15 August 2006

Fishing and Chainsaws

Jan & I took AJ over on the Jeff near Lewis & Clark caverns yesterday after he & Jan got out of school. We found a sunny spot for Jan to set up the picnic station, and AJ & I began fishing up a run. Wearing just hip boots, the kid is a fearless wader. No bites until we got to a nice pool. AJ's first cast into the pool brought him a 17" brown, second cast a 13" brown. Then it got a little slow for awhile and we caught some nice rainbows that we had to release. We decided to fish another 10 minutes and then head down to Jan for supper. AJ's last fish was a 21" brown of about 3 pounds. A whopper. His family will appreciate the meal. AJ caught his fish on worms cast upstream and retrieved dead drift, then allowed to swing down. It was his first time fishing a stream or river, and I think he's a natural.
I had not fished the Jeff for several years, and forgot how magical it could be in this window before it's blown out.
A friend is trying to talk me into taking the Forest Service chain saw course. I don't use mine much anymore, and I did take a chainsaw safety course in 1981 offered by the oil refinery where I worked. We burned a lot of wood in those years -- wonderful white and red and black oak, sugar maple, shagbark and pignut hickory, beech, and cherry. I had a trailer that was twice the size of the Rover. I knew some loggers growing up and when we moved back to Bradford; most of them had a horrible chainsaw scar or two. One guy was reaching up over his head limbing a tree, the saw kicked back, and the chain ripped his head open from above the hairline to just near one eye. He looked like Frankenstein's monster.
If you use a saw and don't already have one, get yourself a peavey -- it will save you a lot of work, keep your chain from dulling in soil & rock, and prove a safety benefit.

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