This forum is for general topics. Keep all posts, images, etc safe for those who read the forum at work. Post only that content that you'd want your mama to read. Violators will be banned.
User avatar
By LA Fly Guy
#694841
[fish_report]







This trip began almost a year ago as a dream. Ruddy duck wanted to backpack into the mountains to chase some high elevation trout. I was just the sucker to be crazy enough to tag a long and embark on a journey of the type that neither of us had done before. The dream changed paths several times before the end destination was set. The main goal was to backpack in the wilderness, view some breathtaking vistas, and catch a fish or two. Other than a family trip to the Grand Canyon many years ago, this would be my fist trip “out west”.



Months of preparation eventually ended and we finally flew from the flat lands of Louisiana to somewhere much higher and drier. With everything packed, it was time to hit the trail.



[img]https://i.imgur.com/42son0u.jpg?1[/img]



After a few miles down the trail, we arrived at our first lake – this one was reported to have brook trout. It wasn’t long before we spotted some fish cruising the shoreline and just like on a skiff, directions were given from one to another to spot the fish and cast to it. Ruddy was the first to catch one.



[img]https://i.imgur.com/mEJXK93.jpg?1[/img]



[img]https://i.imgur.com/c9pCTkT.jpg?1[/img]



I managed to catch a few as well.



[img]https://i.imgur.com/YUqDxEv.jpg?1[/img]



After catching a few brook trout each, it was time to continue.



[img]https://i.imgur.com/9IIp8lW.jpg?1[/img]



Until we arrived to our first campsite.



[img]https://i.imgur.com/H6fNCQn.jpg?1[/img]



With camp set up, we had some time to fish before eating supper. A moose we saw near our campsite continued along the shoreline and gave us some funny looks.



[img]https://i.imgur.com/9JlnRos.jpg?1[/img]



Ruddy duck, much smarter than I, realized we were in the moose’s way and instructed me to quit fishing and back up. After I backed up, he slowly passed us and walked away.



[img]https://i.imgur.com/9LMh5CT.jpg?1[/img]



As the moose walked away, the fishing continued



[img]https://i.imgur.com/nGB8xbr.jpg?1[/img]



until we left the lake to eat and settle down for the night.



The next day we packed up and continued up the mountain. The views of the lakes and mountain peaks did not disappoint.



[img]https://i.imgur.com/srNZA3k.jpg?1[/img]



[img]https://i.imgur.com/eFt07DU.jpg?1[/img]



[img]https://i.imgur.com/YQpbpOq.jpg?1[/img]



The time behind the vise and suggestions from a couple of drakians proved to be all we needed for most of the fishings.



[img]https://i.imgur.com/u1R2tVw.jpg?1[/img]



Our trail took us over passes, through brush, and over creeks.



[img]https://i.imgur.com/tV4VFFU.jpg?1[/img]



As we hiked higher, the trees got shorter and the storms got closer.



[img]https://i.imgur.com/95tEuIs.jpg?1[/img]



Still, the views continued to surpass everything I imagined.



[img]https://i.imgur.com/CaiFOTJ.jpg?1[/img]



[img]https://i.imgur.com/s06XLgd.jpg[/img]



The views surrounding our campsites were ok.



[img]https://i.imgur.com/rf9kGIh.jpg?1[/img]



As we got higher, the creeks got bigger



[img]https://i.imgur.com/B2BGRqM.jpg?1[/img]



We hiked high enough that the trees all but disappeared.



[img]https://i.imgur.com/nPQD2oC.jpg?1[/img]



[img]https://i.imgur.com/tnhwmpY.jpg?1[/img]



[img]https://i.imgur.com/FNsX8gK.jpg?1[/img]



[img]https://i.imgur.com/PNgGaL6.jpg?1[/img]



[img]https://i.imgur.com/PsO1Rfm.jpg?1[/img]



The last remnants of snow were also evident.



[img]https://i.imgur.com/EMjsLps.jpg?1[/img]



[img]https://i.imgur.com/GbvQiOk.jpg?1[/img]



[img]https://i.imgur.com/UIiRv2s.jpg?1[/img]



On the second to last day of our trip, we finally made as high as we planned to go - somewhere around 10,800 ft elevation in search of trout of the golden variety.



