Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Land of the Lost ???





Have you ever been LOST?  Not for a real long time...just temporarily.  Like, you are looking for a destination on the road and you swear that it was a right turn to get there, but it's not that way after all!!!  Or, maybe it was the next exit or maybe not.  It can be dang frustrating!  First, we relied on Owl's memory (or lack of) to get us there.  As I could see that wasn't getting us anywhere, I pulled out the GPS...that's supposed to help you out when you need direction, right?  On my latest trip to visit Owl and Mark in the Smoky Mountains, we were trying to find the campground and repeating the same mistake over and over in getting there!  It was hilarious.  As we were briefly in town where I could pick up a signal...my smartphone GPS told us to go a certain way...and guess what?  NEGATIVE!!!  It lead us in a huge circle to where we began.  Now, I have to wonder if these wonderful devices that we have in our cars and cell phones are always correct?  Hmmm...  Check out the video.  This is the raw and uncut version...and I had a devil of a time converting this...so please forgive for the picture quality!  Remember, this tour guide came cheap... : )  $4.83 plus a Mountain Dew!  (Studying maps not included...) 

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Inquiring Minds Want To Know...


trip1-005What the heck really happened on the Mega Smoky Mountain Tour??   Was the River Damsel "Southern Fried" or "Southern Soaked"???  Just know that sometimes there are  two sides to a story...(Owl Jones had his video and first story published as soon as we got back and a funny one it was...)  But, I am here to tell you that there was quite a breeze up there on the "rail trail" where we had stopped to look at the view.  What was I supposed to do with  cardboard Rebecca and Howard?  Let them blow away or even worse, fall 500 ft below us?  No, I did the right thing...quickly putting them down in front of me.  Ok...enough about that.  What I really want to tell you is that, well...after that video, my hubby bubby left me a note the next morning.  All I can tell you is that it said something like...

"On my way to find "cupcakes"... Hmmmm....Well, I know that he didn't go all the way to Colorado...haha.  And if you don't get this, follow the link above to Owl's video.  That darn Owl...always the funny guy!! 

When I met Mr. and Mrs. Owl, they couldn't have been nicer.  They greeted me with open arms, surprised me with a "Hillbilly Swag Bag" full of fun stuff including dried possum (gee, thanks!), sweet flies and taught me a few things about the Southern style of living and speaking. (I was given a nice little book of Southern phrases)... Let me begin by saying that this trip was not all about fishing...it was about friends meeting up and going on a short, whirlwind journey through some beautiful country...The Smoky Mountains!   I fell in love with the Dogwood trees there...We started our journey on the Nantahala River...in western North Carolina.  The "Nan" was probably my favorite water that we visited on this trip.  A little more open like I was used to.  Maybe the fish knew that the storm was coming...they were a little quiet.  But, we each caught a couple and we met Mark (Flyfishsc.com) for the first time there.  He presented us with some awesome dry flies for the trip, which we appreciated!  I was glad to be with two very good tiers on this trip...as they both knew the bug life well in this area that we were fishing.  Mark cracked me up brown trout with his "Well, let's go get that skunk off right now" statement as he headed towards the river.  And a few minutes later, yep... "Incoming!"  Ok...he made a believer out of me.  Ha.  I wonder if that would work for me...next time I go out fishing, I'm going to be more positive in my approach!  "Here I come fish!  Who's up first??"  : )   Here's a nice brownie that Mark caught...I had a brown on the approach to the net, but came off...darn it all!  Owl has it on video, so it still might make a post...

I had never seen a brook trout up close until this trip...I know, hard to believe.  Another reason why I wanted to go out to the Smokies...We do have them here in Utah, I just don't usually head up into those mountains that have them.  I love their spots!!  Owl and I found one in a deep pool.  Cardboard Rebecca and Howard stayed pretty dry until the afternoon...I had just one little fall with one knee down, but kept Howard pretty dry...just getting his feet wet.  Ha!  I'm thinking that he had something to do with the fall actually...(Troutrageous! blames him for everything that goes wrong... : 0 )  If he could have piggy backed instead of wanting a front and center seat in my wader belt...oh well.  It happened.   Life goes on...got to roll with the punches! 

