Posts Tagged ‘Trips & Falls

20
Aug
11

Fly Fishing: Avoiding the Crowd; Explore

It is easiest to fish near parks, stocking points, turnouts with short hikes to the river, campgrounds…these are often actually nice stretches of water…just crowded at times, or agitated after a weekend of fishing, wading, splashing, skipped rocks and the like.

Sometimes you just don't want company or you might just be in the wrong place all together?

New waters, busy waters will require some exploration to separate yourself from the crowds. Research, maps, driving back and forth, exploring spur roads, exploratory hikes are often required to find privacy. Be careful. Falls, slips etc. can ruin part of the fun of fishing, which is finding that special spot. I seldom have access to a drift boat. So, my time on rivers is limited to public access and that, to me, means getting away from the neighboring angler, if even by fifty yards….ideally way more. The locating of a secret spot should be partially mitigated by telling someone where you are parking and where your secret spot is from there…… I know, you the self contained rebel, balks at that. The longer you fish, the more you will come to realize the bumps and bruises of just getting to a point where you can wet a line or get back to your rig.  

10
Aug
11

Fly Fishing: A Hitch in Your Giddy Up…..

Fly Fishing, Outdoor Safety: It’s a bitch getting old. That could suffice. Says it all. But, then I wouldn’t have anything to write. Random recollections: back pain, hip pain, joints tight, balance issues, tentative moves, a little mounting anxiety, you get there yes, but you still have to climb out.

Muscle pulls and injuries are seemingly normal, early on, if you play hard, work hard. They heal. Some linger. You deal, you wear them like a purple heart…been there, done that. But, later the purple hearts acquire a patina, crusty like coating of something more intrusive…Arthritis

We hear this word, I heard this word, and associated it with little, elderly women with the sadly gnarled fingers/knuckles of their hands. Poor girls. Such dignity while continuing forth. Well, the insidious ‘A’ word does not confine itself to little old hands. It creeps into joints and the spine, into those that are not that old.

Back to the river. As I stood atop the rise above the river, I remarked that the distance and pathway are almost always more cumbersome than it appears from atop. Those rocks are bigger than they look from above. The water is bigger, faster, less than you think from above. So, before you commit down over the edge make sure you size it up well before you make the decision to commit your body to the downward and lateral trek across those boulders.

The ankles, hips and back are tight. The reduced range of motion catches up with you. You commit to those steps out over deep, jagged holes. You reach and place the foot and feel restrictions you didn’t use to feel. The next step is not as fluid as you support your body in a tenuous position over a hole. It dawns on you that your body is tight. You also notice that when you stand upright for a moment you are a bit wobbly. Balance is impeded and you lurch this way and that. Not good. You reach out for the rocks, bent over, holding closer to those abrasive supports. No warm ups or stretching will do much for this reality. You best pick your routes or places to fish with care. The old Clint Eastwood admonition of ‘a man’s got to know his limitations’ is true.

Back Side Creek, Poking Around (SwittersB)

Descending down, fly rod in hand is supposed to be exciting anticipation. A stalking of sort. Don’t let your limitations hinder you, plan ahead. Calculate your route and once you learn that those rocks are bigger than you realize, avoid those routes in the future. Leave it to the younger person that has a bit of Parkour hops in their steps. This is a reality moment that we all must accept. If you don’t, well you will be wearing a bigger purple heart.  

21
Jun
11

Bushcraft: Organizing Gear to Link Together

Most of us park near the water we intend to fish and don our gear, hike in, fish and walk back out. No fuss. No concern. I have previously written about letting someone know where you intend to fish or trying (if cell coverage allows) to let someone know when you have moved. Proper clothing, water, a whistle, fully charged phone are all a good idea. More challenging hikes up stream drainages or cross country to find that lake you saw on Google Maps require more planning. I came upon this piece @ Stumbleupon that provides some organizing suggestions for your review and possible adoption. Leave room for the fly box and rod/reel case (4 pc.)

Bushcraft Hiking Gear

STUMBLEUPON ARTICLE RE BUSHCRAFT ORGANIZING AND ITEMS LINKING IN USAGE

 

08
Jun
11

Fly Fishing: Fly Shop Gauntlet?

Cigar Box Pleasing to My Eye

Fly Shop Etiquette from Colorado FF Reports

I have posted here, for the beginner, before about how to approach other fly fishers & gear fishermen on streams and lakes. I have written about the attitudes one encounters in fly shops that are both discourteous and not helpful in overcoming the perceptions that fly fishing is an elitist endeavor. These are important considerations for enjoying the mental benefits of the sport. In the above linked post, the author reminds us that how you enter a fly shop and conduct yourself is important too.

A lot of mental, social machinations, it seems, to enjoy a pleasant, sometimes solitary pursuit. Yet, it is the reality in fly shops (hardware stores, the workplace, taverns, gyms, back yard BBQ’s). Ego’s, impatience, innocence combine where men (and some women) gather. Many don’t have a nearby fly shop(s) to visit, support or ignore. Some would say you are lucky, while others would say you are missing out on an enjoyable, social aspect of the whole experience. 

So, consider stream/lake etiquette, shop etiquette and if nothing else recognize the dynamics. Then try to place yourself as far from the maddening crowds as possible to avoid conflicts and receive the sustaining benefits of fly fishing. (The comments banter in the above link are worth a read also as they show the variety of perceptions re etiquette and customer service) (Excellent here to  at  Singlebarbed On Support Your Shops? Always read the comments too)

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.


06
Feb
11

Sneaker Waves….Be Careful & Not Shy

Angel of Grief

I am mindful, as two Oregon teens perish from a ‘sneaker wave’ that swept them off the rocks on the Oregon Coast, of two things: First, do not trust the seemingly routine ebb and flow of the waves on the Oregon Coast ………

“…the body of 18-year-old Connor Gregory Ausland was found and that authorities have yet to find 17-year-old…”

“Three men have drowned after being swept to sea by a rogue wave…”

“A romantic marriage proposal on the Oregon coast turned deadly for the bride-to-be when a wave swept her out to sea.”

“The waves were so high, they were crashing over the pole at the end of the pier,” said Bulawka, a schoolteacher. “I kept watching. I just thought they (a couple) would stop. They kept going. And then they were gone.”

“The State Police said two teenagers have drowned after waves swept them off a rocky outcropping on Oregon’s central coast and into the ocean….”

Secondly, ‘your kids’ (be they your blood children, nieces, nephews, students, friends of your kids). Spring is coming. Energy abounds. A heightened state comes particularly for Seniors. Don’t be shy to caution them re their driving (speeding, passing), texting and driving, drinking and driving, outdoor pursuits, swimming, celebrating. Each Spring the loss of young ones spikes as a result of that energy and beckoning freedom. The heartache is too much to bear for such a needless loss. You have nagged them this far, don’t stop now (even if you are trying to given them their space). Sobering I know. That’s ok, you have a party to go to and I am headed out fishing. Have a nice day.

30
Jan
11

Outdoors: Bears (Inside & Out)

BEARS More BEARS




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