April 18th 2024

My apologies for my absence. No excuse. My priorities got shifted around and things got hectic around here. This old man is not very capable of multi-tasking and inconsequential things push the important ones aside occasionally. Easy rectified, I just need to concentrate and keep my eyes on the ball.


Finally, spring is coming to the mountains. I thought I might not survive the arrival of warmer times, but low and behold I am still here and relishing the ever-warming days. Winter is hard on me, it always has been. Before the pandemic my days were always out of doors and generally spent in pursuit of fish, but then suddenly that life style ceased and my life became sedentary.


The good that came from Covid was that with all that idle time I began my journey to making fish So I expect that it was all worth it.


The longer days causes a desire to fish once again, but mother nature plays a wicked game with me; she calls me out of doors to fish and revel in the rebirth that spring brings and then turns her mountain streams and rivers unfishable with high, icy and silt filled waters. Like the female she is, mother nature seduces me and then denial! What horrible fate. I await the coming of warmer times and then I am still denied the days on small streams and rivers with the long rod in hand using all of my intellect in pursuit of trout of every description. Diminutive or of heavy shoulders, all deceived with hook and feather. What greater bliss?


My garage (and my shop) is filled with rods of every description. They lie in bundles in every corner and in racks upon the walls. As I sit in my shop working on fish or having coffee in the mornings or a cup of sweet Canadian whisky in the evenings, they besiege me to pick them up, wipe away the dust and give them life on a mountain stream, but alas, the waterways are unfishable. I force myself to ignore the rods and block their plaintiff cry from my hearing.


The alpine lakes of the high country are no solution. Each are still enveloped with ice and I have sold my boat so I could not fish from her deck. There is a possibility; tailwaters that flow from the many reservoirs near me. Cold, clear waters that the giant dams give up and turn into trout rivers.


These tail waters offer solution from the concrete barrier that is the dam downstream until tributaries and melting snow awash with sediments that murky the rivers. Several of these tailwaters are storied; the Green river below the dam at Flaming Gorge Reservoir and close at hand is the Provo River below both the Deer Creek Dam and the Jordanelle Dam. Each occasionally giving up giant brown trout. A solution, but alas also problematic: Waters can be heavy at times depending on the demands for the power the dams create or later, the demands for irrigation water. As I approach my 80th year I contemplate fishing these gin clear ribbons of water, but fear the currants might be too great for me.


Instead of fishing, I linger in memories of rivers past. My life has been rich and blessings many, among them the opportunities to fish some of the great rivers in the world; close at hand the Provo, the Logan and the Green. A step away; The Firehole, the Madison, the Clearwater, the Snake and the Salmon River and other and far beyond the Kenai, the Ugashik, and 1000 others and beyond to Siberia. Life has been good to me and that should be enough, but the waters still beckon me and I cannot silence their sirens call.


My wader prints will never again grace the sandy banks of these rivers and streams. Those waters are far downstream now and I can only hope that as spring melts the snow from the mountains and the waters of my youth once again run clear and cold and the wild trout rise from their lair to take the diminutive fly I will be content with my memories and still can gaze upon the many rods that accompanied me on my long journey and find joy.