Sunday, January 29, 2012

Take A Lift...Sunday Tippets, Damsel Style

10,000 Ft. Up!
What comes up, must come down. Yes, this is a true statement...especially in snow skiing.  I have skied now over 20 years...And I can tell you that there is this thing called gravity.  If you didn't have gravity, skiing would be a carefree activity!  No big effort!  You could hover around for awhile... But, there is this gravity problem.  In fact, there are huge amounts of it.  And for most people, it takes many years of practice to skillfully tackle the gravity dilemma.  Your ski areas are located smack dab on the top of giant piles called "mountains".  Most ski resorts use snow makers, blowing the white stuff...errr...gravity at night!  In fact, they are full steam ahead this winter since Mother Nature hasn't been too cooperative.

 After the gravity is put into place, silly people like myself head up the canyons looking for fun in the sun...or clouds.  We tackle powerful forces that are always trying to suck us into large fixed objects!  We learn that the One Rule of Skiing Safety is: ``Never go up the mountain without knowing how to come down".  And take lessons from a professional!  I speak from experience on that one.  For some of us, falling down in the parking lot and sliding off the chairlift at the top is the natural thing to do! Haha.

Relatives and friends always have the best intentions on teaching how to combat gravity.  But, it truly is best to have a trained instructor to teach a skill that requires the upmost safety rules to do it properly.  Back when I first learned to ski, four friends had good intentions...but, I got going a little too fast and out of control.  The only way to stop was to find one of those large fixed objects!  No, not a tree or another skiier (fortunately), but a large mound of gravity (snow embankment) that stopped me in my tracks...ugh.  The pain.  The embarrassment.  Day over.  Doctor visit.  Knee out. Crutches.  My first experience with gravity and this is the white stuff that they call fun? 

Sunday TippetFor those not so brave, here is the best tactic for you... Never go DOWN the mountain. Always go SIDEWAYS, which involves less gravity. You will want to creep laterally along the slope, like a giant parka-wearing crab, until you reach a safe place, such as Orlando. This can take months but it is better than going straight down the mountain like I do most of the time!!  Nah...that wouldn't be any fun!  Just ski the "fall line" (going downhill) with me.  But a warning!  If you stay behind me too closely, you just might enjoy the spray of powder in your face!! : )

I did a short video of my day at Alta yesterday...pretty boring stuff.  But, of course...technical glitch, so I bring you the following ski vid to give you just a little taste of powder.  Just imagine this is me until I get that funny, little cam on my helmet going! (Ok...who's kidding who...I'm not this good!)

Friday, January 27, 2012

Can You Say Ouch? Friday's Grab Bag

Another great fly fishing video by Kelly Galloup...with a few surprises!!!  Makes you wonder if those big fish are worth it...mmmm...ok, the answer is yes!  Fish eating indicators...funny stuff.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Because I Feel Sorry For Him...

Guest Post: From Howard Levett,            Windknots and Tangled Lines

As many of you know, The River Damsel did a guest post on Windknots & Tangled Lines. Let's be clear...I asked her to do it. And a good one it was.  Thank you again Emily! Let's also be clear...she did not ask me to return the favor. Hmmm...

So, if you're reading this on Windknots it might be because The Damsel knows it's not a fair trade-off because I don't know a thing about cold weather fishing, warm weather fishing, fly tying, skiing or tiddlywinks.

If you're reading this at Damsel's place, it's there because she feels sorry for me because I don't know a thing about cold weather fishing, warm weather fishing, fly tying, skiing or tiddlywinks!

So, without further ado-do is my list of things to do in Utah when it's too cold to fish.

10.  Go visit the Mormon Tabernacle Choir! Whether you like hip-hop, country or rock, these folks are not to be missed. I don't know how they manage to all stand so straight and tall...their impressive.

9.  Find a Utah Highway Patrol Officer and ask him if you can bum a smoke...

RD:  Honestly, do you think that this guy is going to take time to give you a smoke,
 when he is in the middle of his doughnut routine??!!

8.  Go to a bookstore and ask for a book on making wine in your home...

7.  See how many statues of Joseph Smith or Brigham Young you can find in a day...

RD: Ya know, I didn't find any of those, but we do have a fine UHP female officer with her kanine friend!

