Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Monday, September 12, 2016

So Long, Friends

I have decided to shut down this blog.

As you have gathered by now, my family and I have moved. We're back in the Midwest. It was time. After ten years of being 2,000 miles away from three daughters and four grandchildren, we are now practically neighbors. And my daughter Lidia and grandson Sebastian came with us, so now all the grandchildren are together. We're looking forward to being an ongoing part of their lives.

I will miss the trout fishing that I have left behind, and I will miss the West, but as I have made many trips to the east to see family over the past ten years, so I will now make trips to the west to fish my favorite waters.

Now, however, I have an entire region to explore, replete with lakes, ponds, rivers and streams. I have lived many years in the Midwest, so I am familiar with warm water fishing. I still have some big old deerhair bass bugs that served me well when last I probed water lilies for bass in the sultry summer dusk.

Many of those years I lived in northern Indiana, but we are now in southern Indiana, a place that locals claim is a whole different state. It's a place that does not immediately come to mind when you think of places to fly fish, but you might be surprised what's here. Southern Indiana is limestone country, and there are hills and gorges and stone outcroppings everywhere along the margins of the farmland. Lakes dot the landscape, and we are fortunate to be near several state forests where the woods are lovely, dark and deep and laced with creeks and streams and rivers.

Several of those rivers are renowned for smallmouth. I wonder what they'll think of some of my muddler variations. I think they'll like them.

This is fishbeer country. He blogged for several years about these smallmouth rivers. He found this blog and made contact when he recognized his town in some photos I posted of one of my trips here. Then he moved up to Michigan to guide on the Pere Marquette. But that's the thing. There is also Michigan, and trout streams that I have known and loved in the past. Time to renew old relationships.

And I'm closer to Maine and my brother John's stomping grounds. I might take a trip Down East again. I haven't been there for years.

But now, after almost nine years and 2,220 posts, I'm putting this blog to bed. I extend my thanks to all who have followed and supported it over the years, When I started this blog I was remembering myself trapped in Chicago and searching the internet for a fly fishing fix. So my intention from the beginning has been to share the beautiful places and the beautiful fish that I was so fortunate to find, and to provide a vicarious experience of those perfect moments that fly fishing provides. I hope I have succeeded in that.

I will likely start a new blog when the time is right. I will post a link here when I do. But for now I close with a recent comment from Brk Trt: "The home waters may change, but the fly fishing life continues on."


Thursday, September 8, 2016

Trout Lake Report: So Long, Lake

You squeeze in one more trip to the lake--the last trip. You get that last fish--on a muddler. Seasons come and seasons go, and a long season with this lake--ten years--comes to an end. It has been good.

So long, lake.

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Trout Lake Report: Awkward Goodbyes

You think this will be your last trip to the lake for a long time. You're in the middle of packing everything in the house, loading a U-Haul truck, and getting ready for a move away from Washington back to the Midwest. It's too busy to fish anymore.

So you document the last time you park the truck at the channel (the truck is sold; the new owners will pick it up in a day or two) and the last time you launch the float tube.

But then something goes wrong. You can't document the last fish you catch at Trout Lake because you don't catch it. You miss some hits, and a strong fish breaks you off along the weed beds. You think that might have been the big Brown you've been hoping for. But the end result adds up to a skunk.

Looks like you need to figure out how to squeeze in one more trip to the lake.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Trout Lake Report: Change Is Hard

Change is hard--and hard work--but you get away to the lake once again. You range a little farther down the familiar shorelines, saying your goodbyes. A trusty muddler brings some fish.