Sunday, September 14, 2014

Flying Furballs ~ Sunday Tippets, Damsel Style

There are many experiences one might have when heading off for a day of fishing.  Seeing a ball of fur come at me in the darkness of an early Saturday morning is not one that I want repeated.  The short story... A tanker truck on the highway hit a deer, warthog, or something with elk caddis like fur.  I have a few stands left attached to the back of my SUV.   Yeah, a little fix up job on the undercarriage of my vehicle.  Shocked and bewildered, I drove on to my destination safely.  Once there, a nice kid temporarily stuck the piece of undercarriage tightly away so it wouldn't drag on the road when I headed home later. Yikes!  This goes beyond saying that my next ride is going to be high above the ground...

Yes, the River Damsel joins forces with the Caped Crusader...

No more flying furballs will get in my way on my journeys...

So a day that started out on the "wild" side, only continued to get worse,  five hours on the water and not a single bite.  That hasn't happened in a long while.  So, I guess that you could say that the River Damsel was humbled.  It just wasn't going well at all.  Windknots and Tangled Lines, all along the way.  And every knot that I tried to tie just wouldn't hold.  I must have tied on 15 flies and tying on each of those three times.  It wasn't pretty.  And to cap it off, a barb got stuck in my finger.   I really don't have much more to say about the day...
Except... THE FISH WON
And sometimes it happens that way...

On to the good news of the week...

My daughter and son-in-law presented us with a second grandson this past week.  Meet Cameron.  I probably should have stayed home this weekend in hindsight and enjoyed the new family addition.

The best catch of the week for sure...

Sunday Tippet

Roads are best traveled in daylight.
Enough said.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

The Forever In Plaid Adventure

Yes, it's been a couple of weeks again without a siting of the River Damsel.  Sometimes life gets put ahead of that thing they call fly fishing.  You know... Hey, I even had a birthday two weeks ago.  One that I would like to forget.  Let's just say that it was kind of a flop.  I guess that I'm a kid still when it comes to birthday celebrations.  And well, I had to work for a half day before I could get out to fish for a couple hours.  It was very nice of my friend to take me out to the river that day, but with the storm that greeted us, the fishing was all but stellar.  And I got back home late, so there wasn't the usual dinner out or cake. (Maybe I didn't get one year older, eh?)  So, what do you do when you want a re-do of your birthday? That's right... you go on a fly fishing trip!  So, off to Montana I went for my rain check this past weekend.

  Fly boxes were loaded full of "winners", I hoped.

Almost there... I get quite excited when I see that 
"Welcome to Montana" sign!

But, the excitement faded quickly when I saw my favorite river full of moss and grass.  I had checked the reports and I did know that there was "some" moss.  But, the fishing was supposed to still be "good".  The flows were even lower than expected too.  Well, sometimes a fly shop report isn't quite all the way truthful when conditions are not up to snuff.  It's all about getting you up there for a visit.  I don't like it, but I understand it.

Ok.  So you can catch fish in moss and grass.  But, your tolerance level is definitely challenged.  Haha.

Fortunately, I had a friend that I was meeting up with that is a local and he knew of a few more fishing spots that we could head to.  So, after one day of fishing "green" stuff, we headed to more friendly water.  And this is where the "Forever in Plaid" adventure really started.  We are both members of a Facebook group that does a state count each week of getting out to fish as a competition.  We get a point for each day out on the water.  But, this week it was deemed "plaid week" and so we were decked out appropriately to get two points each day instead.  Oh, the silly games we play sometimes.  = )   And I was playing for Montana, not Utah of course...  Funny, it seems that I often play for another state during the summer.  Heehee.

I want to thank Travis for sharing his favorite fishing holes and also for his great knowledge of the bugs and surroundings.  He was a stand up guy and a lot of fun to fish with.  And he had patience... It's not always easy fishing with a girl...  Especially one that is a little slow in tying on flies.  = )

Without further adieu...
A recap of a most AWESOME fishing adventure!

