Monday, July 25, 2011

Just Fishin'

I'm still limping along, technologically, so will just have to wait 'till I return home to tell the Montana tale(s). I apologize. The silver lining is that it will give me a little time to let it marinate, to let it gain a little perspective, to make it a better narrative. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

The good news is that the others are going strong, blogging their tails off, making it work realtime. Be sure to check them out!!!

Sean at Up the Poudre
Owl at
Travis at The Tailout

It's been a blast so far and I look forward to telling you all about it.


Sunday, July 24, 2011

We Are Experiencing Technical Difficulties

So, we're here in Montana, at the end of 17 miles of dirt track, tucked into the incredible western scenery, far, far from home, or anywhere else - here to fish, learn about the good work Trout Unlimited is doing here and around the country - here to tell you about it as it happens.

And my laptop goes belly-up.

It would be painful at home, but devastating here, given what I'm in Montana to do. I still haven't quite figured out how to deal with it. You'll have to be patient with me while the reality settles in and a plan forms. My thanks to Travis for his quick connection loan here.

So while I mourn for a bit, I offer the above shot, my first westslope cutthrout, caught yesterday in Elk Lake as we waited for our cabins to be available. Seventeen inches of powerful, beautifully colored dynamite. And the week is only getting started.

I guess I may be forced to just concentrate on the fishing for a while.


Friday, July 22, 2011

And So it Begins - Montana Bound

Thursday 3:05pm
Raleigh-Durham International Airport
Gate A27

As my buddy Sean so aptly put it in a quick note this morning, and so it begins…

Sitting here at the gate feels odd. During my thirty-two years in the I/T industry I’ve done my share of flying, so it’s not that. And as a travel team soccer coach, an occasional vacationer, and the grandfather of two cherubs in Chicago, I’ve flown my fair share of friendly skies on the way to fun places and wonderful adventures. It’s not that either.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Bad Habits

With only a handful of days left before climbing onto a plane for a sweet western trout trip, I figured I’d better visit my home waters one last time and reinforce some bad habits. You know. Bass habits.

You see, I have lost the two truly large trout that I've inexplicably accidentally miraculously managed to hook this year by lapsing into my river bass fighting habits. The little-to-average fish have been no problem but when the stout trout have hit - and run - I've been too stingy giving up line, too heavy-handed with the rod, too impatient to turn the torpedoes my way – forgetting, of course, that I was dealing with 5X tippet, not 10lb test. The breakoffs were inevitable, but heartbreaking nonetheless.

Monday, July 11, 2011

The Photo Bin - June 2011

They do sit still...

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Shin Deep

There are two ways to plan a trip. The first is to agonize over the details, to spend late nights devouring maps, setting waypoints, gauging distances, scheduling travel times, and establishing to the nth degree every move, every stop, to be made. The second is to book a flight to and from a jump-off point and, in-between the coming and the going, trust the wind to blow you where it will. I like the later.

With big plans come big expectations, often unfulfilled. Sparse plans come with the tingling sense of uncertainty and adventure that can't help but be realized, for better or for worse. And you have to admit, once survived, the for worse often makes the best stories. Besides, the things you remember about a trip are seldom what you expect. What’s remembered is the chance encounter with a colorful local, the stream found far from where the knowledgeable crowd congregate, or the local off-the-travel-guide fly shop and impromptu bar-and-grill. What you remember is the color of the sky, noticed only by looking out to the horizon rather than down at an itinerary. You simply can’t plan such things. Why try?