The river that lay out on the western horizon was still an unknown to me – a long, mysterious meandering flow. The slow, deep, turbid waters of this flow seemed meant to irrigate croplands here in Crawford County, not to accommodate extraordinarily large spawning trout. But I was here to expand my horizons, to do radical new things and probe mysterious waters, here to challenge another frontier.
Read more "Call of the Frontier"
The ground was soggy as we sloshed back in on this early January day. We parked at a place that I’ll never reveal to walk in to a stream I’ll never name.
Read more "Of Flowages and Fire"
We strive to achieve perfection, every shrub and flower in its assigned place, looking its best, and nothing else crowding things and making a mess, nothing interfering with appearances or first impressions.
Read more "Weeding"
And maybe it’s also all about learning to appreciate the things that aren’t morels – aren’t the most glamorous, desirable, well-publicized organisms out there, the stuff that’s often walked right past, crushed into the ground below our heels as we keep up a good pace to the morel patch, checking again today for first signs of disturbance in the thin leaf litter.
Read more "Before the Morels"
Catfish were simply the most likely fish that were in season, were probably waking now from winter semi-dormancy and could be found close to home. I knew the kinds of places one would set up for catfish on a typical summer night but these weren’t likely the right venues for tonight.
Read more "The Catfish of Affirmation"
Cross-posted from the blog at MarchOfLiberty.com. Early next week I’ll be looking out across the wide plains of the American West from the vantage point of the Continental Divide. Needless to say, it’s been a long walk to get here, to Kalispell, Montana, this morning, but there’s no other way I’d rather have seen the […]
Read more "Wide-Ranging Rewards on the Road"
The whole valley of Turtle Creek – my polluted little brook – is manifestly greener than it was a hundred years ago, a time when much of the surrounding hillsides would have been strip mines or tailing piles and the trees would have been almost all cut for firewood or simply to clear pasture land to feed cows and horses.
Read more "Gratuitous Nature"
During the months of coronavirus lockdown, I’ve been eating more from the wild. I haven’t been working as much, there have been shortages of things I want to eat and I simply won’t wear the mandatory mask to the grocery store. Things haven’t been dire though and I certainly haven’t gone hungry. I just did […]
Read more "Wealth is Good for Us and Our Environment"
Brook trout water remains a simple pleasure, as do the trout themselves. I could walk the mountain runs of the Alleghenies for days on end with no rod and remain content. Looking and knowing that the magical little fish are there is enough. I’ve been away too long. Too much pavement, too much […]
Read more "Simple Pleasures"
Life was good in Woods Dale. Springs fed the forested Appalachian valley, emanating from limestone aquifers that lay just a meter or two below the ample duff. Rain visited frequently as well, leaving sodden wood and leaves in its wake, drops falling with metronomic precision from living leaf tips to last year’s withering leaf blanket. […]
Read more "Parable"