[img]https://i.imgur.com/ceAQiZz.jpg?1[/img]



All of the heavy breathing and lack of oxygen seemed to be all worth it when one of these came to hand.



[img]https://i.imgur.com/YRAf9f7.jpg?1[/img]



[img]https://i.imgur.com/1HdoYjN.jpg[/img]



After being chased off by an approaching storm, we hiked back down around 10,400 ft and settled into camp for the night after starting a fire.



[img]https://i.imgur.com/JX8LJfU.jpg?1[/img]





However, the change in altitude proved to take its toll and both Ruddy and I were feeling the effects of the exertion and lack of oxygen above 10,000 ft. Between the two of us, we exhibited almost all the signs of altitude sickness. We collectively decided to head back to lower elevation the next morning and made the long journey back down to the waiting rental car at the trailhead.



With tired bodies, sore muscles, and half filled lungs, we limped back. A hotel, shower, and a few thousand feet lower helped and the recovery began.

Despite the pain and difficulty it was worth it and I would gladly do it again, well maybe not quite so high next time.




[/fish_report]
User avatar
By Da Ax
#694847
Fan-fucking-tastic. I hate the term bucket list, but this would be on it.
#694848
Well the fuck done, Chewbacca Jr!
I see you sporting an Os-Bray pack, good carriers, them ones.
Meeses Pieces will fukk you up! Just ask SOBF whilst driving through Rangeley!
:cool
#694849
Strong work. Man points for you both. Thank you for sharing.
User avatar
By Ruddy Duck
#694854
I can tell you with remarkable accuracy when I will wake in the morning, leave the house, and take a morning shit. The weather, food supply, and routes are predictable. The roads I take are beaten and paved, so it appears I cannot own the journey. Many struggle in life to achieve symptoms of a “rut”, but living them creates an uneasiness. The cure has always been to pole a skiff or paddle a canoe with a fly rod aboard. But when the cure becomes just another symptom, other experiences call; and other experiences always involve fish.

Programmed for stupidity, the opposite of my symptoms involved wilderness trails, uncertainty, and discarding the majority of the safety nets that guard me on a daily basis. It didn’t take a tremendous amount of convincing for Corey to deal with his own symptoms and join me out West. After a year of planning, filling holes in gear lists, and tying flies; I travelled to a town with equal parts cowboys, hipsters, and hippies. I travelled with excitement and nervousness, unsure if the adventure ahead was an ideal cure or a death wish for inexperienced southerners accustomed to life at sea level.

We stepped out of the rental with cleanish shoes and began walking with the enthusiasm of Lloyd Christmas driving to Aspen. The weight of our packs was irrelevant as we steadily gained altitude and experience. Within a few hours we saw a glimpse of what was ahead and were hooked up with large Brook Trout colored up in beautiful hues of purple. Every fisherman wants to catch but is slightly unfulfilled if the catching is too easy. These fish were almost too easy.

Packs a little heavier, we pressed on to the next lake and campsite. “Walk, fish, camp” became the new cycle. Each day our packs grew heavier and the fishing more difficult. The effects of altitude slowly and steadily manifested in our physical wellbeing. Loss of appetite, flu like symptoms, and insomnia went from an annoyance to things that could not be ignored.

Laying in my tent awake at 3:00 am, I waited for inspiration that the mountains and trout were supposed to deliver. Instead, they highlighted an emptiness inside that I brought with me from sea level. The idea of life without safety nets is far different from actually living without them. When faced with the reality that uncertainty is more prevalent than it was days before, I lay awake thinking only of my loved ones back home and the symptoms of the rut I ran from. However, exhausted and ill, the symptoms now represented a life well lived and full of love.

I am eternally grateful for mountains and trout.

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Friday Cheer Through Pics

I'm still lurking around. And the snow is melting[…]

Hah. You don’t get an answer while we&r[…]

If You’re Planning To Come To Montana

https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/annehelenpete[…]

Things That PISS Me Off!

jeff grosso. poor fucker.

Subscribe to The Drake Magazine