When you get up it looks like it might clear off. You throw the tube in the pickup, work until Noon, and head for Early Lake.
The wind is blowing hardfrom the Northeast, with a cold edge to it. You shoulder into it and go to work.
You strip a shiny, green-bodied muddler through the chop and soon pick up the first fish.
You slide him onto the stringer.
You're on a mission. An elderly couple with a taste for trout has asked if you would bring them some, now, in the spring, when they're cold and firm and tasty. They feel bad asking; they know you're catch and release. But you feel good saying yes.
The muddler is getting the job done. The trout are indeed cold and firm--and pan-sized.
A pair of Red-Necked Grebes has been making big, noisy circles around you. Every Spring one shows up all alone and wails piteously waiting for its mate. When the mate finally arrives they both wail joyfully at being together.
You finally catch their raucous calls on video. You're amused to read in Peterson's Field Guide to Western Birds that when not on their nesting grounds they are "usually silent."
The wind isn't slowing down. It's turning out to be one of those March days you get in April.
The swallows appear to be enjoying the wind, and you enjoy watching them master it.
You pick up the fourth fish.
As you net the little Rainbow and get it onto the stringer the wind blows the tube over the fly line and it snags on something under the seat. You don't really need a break, but you need to get the line loose. So you take a break.
You look for Bighorn Sheep; some years they have come down to the water's edge here.
Back at the tube the midges are swarming. You're amazed to think that the swallows can track these diminutive insects in a stiff wind.
You saddle up and kick back out. One more fish to go.
You decide to try a little bead head woolly bugger. You troll it and strip it. It gets some bumps and follows, but no hookups.
So you tie on another muddler. A couple of casts and you've got your fish, and your limit.
You seek out a sheltered spot under the willows and clean the trout while sitting in the tube.
You kick out, pack up, and hand the trout to your friends at their kitchen door.
Hats off to Jackie Robinson who, on April 15, 1947, broke the baseball color line when the Brooklyn Dodgers started him at first base.
Robinson said, "A life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives." Each time I see my sons on the athletic field I am grateful for his courage, and for the impact he is having on their lives 67 years after he walked out onto Ebbets Field. And I hope his example will shape their lives well beyond the athletic field.
Leo Durocher, the Brooklyn manager in 1947, said of Robinson that he was "a Durocher with talent." He greatly admired Robinson, and made it clear to the other players on the Dodgers that he would trade them before tolerating any opposition to Robinson's joining the team.
Robinson also said, "I'm not concerned with your liking or disliking me...all I ask is that you respect me as a human being." Durocher told us more about what Robinson meant by respect when he said of him, "Ya want a guy that comes to play. This guy didn't just come to play. He come to beat ya. He come to stuff the goddamn bat right up your ass."
I hope my sons will learn from that example as well.
Just dropped over toEarthSky. Glad I did. Big news!
There will be a total eclipse of the full moon tonight, April 14 - 15. Mars, the Red Planet, is the closest and brightest in 6 years, and will be visible near the red moon. Look for the star Spica, too.
This is known as a Blood Moon. Some people, of a particular religious or superstitious bent, believe this moon, and the three other Blood Moons occurring in 2014 and 2015--four in a row--are signs of the Apocalypse. Yes, that Apocalypse.
If you insist on getting all worked up about that, fine. Go for it. But if you have an open mind and are interested in learning more, you might find this link helpful: