The Revolution has reached the Upper Eagle River Valley.......I'm offering two handed fun this season.
While I wait for MR. Scott L2H 5wt, I have been really enjoying my time with Ms. Mystic 11'3" 4wt here in the hood. It took 17 minutes to realize how much fun Switch Rods are going to be for chasing my local trouts; the practical applications for the water I guide is going to change everything. The radical applications are going to be a potential blast. The 4wt has handled a heavy tip/streamer as well as a nymph rig/bobber. I understand that may make a 2 handed purist cringe but the whole system is a mutant offspring of tradition any ways so just be patient while someone gets the rule book written. Honestly the last technique I'll be teaching will probably be the swing unless maybe the bugs look like little wet flies. We fish streamers a certain way around here and the program is strong so I can't see some junior spray pole replacing our tradition. Most of the action these tree branches are going to see (at least in my program) will look like what their little cousin the 9 footers have been doing for us. Can't wait to chuck a dry with it.
While I know there are a few of you who will love picking up new techniques and tactics, I have no illusion of turning anyone into a mediocre spey caster; every single hand roll cast has been a miracle the way I teach.
For one reason or another we have all struggled with the search for more, all guys have sat and thought about life with a few more inches, guides just do it everyday.Well my dim light came on when I quickly calculated I could just buy 27 more at the store. Never mind the ability to mend at 80', the length of the rod makes traditional movements like water hauls, roll casts and single hand casts instantly 16.834' longer. Add double handed casts like a single/ double spey, switch cast, snap t and BANG...... all my fishing friends are on an All Natural Cast Enhancement System!!These things are the medication that can promise feet.
It is a relative nightmare to match up with a line and I can see some spool changing depending on what its being abused for. A switch line, a skagit, speydicator and a wallet of tips also means a new piece of luggage.
Two people peeling from the boat is not anything I want to be invovled with. We'll just stop alot.
Hook sets just got further away.
Damn Rods are as long as my boat.
Lost track of an old buddy a few years ago and I have been wondering what might have become of him. His name is/was John "Mayday" Malone and he scared the shit out of me.
When I first met Mayday at Guide School he wasn't as terrifying. He appeared to have come straight from an Orvis Catalog; wind proof hair, perfectly pressed Logo shirt, high end rain jacket even on nice days and a face that kindly accepted the largest pair of Cocoons sold. He was a 70's Fly Fisherman avatar in a fully loaded vest......exactly what you would sketch if you needed a trout guide cartoon character. He was polite and honestly charming with a knack for making you listen every time he rambled, even if it sounded exactly like yesterdays poop.
"Guy shook em off all day Bobby"
Perry gave him the boot one year and he somehow got a gig at Elktrout for the summer. I'm sure looking like Mr LL Bean in Barbour slacks helped them decide to skip the back ground check. He eventually migrated back to us and his rock below Wolcott where they climb. He's not there anymore but I'm sure his boot prints are. I smile when I float past.
No one was sure exactly how he came to be in the Eagle Valley, he just appeared one day. According to Mayday he used to be a golf pro in Fla and a fishing guide back in PA. The only place he really considered home was a small hunting cabin somewhere in western PA, it wasn't until the end of his days in Colorado we learned he was actually from Ohio. Everything was a bit mysterious with the old fella. He had very few friends, no family to mention, an ex wife with no legs and he was supposedly Ray"Boom Boom" Mancinis Cousin. He had a post office box but cashed most of his checks and never signed a lease, which made us all think he escaped something. He slept a lot of places including some crazy Irishman's basement, his truck, expensive motels, several couches and the fly shop floor over the years. Everyone extended a hand to Mayday, at least in the beginning, before it started to feel like you were just buying him another round. He never had a problem finding people who genuinely cared, a holiday meal or a place to stay until the Booze started pushing him around real hard.
I had some "things" going on in my life and I guess he thought it might be OK if his life went into flames at the same time. My misery wasn't looking for company and my patience level was the door man so it was hard to get equal playing time, but this sweet old man was part of the family and needed help. Watching someone in their 60's sell all their worldly possessions (which fit in part of an old Jeep Cherokee) was sobering enough, seeing him chase nitro pills with a Budweiser made me think clearly about tightening things up (or trying to). I honestly would close my eyes at night and think to myself that could be me and if I am not careful I might be the one "watching the shop for the night." I would hate to hurt his feelings if he is still around, I doubt he has one of these "machines" (his flip phone was gremlin enough),but his hot mess started to help me out of mine.
It's been a couple of years now since I last heard from John; I wonder about him often, even calling his cell now and again. Drunk or not he never let our friendship wobble, he supported me no matter in some dark times, which is more than I can say for a few of my "good friends" in Colorado.The last time I saw him was the day my Dad drove him to the bus station in Vail. He had tickets to his hometown, Youngstown Ohio and a treatment program to get the demon out. I know he checked in and 3 months later checked out and then disappeared. Some people around here want to know he's all good, so if you are a dry cleaner in the PA/OH area and you read this crap, please keep an eye out for a nice old fella who might come in to have his rain jacket pressed.......tell him to give me a call, Karma misses him.
There are 9024 pictures on this hard drive and not one of Mr Malone, if anyone from back in the day has a picture of Mayday send it to me so the FBI can have something to go on.
Woke up excited and READY for a float on the Roaring Fork Thursday morning and then found this:
This was my third bullet from Plow King Paul and this terrorist act was due some measure of retaliation. Armed with a fresh cup of Joe and a schedule to keep I turned to a weapon of mass destruction I am very highly certified to use. Anyone from my past knows that I have moved a Superdome's worth of dirt with a shovel in my time, this was nice, light, clean, cold and easy. 45 minutes later Ol Sadam of Snow needed to scrape most of that parking lot again since it looked like a Scud missile had been lobed into his sick joke. My neighbors quietly smiled and shook their heads as they walked the kids to the bus stop. Each toss of giant clumps of plow snow was meticulously placed in a nice neat 40' radius from the original crime......It was gorgeous work. The enemy was not pleased as he re cleaned what he could while waiting for me to move the rig I strategically left in the way for 22 mins. He got my biggest grin and a wave from Sam as we FINALLY moved so he could finish for a second time.
Test drove the new Mystic 4wt Switch once on the water. Love it, need to spend more time with her.
Nice to be back in the boat with my good friend Josh Miller. The Fork gave us much love early and then paid us back for my evilness late......we were better than that.