 Howard and I fishing!

The storm that was forcasted came with a vengeance...Wind, rain and we finally headed back to our fishmobiles...We decided to go to the campsite next and set up tents and then go to town for some Southern BBQ...Yummy!!!  That beats sitting out in the rain anyday!  We were all hungry and the Black Eyed Pea stew warmed me up inside...it had a flavor of BBQ pork in it that made it absolutely delicious!  Afterwards, we got the waiter to take a picture of all of us...heehee.

bec and sweet tea
Rebecca trying some "Sweet Tea"!  I thought her hair held up remarkably well in the rain
                                 
Did I mention that we took a few detours before getting to the campground?  Mark and I didn't know that the tour director that we hired for $4.83 plus a Mtn. Dew would get lost and not remember which turnoff we needed to take... he relied on his memory to find the campground...but, we eventually got there!  ; )  It was hilarious.

Tour Director giving the little bass pond by the campground a try...

SUNDAY TIPPET:  Tour guides/directors are usually worth every penny that you spend...and sometimes you get more/less than what you paid for their services...just sayin'!  Love ya, Owl!!! : )  Ok...I think that I did pretty well with my choice...I mean, I did get fried pies, boiled peanuts, Stewarts Key Lime soda, and Steaks over a bonfire!!  Wow...wait till you hear all about that!  So, this is all that happened before the storm...I guess that you could say that I was "Southern Soaked!"  What happened after the storm moved out...you will have to wait and see!    


The Famous Blue Ridge
Today's Guest Summary Writer:  Jason (Fontinalis Rising)   And so the saga continues. Owl Jones turns out to be a contraband possum dealer. Mark is really Saruman, wizard of southern weather. Have they lured RD into the southern mountains to drown her or poison her with roadkill? Will RD be able to save Cardboard Howard from Owls voodoo? Why does cardboard Rebecca seem to be immune to all of this? Do her powers as Goddess of OBN extend to the Realm of Cardboard? Will RD disappear into the Blue Ridge forever on a quest for brook trout? Tune in next week on The River Damsel: Southern Soaked!



Saturday, April 23, 2011

My Favorite Outdoor Food...mmmmm



This OBN writing prompt was inspired by a popular thread on the OBN Forum that was started by Owl Jones called, What is your Favorite thing to eat Outdoors?  I have a few, but I know what is the first thing that I look for when waking up on a camping trip...ugh...no, that's not it!  Well, maybe.  Ok, the second thing I look for...BANANA PANCAKES!!! (And they are yummy with a few chocolate chips thrown in too!) There isn't anything better than making pancakes outside on the outdoor stove and warming up some maple syrup to pour on top.  Mmmmmmm....




Now, I think that I will go stir up a batch this morning along with some hot, crisp bacon and scrambled eggs and orange juice!!!  See ya tomorrow for one of the best "Sunday Tippet" segments ever...a recap of my recent trip to the Smoky Mountains.  Yes, finally!!!!


For Coyote Luke...Bisquick, our camping friend!  Just add water...
Then, slice and dice bananas and drop in!!!  Easy...  

Thursday, April 21, 2011

The MNRiverDageous LunkerDooress




Yes, that's right!!! 
We have an interactive CONTEST ready for you...the question is, are you ready for the challenge?


You could be the WINNER of a $50. Cabelas gift card!  Here is the skinny on what you need to do to win:


Official Rules:

  • Send all 5 answers to me, or any of the participating bloggers. See their post of this contest for their contact information.  Click here to view my contact info.
  • You must answer all 5 questions correctly, as determined by each blogger, to qualify for the drawing.
  • You are allowed to send your answers to multiple bloggers, thereby increasing your chances of winning. So if you send your answer to all 5 of us, you get 5 entries. 
  • We will put all the correct entries together, sort by date received and pick a winner using OBN's famous RNG.
  • Contest runs from today (April 21st) to 11:59:59.9 PM, CDT, April 30th.
  • Contest winner must be from U.S. or Canada. Gift card will be in U.S. funds.




