Thursday, August 22, 2013
I know some of you will laugh when I say this but I actually consider myself to be a pretty positive person. The last few weeks I found myself battling this funk that I am not entirely sure of the source. I think the onset was seeing Cat’s chance of a lifetime fall through the cracks and the two of us staring at each other in shock asking now what. The rivers and weather have not really cooperated in filling up our slack time and maybe last of all, my real job has really kept me hopping as of late. I have had three customers this week tell me that they want to own a Subway because they think it would be a lot of fun. Yep, all I do is sit around and count money……Well I was griping to Cat and we started thinking that maybe we needed to take part of a day off and get away to fish somewhere else. Spinney came up but too much work for a one day trip. Ptarmigan sounded fun but a long way away, North Lake would be fun but not for the dogs. We decided to pack the car and head west and allow the “Spirit fish” guide us when I got off work on Wednesday. I was hoping to sneak out early but internet issues kept me way later than I had planned. We got on the road and decided on the upper Ark and headed all the way to Hecla Junction in hopes of escaping the heat. We pulled in at about dark and the smile returned to my face.
After an "interesting" nights sleep in the tent, with two dogs and noisy neighbors, Cat and I got on the water just a little before 8:00am and were immediately blown away by the pure beauty of Browns Canyon. The boulders, the gin clear water, the really smart fish, and the contrasting colors of all the flowers made it hard to think about anything else. During the first hour I was so mesmerized by the beauty that it didn’t really seem to bother me that I was being schooled by every fish in the river or that Cat had one fish up on me. In the second hour and a half however I started to take it personally. I was getting pretty frustrated and finally I sat down looked around at God’s beautiful creation, scratched my head and asked myself that all important question W.W.J.D. Which in the fishing world stands for......“What Would Jeff Do”. If you know Jeff Ross you know why I asked myself this. So I put on a Z-wing caddis and as if Jeff was actually looking on from South Korea, I hooked and landed my first fish of the day(thanks Jeff). The next hour was a blast, landing several and being able to look up and hear the Ciggle as Cat was playing another brown to the net. We didn’t get to stay as long as we wanted but hopefully those few precious hours of beauty will carry me through till our water turns on again.
Friday, August 16, 2013
Hello everyone this is Cat and I know I have been slacking and letting Connell do all of the blogging lately but this time I couldn’t resist.
Many of you may not know this but August 17th is a magical day. On this day …. a few years ago …hehe …. an amazing man was born…….one who changed my life forever. Who was this incredible person you may ask? I’ll give you a hint. He is a loving husband and father, a master fly fisherman, a good friend, and biggest hint of all he loves his Winston rods. If you guessed Connell you would be exactly right and if you didn’t guess him you should have known better.
So on this very special day I wanted to share a few details and a story about my best friend and husband.
First the story…………
So most of you know the story of when Connell decided to marry me… it involved a very large spider, but very few know the story of when I decided to marry him. We had been dating for only a short time and headed to the mountains one summer day. Ophir Creek was our destination and it didn’t disappoint. Beautiful scenery, clear skies, and a sweet creek swept around us, but I didn’t see any of it. I was looking at one thing, a man and his fly rod. With his xp in hand Connell led me to the creek where I sat on a dirt road and watched him hook brookies. The fish were about three inches in length and kept flying out of the water when they got hooked but were greedily gobbling up his dry fly …..which knowing him so well I would bet one million dollars was a royal stimulator ….. but I digress, sitting on that road I realized that I wanted to marry him. No, it wasn’t his amazing fishing skills that drew me in (didn’t hurt though! J ) instead it was the smile and light in his eyes as he relished those tiny trout. What I saw there was happiness, joy, and an appreciation for creatures great and small. The feeling he was obviously having was addictive. I could have watched him fish for years, in fact I could have watched it forever and that is when I knew. To this day when we fish together I sometimes stop (typically when I have a big lead ….JK..) and just watch him. His grace, his joy, and that same light still radiates from him even years later.
That’s the story but it doesn’t end there. I also promised details (all things I adore about him) The first is that he was the custodial parent to his youngest son. He was a single father and raised a baby on his own, a great feat that he never takes credit for. Connell is also the most responsible person I ever met. He is never late, never careless, and never forgets what is important to those around him. He also posses the gift of humor, a fact I get to live day in and day out (I think most of you know this fact). The next thing many don’t know is how his care for others is unmatched. Friends, family, and even strangers are all in his prayers and on his mind constantly. This pairs nicely with his other great and rare trait of honesty. Connell won’t lie or sugar coat anything and he does this to truly help those he cares about. While so many of us avoid awkward situations and do so by not saying what we really think Connell cares too much to give into that. If you ever want the truth and get good advice there is no man on the planet better to talk to.
Lastly I wanted to take this moment in this public forum to thank my best friend and husband for never failing in his belief in me. I say I wanted to finish school, costing us thousands of dollar and he said sure, I tell him I want spend the very little free time I have to write a book and he gets excited about the plot. When something means a lot to me it means a lot to him. There are countless things I have to thank him for and I’ll never be able to share my gratitude enough…….. So for now I’ll just say thank you for choosing me, happy birthday, and I love you very much!!
So the next time you see this incredible man on the water stop and watch. You might just be able to see all the amazing things I do.