Archive for February 13th, 2011

13
Feb
11

Ice Off, Over The Hump

Many of us have that favorite lake or river or small stream. One of my favorite lakes has such a positive memory bank, I can hardly let myself think of it this time of year. Too soon. Turnover

13
Feb
11

Fly Fishing: What if…………?

Body of Salem fisherman recovered

by Associated Press

kgw.com

Posted on February 13, 2011 at 12:25 PM

SALEM — Authorities have recovered the body of a 46-year-old Salem man who fell into the Santiam River Jan. 27 while fishing with a friend in Gates.

The Marion County Sheriff’s Office said the body of Troy Topper was recovered Saturday night after two fishermen in a drift boat spotted the body about 15 miles downstream from where he fell into the river.

The Salem Fire Department Water Surface Rescue Team assisted.

Topper was fishing from the river bank Jan. 27. He lost his footing when he went to the water’s edge to wash his hands.

His friend tried to pull him from the fast-moving, 38-degree water with a fishing pole but was unsuccessful.

The above news piece, is a sad and sobering reminder of what if’s and the attendant visuals of what friends and strangers went through over the man’s deadly mishap. I was reminded that a week ago, I hiked into the Sandy River at Oxbow Park. One spot in particular drew me and the one obstacle between me and the river was a ten foot+ high half a mile long pile of trees and debris from recent high waters. I made it to the river and out, but ignored a ‘what if?’ self check moment. What if I miscalculated and stepped into a hole at the top of the debris and plummeted downward out of sight? Sure, family knew where I was headed “Oxbow and if not there above Dodge”.

But, if I am late coming home, there is often going to be a delay filled, anxiety laden night for family and rescuers. Rescuers are not going to risk their safety climbing atop a drift pile, if they initially think I am even down in one of those crevasses of debris. Most logically they would assume I drowned or am down on a trail.

Outdoor pursuits are, of course, inherently dangerous for all manner of reasons. But, a primary danger are falls (even at home) for outdoor types.  So, my what if, self check mechanism should have been activated and more patience maintained to spare rescuers the dangers and costs and my family the nauseating gut check of their own what if’s. Exercise caution while having those alone moments and hearing the call of the river.  Condolences for the family, friends and those that recovered Mr. Topper.


13
Feb
11

Fly Fishing: TIPS Mouche Rules

TIPS Mouche Rules 2009

I was reading a piece about fly fishing competition and Lance Egan at Troutlegend.com. I have watched a few shows on American TV about competitive fly fishing. It has, personally, grated on me and I have mentally turned away from it as something to endorse or highlight. International competition and the energy associated with it seem to squish that mental space I have on why I fly fish. My problem, no one elses. But, in reading the piece, I see the worth of learning on how to maximize my personal experience and improve my techniques. Because it is predominantly about technique vs. fly pattern. So, I attached the piece because it is interesting and the references to the TIPS Mouche Rules was foreign to me. So, I attached a 2009 file re the rules. Really nothing to shattering in them unless you use split shot and  Thingamabobbers. It isn’t the techniques, it is the mind set and again…..pretty much to each their own as long as the fishery/habitat are safe.

13
Feb
11

Alaska’s New AG John Burns on State Sovereignty & the Resources

Alaska’s new Attorney General, John Burns, is an avid fly fisher. He also provides not so subtle clues on his position re statehood, state’s rights, Federal regulations and ‘overreach’, development of resources  and the environment in a piece in the Juneau Empire………

“Burns stated the biggest challenge so far is prioritizing the multitude of issues affecting the state. Outside of Alaska is the concern of state sovereignty and the frustration of dealing with Federal regulations and unnecessary overreach, and the federal government seeking to regulate that which they cannot legislate.”

“From our perspective, the ability of our state to become a state, to become an independent entity is critically dependent on its ability to develop its resources,” Burns said, quoting Parnell. Burns urges all Alaskans to read the Statehood Act as well. “The frustration is that, I strongly believe that anybody that lives in the state of Alaska, who has lived here for a long period of time, is an environmentalist. You cannot live in this great state and participate in all that we have and not want to see it continue. But at the same time we recognize that you can have different and responsible development coexisting with that ability to participate. The frustration that I see is that the rest of the world does not believe that we are competent enough to responsibly develop our resources. I don’t think that they believe we care about this wonderful state. To me that belies comprehension. Every Alaskan I have talked to, who has been here for any length of time, is here because it is such an incredible state. The thought that we would do something to ruin it is beyond comprehension to me.”

I wonder if Mark or Brad at Alaska (Juneau) Fly Fishing Goods (nice shop by the way) might ask John Burns, the next time he drops in to heft that new 6 wt., what his take is on the Pebble Mine issue and that  whole process. Unofficial position, of course.

 




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