My wife and my brother have the same birth date. Coincidentally, they are also both list makers.
My brother has stacks of pre-printed gear lists that he's made up and refined over the years, and he uses one or more of them before every trip. There's a "Warm Weather Camping" gear list. A "Winter Weather Camping" gear list. A "Warm Weather Trout Fishing" gear list. A "Winter Steelhead" gear list. A "Backpacking for Trout" gear list.
You get the idea.
He's honed each list to the point where if you called him on a Friday night and said “Let’s go float tubing for bass tomorrow,” he could pull out his “Float Tubing for Bass” list, toss every piece of gear listed on it into his truck, and be ready to go within an hour, knowing that he hadn't forgotten a thing.
I am not a list maker. I gather together everything I think I'm going to need for a trip by creating a movie in my mind of how I think things will play out. I then play the movie, and as I watch it in my brain, I gather together the gear and supplies I think I'll need and put them in a pile.
And so a week or two before a trip, I'll move the furniture in the front room off to the side, and over the course of several days I'll build a nest of gear for wherever I’m going. Am I a fucking freak? Most definitely. Does it drive my wife nuts? Absolutely. But she's getting used to it.
This past weekend, I joined my brother and several of our friends at his annual "Lake in the Desert" fishing trip. Two weeks beforehand, I moved the furniture, wrote the script, and played the movie, and based on what I saw in my brain, I began gathering what I thought I would need. It went something like this.
"OK. Leave the house. Get to Neil's. Load up the gear. Drive drive drive. Arrive in camp. Crack open an ice cold beer."
Cooler, beer, and bottle opener go into the pile. Mental note: get ice the night before so beer is cold.
“OK. You've finished your beer. Crack open another one and figure out where you’re going to crash once you get good and fucking hammered.”
Tent, sleeping bag, cot, hammer for tent stakes go into the pile.
“OK. Time to wader up and start fishing.”
Waders and boots go into the pile.
“It's going to be fucking cold.”
Remove waders and boots from the pile. Thermal underwear, fleece wading pants, wool socks, heavy shirt, beanie, and boot-foot neoprene waders go into the pile.
“Probably going to rain.”
Wading jacket goes into the pile
“Probably going to rain pretty fucking hard.”
Helly Hansen raincoat goes into the pile.
“Everyone is probably going to be fishing from a fucking ladder again, just like last year.”
Fucking ladder goes into the pile.
“The fish in this lake are big. It will probably be windy.”
Eight weight, stripping basket, box of streamers, Galvan Reel loaded with Rio Outbound Short, spool of 12lb fluorocarbon, and nippers goes into the pile
“Here comes the Indian Police.”
Go online and purchase camping permit and license.
“Be nice to have a smoke right about now”
Cigars, cigar cutter, and lighter go into the pile.
“Look at that sunset.”
Camera goes into the pile.
Headlamp goes into the pile.
“I’m ready for a fucking drink.”
Bottle of booze and tumbler goes into the pile. Mental note: get ice for beer AND cocktails the night before.
You get the idea.
Would it be easier just to make a list? Of course. Am I a fucking freak? Absolutely. But this is what works for me, and I can't remember the last time I said "Shit! I forgot to bring (---)." Also, I just really enjoy living out imaginary fishing trips in my mind.
My buddy Neil, on the other hand, has no method, or at least none that I'm aware of, because he forgets shit all the time. Not little shit, like "Damn, I forgot to pick up some floatant." He forgets major shit. Like waders. Fly rods. Beer.
And so when we left his house at 5:30 AM, it didn't surprise me when 15 minutes later he made a U turn and said, “I forgot something.”
Nor did it surprise me when two hours after that, he remembered that he'd forgotten to bring his new net. And a special bottle of Jameson he'd purchased just for this trip. And sterno.
But that's OK. Neil's a great guy, and his forgetfulness always ends up supporting the local economy.
One thing I really like about Neil is that he always insists on driving. Driving with Neil is always an adventure, because he drives his truck like he fucking stole it. If the driver in front of us doesn't move over after Neil flashes his high beams, they can look forward to getting flipped off as he passes them on the right and then cuts them off. That, and multiple lane changes while zipping in and out of traffic at high speeds is all part of the fun.
A year or so ago, augustwest had the pleasure of riding with Neil. I don't think he's ever been the same since, and I don’t think he’ll ever do it again. That may have had something to do with him turning down my invitation to join us at the Lake in the Desert this year. That or he simply had better things to do. Spicytuna declined as well. Then I remembered a PM I'd received from The Wandering Blues, in which he stated that he'd always wanted to fish this particular lake, and that he’d love to join us the next time we headed that way.
This is my brother's trip, so I checked with him before extending the invitation. He gave me the OK, The WB accepted, and the rest went down pretty much the way he described it on the first page. About all I can add at this point are a few images that my brother and some of the other guys managed to capture.
But first things first.
B.M. Barrelcooker wrote:
cantfishforshit wrote:Needs more FOOD ,but still pretty cool.
I didn’t get any photos of the corned beef hash and eggs, or the chili, coleslaw, and cornbread, or the sliders, sausages, hot wings, and potato skins filled with cheese and bacon, but I did get these.
Tent vs wind.
The wind won that battle.
But my little tent held up quite well.
I caught a couple of fish.
And took some scenery shots.
The fish photos that follow were taken by my brother.
It was a great trip, and I was sad to see it end so soon.