If you're a stillwater fly guy up here in north-central Alberta, you get good fishing weather for five months with two months (April & October) of hit and miss. The lakes are covered with ice for the remaining months and if ice fishing ain't your thing then you spend a lot of time tying flies, surfing the web and dreaming about summer. So now that summer's here, why am I not fishing?
I got out with my buddy Brent last Saturday evening and fished Star Lake from about 5:30-10:30 (we could have actually fished past 11 as there was enough light from the setting sun to tie a fly on but Brent doesn't like loading his boat on the trailer in the dark (wussy). Anyway, I took my camera with me but didn't take any pics as we couldn't find any lunkers at all. Caught lots of stockers from both this year and last but ol' Walter didn't want to come out and play so I didn't bother snapping any shots. I had planned on fishing Monday and then maybe tonight but the weather we're getting is all messed up. These evening storms are really messing up my fishing and they just keep coming. Today we've had these cold fronts moving over one after another. Just when it clears up and the sun starts shining, another front moves in and the wind is gusting to somewhere around 50km/hr. The sun just disappeared behind some low hanging, black clouds as I write this and I would go take a few pics just to get the point across but ya, I'm to lazy. So I've put my time towards other useful things this past week.
My niece had been living with us for the last two years. She went back and finished high school, graduating this year and has now decided to move out and back in with her mother. Her leaving has left me with an empty bedroom which I decided to now make into a den. I've moved in a desk and my tying vise, a 20" TV/VCR combo and a DVD player for my tying/fishing videos (and of course my war movies... Platoon, Hamburger Hill, Full Metal Jacket, The Big Red One, We Were Soldiers, Saving Private Ryan, etc, etc, etc). I've finally got up some pictures that the wife wouldn't let me hang in any other locations of our house (signed Bobby Hull, Oilers run at the cup collage, Gretzky photo, fly-fishing and golf pics, etc). It's starting to look like a "Man Cave" but I need more. It's definitely missing something so if you have any ideas, please let me know. To the right is a photo of my niece Chantell in her graduation dress.
On Wednesday evening, my daughter Cassandra and I went to check out a volunteer seminar put on by St. John Ambulance. Since I decided not to head up to a camp working as an EMR (three weeks in, one week out) I decided to voluntarily use my training to help others as I'm still very interested in this field. I found out that to be a Medical First Responder, you must first have a Basic First Aid certificate which I already had because I needed it to take my EMR schooling. And you must also obtain a Medical First Responder certificate. Because I have my EMR certificate, I get an MFR certificate automatically but my daughter wants to join as well so I told her I'd take the MFR course with her. The course is 40 hrs long and is paid by St. John Ambulance but they don't pay for the basic first aid course which my daughter will also have to take. They don't supply uniforms but they do expect you to dress in black pants and shoes and a white shirt. Over this you wear a really bright yellow with green vest that says St. Johns Ambulance which they do provide. The cool thing about it is not only do you get to give back to your community but you get to go to all sorts of festivals, concerts, hockey games, etc. all for free. There are two catches though, you must attend at least one meeting a month and you must put in 60 hours of volunteer time per year. Hell, I could put in 60 hrs at hockey games easily. I'm really excited about this and the fact that my 18 year old wants to do it with me makes it even better. To the left is my daughter Cassandra in her graduation dress and she too is in the Class Of '08.
I always work late on Fridays and I have a client on Saturday so it looks like Sunday is my fishing day. Wow, over a week without wetting a line. Not the summer I dreamed about so far.