6. Take a drink out of the Great Salt Lake...

5.  After you do number 6, ask to be taken to a Jewish hospital...

4.  Stop by the River Damsel's house and ask for a cup of hot cocoa...

RD:  And upon request, I might even top it off with marshmallows!

3.  Stand on a busy street corner and yell, "I Believe!!"

2.  After you do number 3, ask the arresting officer for a smoke...

1.  Ask a local where the nearest mosque is...

Well, now that I've alienated every Mormon, Muslim and Utahan in work is done.

RD:  Howard, I'm not sure if you have alienated this guy though...just sayin'!


Tuesday, January 24, 2012

"Clean and Cast"... Together!

I wanted to put this story onto my website, as it was previously posted over at
If you have already read this...go on over to Brian's blog...where real trout pictures hang out...unlike here : ) 

The "CLEAN and CAST" ... Collecting over 15 sacks of garbage with a group of fellow conservationists (and friends).Enjoying the rest of the day fishing together!  That is what I experienced the first time that I went to haul in garbage with the UFFC (Utah Fly Fishing Club) last year.  What a great way to get some karma!  There is nothing like doing a good deed.  And when you are a fisherman, it feels really good to give back to the passion that gives you so much enjoyment.  I am a Fly Fisher...plain and simple.  I will always be.  It is not something I do, it is who I am.  Those who knew me before I started fly fishing three years ago, often question me with "Why and How"?  It wasn't to be an escape, but rather somewhere that I felt that I belonged.  And when I came across groups of people like the UFFC, it told me that I had found a very good thing.   

Being involved with an organization such as this, helps you appreciate the rivers and streams that you frequently visit.   Conservation, education and all part of fly fishing.  At least, I believe that it should be.  You always get more out of something when you put more into it.  Plain and simple... And if you can bring a great group of fishers together to enjoy the experience and build's even better!  So, we "Clean and Cast".   We clean the river beds and surrounding areas of debris for a couple of hours in the morning and then take a lunch break and fish in the afternoon.  We pulled out tires to lawn chairs from the banks...then, we took this picture by the dumpster with our great finds!  It makes a great day!  If you don't have something like this in your area...I recommend it highly as something that can be organized with a few determined and conservationalist minded people putting it together.  You will be amazed at what a difference it can make!  (And you will probably catch an extra fish that day too...)

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Honey, Where Is The Receipt?

Ahhh...a common question in many of our households...Do we sometimes lose important receipts or throw away documents that we need later on?  (Yep...) I recently made a purchase at a department store and chucked the receipt.  Now, I have in-store credit, which is better than nothing, but, I would have rather had the cash back.  A shoebox full of receipts seem to be the norm for most of us.  Every time we make a purchase, we shove receipts in wallets, pockets or purses. We bring them home, sometimes sort them and drop them into a shoebox. (or a drawer that we can't open too easily anymore!)  Here are some useful "tippets" that I found on the internet, to help us now how long we need to keep receipts...


  Income-Tax Receipts


Any receipt relating to your incomes taxes is especially important and should be kept at least three years, since the IRS can audit (that's a dirty word) you for up to three years. Save all income-tax receipts associated with deductions and credits claimed on your tax return!

Bill Receipts

Even after an account has been paid in full, it's a good idea to keep your bill receipts for at least a year. Bill receipts can include those for utilities, credit cards, rent and loans. Mortgage receipts should be kept forever. (Even if it is the house on the left!)

Minor Purcase Receipts

Some minor purchase receipts, like those for clothing and groceries, don't have to be kept for too long. For clothing purchases, receipts should be kept until after you wear the clothing, because you typically can't return clothing that has been worn. And after consuming the groceries, it's safe to throw out the receipt. (Don't think that you can return something with just a great...errr...big smile!)

Major Purchase Receipts

Major purchase receipts should be kept longer. Major purchases include items like televisions, large appliances, tires and furniture. Typically these come with warranties, so keep your receipt for the life of the warranty.  A new report out says more than one in 10 electronic items purchased are returned to the store by consumers.   A survey by the consulting firm, Accenture, finds many times products are returned because of buyer's remorse. Consumers often blame their returns on a defect, but in 68 percent of the cases, a defect is never found.  

