Wednesday, June 24, 2009

We Struck Fish! Too Bad Jon and I Have to Go Home!

Rember to click on the pictures that you want to see better!

Don't forget to read the next post as well. After all, it came before this one and is the first part of the same trip!

I was a bit disappointed about not getting in a second float but I can roll with the punches and decided to adapt to the conditions. Terry, the guy other fishermen want to be, suggested we go to some place he affectionately calls The Burn. Not having too many viable options, and having never been there, and having a learned respect for his opinion of what is a good spot, I decided to go along and try my hand at The Burn. Holy Cow! I sure am glad I came along. Look at this view. This alone is worth the trip!
I chose to wander down into the marshy area to the right in the previous image. As I meandered down there I took the time to take pictures of some wild columbine and roses.

You know something? I need a better camera man! Mine is never there when I need him. Sometimes you just have to make do!Once I'd made my way down to the water, it was only a few casts and I had hooked a small but legal trout. I let him go unharmed. Hopefully, he'll be there next year with a little more length and girth.Everybody was using Rapalas, a lure that is supposed to resemble a fish and is extremely effective on browns by the way, and though they offered to let me borrow one, I stubbornly chose to use my own gear. I have had a certain amount of experience with spoons and spinners, albeit with other species of fish, but I refused the accept the notion that brown trout will not strike out at them. The first fish I caught was on a steelie. Yeah, it was smaller but it was a fish and a brown trout just the same. I then switched to a red and white Mepps. This is a spinner that I have had a lot of success with as a kid catching grayling in Alaska. Perhaps it was a fluke but I had only made a couple of casts and BANG. I think this is a decent fish! This is the fish for which I've been looking! Thankfully, it stayed on the line and I was able to land it.
Often, I let fish go but there was enough length and girth to this fish for me to decide to add it to the food chain. I didn't eat it myself but I gave it to someone who will appreciate it. They had at least two others and by the end of the week, will probably have more.

Oh my goodness! You guys are a long way from home! This is Levi and his cousin Dennis. They decided to come up for the day on Levi's bike and surprise us. Here are some more pics of the people who shared this adventure.

Finally, I found someone to take my picture! Whew!Just to keep my pride in check, the Lord provided another fish just a bit bigger.

Well, that is it for now. Jon and I headed home to our regular lives. Today, I got up like normal and went to work. Sometime during the day, my phone gave me the signal that a text message had been received. I checked it out and it looks like Terry has passed the baton to his son Cullen. Apparently, this is one of the largest browns that they have ever pulled out of this stretch of water.Way to go Cullen! That is a beautiful fish!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

If Only There Were More Days Like These! Day 1 & 2

Remember to click on any picture you want to see more clearly.

On Sunday Jonathan and I packed the truck and headed out to La Pine where we joined a group of guys for a great couple of days of fishing and comaraderie. It was great fun but not everything went as smoothly as we would have liked.

Let me first show you some pics of the place where we were staying. It is not huge but was adequate for our needs and had a wonderful western cabin ambience.

The first thing we did, once every one had arrived, was to find something to eat. The tentative agenda had said we'd all go over to Gordy's Truck Stop for dinner. My brother-in-law, Terry, suggested we all go to Taco Bell. All of the under 18 crowd chimed in and voted unanimously with one voice that Taco Bell was their all time favorite eating place in La Pine. I donated my truck to Terry for their transportation since Terry had hitched a ride from Jacksonville to LaPine with his friend Terry Toner.

I chose to eat with the over 18 crowd at Gordy's. After dinner, we all agreed that the meal was great and headed back to the cabin. This is where our first difficulty showed up. Josh's truck refused to start. Somehow one of the battery posts had fallen off the battery. How often does that happen? No worries! They grabbed another rig and headed to Walmart and arrived 10 minutes from closing but were successful in acquiring a battery for the truck. Unfortunately, the truck still didn't start and they were forced to leave it over night where it was parked.

