I went out on the North Platte March 4, 2016, and to my astonishment, but perhaps not to others, I was skunked like back in the old days. I was in the river casting by 9 a.m., had a few on, but never landed a fish. I looked deeply and lovingly into my fly boxes, but couldn't figure out what the trout wanted. One would think--with all the expensive equipment, variety of flies, years up and down this river--that a guy of my experience wouldn't get skunked. There was almost no wind, perfect temps. I saw no fish on the redds because I was fishing twenty miles down from the dam and the spawn starts a little later here. I threw a stick for Rocket. Blasting James Brown on his truck stereo, The Rodfather showed up around 2 p.m. with much needed food: smoked salmon, cheese, crackers and two bottles of stout. He caught a few. By then I had switched over to a goofy streamer. I had all but surrendered. Fighting a cold, I stumbled along the mossy rocks, confused, snotty, and perplexed. I'm heading to Mexico this week, so trout are going to be out of my mind. And the annual flush is supposed to happen between the 7th and the 17th of March. But I'll be back when the water clears.