FIND the answers to the following questions:

"Which species of fish did I catch and then release without submitting for the state record it deserved?"

Journal of a Minnesota Angler: http://www.journalofamnangler.com- Facebook - Twitter
"In which of my top adventures of 2010 did I catch my personal best largemouth bass?"

"I hate a specific day of the week. In fact I think it's the worst day of the week. What day is it?"

"I took 'Idaho By Storm' with Rebecca 'The Outdooress' and Cardboard Kirk...What did we have for lunch?"

"What was the nickname of my first fly rod?" (She wants the nickname, not the make/model)



GOOD LUCK AND HAVE FUN!!!!
And if you like what you see around here...push that "follower" button and join me on Facebook!! : )  Thanks.




Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Sneak Preview II...Mega Smoky Mtn. Trip!


I hate to keep you on the edge of your seats, but this is such a huge trip with more than 200 pictures and over 100 video takes...(I'm not joking)...and all in three days... So, here are a few more pics to keep you entertained until the BIG SHOW on Friday!!  I am anxious to see how it all turns out too...haha.


Bloggers work together to help out a not so happy Brookie!!


Ahhh...Feeling much better now!


Do you know this guy???  America's Most Wanted...Blogger!


Rebecca and Howard enjoying the beautiful foilage and falls...


Mark (Flyfishsc.com) spotting a fish not so far under...


Blogger "Kiss Ups"... I don't see too much interest there...do you???


This and much more coming on FRIDAY!  Stay tuned...

Monday, April 18, 2011

Home Sweet Home! Sneak Preview...

 Howard and I fishing!

Well, I know that you are waiting for the full report...and there is much to tell and lots to show.  But, I need to get a few zzz's before work at 6 am tomorrow morning, so here are just a few pictures to hold you over until my posting of the Mega Smoky Mtn. Trip 2011!!!  I will try to do my best to hopefully get it out by Wednesday morning.  Stay tuned!!!!  It was an unbelievable experience and one that I will always remember...Thanks, Owl Jones Whirlwind Tours for showing me the Smoky Mountains!!   Owl Jones  and Mark @ Flyfishsc.com  were great to hang out with for a few days of NC fishing!!!


Fishing in the Amazon of the Smoky Mtns!


A whole new ball game with my casting!!



You gotta be kidding!!!  How many miles did I travel?  Haha.

Lights out for tonight...see you back here with some awesome pictures and stories of the trip...

Guest Post: Rufus T.

Hey y'all. This here is Rufus T. and Iz been asked to do one of them there guest post thing-a-ma-jiggies. Seems as if River Damsels iz on her way back to thuh airport after a long weekend of hootin' and hollerin' up in the Smoky Mountains. There wuz apparntlee some big ole thunderbommers but heys missed em' all and jest had a mess o' rain. And I hears that River Damsel's dune got her a new freend. That ole rat Moody is dune shore nuff stowed away in her luggage. Says he " Get me outta here. That Owl is a lunatic!"

So, he's headed out to River X to try and find some peace and quiet and some new brown trout freends. He dun tolded me that he shore will miss the Blue Ridge, but he hopes to come back here a'gin sumday.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

THE BIG EVENT...TIME TO GO FISHIN'!

It's finally here!!!   Time to put up the good ol' "GONE FISHIN'" sign...well, how about a picture of my suitcase?  Hey, there's a stowaway!!!  Hope they don't charge me $25. extra for him....you never know these days... : 0

The Journey begins...

Whoohoo!!!  After a month of waiting, I am off on a whirlwind adventure...starting today.  I board a plane, get off a plane, back on a plane and whallah!!!  My final destination... And I'm bringing someone with me to check out some new territory to fish.  Yes, the one, the only...Howard, aka: "COFISHER"... A striking resemblance don't you think? 