Most businesses have policies in place on how long they'll accept receipts for refunds and exchanges. Some businesses only allow 15 to 30 days to get a refund or make an exchange with or without a receipt.  Make sure you know the time frame before it's too late to return! (Don't waste your time in line)

Sunday Tippet ~ One more item not mentioned is restaurant receipts...sometimes it is wise to keep them and double check your bank or credit card statement against them.  Just to make sure that a tip is not altered or misread!  And one other thing, we never read our receipts unless we’re taking something back. In some cases, it pays off to double check what your beloved cashier may have rung up.  (It might not be so easy to return or exchange!)

How long you need to keep receipts just depends on who might ask to see them.   A good rule of thumb is that anything related to insurance or warranties can be thrown away once you get rid of the item in question —
Footnote:  For the IRS, how long you need to keep receipts can vary. The longest you might need receipts is seven years.  A long time...but, better safe than sorry!!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

An Otter-ly, Stingray Tuesday!

There was no way that I was going to get out of bed after I flipped on my Weather Bug app on my phone this morning.  Heber Valley - Provo River...  -8 degrees.  Burrrr... I have fleece and great gloves, but 15 degrees above is where I draw the line.  Anything less...well, the fish won't be biting anyway.  So, while tossing side to side, I knew that a back up plan had to be in the works...and it had to have something to do with fish. Not laundry!!! I have been wanting to check out my "neighborhood aquarium" just a few miles down the road.  There have been quite the crowds patrons there since it opened and now I know why... The Living Planet Aquarium, is AMAZING!!!  Yes, the stingrays were awesome to touch at the petting pond, but my favorite was actually the...

OTTERS!!!!  They are so much fun to watch!
I have seen a few river otters along the Weber River here in Utah and on my journeys out of state as well.  But, watching them behind the glass today gave me a little more of an idea how silly and humorous these guys are.  They love to play!  We saw quite a show...I found out that the North American River Otter is the only river otter found north of Mexico. Its luscious pelt is waterproof and helps keep it warm.  The river otter will settle in a location with sufficient coverage, usually vegetation or physical structures, such as rock piles.  And that is usually where I have seen them; behind an old tree trunk that has fallen over in the river. 

Next, my friends in tuxedos...I always love the Penguins!!

Then, there was this guy...A Dwarf Caiman (small croc)

 And this guy was up in arms...Mr. Octopus scratching his nose!

Jellyfish are way cool...more so behind glass instead of under your foot!

Beautiful Lion Fish, but you don't want to meet one...very potent venom.

The Four Eyed swims along the surface using one set of eyes, each with two sections!!
It can see above and below the!!

Yep, even some familiar faces...many different species of trout

And a few suckers!!!

All in all, it was a great way to spend a cold day inside with a few friends from the outside.
And shaking petting a stingrays wing... : )

I am so glad that we can patronize these incredible Aquariums.  It is one way that we can learn to respect, observe and understand the complexities and importance of freshwater environments, rain forests and the world´s oceans.  It's an incredible adventure...Check one out if you have one in your area!

Last but, not picture for Jay...
Yes, our lovely King Snake!

Monday, January 16, 2012

High Sticking!

High sticking with Kelly...
This guy knows his doubt about it.  This is also one of my favorite techniques...Enjoy.
Oh, and it is on my beloved Madison River, of course!!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Miracles Great and Small ~ Sunday Tippets, Damsel Style

                                                                       Things Work Out
                                                                       By Edgar A. Guest

Because it rains when we wish it wouldn't,
Because men do what they often shouldn't,
Because crops fail, and plans go wrong
Some of us grumble all day long.
But somehow, in spite of the care and doubt,
It seems at last that things work out.
Because we lose where we hoped to gain,
Because we suffer a little pain,
Because we must work when we'd like to play
Some of us whimper along life's way.
But somehow, as day always follows the night,
Most of our troubles work out all right.
Because we cannot forever smile,
Because we must trudge in the dust awhile,
Because we think that the way is long
Some of us whimper that life's all wrong.
But somehow we live and our sky grows bright,
And everything seems to work out all right.
So bend to your trouble and meet your care,
For the clouds must break, and the sky grow fair.
Let the rain come down, as it must and will,
But keep on working and hoping still.
                                                                    For in spite of the grumblers who stand about,
                                                                       Somehow, it seems, all things work out.

