Fishermen, it is said, have a reputation for exaggeration and—at times—outright prevarication. Care to prove it? Now's your chance. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Like this: It was 18½ years ago now, a beautiful July day. My friend, Randy, and I were float tube fishing on Davis Lake in the Oregon Cascades. We’d begun just after dawn and had worked our way south almost to the lava dam, where the bottom drops and the lake suddenly gets quite deep. We’d caught a few fish (This was before Johnny Bass Seed did his evil work and so the lake was still full of some of the biggest rainbow you’d ever wish to see. A six-pounder would not have been uncommon.). It was mid-week, as I recall, and we hadn’t seen another soul, so we were congratulating ourselves on our good fortune: beautiful place, catching gorgeous big bows, and no competition. Little did we know we’d be lamenting our solitude shortly. The problem started when I tore a small gash in my thumb attempting to dislodge the fly from a deeply hooked fish. The wound bled profusely and, naturally, I washed it in the water and we went back to fishing. After that everything is a blur, with things happening really fast. Randy hooked another fish. From out of nowhere, two huge dorsal fins appeared and began circling our tubes. “Sharks!” I yelled. But before Randy could react, one of the sharks took a huge bite out of his tube and he was in the water swimming hard toward me. “Hold still. Just float,” I hollered. “They have horrible eye sight but they’re attracted to movement.” And so. That’s what we did. Both of us froze. Our situation was dire. No one to rescue us. A long 50 yards to shore. And the sharks circling and hungry. But the lack of motion seemed to be working; they were confused and their searching seemed now to lack focus. If you’ve ever float tube fished, you’ve no doubt sensed the uncomfortable feeling of having your fin clad feet dangling down into the unknown depths. And, poor Randy—it’s a good thing he was wearing a life jacket. It was then that we caught our break. A flock of ducks locked wings and splashed down noisily a hundred yards out on the lake. Instantly, the sharks turned toward the sound and their dorsals disappeared. A couple of minutes passed and we wondered what to do. Then, as we watched, first one duck, then another, and another just vanished, each with a little splash and some bubbles. It was not unlike May flies being sipped by trout. Just bigger splashes and bubbles. Well, we figured that was our best shot. So we counted three and beat cheeks for the lava dam. Of course no one believed us when we got home and the more we talked about it the stranger the looks we got until we finally doubted ourselves. In the years since, any time I heard of someone fishing Davis Lake I’d ask if they saw anything strange. Every once in a while a fisherman would say he heard a really large splash bigger than any trout would make. And there have been a couple of dogs that went missing. But that was pretty much the end of it. Needless to say, I gave up float tubing in favor of a bigger boat. So, when I finally got around to having a garage sale last weekend, it was natural to sell my tube. There in one of the zippered pockets, I came across my old camera and took the film in to be processed. Imagine my excitement when I found this photo on that roll of film. In all the excitement back on that fateful day, I completely forgot I had snapped a picture. There it is: proof that fresh water sharks inhabit Davis.