Friday, August 22, 2014

Friday Night Lights - Damsel Style

We bring back "Friday Night Lights"...  I think that it was last year when I wrote up one of these.   A little round up of what is going on around the blog circuit.  Well, first of all, Howard's lights over @ Windknots & Tangled Lines, blacked out.  For just a minute or two.  Something about a ceiling fan and a fly rod in his hand connecting before the "hit" to the floor.  All is well with Howard, but not the rod.

Alan, over @ Small Stream Reflections is doing what he does best... Catching wild brookies on the front line.   I believe that there is no prettier of a place than where he lives.  New England... the land of majestic color in leaves and fish.

We've got Mark over @ Northern California Trout finding all kinds of beautiful lakes to throw a line in.  Here is the Upper Blue Lake, out by Lake Tahoe, NV.  Lucky dog.  I loved that area when I lived out there.  It must be an epidemic though.  He broke a rod too... Fishing with or without ceiling fans is a tough job, folks!!!

We have Mike... errr, his guide @ Troutrageous! teaching Mike to stand and fish from a kayak.  Now, he says that he can do it, but there isn't any proof...yet.   I'm sure it will be posted sometime in the near future.  His wife is such a sweetie and knew his desire to get better at this new thing called "salt water fishing"  and presented him with a guided trip to learn some new skills...

And the last blogger to put under the Friday Night Lights is none other than Kirk @ Unaccomplished Angler.   He seems to be leaning a new skill as well.  Fishing on a John Deere and catching "lawn trout".  Ok,  Some people's kids.  

Have a great weekend my friends!  It's time to turn the lights off around here...

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Do You Remember? ~ Sunday Tippets, Damsel Style

"I'm late and I can't find my keys!  I know that I put them on the kitchen counter, but they aren't there...  Oh you know who I'm talking about.  What's his name...  I have been down this road before.  We take a right, or is it a left?..."  Have we all not had these conversations a few times in our lives where we blank out on something that we should remember?  Ahhhh... the aging process.  So what is normal and when should we be concerned?  I guess that the first step in staying mentally sharp as you age is to know what is "normal" forgetfulness due to stress and what might be a serious memory problem. 

Forgetfulness can be an uphill battle at times.  It's nothing to laugh about.  Ok... sometimes it is.  I find myself talking about a movie and even though I just recently saw it, I can't remember the title of the dumb thing.  Well, maybe it wasn't that good.  Haha.  The worst thing lately is going into the kitchen to get something and not remembering what it was that I was going to get.  Oh boy.  Memory lapses can be dog gone frustrating.  But fortunately, the ones I'm experiencing don't have too much cause for concern as they are more age-related than symptoms of dementia.  The main difference between those two is that temporary memory loss isn't disabling.  It has little impact on your daily tasks and ability to do what you want to do.  
And you know that I am still doing what I want to do!!  Like yesterday...

But, in all seriousness... fishing is about the only thing that I don't forget things.  Oh wait.  I can't say that.  So, I get to the river a couple hours away from home and I can't find my PMD fly box.  I had sifted through all of my boxes and made a special trip to the fly shop to put together this box for the trip.  So, I put on my pouty face and headed down the river with the boxes that would have to work.  Yeah, no fish for two hours.  I threw out the kitchen sink at them!  I couldn't believe that there weren't any caddis flying around.  There is always caddis, aren't there?  Nope, just size 22 pale morning duns.  And spinners.  So, I dug deep into my pack and came up with a Barr's Emerger.  Yay!  This bug has saved my goat a lot lately.  It's almost like my go-to fly.  I LOVE IT!!!  The Barr's is a great mayfly imitiation.  It can imitate a blue wing olivie, pale morning dun, or other maylfies.  It's simple and effective and the next fly that I am going to learn how to tie!

