Tuesday, May 6, 2014

No Service

Comfort and convenience permeate every area of our lives. Communication is instantaneous and a response always urgent. Information is at our fingertips, any topic, anytime – on demand. Fortunately there are still places where things aren't so easy. Places where hard work and experience trump search engines, where help isn't a phone call away, and where things are a little rough around the edges.

Last week a buddy and I traveled to such a place in rural Montana. A place that a Google search reveals little about. We were there to fish, and perhaps to disconnect for a few days. This was my second trip to the far-flung fishery and it was every bit as challenging as the first. We had brutal weather the entire time, the roads were rough, and the fishing was slow. But that is what I've come to expect from the place, and I wouldn't want it any other way – albeit less wind would have been nice. It’s not a river where you can expect to rack up 50 fish days, or even 20 fish days for that matter. A few trout to hand is a good day, and with a little luck one of those will be the type that isn't soon forgotten.    

Catch of the day.
The river is typically deserted. If you do run into other anglers, they’re generally the type that you’d be happy to share a campfire with. There are a couple of over-eager guides that bring clients to the river, but most guides are wise enough to keep the place for themselves.

Not another person or a paved road for miles.
There are no fly shops, no fishing lodges, and no shuttle services to call upon here. In fact there’s nothing to call upon, cell service is nearly non-existent. It’s a place where self-reliance is critical, and where you’re on your own to figure out the nuances of the fishery. It's a nice change of pace from the hype and industry surrounding the fisheries closer to home. It's becoming one of my favorite places to unplug and recharge - here's to hoping that you too have such a place. 

Our shuttle rig, the venerable Trail 90

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