A Weekend at Bennet Springs

May 19, 2008
By Julie Thompson, Springfield, MO

In the early morning I was standing next to the stream, bundled up and I could see my breath. Then, suddenly the horn sounded and everyone around me threw his or her line in. I pushed the release button on my rod, watched the black and yellow lure fly into the water, and waited for it to sink to the bottom. As I started to reel I felt a tug, but I thought I was stuck on a rock. I hollered to my mom who was standing about 20 feet away in the water. Then she came over to help me, and told me to try and reel. As I was reeling my line in there was something on the end. When I had reeled the fish close enough in my mom scooped it into her net. I had finally caught my very first Rainbow Trout at Bennet Springs, right outside of Lebanon, Missouri.

This was the beginning of a very long weekend for my family since I could catch fish now I needed someone to take the fish off of my hook, and put it on the stringer for me. Once the fish was on my stringer, I needed someone to clean the fish. When I was seven I couldn’t do any of this, and I depended on one of my parents or one of my brothers. Thank goodness they were there to help.

Lately I had been complaining that while I was on the shore trying to fish that people would step right in front of me, and I couldn’t do anything about it. Little did I know Kyle had a solution for me? My brother told me that if anyone steps in front of me to cast right over them, or right next to them. He said they would move, because they wouldn’t want to have a hole in their waiters from a fishhook. I wasn’t so sure about this strategy, but I knew that what I had been doing wasn’t working.

Later that morning while I was fishing close to Kyle by the bridge I had been perfectly fine, until a stranger stepped in front of me. I stood on the shore for a few seconds, and then looked over at Kyle. I gave, Kyle, an angry look, and then he gave a nod and castled his own rod. I knew exactly what he meant, and he didn’t have to tell me twice, so I tried to throw my lure right over the man, but my aim was a little off, and I hooked his hat. I started to reel and I lifted his hat right off his head and into the water. This guy whipped his head around, looking for his hat, then grabbed it and took the lure out. I told him and then he moved out of the way. I looked over at Kyle and was grinning from ear to ear, and then he gave a little smirk.

Once my family and I had everything cleaned up from our campsite all five of us climbed into our white van. I sat in the back with the tent under my feet, both of my brothers, Brent and Kyle, were in the middle with the drink cooler in between them, and my dad was driving with my mom in the passenger seat. Once all five of us were situated with our ice-cold soda in hand, Dad began to drive up and down the hills, and around the curves heading away from Lebanon and towards our house in Springfield.

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