So, BAM!!!  As soon as I put this fly on, I had a fish.  And a couple more before I had to head off to lunch.  When I met back up with my friend, Holly, we decided that we would go down the road for the afternoon and fish another river.  I always am in favor of new water and especially when I don't have the right fly box!  Yikes...  I do remember putting it in the car the night before.  I had searched through all my bags earlier.  But, I had missed my boot bag because well... why would it be in there?  You guessed it.  

For some ridiculous reason, I had thrown a few things in my newly laundered boot bag to take out to the car.  When emptying it out and putting those things into my fanny pack, I missed this one plastic box.  Well, it was dark outside to my defense!  Lol.  And then the boots went on top of it and end of story.  = (  

~Sunday Tippet~

So, what are some of the reversible causes of memory loss?
Studies have shown that the side effects of medication, taking three or more medications,  depression, vitamin B12 deficiency, thryroid problems, alcohol abuse, and STRESS are common factors in forgetfulness.  

How can we prevent memory loss from increasing?
Well, it seems that there are actually some simple things that we can do.  
1.  EXERCISE!!!  Manages stress and leads to a healthier brain.  Researchers have said that walking can cut your memory loss in half.  Who doesn't like to walk along a river bank?
2.  Stay social.  Interacting with others challenges the brain.  In many different ways... haha.
3.  Watch your diet.  Fruits and vegetables!  And antioxidants are very useful in keeping your brain cells active.  Eat those omega-3 fats that are in a tuna fish sandwich!  And avoid those saturated and trans fats which can increase your risk of a stroke.
4.  Manage that stress.  It's easier said than done, I know.  But, memory difficulties are definitely linked to cortisol, the stress hormone.  Learning new things and concentrating can be effected greatly.  Lessen the load and you will start feeling better.
5.  Sleep.  The brain needs to revamp.  Lack of sleep will effect your concentration and decision making and can cause depression too.  One of the most important remedies to stay alert and responsive to the "little things" that you should remember!
6.  Brain excercises.  What are those, you ask?  Well, when it comes to memory, you have to use it or lose it.  Besides physical exercise, is mental exercise.  Playing games can increase those brain cells.  Anything strategic like scrabble, word games, chess or bridge.  Reading is a great excercise.  Learning a new skill.  Maybe just cooking up a new recipe, a new household project, playing piano, or tying up a new bug pattern on the vise.  These all can engage the brain and help the memory in the long run.

So, here's to better memories of what we want to remember... = )

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Nose Up Or Nose Down?

So, you thought by the title that I was going to tell you about my recent dry flying success.  Sorry, that's not it.   I just wanted to tell you that one of my favorite things about fly fishing is the camaraderie of fly fishers.  Sharing water, sharing good stories, sharing knowledge. (Nose down)  This is what makes it special.  It shouldn't be something that is "elitist" or "exclusive".  (Nose up)  It's all about having an enjoyable time.  When you head to the river, you should expect to see an occasional angler there besides yourself.   It's not "your" river.  Unless you own the private land that it is on.  Haha.  So, don't make the sour face when you see me standing where you wanted to go.  I will be on my way soon enough...

Sometimes there is a crowd.  Yes, it is what it is.  And when there is a crowd, it is kind of nice if everyone leaves an appropriate amount of space between them and the next guy.  
It is what you call river etiquette.  

 Are you better than the other guy because you wear all the designer or big name fly fishing gear?  No!  One should never think that the guy wearing Cabelas doesn't know as much or more than the guy wearing Simms.  I have a friend that wears Cabelas and he is 5 times the fisherman that I am...  just saying.  And I only wear Simms 5x ply because I fall down so much and trip over every rock and branch.  There are factors involved with purchases.  There are some things that I buy on a budget and some things that I pay a price to have what my clumsy self needs.  = )

So, I'm keeping my nose to the ground.  Trying to stay humble.  Teachable.  And likeable.  
And if you don't find me acting that way... 
You can kick me in the a$$...