I've been thinking about fishing and friends a lot lately. I know to some of you me thinking anything is a dangerous proposition, but hear me out. With our Baja trip now just a couple of weeks away obviously this has been the main focus of my daydreams. The Sea of Cortez at sunrise is as flat, glassy and beautiful any lake can be, with an equally amazing variety of fish to test you and your gear. Last week it was fishing a secluded bass pond on Tejon Ranch. I haven't done a lot of bassing or any other warm water fishing since I moved to California and it really brought me back to my roots as a kid on the East Coast fishing for bass and pickerel with my brother. The One Fly Tournament was another great event in the past couple of weeks. On the horizon are trips to the Kern, the Eastern Sierra, Montauk in October and hopefully Christmas Island in March of next year. So as you can see I have been thinking a lot about fishing. Which brings me to friends.
While there are times that it's great to be fishing in some secluded spot, alone with your thoughts, what makes this sport really special for me are the people who share it with me. I consider myself to be so fortunate to have met and fished with the people I have met since I became a full time flyfishermen. The "Spot" has only expanded my access to some really great people and some fantastic opportunities that I wouldn't otherwise have had.
I was there when Dean finally caught his first Roosterfish last year. I was there when Dave won two of the three awards at the "One Fly". I watched Artin fish the surf for the first time. Last year I caught my first Rooster, first Dorado and first blitzing surf Striper in the company of some of the same guys. I always look forward to Steve and Ken's Chile reports, mink and all! There are way too many names, places and memories to list here, but I think you see where I'm going with this.
The common thread here is not only the shared experience and passion for the sport but the friendship, camaraderie and love I feel for my friends. They make me happy. They make me laugh. They accept me for who I am. I only hope that I am as good a friend to them as they are to me. It has been said that "no man is a failure who has friends". Truer words were never spoken.