I couldn't get the "reel" deal, so I had to improvise a little. (a nice bushy caddis gotee)  But, that's ok...because his substitute might be a little more willing to trench through small streams, climb over large rocks, and squish a salamander or two.  I promise to take good care of Cofisher II as we journey to the rolling hills and clear water streams and enjoy a few meals by the campfire.  (I've heard that steak and mashed taters are on tap)  Oh, it will be an outrageously fun time!  And we might even meet up with a few friends...and there is for sure going to be some surprises!!  Most of all, I promise not to dunk Cofisher II like Rebecca did to Cardboard Kirk... : )   Now, if you want more details on where I am taking Howard...you will have to go here.  Well, I must finish up a few  things before we leave.  Oh, this is going to be fun!  Depending on cell service, I will try to post updated pictures of where Cofisher II is headed next on this page...If no internet, we'll see ya'll next Tuesday!!  Sunday Tippets will be skipped this week.  My report next week will be jam packed of good stuff though and will be fascinating to say the least...Well, behave and don't do too much monkey'n around while I am gone!!!




Footnote: I must thank my 12 yr old nephew, Ethan, for the Cofisher II drawing...


well, i am here...and what i welcome bag, i got...

Monday, April 11, 2011

The Must Haves....For Me Anyway!

As I look around my collection of fly fishing gear...it seems to me that some pieces are more important than others, but all valuable at the same time.  I have picked up a few things that are more a matter of convenience...Items that make my fly fishing journey more enjoyable.  And isn't that what we are out there for...to have the best time we could have?   You betcha!!  Did I really say that...sorry!  Anyway, I bring to you a review of some of my favorite "gadgets" that make my life easier when heading out to the water.








The MAGNET  ~  Now, when I started fly fishing, I never had a good place for my fly rod (haha...I'm learning!) and it was always in the way or falling somewhere.  So, I decided to be proactive and go into a fly shop to see if there was something to hold up my rod, rather than sticking it in my windshield wipers!  Wallah!  The MAGNET...Perfect.  Now, I have a rest stop for my fly rod while finishing gearing up.














The GREEN SNIPPERS ~ I never have liked clippers...they just get too dull too quick.  I wanted something that would be more like a scissor, but retractable and sharp enough to cut tippet.  My favorite gadget and one that not every one has, but should!  Check out Cabelas for this one!









The SIMMS WATERPROOF POUCH ~ My phone and ipod fit perfectly and are tucked away. Peace of mind...hangs around my neck and stashes under the front of my waders... 











After losing a pair of favorite sunglasses, I headed out to find myself a lanyard...no worries about taking off my glasses anymore.  They are always around my neck instead of on the top of my head and then down the river!!! Ugh...











Silly me!  Why do I bring a book to the river?  I will be the first to admit that I don't have every bug memorized yet...So, I always have one of my hatch guides with me in case I need to do a little matching!  One of the reasons that I took up fly fishing...to learn and study something that was absolutely fascinating!






Well, there is a sneak peak of what I bring out with me on my journeys.  Some items of convenience and necessity.  Sometimes you have to test out something new to see if it changes things for the better and makes you more effective.  I'm sure a lot of you have a couple of  fishing "must haves", gadget wise too...

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Jumpin' Tarpon!

Check out this ladyfisher with some real jumpin' tarpon!  I think that I'm ready to venture out and try salt water fishing real soon!!!  Fun stuff!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bLAzJH-CBvE&feature=player_embedded

Where Hard Work Takes You ~ Sunday Tippets, Damsel Style


Hard work is many things. We live in a complicated, fast world, surrounded by distractions. Getting down to work can be a way to free yourself of all things extraneous. It can be a stress reliever, a form of meditation. Conversely, it can be punishment for enjoying yourself too much the night before. Whatever the reason, hard work is tunnel vision. While you’re working, the only thing that exists is you and the light at the end.

 
Getting down to work is a new challenge every day. Anyone can work hard once a week for an hour. To do it for eight hours a day, seven days a week, over any number of years: that’s the real challenge.  Of course, you can’t start out at top speed; you would burn yourself out. If your goal was weight loss, the equivalent would be running on a treadmill at level 10 for an hour the first day you’ve ever used a treadmill.  Successful hard work over time is something you have to work towards. The important thing is to know that it’s within your grasp, and that it pays off.   


