fishing for words

(and tossing out random thoughts)


our (cruise) story in pictures

Sometimes it’s better to let the pictures tell the story. Before that happens, a few high points of our recent vacation and cruise (Vancouver and Victoria, B.C., round trip from Seattle):

• Fun time all around with mostly good to great weather.
• Spending time with the folks who raised us and The Bro’s family.
• Meeting a fellow fly fisherman/author who happens to live in The Parents’ hometown.
• Vancouver. Loved it.
• The cruise itself. Already planning another cruise.
• The food on the cruise.
• Meeting with The Wife’s online knitting friend and family.
• The fact that The Brother and I ate frog legs.
• Butchart Gardens. Amazing.
• Did I mention good beer?

Enjoy! (If the gallery pictures run together in Internet Explorer, try using “Compatibility Mode” by clicking the broken page icon next to the address bar.)

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congratulations to a boy (and his parents)

Sean was awarded his A.S. in Criminal Justice/Law Enforcement last night. That’s an accomplishment in itself. So was sitting through a ceremony that seemed a bit protracted and through speeches by speakers who sometimes veered away from the reason we were there: the accomplishment of these young people. I guess that’s almost to be expected today, when some people use every opportunity to push their agenda.

We’re proud of Sean’s work and accomplishment. But they don’t hand out degrees or certificates of achievement for those who both attend school and work one, sometimes two jobs while attending college and maintaining passing grades. That’s something in which Sean should also take pride.

Lastly, some photos below. Sean looks almost too happy to have this part of his education journey behind him, don’t you think?


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WSJ: viral marketing victim?

That the Wall Street Journal printed a tidbit on fishing shouldn’t be too astonishing, the WSJ abandoned the high ground to add sports coverage about two years ago, but yesterday’s edition included an anomalous “factoid” that smells suspiciously like viral marketing in print.

Bottom center of page D8 in the May 13, 2010 WSJ appears, what, at first glance, appears to be simple filler.

Number of different fish species caught by Patrick Sebile after he landed a Vermillion Rockfish. A news release said the number puts Mr. Sebile ‘in a class by himself as an angler.’ “

Look closer.

Sure, landing 600 different species of fish is impressive, but without telling the reader, this little scrap implies that there’s something notable about landing a Vermillion Rockfish; notable enough to start the fish species countdown. Vermillion Rockfish (Sebastes miniatus) is a member of the family Scorpaenidae (rockfishes with strong head spines, aka Scorpionfishes) and is widely distributed from the San Benito Islands, Baja California, to Vancouver Island, Canada. Nothing remarkable.

The WSJ then quotes the news release as to Mr. Sebile’s unique standing in the world of anglers. Again, 600 different species is remarkable, but considering it all started with a rockfish, a family that includes an estimated 102 species, Mr. Sebile could have picked up one sixth of his total just off the coast. We’ll still give him credit on the 600-species claim as, apparently, there’s no documented case of any angler landing as many species.

Finally, the WSJ credits the source: Patrick Sebile. He’s his own PR team. And the founder and lure designer of his namesake tackle company, SEBILE Innovative Fishing. That’s the viral part. Well played Mr. Sebile.

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it’s invasive species week:Asian carp’s little bro’ on the attack

Earlier this year we had the fight to keep Asian carp out of the Great Lakes by ending the Chicago diversion that artificially connects Lake Michigan to the Mississippi River system. Now the Asian carp’s little brother is assaulting Mann Lake in Eastern Oregon.

According to an Associated Press article, biologists with the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife are pondering a plan to poison Mann Lake, in the hope of ridding the lake of invasive goldfish.

The first step requires volunteers to catch trout, in the hope that the trout can be restocked after poisoning the lake with the chemical rotenone, which kills fish by interfering with cellular use of oxygen.

Mann Lake, at the base of Steens Mountain, has a long history as a well-known trout fishery. Scientists believe that in 2001 live goldfish were somehow deposited in the lake, perhaps used for bait, and reproduced. Fishermen now catch goldfish up to 13 inches long, and the trout population has experienced a decline.

To answer the question we know is on your mind, yes, there is an overall U.S. IGFA record for goldfish (Carassius auratus auratus) from 2002: 9 lbs. 6 oz. (4.26 kgs), out of Lindo Lakes, California.  No fly rod record. Yet.

That said, I’d much prefer rainbow trout as an invasive species.

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corruption or conservation?

The evolution of an angler to fly fisherman often includes embracing the concept of the ‘catch and release’ ethic — along the lines of Lee Wulff’s assertion that “The fish you release is your gift to another angler and remember, it may have been someone’s similar gift to you.” Conservation is part of our credo. In more recent years that credo has grown to adopt the concept that the survival of native fish is preferable.

Now Trout Unlimited and the Idaho Department of Fish and Game have crafted a cash-for-rainbow program in the hope that the almighty dollar can sway fly fishermen to revert to the hunter/gather mentality to harvest the nonnative rainbows in the South Fork of the Snake River.

Seeking to thin out the competition for native Yellowstone cutthroat trout in the blue ribbon fishery, Woodard’s organization, Trout Unlimited, has partnered with the Idaho Department of Fish and Game to place a bounty on rainbows.

Fish and Game has inserted tiny, invisible tags in the noses of 571 South Fork rainbows with corresponding monetary awards ranging from $5 to $1,000.”

With any luck, maybe this fly fishing habit can pay off.