A miracle does not become a “Miracle” without a trial, most of the time...I have seen many miracles in my life...great and small.  Most recently, at Christmas.  People cease to amaze me!  My heart was humbled and a greater love for friends and neighbors was felt.  Yes, all things do work out.

May each of you have......

Enough happiness to keep you sweet,
Enough trials to keep you strong,
Enough sorrow to keep you human,
Enough hope to keep you happy;
Enough failure to keep you humble,
Enough success to keep you eager,
Enough friends to give you comfort,
Enough wealth to meet your needs;
Enough enthusiasm to look forward,
Enough faith to banish depression,
Enough determination to make each day better than yesterday.

Author Unknown

Post inspired by Will King, The Riparian Corridor...His father is miraculously fighting back from a serious stroke.  Best wishes go out to him and his family...The clouds are breaking and the sky is growing brighter!!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Winter White...Or Is It?

But, blink!  And it could very well change...


The OBN has a "Photo Prompt" going on of what winter looks like in our area of the world.  Well, this is what it looks like in the Park City, UT. area on my way to the Provo River.  I wish that I could say that it looks like the picture is what it is.  Last year we had a record snow fall.  800+ inches in the mountains.  I'm still waiting it out for a few more feet.  Hopefully, we will get some storms this month, as Deer Valley is having their annual hosting of the "Freestyle World Championships" which I volunteer each year.  Snow Dance!!!  Even with poor snowfall,  Deer Valley makes lots of snow and there is plenty to ski.  Locals are just spoiled!!


 The black dot in the middle would be me... ; )  The orange safety barrier near the bottom is there to tell me to SLOW DOWN!!  And I do...then.  Wait until the Go Pro Cam gets rolling at fast speed!!  Heehaw!

I LOVE POWDER...Bet you didn't know that I was the "Powder Girl" before I became the "River Damsel"!  Whenever I would give out my old email to people, they would ask me if I sold Mary Kay...duh. 

My Playground...

This is what you call a "good time!  And I had a part in it...I believe that you can see me again...the black dot up there on the left.  I love the new "freshies" first thing in the morning before there are tracks.  Yeah, a few of those squigglies are mine... : )  

C'mon Mother Nature...BRING IT!
(Sometimes, I do a little more than fish!  Sometimes.)

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Rubber Ducky Tuesday

OK...I am big enough to admit it.  Today STUNK, like in SKUNK!!  A beautiful day in every way...but in the wrong place at the wrong time.  Let me give you a quick synopsis of how the day went.  Every fly shop in town said the same closer to the dam where the water isn't as cold.  So, I  gear up, ready to bring in a few brown trout on my "Fish Tuesday".  Well, I didn't expect it to be something like Troutrageous experienced recently with fish in hiding.  I wanted it to be more like what Trout Underground found on a winter's day. 

And All I Got Was This!!

Couldn't beat the weather though...sunny skies and 35 degrees...even took off my gloves and sweatshirt.

So, after three hours of "nuttin", I packed up and went down the road to the local fly shop.

I thought that this was kind of an interesting sign...hmmmm.  Maybe they meant the temp. for the day.

Interestingly enough, they told me that I was at the wrong section of the river today...I should have been about 8-10 miles downstream from where I was.  I usually get pretty good info from the Salt Lake fly shops, but today...the Heber Valley shop which is down the street from the river had the inside scoop.

Talking about make me feel better after the shellacking, I went a few more blocks and got myself a Raspberry Banana Shake..mmmm... I always substitute the drink in the kid's meal for a big ol' shake!
 Go figure.  Well, why not?  Lol.

Well...I didn't totally go home empty handed.  Now, don't be jealous...I did get a rubber ducky as the toy in the meal...haha.  So comforting...