The next morning, they arced across the solenoid to get it started and at least got it to the cabin. Because we all were concerned about Josh's misfortune, we got a really late start on the days fishing float. To make matters worse, a number of members of the group didn't even have fishing licenses yet and needed to rectify that issue before we could get started. Then, in the confusion, we apparently didn't coordinate well where we were putting our tubes in the river so the guys who got an even later start, put in at different spots which wouldn't have been all that bad if it weren't for the fact that some of them were parked on opposite sides of the river. This may not seem such a bad thing until one realizes that in the natural course of a float trip ones floats away and often some distance away from their vehicle, in our case over 7 miles, and it needs to be arranged with another party to pick him up and ferry him back to his rig. These are the things from which memories are made. We had hoped for a second, perhaps shorter, evening float which never came to pass due to the difficulty and time it took to get everyone back to the cabin for dinner. Oh well, at least everyone had a good safe,time.

The two Terrys, their boys, Jonathan, and I put in at a place called Tenino boat launch. I GPSed the spot so I could get an idea how far we would travel that day. We got out at Wyeth Campground which turned out to be 7.13 miles.

Ok, let me tell you about the float. We had a great time! The weather was beautiful! My arms and neck got a little burned but that was a small price for the fun. The fishing on the other hand was not as productive as I expected based on prior trips to this beautiful spot. There were a lot of fish because I saw a number of very fine ones as I floated over the top of them. I think we just hit the river at the worst time of day due to the issues that have already been mentioned. Both of the Terrys each caught a brown and later we learned that Ron caught a nice eighteen incher. There were some other smaller fish caught as well by other members of the group. Even I caught a fish finally but as I landed it was disappointed to note that it was a whitefish or some kind of chub. It was a decent 11 or 12 inches and fought me with the heart of a trout so I let him go grateful that he'd sacrificed his dignity and allow me to not go completely skunked. Here are a few shots of the lauch, the float, and the landing.

I had to add this pic to remind how and where one lives when they have money. Pretty Sweet!

Here are some more shots of the float.

Oh boy! I'll bet Seth wished he'd known how his shoulders and back were going to feel the next day!
Joe looks like he's well protected from the sun. Here's how we looked after pulling the tubes and pontoon boats out at Wyeth.
Mostly tired and happy though a couple are wet and cold.

Oh my goodness! This is turning out to be a long blog and its only the first day. Tell you what. I'll post this so the followers of this blog can get started and I'll continue day two in a little bit!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Happy Father's Day!

Today I just wanted to do a quick post to remind the fathers in my life that this is the day we've set aside to honor you. Thanks for all the time, money, and effort that you contributed into making us what we've become.

My dad loves to fish, especially flyfish, and that particular love has been passed on to me. In fact, today I am packing the truck to head over to the upper Deschutes river with Jonathan and a bunch of guys to make a go of it with the brown and rainbow trout living there. I hope to take some great pictures to share when I get back.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Job! Who Was That Guy!

We have this new preacher and I really have appreciated much of his approach to the scriptures. Currently he is moving (probably just a little too rapidly) through the book of Job. Anyway, he got me thinking about the man himself.

Apparently there is some discussion among scholars who wrote the book but there seems to be much consensus between both Christian and Jewish experts that the man was an actual historical character as opposed to some apocryphal or mythical figure. I'm glad because I believe that as well.

The question that is pressing on my mind is how is it that this guy, without the full complement of scripture which we enjoy, was able to have so much deep understanding. It is not so strange that in chapter 14 he can ask such remarkable questions such as "Who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean?" Apparently, he recognizes the impossible distance sin has created between God and himself. The next two questions are kind of related in my mind. "But a man dies and is laid away; Indeed he breathes his last. And where is he?" Job recognizes some kind of finality in death. The third question, "If a man dies, shall he live again?" Now we have to wait a bit for his answer and this is what I find so remarkable. How does he have so much understanding? In chapter 19 he seems to answer his own question. Starting in verse 25, "For I know that my Redeemer lives, and he shall stand at last on the earth; and after my skin is destroyed, this I know, That in my flesh I shall see God, Whom I shall see for myself, and my eyes shall behold, and not another. How my heart yearns within me! Where does his knowledge come from? Apparently, God had reveal Himself to Job in much the same way as he did for Abraham. They probably were contemporaries perhaps even close relatives.

