Lake Clark National Park, Bristol Bay, Alaska
photo by Matt Skoglund
The other day I got a letter from Robert Redford. No, he wasn’t solicting a film script from me. Instead, he was urging me, via his position at the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC), to take action against the threat of Pebble Mine to Bristol Bay, Alaska. Even though I have written a great deal on the Pebble Mine issue and contributed in every way possible to help prevent the mine and to bring exposure to the threat, I was greatly encouraged to see the materials from the NRDC arrive by mail. It means that the level of exposure is growing, and more important players are becoming involved.
Shortly after that package arrived, a colleague here sent me a link to an NRDC blog about the issue. It was written by Matt Skolgund and has the personal angle to which many of us can relate. As Matt wrote:
If this nightmare known as the Pebble Mine is allowed to go forward, it will be – take a deep breath – a 2,000-foot-deep, two-mile-long gold and copper mine with gigantic earthen dams built to hold back some 10 billion tons of mining waste. Roads will be built, and the mine will be smack dab in the middle of a known earthquake zone.
Pebble Mine will inflict irreversible damage on Bristol Bay, including the permanent destruction of dozens of miles of wild salmon habitat. That’s why NRDC has joined Alaskan Natives, anglers, hunters and other conservation organizations to fight this wretched proposal.
pastel by Mimi Matsuda
Mimi Matsuda is another outstanding wildlife artist who uses trout, salmon, and other fish species as subjects. She works in color pencil and pastels. Her work is currently featured in the Graceful Rise exhibit at the American Museum of Fly Fishing in Manchester, Vermont.
The developing relationship between Pickett and Murphy reminds me a bit of The Old Man and the Boy, the remarkable stories of Robert Ruark about a young boy and his grandfather and their adventures together hunting and fishing in old North Carolina. While Pickett is not Murphy’s grandfather, they are in fact chronologically suited, as Pickett is nearing 63 using the hypothetical dog-year calculation and Murphy is somewhere around five.
We all know the Fonz was cool, but the actor who played him, Henry Winkler, is even cooler. Why? Because he’s a devoted, passionate fly fisher. As he puts it in his new book I’ve Never Met an Idiot on the River: Reflections on Family, Photography, and Fly-Fishing:
My heart lives in New York, where I was born and raised. My body lives in Los Angeles, where I do much of my work. My soul lives in Montana, where I fish.
Come meet Henry Winkler at his book signing for his new book at Orvis NYC, Monday June 27 from 12-2 PM.
Author Peter Matthiessen caught this
nice brown using Depth Charge line
Before a recent trip to Chile and Argentina, a friend who runs a lodge down there said “Don’t forget to bring a sinking line around 200 grains.” Naively, I made some comment like, “I’ll just bring a floater, that’s why God invented tungsten cones.” But at the last minute, I packed a 250-grain Depth Charge line. And I learned a lesson—never go trout fishing in big deep rivers without one. I’d always taken a Depth Charge when saltwater fly fishing but never on trout trips.
Summer is here, and we dog owners know what that means: Stinky dog!
Whether it’s because our dogs get wet while swimming, splash in mud puddles, or roll around in…whatever that stuff is…with summer comes stink. Our dog Toby gets so stinky after swimming, we’ve taken to calling him Taleggio Toby. For those of you who have not had the pleasure of smelling Taleggio cheese, don’t.
If you think terrestrial imitations are only for summer fishing, you’re missing a great deal of dry-fly action. The normal thought is that trout ignore land-bred insects in the spring and early summer, until mayfly and caddisfly hatches dwindle with the heat of summer. They ignore terrestrials about as much as you ignore chocolate mousse when out to dinner.
In this wonderful video, fly fisher and photographer Christen Magaret shares her love of fly fishing and the outdoors, and her gratitude to her father for exposing her to both. She and her father express why fly fishing is special to them, and to so many of us who pursue it.