But last week, we just needed to get out. John Muir said it best ~ The Mountains are calling, and I must go…
We loaded up the trailer and pointed in north. The transition from the desert of New Mexico to the Colorado Plateau was a much needed shot in the arm. The monsoons had been been kind to the high country. More green than I’ve seen in a long moment. The boss whipped up some green chile stew, added in some fresh Olathe corn, and we enjoyed a cool evening at 10k. A pint of my favorite barley wine only insured an early night. Next morning, we broke early as we had a few passes to cover before arriving at our camp spot. Dawn on the San Juan’s is always a treat and the moment didn’t disappoint. We drove a few hours, pulled in, and before I had the trailer unhitched, I was in the water. I’ve caught as many as 5 species in this particularly stretch. No cutts this time, but 4 outta 5 ain’t shabby. I scaled down an threw my TXL 1wt. It’s a curious little rig that makes small trout challenging, but I’ve also managed a few 15-17” fish over the years as well. It a versatile little outfit that did the job. Gratuitous fish pics… A curious thing about this drainage is it sits down system from a marble quarry- marble that was used in the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and Lincoln Memorial. That which was imperfect was unceremoniously tossed over the edge of the highway, to blend in with the rip rap. Some pieces make it into the water where they’ve become almost sensuously smooth. I love this water. We were fairly self contained, save a BBQ joint up the road. While I normally maintain an aloofness towards joints that don’t reside in the BBQ belt (from NC, TN, to Bama and Mississippi, Louisiana, and begrudgingly, Texas) the scent coming out of their smokers after a walk with the fat little red dog had us pulling in. It did not disappoint with a blend of citrus, applewood, and red oak providing the kiss to a nice pulled pork. Add house made pickles and pickled onion, and a zesty chipotle slaw, and it was a winner. They even did good fried okra. Overall, fishing was a little slow. But, I needed the oxygen more than the tug. The sweet smell of sage and pine after a cool afternoon rain.. Aroma therapy. Heading back up to Durango next week for a session and to celebrate Ska Brewing’s 25th/26th birthday. The headliner is the Mighty Mighty Boss Tones, and the opener is my little brother’s band- The Pietasters. Should be a blast.
180 Degrees South