Sunday, December 10, 2017

"An Old Man's Winter Night" by Robert Frost

Deb Garlick

All out of doors looked darkly in at him
Through the thin frost, almost in separate stars,
That gathers on the pane in empty rooms. 
What kept his eyes from giving back the gaze 
Was the lamp tilted near them in his hand. 
What kept him from remembering what it was 
That brought him to that creaking room was age. 
He stood with barrels round him—at a loss. 
And having scared the cellar under him 
In clomping there, he scared it once again 
In clomping off;—and scared the outer night, 
Which has its sounds, familiar, like the roar 
Of trees and crack of branches, common things, 
But nothing so like beating on a box. 
A light he was to no one but himself 
Where now he sat, concerned with he knew what, 
A quiet light, and then not even that. 
He consigned to the moon,—such as she was, 
So late-arising,—to the broken moon 
As better than the sun in any case 
For such a charge, his snow upon the roof, 
His icicles along the wall to keep; 
And slept. The log that shifted with a jolt 
Once in the stove, disturbed him and he shifted, 
And eased his heavy breathing, but still slept. 
One aged man—one man—can’t fill a house, 
A farm, a countryside, or if he can, 
It’s thus he does it of a winter night. 

The Rod & Road

Bikefishing the Deschutes River in Oregon.

Saturday, December 9, 2017

River of Life

Trump's Dismemberment of Bears Ears: Perspective From Indigenous Scholars

Bob Wick/BLM

Thanks to Moldy Chum for this link to The Revelator and a perspective we hardly ever pay attention to. Five First People Nations, Navajo, Hopi, Ute, Ute Mountain, and Zuni, worked for years to establish protections for cultural sites, religious sites, and grave sites prone to looting and desecration. Now, with a stroke of the pen, 60,000 sites are stripped of that protection.

What would you do if the shoe was on the other foot? Have the courage to put yourself in their place before you lock yourself into beliefs and positions fed to you by self-seeking politicians.

Read the article HERE.

Friday, December 8, 2017

Ushering In Winter With The Wood Between

We're in the deep freeze right now. It came fast with daytime temperatures in the 60's one day and then dropping into the 30's over the next two days. Night time temps are in the teens. To cap it all off snow is predicted for Saturday.

Now, I like winter, but it does take some time for me to adjust to the change and anticipate the pleasures of the season. I hope to keep fishing on the good days when they come, and I plan to get out to enjoy the particular beauty of the winter landscape. But I'm not ready yet.

A pleasant boost in this adjustment phase has come from some recent winter-themed posts on The Wood Between. I look at these works of art and suddenly I can hardly wait for winter.

Chris Wormell

Yuri Vasnetsov

William Hyde

The Elusive Marble

Wow. More gorgeous evidence that Slovenia is the place where good fly fishermen go when they die. Famed Marble trout and dry flies on the Soca River.

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Boggan's Oasis Burns Down

Dang! Just read the news about Boggan's Oasis on the Grande Ronde in Washington State. As you can see, it burned to the ground last month.

I was fortunate to spend some happy hours there with my brother back in 2013.

The world seems like a sadder place knowing that this landmark right on the banks of the Ronde is no longer there to welcome steelheaders after the 13 mile descent of Rattlesnake Grade. 

But that community of steelheaders and others have launched a GoFundMe campaign to help the owners, Bill and Farrel Vail, who lost everything, get back on their feet.

Find out more HERE.

Fall On the Fly

Fall cutts in BC. Gorgeous.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

The President Stole Your Land

Thanks to our friend over at Fly Fishing in Yellowstone National Park for calling our attention to Patagonia's call to action in response to the butchering of National Monuments in Utah.

Read it HERE, and be sure to click on over to the Patagonia site.

Or click on over to Patagonia HERE.

We have fallen heirs to the most glorious heritage a people ever received, and each one must do his part if we wish to show that the nation is worthy of its good fortune.
— Teddy Roosevelt

A Good Explore

I go back to Clear Creek. The weather has been mild and I still have hopes of finding a smallmouth somewhere. I go upstream and begin at the log jam run. On the way in I see small fish bolting at the sight and sound of me hurrying along the high bank.

After a thorough search of the water column--they bolted somewhere else--I turn and start upstream again.

I'm going to take the opportunity to explore some more of this stream. With the leaves and underbrush thinned out you can get the lay of the land much easier. You can also find new landmarks like this monarch of the forest, now in repose.

I follow a deer trail for a quarter of a mile or so.

I find a small feeder stream. It flows out of a stone-built opening under the ridge. Or is that an old road or rail bed up there? My curiosity is piqued. 

But it's also piqued by this stretch of new stream. I decide to explore the stone work another day and wade into the current.

There are chubs here. I think each one might be a little smallie until I get it in close.

I enjoy myself wading downstream fishing all likely looking spots and looking for new runs or holes.

Fish of the day.

I get back to the log jam and use up the last of the daylight exploring the deep pool some more.

I head for the truck as the moon rises through the trees. It's one day away from being the full super moon.

But it will do for tonight.

Fall Beaver Pond Brookies


Sunday, December 3, 2017

Full Cold Super Moon


Scouting Clear Creek again. Good for mind, spirit, and body.

Scale, No. 27

Thumbing their nose at the 27 Club and going for 100 and beyond. Get it HERE.

Saturday, December 2, 2017

A Screwed Up Day

I miss trout, and with precious little action now in my local waters I determined to make a trip back to the Brookville tailwater. That's the closest place to home that I can find trout.

I screwed up. The cardinal rule when you're driving a distance to fish is to be sure to check water levels first.

I drove the two hours to Brookville without doing that, and, wouldn't you know it, someone had flipped a switch and tons of water were being released from the reservoir. Dang.

I stayed and fished. It was bank fishing, working streamers and nymphs as far as I could roll cast them. I was hopeful that the swing up along the bank might find a trout or two seeking refuge in the soft spots there. It reminded me a little of fishing Rocky Ford Creek in Washington state. The only difference was that I caught trout there.

I started fishing the current seam between this backwater and the racing flow in the main channel. I could roll cast far enough to cover the whole seam. There were a few fish breaking the surface right out in front of me, but I couldn't get anything to take a fly.

Then it was like someone flipped a switch. In quick succession I caught a mess of bass and crappie. I hoped for a trout in there somewhere but it was not to be.

Then the switch was flipped off and the fun was over.

On the one hand, I didn't catch any trout. On the other hand, that was the most fish I've caught in some time. Not bad for a screwed up day.