I work hard...I play hard...That's just what I believe in. ~ The River Damsel

Hard work is the key to success, so work diligently on any project you undertake. If you truly want to be successful, be prepared to give up your leisure time and work past 5 PM and on weekends. Also, have faith in yourself. If you come up with a new idea that you believe in, don't allow other people to discourage you from pursuing it. ~ Charles Lazarus 

There is no substitute for hard work. ~  Thomas Edison

I'm a great believer in luck and I find the harder I work, the more I have of it. ~ Thomas Jefferson

If hard work were really a virtue, then mules would be saints. ~ James D. Richardson

Hard work is painful when life is devoid of purpose. But when you live for something greater than yourself and the gratification of your own ego, then hard work becomes a labor of love. ~ Steve Pavlina

Behind every technological breakthrough there lies a dream. Behind every new product there lies a dream. Dreams create realities-- through hard work." ~ Rolf Jensen




All the qualities that hard work demands, like discipline, patience, confidence and persistence do not come naturally to many of us.  I have found that the more I commit myself to working hard at writing, the greater I find my reserves of patience within myself. And not just for writing, but with other things, like my workout schedule and my job.

Hard work gives a lot more than it takes. It doesn’t happen overnight. Learning to enjoy hard work is no cakewalk; it’s a struggle to get started most days. But it is within your reach…and the benefits far outweigh the cost. Need money? Hard work can cure that. Stressed out? Try working harder on the things you love. Family trouble? Work hard to fix it.  Put in the time.  


Tippet of the Day:  In the end, you will find that hard work can cure almost anything.   And after you accomplish your task at hand, you can enjoy the fruit of your labors! 
Don't miss a great opportunity... All it takes is a little bit of effort!




Friday, April 8, 2011

The Little Stinker

Little Stinker™
Or Not????
Sometimes, you settle for "A Little Stinker"...as the case played out this week on "Fish Tuesday"... I thought that this was the day...the calm before the storm.  Well, kind of.  It was a day between storms.  And when I started going up the beaten path (which I have frequent walker miles), the path got a little more slippery and a little muddier.  But, I was convinced that this path WOULD  lead me to a few fish, despite the high water and inconsistent water temps as of late.  I walked about a mile before I saw the spot that I wanted to put a line in.  There it was before me...the most beautiful, deep pool, which should have been full of fish.  But, not a peep.  No bug activity and no rising fish like you usually see in this particular pool.  So, I decided to take my journey a little farther down the path.  The coolness of the brisk air felt great.  The birds were chirping and as I followed their path, I watched and listened.  A few casts later, I had a fish bite, but it came off the fly.  Maybe a little bit jerky on the set.  No worries...we tried again and again...where was that fish?  That "Little Stinker" wasn't going to get away from me!  I didn't know if there would be much more opportunity out there...A few more casts and a few more steps down the bank...Fish On!  Oh, it was not much of a pull...so I new it wasn't going to be any trophy...but, it was a fish!  Out of all the 14" to 24" fish in the Provo River...this is what I came up with...Alas!  "The Little Stinker"!!


Lil' Stinker-Remite Controlled Farting Teddy Bear




The Lil' Stinker Farting Bear is a 12in. remote controlled farting bear & it's definitely a gas! Sit him on the couch and surprise guests from across the room by pushing the remote control. Cheeks light up in embarrassment after the GAStly deed!


NO...THAT'S NOT WHAT I CAME UP WITH...WRONG KIND OF STINKER! 




Little Stinker™ Baby Butt Spray. The Baby Butt Spray was developed to de-stinkify your little ones while gently moisturizing their little bums.
In fact, your baby will smell so fresh and clean, you’ll probably want to eat them . . . but you know . . . don’t do that! Let Little Stinker be the perfect answer for your poopy prancer.


NO!  THAT ISN'T "THE LITTLE STINKER" THAT I'M TALKING ABOUT EITHER!!!  DEFINITELY NOT!




Sparky,

My Photo

After two long hours, I had caught the fish of my dreams...I named him "Sparky" as he was about the only "spark" of fish activity that I saw all morning...