It was a delight to see so many members last month at our annual August picnic at the casting ponds in Westmoreland. Our first in-person event was very well attended with at least 30 members by my unscientific recollection, and we enjoyed a beautiful summer evening with temperatures that were blessedly cooler than the scorching weather that had been in the forecast. A big thank you to programs director Mike Radakovich for organizing the event, which included great food provided by DeNicola’s Italian restaurant in SE Portland (special acknowledgements to Donata for her outstanding meatballs!). Additional thanks to special guests, Jack and Finn Hagan of Northwest Flyfishing Outfitters, as well as Joel and Jennifer LaFollette and Josh Linn of Royal Treatment, all of whom generously donated raffle prizes and demo rods for member to try out, and also to member John Redhouse, who kindly donated several knives and other raffle prizes.
Unfortunately, the Covid-19 delta variant is still at large, resulting in renewed masking requirements for both indoor and outdoor activities in Oregon. Although the University Club remains open (with masks required except for eating and drinking) and was prepared to host us for our September 14 dinner meeting, we had only received 8 reservations as of the September 3 cutoff date for committing to rent the room, so Mike Radakovich and I made the executive decision to revert to online Zoom meetings until more members are comfortable with in-person meetings.
Our September 14 presentation features Nick Wheeler, formerly of Royal Treatment and now with Portland Fly Shop. Nick will be speaking about Oregon’s infinite fishing season. There also will be several raffle prizes. Mike Radakovich will be sending a Zoom link to register (for free) so watch your email or go to the Event Page of the FCO Website and paste the registration link in your browser. Sign up to learn how to extend your personal fishing season and possibly win some cool fishing swag. See you next week on Zoom!
Fishing opportunities remain limited in our neck of the woods due to the closure of the Columbia and tributaries to steelhead fishing. Several friends have had steelhead trips canceled, and I am thinking that my own steelhead trip in October may turn into a trout trip instead. Shutting down recreational steelheading has an outsized impact on local guides, so please consider supporting them by switching to a trout trip or pre-booking some winter steelhead spots. I have not personally wet a line since early July, but I am looking forward to a trout trip this week with Rick Pay and two other angling friends to fish the north arm of Timothy Lake.
In the meantime, I’m very much looking forward to attending the special paella and Spanish wine pairing dinner hosted by Janet Arenz and Curt Marr, which was the highest grossing auction donation last spring. All guests are fully vaccinated, and Janet promises a (weather permitting) outdoor dining experience. Given the menu and wine array, I suspect it will be a situation involving tight belts, rather than tight lines.
I hope that you are all safe and healthy and that you will be able to enjoy the waning summer weather as we transition to fall colors, fall football and (we hope) fall fishing.