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Catching Up…(And giving things Away)

March 10, 2010

– I must say, I’ve been a little lost in the sauce over the past few months.

Between learning civics, teaching civics, then correcting tests, papers, and homework about civics, fly fishing has taking a seat in the back of the crowded movie theater that is my life. With another 7 weeks of student teaching around the corner, it would be unwise to say that things are going to change in the coming months. But I can promise you all one thing:


Fly fishing is my passion, and a love this deep does NOT simply fade away. Mixed within the hundreds of papers I grade one is sure to find a stray Eastern Fly Fishing magazine, or the latest product catalog from The Fly Shop. My wool coat occasionally sports a rouge hackle from a fly tying session, and at least twice a week my students sit puzzled when I use phrases like “double haul” or “brookie.”

My point is, just because I can’t TEACH fly fishing to a bunch of Civics students, does NOT mean it isn’t part of who I am. For me, reading blogs, looking at pictures, and browsing online fly fishing stores is a regular part of the day, just like taking a shower or putting on socks. Some people fish for fun-I fish because if I didn’t, I’m not sure what else I would do with all of my free time. Maybe I’m obsessed, I’d like to think I’m just finding a productive, healthy way to fill my time.

Too few young people these days have no real substance in their lives, trust me-I know. Between sleeping in class and playing video games all night, what was once a rich American culture has all but receded back into the depths of nothingness. These same students, and many others always seem to ask a similar question:

“Don’t you get bored from fishing all the time?”

I could answer that question simply with a resounding NO, but why stop at one word when the actuality of the question begs a stronger answer? I don’t get bored of fly fishing because for me, fly fishing is so much more than those who have never done it can ever comprehend.

  • It’s catching big fish, little fish, and logs/weeds/rocks that you THINK are fish.
  • It’s throwin’ back a few cold ones with your friends and reminiscing about life, pretty women, nights you can’t remember, and time’s you’ll never forget.
  • It’s a country guitar chorus and a harmonica under the stars when someone gets a hankerin’ for “Family Tradition.”
  • It’s driving/flying/walking to some of the most remote places in the world, and fishing some of the most beautiful rivers, ponds, and lakes that FEW will ever get to see.
  • It’s eating camp stove hot dogs and drinking black coffee on a river bank for lunch, or dozing off against a tree when the fish aren’t biting.
  • It’s tying 20 identical flies during the winter of 40 different patterns, when you know you probably won’t touch half of them.
  • It’s counting down the minutes until open day, and taking off work to fish as much as you can during the final week.
  • It’s teaching new people to cast, then laughing when they forget their anniversary because they were fishing a Spring salmon run.
  • and it’s a Labrador Retriever sitting patiently in the bow of the canoe, waiting for attention, but never complaining if your having an off day.

The list could go on and on, but you get the picture. Fly fishing is a lifestyle, not simply a hobby I partake in to pass the time. It’s as timeless as it is relaxing, and I simply can’t get enough. So in this message begs a question:

What does fly fishing mean to you?

Answer the question in a paragraph, list, or submit a picture with a description. Creativity is key! I’ll pick my three favorite responses and put names into a hat. The name I draw will receive a large Up’North Decal and 10 streamers just in time for Spring, including the Black Ghost Marabou, Alexandra, and a few different versions of the Maple Syrup!

Leave you submission in the comments section of this post. If it includes pictures or is simply too long, email it to! (Please type “emailed” in the comments section.) The finalists will all have their responses posted before the winner is announced!

PRIZE UPDATE: The bounty is growing!

  • Up’North Fly Selection
  • Up’North Decal
  • decals
  • LLBean was generous enough to donate a brand new 5wt travel rod for the lucky winner!

So, What does fly fishing mean to you? I can’t wait to find out!


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