Posts Tagged ‘planning


A place to slow down…

“Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.” Allen Saunders

(Woods by Old Germantown Rd. near Portland, Oregon)


wedding day morning…

a backyard wedding

preparing another’s vision

words, tears and then beers

wedding, seating, backyard, SwittersB


Where does time go?

The holiday season, in particular, elicits a great deal of thoughts and emotions for many. Yes, the blessings or seeming lack there of preys upon the mind, heart and stomach. But, whether your life is bountiful or lonely another element ever more preys upon my mind….time. Fleeting time. It is true what they said long ago, when I was young, ‘the time just seems to fly by ever faster’. And you know what, it does. Days, weeks, months and then years fly by ever faster. A few trips, a few family gatherings, a few accomplishments and a whole lot of time unused, wasted, evaporating. When you are younger it seems never ending and when you are older I think we still take it for granted.


I have this memory etched into my mind: my Mom was in hospice in our home. She was dying of cancer. She became more reflective and withdrawn. We never did have long conversations about our inner thoughts. Just didn’t happen. But, one day a short utterance from her came forth. “You know Gary, I never really did anything in life. It all went by so fast. I still feel like a little girl…afraid.” 

A strong recollection, a prompt to live life and love life. The time is still going to fly by. So what are you going to do today to make it a little bit more meaningful for you and those you like & love? 



Fully Loaded……..

Winter Preparations: Mind numbing cold…second guessing your pursuit. Wearing layers to the max and still the fingers feel as if a hammer has smacked them and the toes are getting numb. All the personal drive and desire to hook a Steelhead in the cold flows is seriously challenged by nature’s weather offerings. Beginner or seasoned, are you prepared? Change of clothing? Notifications made of where you will be? Emergency plan and communications if you get injured? Have you studied up a bit on hypothermia and recognize the early warning signs? 

Hiking, photography, skiing, snow shoeing, camping, fishing in the Winter, even if in close proximity to your rig, require some forethought to what if’s and the consequences of your decisions. Gear, checklist, notifications where you will be, weather reports, change of clothing, full tank….Semper Paratus!

™ Spey SwittersB-Winter-Two hander-fishing-steelhead-Oregon



“Forewarned, forearmed; to be prepared is half the victory.” Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra

brooding-dark clouds-lake-nature-Oregon-photography-SwittersB


Artsy…..but plan ahead!

“All work is the avoidance of harder work.” James Richardson

“The time to repair a roof is when the sun is shining.” JFK

holes in the roof-swittersb-photography-Oregon-SwittersB


Photography: Creative Vacancy…..

How do you plan your photographic exploits? For me, usually, it has centered around two ‘plans’: a vacation/outing that is going to provide some opportunities and haphazard driving around town and seeing an opportunity. One is planned around the trip and the other is random and maybe I have my camera along.

As of tomorrow, I will be gainfully unemployed (‘retired’). So, some time slots in my daily routine are opening up. I have a yearning to plan more and not just where I am going, but maybe on what I would like to start looking for to photograph. The surprise opportunity is nice. But, what am I missing by not giving a little more thought to the where and what of it all?

Vacancy FF Collage swittersb

Urban decay, rural, old, worn, natural, contrasts, angles, rock formations, clouds, color, black & white, trees, flowers, rust, steel, decay, the what, when, why, how, where of it all (history). I notice I am not drawn often to new lines, urban construction & growth and shiny.  Some planning is in order to take me there and then let my imagination and eye collect the possibilities. Oh, I think I will also have an opportunity to throw a line more often too!


Planning Ahead: Time to Start the Inventory

The holidays are over and the probable grey skies of Winter have settled in (in certain parts of the world you are gleefully venturing out into your Summer’s delight) and the doldrums loom. Wanderlust inserts itself. Each year, I suggest fly tying classes at shops or a community college or club. Also, there are now a lot of worthy on line tutors to peruse and learn from. Now is a good time to start charting out what you need to tie for the next season and to set to work to fill the fly boxes with those patterns. First, an inventory is in order.

