Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Just Waiting...






































We arrived at our destination and got everything ready to go.

Rods, reels, bait, chairs, food, drinks and a million other things in tow.

I bombed out a cast and set the rod in the holder, and on cue he grabs his chair.

As he plops down with a big smile, he made me a proud father for the millionth time....

"Just waiting for my bite dad"

Be still my beating heart.

Monday, January 7, 2019

Cant Leave It On The Road...































Gifts, dont question where they come from...

A couple hundred cars probably passed this squirrel taking it's final dirt nap.   When I went by, I knew what I was going to do.

I've come to the portion of my fly tying life that I cannot leave a dead squirrel on the road without making some alterations and adding to my collection.

I've salvaged coyote tails, countless squirrels, hun patridge, pheasant, raccoon, and a bunch of other animals that made it way onto the tying bench.  Too funky, smells a bit weird, na.....we can salt the stench away.

At this point, I may be a hoarder.  A good squirrel tail will last a season, maybe two of intense hairwing tying.  I think i have 7 now.

Why do I keep doing this..... quote a grandmothers or two out there, "Ya never know"

Thursday, January 3, 2019

Swing And A Miss...























There's always a story behind the story.

The bird hit the ground, picked up by a happy dog and returned to an even happier hunter.

From the start, you could tell something was off on this bird. 

It's size said a veteran of the game.  The spurs said years were on this pheasant, not months.

But still, it had very little in the tail feather department. 

What's the story?

A quick inspection told the story.  A coyote took a swing, and missed

The bird got away with it's life.  The coyote got a bunch of fly tying material in it's mouth.

Thursday, December 27, 2018

Joining Hunt To Eat...



Hunting has always been a big part of my life.

It's always been there, from bedtime stories delivered by my father and now with roles reversed as I deliver those stories to my boys.  It's woven deep into the fabric of my life

Additionally, putting our success onto the dinner table was always part of the equation....

Pan fried pheasant breast.  Deer Chops.  Smoked Wild Turkey and Steelhead.  Grilled Salmon,  fried perch and walleye.    Year in and year out, you could count on a consistent rotation of what we returned from field and stream with and eventually cooked up.

Recently, there's been an awakening in my consciousness on what I have been missing with my connection to wild game and fish, and how much more is on the table (pun intended) that I have missed in taking my love of the outdoors and delivering it to the plate.



Combine this all with my devotion to protect public lands and the want to push a conservation ethic, I am beyond thrilled to be joining forces with one of the leading brands in this space, Hunt To Eat as a brand ambassador.

In a nutshell, Hunt To Eat is an apparel company started in 2013 that is leading the conversation on the connectivity of our sport, our ethics, public lands and the respect we can show our quarry as we deliver it to friends and family via a shared meal experience.

































Their lineup of t-shirts, hoodies, hats and accessories are beautifully designed and collaborations with organizations like Backcountry Hunters and Anglers, Pheasants Forever, Artemis, and The Wild Sheep Foundation along with titans of the hunting world like Remi Warren and Randy Newberg are raising serious dollars for hunting and fishing conservation efforts.

Another cool aspect is that there's a growing list of state specific shirts that take some of the most iconic aspects of a state's outdoor culture and encapsulates it like the Washington shirt above.  currently there are 17 states with their own design





What's really stirred my soul is the community that ambassadors and other's around the brand are providing for me as a I endeavor to become better and more innovative in using what is in my freezer.  Recipes for dishes like these Venison Enchiladas from contributor John Wallace have me drooling and there are many others ready for you to take part in on the Hunt To Eat site.

We owe it the game we take to honor it in a way that showcases our sport for the blessing it is.

Hunt To Eat is providing that forum.  I hope you join us.





Thursday, December 20, 2018

What A Campsite...








































Looking for a great spot to camp, there's a wide open campsite ready to go for you. 

Beautiful riverside location, easy river access on public land.  Good fishing spots both above and below.  Large shade trees, waterfowl, wild trout, deer, and easy downtown Spokane access...

----

It's hard to summarize the feeling of finding a abandoned homeless camp along my river.  There's dozens of them.  Piles of garbage.  Empty food containers.  Clothes, tents, shoes, human waste, needles and other drug paraphernalia

I feel sad for the people that have to resort to this.

I feel shame for our community and our river.

I feel RAGE at the way humans treat our wild places.

We drag tons and tons of garbage out of the river and it's corridor each year in river cleanups and still it keeps coming at us like the plague.

What's the answer, I dont know. 

We'll drag the shit out of there.  Put a bow around it and feel great that we took care of our area.

Then there's nothing preventing it from happening again. 

And it does...


Friday, December 14, 2018

The X Is In The Wrong Spot...
























I could hear the wingbeats and honks clear as day.  The birds were coming in, hot.

In the waterfowl world, finding the X is a big deal.  Find that spot and you know you're going to have a wild couple hours in the blind.

Hunt land or water outside of where the birds want to go?  Well you're in for some long hours of staring at your dog or cracking jokes with your hunting partners because you know birds have other flight plans.

I had stumbled on the X.   There were hundreds of Canadian Honkers right in front of me. It looked like the field itself was moving.




Alas, this was the wrong spot to find the X. 

It was on the way walking into a college football game.  In the middle of town

The unhuntable fowl honked and cackled back at me.

What it really sounded like was laughing....

Thursday, December 6, 2018

Steelhead Hwy 101














There isnt a road in the world that takes you past more steelhead water than Highway 101.

This ribbon of asphalt transverses over every steelhead bearing stream along the wild, crested Pacific. From the drenched rainforest rivers of the Olympic Peninsula, arching over the mother river Columbia, tracing along the rain fed coastal range of Oregon, through the grand redwoods and chaparrals gracing California to Baja. The streams beneath this coastal highway cloaks a life altering game fish with the hues of the Pacific gracing their flanks.















My own Hwy 101 story includes my first winter run fish on the swing.  As the road crosses the Bogi I was knee deep in a beautiful swing run, flanked by my dad and my good buddy Joe Willauer.   The stars aligned and a fresh rocket spun me far into my backing before flipping me the middle fin.  Mouth agape, I reeled in and started again only to connect two casts later.  A tense battle was fought and a feisty 10 pound buck came to hand.   10 casts later, another fish....and so that day scorched into my memory

Graphic Designer , founding member of the Wild Steelhead Coalition and owner of Mykiss Studios Rich Simms is the man behind the Hwy 101 brand, and it's his hope that his line will help carry the flame of steelhead experience beyond your time in the water.






























































There's a full line of apparel for the steelhead obsessed man or woman on your Christmas list.

With any Steelhead Highway purchase 5% of profits will be donated to The Wild Steelhead Coalition supporting their important conservation work.


Consider supporting this original brand and in turn, support wild steelhead conservation