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Spring Brook

August 26, 2017

August 25, 2017

So sometimes you just got get out of the office…

Purposefully scheduled a meeting in Northfield for two reasons, okay three:

First, no late-summer/fall trip to Northfield is replete without stopping at Fireside Orchard and grabbing some apples.  I’ve been visiting Fireside for years and on this trip I purchased some some Sweet Tango, Zestar and KinderKrisp apples.  Delicious!


Sweet Tango

Second, Map 12, page 28, of the MN DNR Guide to Trout Angling Opportunities in Southern and Central  Minnesota, identifies Spring Brook as being a fishable trout stream.   Internet research also identified a study conducted by St. Olaf students  indicating a surviving, but threatened, population of brook trout, and possible riparian improvements made by the Hiawatha Chapter of Trout Unlimited.  Satellite images showed a tiny little stream, aka brook, and that is exactly what I found when I arrived.

Pulling off the road just enough to not be a hazard, I took a look downstream at the still water and thick brush before preparing to do battle.  The brook is tiny, with enough pockets, riffles, brush, and pools to give one hope that there are trout here.  Flippin’ a black nosed dace, a brook trout dashed out from the grass of an under-cut bank only to shake itself free.  This was repeated by two others.  I switched to a small woolly bugger and beetle which resulted in one 5″ brook trout.  Tough sledding amidst the tall grass, weeds, trees, etc., but there are fish here. Patience and stealth is required as they are spooky in such narrow and shallow confines.



First glance


A dark gurgling brook

trout, colleges, contentment?

I shall soon find out

Third reason for visiting: beer. Capped the trip off at Imminent Brewing with a glass of Question Mark Hill Wheat and a glass of Cherry Leaf Saison.  Nice foam.  Great taste.  Go have a pint.



To Spring Brook

I cast this toast:

May your waters be strong

to avoid the ills of man’s throng

and may your trout swim,

wild and free,

for ever long.

— Hats


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