Fly Box Cubes SBThis inventory will in large part be eased by how organized you started last year and maintained that through the season. If you finished like me…somewhat disorganized…then the first part of the process might be to reorganize your fly boxes/containers according to your normal labeling: nymphs, dries etc. or perhaps even more specific than that. Some years I over organize and other years I go simple (say two boxes “nymphs/wets” & “dry”) and ease my mind from too much analysis. Either way make it your comfortable way. 

SwittersB tying  1992

Ah ‘Vintage’ SwittersB tying, circa 1992 or so, in an old photo darkroom.

Once your inventory and fly tying to do list is complete then inventory your materials for each pattern and enjoy the process of preparing for the coming season. This time of year, I often make discoveries of what I tied and never used, what I tied with high hopes and was a fizzle for that season at least.

My wife dreads this time of year because this is when I tend to spread out, now that the holidays are over, into parts of the house that are warmer and less isolated. Messes can ensue and then the banter commences. This year I will try to contain my tying and subsequent macro photography work to more manageable limits…at least that is the good intention.

BWO PMD 16 SwittersBThese types of patterns, PMD’s and BWO’s (Pale Morning Duns & Blue Winged Olives) with exacting quill and biot bodies and upright wings and perfect tails are mentally challenging for me and may I say this heretical comment…they have never proved worth the fuss in effort for me over 30 years of tying. I try this every few years and do so because well, you are suppose to be able to tie and fish such patterns because they are ‘better’ imitations. Hmmm? 

I think it’s part of the art form of fly tying that challenges us to tie exacting patterns to perfect our skills and be able to say we can/did tie such classic styles. For me the practical intrudes and perhaps laziness too. I derive no satisfaction from tying exacting patterns: Atlantic Salmon artsy flies or these detailed dry flies. Just me though. Have at it if it gives you that crafting pleasure.


The New Year: Looking Forward……………

Beauty Bow SB-BLooking forward to the New Year, I am making certain hopeful resolutions with regard to fly fishing & photography: I want to pick up the two hander again and for once catch a Steelhead on it, not just practice casting…I want to venture forth this Winter, into Spring with some fly fishing trips in Central Oregon (Crooked, Metolius, Deschutes Rivers)…I MUST organize all my gear back into the somewhat manageable concepts of Salmon/Steelhead…Bass…Trout. Now everything has become a mishmash of overlapping rods, lines, flies and I am often forgetting something (back to the checkoff list)…More photography of urban/industrial settings along with the natural environment…exploring the Columbia River Gorge (Oregon) in late Spring/early Summer for Wildflowers and then learning to identify and photograph them…we want to travel to the desert and find those rustic locales to photograph and imagine what was. That’s a good start. I will have to think about the ‘normal’ resolutions re working out, less harmful activities, organizing etc. Seem so boring the day after Christmas Day.


Final Trout: Time to Reflect

Photography-Trout-Fly Fishing-Images-Summary-Planning-Preparation

Final Trout SwittersB BuckyFor many the trout season has just closed. Some of us have streams open all year, but for many the season has just closed. This is a good time to reflect upon your successes, your shortcomings, your planning, your gear, your skills and what you might want to do through the Winter months to prepare for the season opener next Spring.

bow net bugger Bucky SwittersB I might suggest the following: stow your gear away in an orderly manner so next Spring you don’t have to search for the primary items. Make a checklist of all items needed and put it in your gear bag on top for next year. Cleanup those fly boxes and take inventory of what is left. What worked? Do you need more of that successful fly pattern? What broke and needs repairing now? Tears, ruptures, breaks and leaks should be fixed now. Now is a good time to check out local fly shops and community colleges for scheduled fly tying classes. What items should be on your holiday gift list? Yes, some of us will venture forth into those open waters this Winter or brave the elements to chase Steelhead. But, if you don’t, make the effort to tidy up now for next year.

speckled beauty Bucky

In the meantime, we will day dream of what was and imagine next year’s possibilities. All Trout Caught/Released

Below @ “The Past” you can search back to 2008 month by month

July 2020

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