Sunday, April 28, 2013

Walking the Dog

Today was far too nice of a day to be inside or do chores...even if they were piling up as fast as the snow drifts were melting. It was hot even up in the canyon. I lay in bed this morning and tied to remember if I still had enough kindling to start a fire, or if I was going to have to trudge out back in my knee boots and pajama bottoms looking like a mountain bumpkin. But it was not even chilly enough to warrant a fire...

Erin and I both tried to get some odds and ends done around the cabin and even sat down around lunchtime to get some writing done. Erin grueled through some more footnotes for a book she is wrapping up and I tried to focus on a project that is in that scary stage of barely being started...but the first half of the advance on royalties has been spent. So my bills are payed, but I am now kinda committed. Enslaved to the keyboard. But we both looked outside, looked at each other...and then at the dog. We should really take him for a walk, we agreed.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Opening Day

When I was a kid "opening day" was as exciting as any good holiday with all the same build up and anticipation ..and staying up late the night before. That ended with the usually and similar over-expectations and let downs. Opening day meant the first day of trout season in western Pennsylvania when I was a kid. Happened about this time of year, too...mid April. The nights and waters were still cold, I remember. And the opening day usually found me and friends standing on the banks of a creek, nursing under-aged hangovers (Busch Lite bought by a friends older brother) and gazing hopefully and dumbfounded out over a a body of trout stream brown and bursting at the seams from run off. Rarely was a fish seen at all.

The idea of an opening day or even the concept of a trout season is so foreign to any fly fishers who have never lived outside Colorado or elsewhere here in the Rocky Mountain West. It seems even a bit silly. And it was... especially because it usually was stocked trout we were looking for. Checking stocking reports, listening to the Weather Channel  eavesdropping on bait-store gossip... Yes, it all was a bit silly now compared to the 365-day binge we enjoy out here. And wild trout. But there is still something that gets me pumped up about being told you can't fish...and then, NOW you can! Go! Like a dog obediently drooling and staring cross-eyed at the Milkbone balanced on his nose. Or the first time that cute girl doesn't back away when you lean in for a kiss. The build up makes the reward so memorable.

These memories of the PA trout openers of my youth are the reason I still wake up early and drive down to Denver and fish the Rocky Mountan Arsenal on opening weekend. There are other, less crowded pike spots and a hundred other great (and better) bass lakes on the Front Range, but that ain't the point. The gate opens at 6 o'clock and everything is prepped ahead of time...flies are tied, rods are strung and resting in the bed of the pickup truck. Radio belching some old Chris Ledoux. Lets drive up get out and get on another one and boy you better win...Warm gloves. Hot coffee. Spare wire leaders. Here we go!

Monday, April 8, 2013

Interview With a Potty Mouth

I've only shared time with Jay Zimmerman once--we tipped a few beers in Denver during a gathering of writers and bloggers a few months back. But Jay is one of those guys who's simply hard to miss in this incestuous little community we've chosen. He's outspoken. He can be a little crass. But he's thoughtful and I think he's really smart.

One minute you're thinking, "Dude, do you kiss your mother with that mouth?" and the next you're wishing aloud, "Damn, I'd love to be able to enunciate my thoughts that profoundly ... at least once."

A lot of you may know Jay as the significant other who's attached to Erin Block, the fine young writer who's recently penned a book and whose work appears regularly in TROUT Magazine. But Jay's carved a niche in the fly fishing world all his own--he's a hell fly tyer, and he's not a bad writer in his own right. He has his own following (and his own book on the market), and rightly so.

I feel fortunate that I got to spend some time with Jay and Erin in Denver a few months ago, and I look forward to the opportunity to share a drink with them again sometime soon.

On with the questions: Eat More Brook Trout