Earl Worsham and the "Trout of a Lifetime"

Yes, it was a trout of a lifetime… Largest sea-run brown trout in the 35 year history of the “Brooks Water” on the Laerdal River, Norway.

We had just finished a fine “shore” dinner BBQ with bon-fire on the river with fishing friends…. As everyone was speaking in Norwegian, I was bored, threw a couple of logs on the fire and took our my 12-6 Sage two handed rod with a #7 Rio Wind cutter floating line, checked my Hairy Mary size 6 wet fly and began fishing. It was about 15 minutes until Midnight, but there was light in the sky in the west. Casting directly across the pool (it is called Tonjum), almost all the way to the far bank and allowing the fly line to “belly” which produces an accelerated whipping action to the fly as is skims across the pool, I worked my way slowly toward the end of the pool. Casting in the tail section is a little dangerous at night as one must stand on a rock ledge or jetty with the huge boiling fast current river flowing behind you as well as in front of you… A little scary.

Well, I had almost finished the pool and had decided to take one more cast! Yes it is true… I said just one more cast… It was about Midnight +40. As the fly whipped at the very end of the cast, this big monster hit it with a bang!… More like a thud. And everything stopped… The fish just stood there.. He did not jump, did not run for cover or for the foss (falls at the end of the pool) just stood there… I thought that maybe I had found a rock… Then he began a slow traverse across the pool… OH BOY! I said as I began tightening down the drag on my #“150” Bogdan… There are ten drag settings on the Bogdan. As he accelerated, I tightened…all ten… full brake and he still did what the hell he wanted to do…. Well, this went on and on… Soon the fire watchers (fire water drinkers too) all realized that something the hell was going on…that this was no little sea trout, and they joined me on the jetty…. I thought for a time that we were all going in the water as they began hooting and hollering as they saw the size of the trout!…. He ran up the river 250 meters, then turned directly at me and made a run… Thank God I had the multiplier Bogdan or I would have lost him right there… After four of these crazy runs my step son, Mark Brooks, netted the fish and someone took the picture that you now have.

We thought the fish would weigh 20 to 25 pounds, but upon examination saw that he was probably a 18 to 22 year old male and not in condition. He weighed 6kg (almost 14 #) and still was the record for our water!

I brought him home and soon he will be mounted in a glass fish-box!


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