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Byline: Eric Sharp
CORNELL, Mich. _ It's 11:15 p.m., and the last of the twilight is fading above the silky pools and broken riffles of the river. In the past two hours, the western sky has dimmed from a burnished mirror too bright to look at to a pale violet streaked with hints of green and gold.
A pair of nighthawks swoops above the dark tops of the pines and maples, picking off mayfly spinners silhouetted against the darkening sky by the thousands as they await the right moment to drop onto the water, lay their eggs and die.
This lingering light was called "the gloaming" when I was a kid in Scotland, as in the song "Roaming in the Gloaming." But we are far from the bonnie banks of Clyde. This is the Escanaba, one of the biggest rivers in the Upper Peninsula, and long, long days in summer are one of the advantages of fishing a stream 300 miles farther north than Detroit and only a stone's throw from the western edge of the Eastern Time Zone.
About 100 yards upstream, Mike Mulier is also just a silhouette. He raises his rod tip, and I see a splash and a smaller silhouette as a brown trout that grabbed his brown drake imitation mayfly leaps through the surface and makes a spirited bid for freedom.
Closer by, the waters …