Its been a five year quest for Atlantic salmon in CT and I have come up short every trip I made, until this year. Finally after about seven trips to the river and many hours of tying, planning and reading I was presented with a perfect opportunity. The fight didn’t last very long but it was GREAT to feel the tug of an 8lb salmon at the end of my line. It was landed a couple mins later and released unharmed. It would be three days till my next trip to the river. The water was high and the fish were scattered and hard to find. I entered into a new pool that I have never fished, with little expectation. As I stripped the line from my 8wt Tioga I turned and saw some nice riffles that looked promising. There was a glare on the water that would not allow me to see anything past my boots. I casted across the river so that my fly would swing down and across the riffles. The salmon hit hard and took off. My Fenwick bowed with the tension brought on by the tenacious lunges the salmon made. Soon the fight was over and the fish was in. I was truly lucky, two salmon in three days after five years with no luck. Could this day be any better? The salmon was released quickly and swam off unscathed. I took a deep breath and debated calling it a day. No way. I began blind casting and letting fly swing. Five casts later my line came to subtle pause, I stripped to be sure. Yes! Fish! But the take was so subtle there was no way this was a salmon. As the broom like tail broke the surface and swept across current there was no doubt in my mind this was a salmon, a large salmon. Fifteen minutes passed with little gain on my part. This was a tough fish, the biggest I have seen. I heard a voice ring out to me. Two men armed with fly rods, a trout net, and big grins stared back at me as I continued to battle. “Could you use a hand landing em?” they sounded. “I thought you’d never ask.” It was another ten mins before the fish came close enough to attempt a landing. As soon as they saw the distance between the tail fin and pectoral fin they said it wouldn’t fit in the dinky net. This I knew already but didn’t want to count my eggs. Soon the fish came close enough for a swift tale grab. The Half hour slug fest was finally over and I had the fish I have been waiting five years to land. She was a beauty. I will never forget that day. I couldn’t have done it without the help of two friendly strangers. I had never worked so hard for a fish in my life.