and he
has found a couple other places to fly fish for Brown trout that are much closer to where he
has also identified from my photographs one fish that I caught as a Bluehead Chub and the other as our targeted species, the Roanoke Bass.