A long-anticipated journey

Summer is in full swing, and after much long deliberation, I’ve decided to fish my way from California to Montana. I’ll be gone fishin’ for the rest of the summer and perhaps well into the fall. I set out with no particular time frame or route in mind. Like Bilbo Baggins, I intend to go wherever the adventure takes me.

Irresponsible? Perhaps a little bit. But hey, you only live once. What about my job you ask? I’ll still be able to telecommute part-time for my current job so I won’t be completely off the grid while I’m on my adventures (not to mention I’ll be able to afford fishing gear, gas and food….in that order). Many of my friends have no idea why I would want to go galavanting across the country by myself; fishing away the summer. But then again, many of my friends don’t fly fish; those that do just wish that they could come with me.

A scenic drive

A scenic drive

Days 1-3; July 13, 2013:

My Dad is traveling with me for the Oregon leg of my trip; double the gear but also double the fun. Most of the morning is spent getting last minute items and cramming my beloved Subaru full of fishing rods, fly-tying materials, enough flies to open a fly shop, float tubes and camping gear. Who needs to see out the back window anyways?

Windmills line the mountain outside of Burney

Windmills line the mountain outside of Burney

About 5 hours into the drive, I realize I didn’t bring a net. “Hey Dad, did you bring your net?” Uh oh. Dad realizes he didn’t bring his net, not a huge deal….except for the fact that his net is attached to the back of his vest (loaded with all of his favorite flies, and other beloved fishing gear). He’ll have to make due with his hip pack for a few days until it can be FedEx’d up to meet us. The next day on the river, I notice him reaching out of habit for tools normally found on his vest; but alas he grips at empty space. Poor guy!

Fish these size were so fun to catch on a #2-3 graphite rod my Dad built. I want one!!!

Fish these size were lively to catch on a #2-3 graphite rod my Dad built. Slow action and fun to cast. I want one!!!

We make camp at Castle Crag, our site is right on the Upper Sacramento River. Ironically, our neighbors are the Peninsula Fly Fishing Club. It’s always easy to identify fellow fly anglers, the gear tends to give us away. Fishing stories are exchanged and it turns out the president of the club has just moved to Truckee. What a small world it is!

While Dad continues to chat away with these folks I decide to hit the river.  It’s dusk, the perfect time for fishing. The fish are hungry and I’m catching 10″-16″ wild and planted ‘bows every few casts. The next day more fish are caught, I learn how to tie  PMD emerger and pops teaches me how to skate a caddis. A sublime start to what promises to be a spectacular journey.

On the road again. Mt. Shasta in the background.

On the road again. Mt. Shasta in the background.


6 thoughts on “A long-anticipated journey

  1. This friend gets it! So happy to see you pursuing your dreams- have an amazing trip and keep blogging!! I’ll be waiting 🙂 Beautiful pics already.

  2. I am glad to see your following a dream. Looks and sounds fun. Can’t wait to see more, really wish I was there. Enjoy

  3. I get it and I’ve done it….adventures by oneself are some of my favorite memories in life. You’ll never forget this experience and I’m looking forward to following along as you go….


  4. Hi Less.This is Art ur ole neighbor in Truckee.I did the same pilgrimage years ago.Montana.(fished with Mike Posten up there),The Madison,Big hole,Hebgrin lake,Henerys fork,Then down to my favorite river in the world The Green river below Flaming Gorge,.Then down to the San Juan River in New Mexico While camping @ Navaho dam I was looking @ the Rand McNalley map.If I fish my way back thru Nevada up to Washington,Then back down to So Cal it would look like a big butterfly on the map.So off I went.The Metollis Silver,creek,Willamson river,Umpqua,then down to my old stopping grounds Upper Sac,the Hat, Burney area,Pit river&,Our Truckee river,Hot Creek,the Kern river.Then back down to So Cal.Hence the big butterfly on my map.
    Speaking of Bilbo Baggin your dad has been talking about New Zealand.That would be a great adventure for you guys,Come down with your dad one of these days & fish Hot creek and the Bishop area.
    AH MEMORIES!!!!( Excuse my poor writing Compared to your dad &yours)
    Tight lines Art

    • Hi Art! It has been too long since I last saw you! Dad told me when I was planning my trip that you had done a similar one. Less than a week into it and it is so much fun. And so many fish! I would love to take Dad to New Zealand soon, have you been there? Next time Dad heads down there I’ll come with him and we can all fish together. Great to hear from you, I hope all is well down in Bishop 🙂

  5. Hi less!New Zealand is Awsome,friendly people,good food.excellent dry fly fishing in South island&,Queenstown the adrenaline capital of the world,the Alps& BIG BROWNS.If you saw Lord of the Rings That exactly how the countryside looks like.Any country that build a 40 foot statue of a brown trout (In the town of Gore)Must love fishing.On the north Island are the Rainbows
    I got to fish New Zealand with my favorite people.Tricia&Matt my daugther&soninlaw.When you get over there try to go to Tazmania.A short hop
    from New zealand Excellent flyfishing.Hey have a good trip&Stick plenty of fish looking forward to lots of pictures
    Art.( Oh yea try not to show your dad up to bad!)

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