Losing a good fish

At dawn nearly everyday for the past few weeks I'd been stalking a pod of stray Skamania Steelhead that had made their way into the Flat River.  Today I finally got a solid hookup on a swung red and white bad hair day streamer.
The fish crushed the fly and I had a great hook set (and a couple more for good measure).  He took off upstream towards the dam.  I kept the tension on but let him run (like I had a choice) while trying to work my way to a shallower spot on the river where I could attempt to land him.

He ran up under the dam and the fluid tension of having the fish on the line changed to solid, static and hopeless.  I moved around to different angles,  hoping my line was just hung up on something.  After a few minutes with no change in the situation, I swallowed my fate and did the inevitable, I grab my Skagit line, wrapped it around my hand a few time and started to yank.  Eventually the line broke free with no fish or fly on the end. 

I'm pretty sure I'd hooked up with the big buck that had just porpoised a few minutes earlier in the spot where my fly got grabbed.  To further confirm this, I saw him jump again from nearly the same spot where I broke my line off a minute or two after everything went down.

I can take some consolation in that I'm pretty sure I saw this same fish come unpinned in a wonderful acrobatic display from a Mepps spinner a guy was throwing the day before.

Here is John Larison's take on the situation : A Steelheader Farms Another One

"What happened next, I’ll never know for sure, though I have some suspicions. The line came tight, suddenly and abnormally tight, and then it wasn’t the animate flex of a fish I felt but the firm resonance of current parting over fly line. I leapt onto a rock to change the angle, and felt the resonance increase to a hum. And then felt nothing."

Sometimes nothing is the heaviest thing of all."

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