Tuesday, February 1, 2011


It was still dark as I nudged the Dodge into the canopy of the road side trees, 2 hrs until day light and Mat was sound asleep in the passenger seat.. so I punched his arm like any loving father and said... thanks for keeping me company on the drive.. he growled and then smiled and asked are we there? I said no, we are just done driving, still have an hour and a half walk in the dark... he looked stoked but tried to hide it under a tired scowl, I smiled and said.. you can't fool me, I know your stoked.. he smiled and said yeah, just tired, I played ps3 until 1 am. I laughed and said that's nothing, I sat up drinking until we got in the truck.. he looked at me and told me to knock it off, I laughed because there was a time ( 20 years ago ) that I actually used to do it. We walked in the dark, talking about guitars and fly rods.. and cars.. Mats 16 cars are still quite magical to him, life will cure that I'm sure. We arrived on the banks of the upper Lewis and Clark with daylight still just a twinkle in its father eye, and started to rig, I lit a smoke to contemplate just which soldier I would put my faith in for the magic hour of half light.. Mat huffed and told me he wished I wouldn't smoke, I told him I wished he would shower at least once every 7 days.. and the woods were quiet.. what fly dad, I told him to go black and small, gin clear water and native steel would demand it on this day. we sat on the Bank together and watched the crescent of dawn swallow the stars, he wanted to start, he was fidgety and it made my heart smile, I told him to wait for it, so reluctantly we did. We fished hard for the next 6 hour without so much as a strike or denial, as the sun began to cast shadows in the canyon I felt the stop... tap... pull.. and set! and the Brawl was on.. the fish took to the air immediately...and then as fast as he arrived he was gone. I reeled in my fly and placed it on the hook keeper, It's time to go, Mat did the same and we struggled through the Oregon rain forest back to the logging road. We walked in silence for about a mile when mat offered the conversation of the lost battle, doesn't that upset you to fish for that long and then lose it? I said lose what? the fish dad, you lost the fish, I patted my heart and said no, I have him right here, he said you know what I mean. I stopped and we stood on a high ridge looking back down on the canyon, You know Mat.. If I could choose my heaven I would wake up at 3 every morning scrape the ice off my windows, buy $60 worth of gas and a gas station machine mocha, drive for 3 hours listening to Bob Dylan... hike and cast all day, rip my waders, smoke a pack of cigs and dine on spam on white bread.... mustard only, the last cast of the day I would hook up and lose the fish within seconds, then the next day I would get up and do it all over again, and I would consider God a fair God, a loving God. We stood in silence, and he started to walk again, then turned to me and said.. that's easy to say when you've caught thousands of fish, in my Heaven I would fish all day in the sun and catch a fish every five minutes. ................... with you-


  1. Well written, I enjoyed the post as if I was there along side you and your son. We each find our peace and love of fishing in different ways. Glad you shared.

  2. Great post brad! The end kinda reminds me of today. Groundhogs day.

  3. Fantastic post, you and your son are very lucky to have that shared memory!