Saturday, June 03, 2017


Wrapped up my spring guiding earlier this week with a few days around the Bozone with some new clients. I have to admit to being spoiled, more or less, in the guiding realm as most people I go out with anymore are good to very good fly anglers. So, I was curious to see if my renewed love for the guiding life would make it through a few days with a couple of guys that I didn't know and that basically had zero experience with fly-fishing. I made it through OK, we caught some fish, enjoyed the rivers and the weather, and they even improved dramatically over the three days. I think that I am "officially" back in the saddle with a happy heart and kind words flowing forth!
 That experience, and the last couple of months has put me at ease about my current and future career path. I have to admit that I have been burnt out with guiding the last few years and more or less trying to come to grips with the reality that I just can't row as long, get up as early, and work as hard as I used to be able to. I have too much other stuff in my life and guiding had become a distraction, mores than a passion. I was able to say that I loved it and blah, blah, blah...but most days, the last two years - the best part of my day on the oars has been pulling away from the boat ramp at the end of the day. Had come to hate it, to be honest.
Something happened this winter though, and I started to look forward to the season for a change. I got excited about getting a new boat. I looked forward to hitting the Missouri in May once again. I bought a bunch of new gear, organized my flies, and even plotted to tie some of my old reliable patterns myself. I wondered if it was real or just a way to keep my mind busy during the long, dark days of winter. 
It has been a struggle the last two years for sure. Dealing with this mix of emotions that have come form trying to make sense out of dreading doing the one thing in life that I really am pretty good at. Maybe I gave up, maybe a lighter 2016 was the difference? 
I think it has to do with getting the jet boat a couple of years ago and fishing carp more and more. The boat is bad ass for sure. Carp fishing, in Montana, is stupid. However, something in me just really likes doing stupid things. Learning to accept that I like carp fishing...even though it is stupid...somehow made me realize that it's OK to like to do stupid things. The excitement of guiding came back to me, I hope it stays.
Guiding, like fishing, is the one thing that I do in my life that centers me and keeps me in the moment. Life is moving way too fast for me anymore, but the water slows it down for just enough to help me be sane during those times when I'm not on the water. I've actually been happy this year, free of nicotine finally, and grateful foe the people around me.

I'm on my way to Miami as I write this. Sitting in 14 C with an empty seat between me and my best friend. My dad, of course, is up front in the plane. My man "Blanca, Negro James Hardin" is somewhere in the air tonight too, on his way to Miami. My mom is with the kids and dogs. The crew at the shop is set to keep it real through the week. I'm here, writing some gibberish because I miss writing gibberish more than you know.
We are on our way South,,,way South, but to so far South that one could say we were headed to South America. I'll say where later, like in a few days later, assuming the Internet works where we are headed.
I spent the last few days trying to balancing my oldest son's graduation (awesome feat in itself as many of you know the struggles over the years), end of school for the little Googan, and just being busy as shit with work, plus trying to wrap up my USCG Captain's license, and tie some file for where I'm headed. Got it all done today, about 45 minutes before we departed.
I'm jacked up for this adventure, and rightfully so. It's nice to be here, sitting in 14 C, writing about now instead of what I wish now might be. I look forward to sand, the smell of saltwater, the sound of waves on the beach, and the reality of things being that everyday that I blow a shot at a Permit just means I'm one more shot closer to my next Permit. Pathetic, I know.

So, keep an eye on the blog and thanks for checking in. Believe it or not, when I go days without doing this, it actually makes me feel like I'm missing something. 

Viva La Pesca

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