I think this is pretty remarkable stuff. What do you think?

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Lap 24 and Still Running Strong!

What were you doing 24 years ago today? It wouldn't be strange if you didn't know but if I didn't know what I was doing then I'd be in a world of trouble. Today is the anniversary of my marriage to my first wife, Debbie. To tell you the truth, it has been a true joy and I look forward to many more years with her. God has granted each of us the grace to continue to honor the promises that we made to each other all those years ago.

I love these words of Paul Overstreet.

What God Has Joined Together

With shaky knees and my old nervous grin
We stood before the Lord and all our friends
And your Daddy cried a teardrop as he gave his girl away
And I promised to keep lovin' you until my dying day

CHORUS: What God has joined together
Let no one come between
Or try to put asunder
Lovers building their dreams
The light that shines forever
Is now burning in our hearts
What God has joined together
Let no one ever part

Well that was several years ago today
And we walked some rocky roads along the way
But the lord has helped us make it through
These crazy ups and downs
And when we took the wrong road
He turned us both around


When the evening of our lives on earth is near
And our eyes grow weak and words are hard to hear
Well I pray the Lord is tender
When he comes to call us home
And he lets us go together
So we'll never be alone.


Isn't she amazing! Hasn't aged a day in all of those years!

Monday, June 1, 2009

More Peppers and Tomatos. Yumm! Oh Yeah, and Flowers.

We continued to add to our little deck garden this week-end. There were no major changes. We only added a couple more varieties of tomato plants and two or three more varieties of pepper. We got a green bell, an orange bell, and a jalapeno. I'm afraid the jalapeno may be a bit toasty for anyone around here but me but I thought the picture showing wonderful red colored peppers made for a very attractive potted plant. We'll see, perhaps I can sneak a small amount into a salsa later in the summer just to "kick it up a notch" as Emeril might say.

Jonathan went for a bike ride with some of his friends tonight and wanted to eat at Taco Bell afterwards. That always opens the door for us to have something really special. He won't eat the good stuff so we eat it when he isn't here. When I discovered he wouldn't be joining us this evening, I hurried off to the grocery store for some of that nice sockeye they've been advertising. Perhaps you know that not all salmon is the same. It could be argued from a position of strength that sockeye is the best eating salmon out there. It is a little smaller, of course, but the color, texture, and flavor is outstanding. It was quite a bit less expensive to buy it still resembling a fish so I brought it home and tried out a very nice Fiskars filet knife that I got for a steal at an estate sale. I prepared a wonderful (if I do say so myself) leek sauce to accompany the salmon. In addition, because I get special strokes from my wife, I made some asparagus with a lovely mustard sauce. Man, what a treat! Take a look at dinner. Remember to click on the image to get a detailed view.

I probably should have warned you to keep a rag close by in case you accidentally drool on yourself. Hopefully no one was watching.

Ok let's get back to the garden. I am a little partial to the herbs since I have developed this facination with the culinary arts. Debbie, on the other hand, appreciates the colors and aromas of flowers. We stopped by Home Depot to buy some bovine excrement for her hydrangeas and had to stop and appreciate the lovely assortment of flowers that they had for sale. I think that there are not many blooming flowers more spectacular than the hibiscus. Apparently, she spotted a weakness in my resolve and suddenly we had a hibiscus in the cart.

She saw another plant that really caught her attention. It is called bougainvillea. She indicated that I'll probably be buying one for her for our anniversary which is coming up this week. I suspect that some day this week I'll come home and something resembling this will be in my front yard.

C'est l'amour!