Cruising the Keys

In late October of 2013, Tom Bie, editor of The Drake, sent me an email:

"CLYDE IS PARKED on 2nd floor, row E, space 14, in the garage for American Airlines, right next to an emergency phone. He is gassed and ready to go, but keep in mind he is 40 years old, with almost 100k miles, and a lot of quirks. You need to take it easy at first. For example, a LOT of play in the steering."

Central Oregon nothingness.

A different take on Wild and Scenic Rivers

When I opened the car door, a mangy border collie barked and charged at us. Mike Murtha yelled, and the dog backed off. Mike was in his 80s and wore a dusty-brimmed Stetson and tattered Wranglers. He smoked Camels, and his hands resembled the harsh, cracked earth of the surrounding desert. Tin cans filled with cigarette butts cluttered his porch. We sat on a muddy couch and drank Jack Daniels as Mike told stories of hunting mule deer, and talked about what the John Day was like before rafters, and before regulations limited grazing.


In Honduras, some mysteries are better left unsolved

I'm not sure I want the Miskitos back in camp. Rules are different here. Maybe there are no rules. They want gas this time. They also want weed: "Fuma?" We give it to them. They smoke it in front of our camp. We've given them sliced pineapple, five-gallon jugs of water, rice and beans. They want the weed more than any of it.


The gift of missing me

LAST SUMMER, SITTING QUIETLY on a stump smoking a fine-smelling cigar, no doubt rolled on the thighs of an elderly Cuban woman, I heard one of the greatest lines ever muttered by a fellow brother of the flyfishing fraternity. In many ways it encapsulated subconscious thoughts I would like to think I am capable of, yet rarely produce. As with so many iconoclastic ideas, its genius was in its simplicity.

a classic salmon fly tied without classic animal feathers.

Author Kirk W. Johnson takes on classic flytying's excommunicated flautist

The best thing about a nightmare is the split-second you wake up and realize it was only a dream. Author Kirk W. Johnson skipped that moment, when, on December 29, 2005, he sleepwalked out of his second-floor hotel window in what he describes in the prologue of his new book, The Feather Thief, as a "PTSD-triggered fugue state." Regaining consciousness on the concrete below, his nightmare was just beginning.