Hoisting the Colors

In answer to KVeMAN's comment - yes, I am still alive. And yes, I have been fishing. What I haven't been doing is posting. And it has absolutely nothing to do with being lazy, or because the college football season kicked off a month ago, either. Nope.

It's mostly due to time, which seems to be at a premium as of late. When I was a kid, I always thought that growing up and being older was the ultimate score - no set bedtime, no school or homework...just go to work, get paid and spend the hours in-between having fun, doing cool adult things.

Yeah, I wasn't too bright as a child. Actually, I'm not too bright as an adult, either, but I digress...

Come to find out, this whole 'grown-up' deal is a major rip-off. Aside from not being remotely close to what I envisioned as a kid, time seems to speed up the older I get.

With the exception of meetings. Somehow, those seem to be immune to the mysterious space/time continuum that comes with getting old.

Stoopid inconsistent space/time continuum.

So, being that my last post was in....JUNE (*gasp*), I think it's high time I hoist the main-sail and unfurl the colors once again.

Don't be alarmed - that's just me using sailor's jargon and trying to sound all pirate-y and such. How that translates into me stepping up my blog posts is a mystery, so let's just pretend that it all makes sense.

So the month of July was busy...between vacations, work and travel, there was limited time to hit the rivers. But when I did manage to get to the water, the fishing was so-so, due to wacky run-offs, excessive heat/cold, the Amish curse (a superstition of mine), Fate (who has it out for me) and the undeniable fact that I have the attention span of circus monkey.

Not that I didn't catch any fish - there were some nice ones thrown into the mix, but nothing to get too excited about.

August...essentially a lather, rinse and repeat of July. However, my son and I did manage some good hook-ups (above) during a weekend spent in Estes Park, including this large sucker that took a Black Mamba that Tristan was drifting low and slow:

Labor Day weekend was great - three rivers in three days: Friday evening, the Dream, which produced about a dozen smaller fish for me right around dusk.

Saturday was the Taylor, and a meet-up with Josh (aka Bigerrfish). At the end of 9 hours of hardcore fishing I was a miserable 0-12. That's right. Twelve ginormous fish hooked....and all twelve either spit the bit or snapped my line.

However, there was a herd of sheep-type-thingies down by the river when we arrived, so that was a bonus.

Sunday, I managed to fish Elevenmile Canyon which, after a day of painfully technical fishing on the Taylor, was akin to throwing a line at a stocked pond, and I walked away with a handful of respectable fish after only a few hours.

Fast-forward to this past weekend; my nephew decided to come on out for some fishing - specifically, to hit the 'Canyon' and hunt some lunkers. It was also the weekend of the Fly Fishing Frenzy, with loads of fellow bloggers descending on specific locations, and looking to wreak havoc like a swarm of locust.

And since wreaking havoc is always at the top of my list, I figured I needed to make this all work, somehow, so I decided to split the difference, stay in Estes that Friday night, and meet up with the group on Saturday.

Since my nephew had never been to Estes, and being that he's a fan of the Shining and Dumb and Dumber, the famous Stanley Hotel was a must. Having spent many weekends here, it was great to be able to share the experience with family.

Plus, my son was thrilled to have someone with us that was equally enthusiastic about hunting for ghosts as he is.

I, on the other hand, flopped my lazy arse on the bed and watched college football, since the spirits at the Stanley are probably sick of my schtick by now.

So after a relatively 'quiet' night, we hit Saturday right square in the mouth, starting off with a hearty breakfast, followed by copious amounts of bumper carts, bumper boats and some mini-karts.

After that, it was time to hit the river to remind some fish that their pea-sized brains are no match for a walnut-sized brain. Granted, the rod gives me an unfair advantage, but hey...is it my fault that fish haven't yet mastered the art of building rods to toss fake burgers on to the banks of the river?

I think not.

Now, this trip involved a little less fishing than I would have liked - with an 8-year-old and a newbie, it was a little tough to find some 'me time'.

Most of the trip was spent tying on flies, untangling lines, and trying to put them on to some fish. In between all of that, I was also scanning the crowds for anyone that remotely looked like a blogger that was part of the Fly Fishing Frenzy.

Note to self - Fly Fishing Frenzy bloggers blend. Too well, it would seem.

By the time the fishing came to a halt, I had pulled several fish, my son (who's cast and drift really surprised me) pulled 2, and my nephew...well, let's just say that he enjoyed his time in Estes Park.

To be fair, he's still really new to the entire fly fishing experience, and I'd like to get him out again, just he and I on the water, so we can go over some solid fundamentals that he can build on. Perhaps this Spring....

Oh, and my son caught a snake, as well.

So about 2:30, we had some elk show up on the river - the bull is the one that we noticed first, followed by the cows. Being that he was only about 15 yards upstream from where we were fishing, we decided to pack it in, head back to the truck, gear-down, eat some lunch and watch the animals from the safety of the truck bed.

Several times while we were eating, I thought we'd see someone get trampled - so I kept the camera at the ready, mainly because I have a dark sense of humor and think that shit would be hilarious.

Hey, if you're stupid enough to try and approach a wild animal, and it tears you up...too bad. It's called 'Natural Selection' and it means that you didn't have the wits to avoid obvious danger - ergo, you are erased from the gene pool.

Fortunately(?), no blood was shed, the elk moved on (along with a caravan of gawkers who remained dangerously close to the animals) and we wound up calling it a day a little after that.

But a great day it was - granted, I didn't meet up with anyone from the Frenzy, but we had a great night at the Stanley, had some fun in the morning, and enjoyed some good fishing in the afternoon - not bad. Not bad at all.