Ed Engle Walks the South Platte

January 24, 2009 By: Marshall Cutchin

A column by Ed Engle reminds me of days when I enjoy fish watching as much as I enjoy fish catching. That might be hard for some to understand, but if you spend enough time looking for fish, there is a sublime satisfaction to be found in observing their behavior. Here Engle describes examining a river he knows as well as any other, Colorado’s South Platte, where over the course of years fishing was changed dramatically by natural events. “It then occurred to me that the wildfire was simply the last event in a chain of bad luck that the river had endured since whirling disease devastated the wild rainbow trout population in the 1990s. For those of us who fished there before whirling disease, it’s hard to explain how good things were. Maybe I’ve just needed time to get used to what the river is today.”