I’m writing this on Thanksgiving morning, so it’s appropriate to give thanks for many things, not least of which is the many fishing opportunities I had in 2019. Frigid days chasing winter steelhead on the coast and on the Sandy River, less frigid (but equally unproductive) days chasing steelhead in early spring on the Willamette, fishing for (and catching!) springers and shad in May, trout fishing on lakes and rivers in the glory days of June and July, bass fishing on the John Day in the heat of August, followed by summer steelhead on the Deschutes in September, and a final lake trip in October in the gorgeous Methow Valley. All in all a very good year.
Christmas is coming, and while I’m reasonably certain that Santa will not be landing on my roof, I still make mental wish lists, particularly when it comes to fishing gear. As I inventory my collection of rods, I see considerable room for expansion, particularly in the area of micro-spey rods (of which I have none), and a nice 7-weight full spey rod to fit neatly between my six- and eight-weight two-handers. I’m also in the market for a new six-weight Deschutes rod, a longer float tube rod, and perhaps, if we are going to be thorough, a bass rod or two. Of course rods need reels, and reels need a variety of floating and sinking lines, leaders, and tips, so my wish list is ever growing.
I also will use the downtime at year’s end to plan my fishing expeditions for 2020. Many of my outings are now regular events that I look forward to each year, but I also have some new opportunities in mind. Last month’s presentation by Nick Clayton on fishing for sea-run cutthroat trout and coho salmon in Puget Sound got my attention, so I’m planning to book a trip with him in late winter. I’m also going to (finally) learn how to put my Euro nymph rod to use on the Deschutes or the Crooked River. And I haven’t floated the McKenzie River for at least a dozen years, so I’d like to reacquaint myself with that beautiful part of Oregon.
Our December Flyfishers’ Club dinner meeting is not to be missed. The University Club will be decked out in its holiday finery, and renowned fishing writer and speaker Dave Hughes will entertain us with fishing stories from his prolific angling career. It is a great night to bring a spouse or significant other, so don’t forget to sign up on the club website. I’m looking forward to seeing everyone there.
My best wishes to each of you for this holiday season. I hope you are able to spend time and build memories with your family and friends as we look forward to the New Year and all that awaits us.