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Yet another letdown...

...for the 3 people that have been oh-(not)-so-patiently waiting for me to complete the Dear Joe series....

Another obsession has returned over the past 6-8 months. Faire de l'alpinisme. Not that I need another time-drain, but at least it's motivation to be less fat-and-lazy. The mountains' call is strong. While we're on the topic, check this out:

Top 5 NE Long Distance Day Hikes

Math may be off a little on some of them. Great range is tentatively scheduled for 2012. Burroughs might even be doable this year. Presi and Devils are on the agenda...not sure yet about Pemi.

Here's my ideal option (either direction works) for the Great Range (minus the Ore Bed Brook side-trip...hopefully won't have to leave the range just for water). Logistics may end up requiring a more traditional route (longer approach or return leg) but there's still about 17 months to figure it all out. Evidence that I've thought way too much about this already.

Piggers, or, Dear Joe Part V: HOT DAMN!

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Fortunately, I have had (barely enough) time to get back to what's impo'tant...wasting my lunch break on the internets. Sorry for the delay. 6:01 PM, Thursday November 18, 2010 Dear Joe, It's official...the mojo is back. I was really worried. See...my last...oh...5 or 6 days on the salmon...the ol' fishin hat hasn't brought me luck. Zippo. It's times like that can really make you lose heart. Nothing is harder to part with than a favorite hat. Well...except in your case...anything that requires you to miss out on epic fishing trips is tougher to part with...but this isn't about you, it's about my awesome hat. She did her job today though so looks like I don't have to retire her just yet. Despite another freezing gale, today we perservered, and were rewarded. Several fish landed. Photo'd only one (see attached). She's a beaut though. No doubt. I got a couple browns up top too, one buck almost as big as the hen steelie! Wasn't a ton of activit…

Not Regularly Scheduled Programming

Morgan Lyle provides a primer on the what and why of 2-handing it in yesterday's Gazette. Unfortunately, you need a subscription to read it. Fortunately for me, a coworker brought in the article.

Oh, and apparently, Alex is tying at the next Clearwater TU meeting. I've really gotta start showing up to these things; already missed plenty of awesome tiers.

(y)ear to (y)ear

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Gas in Troy (4 AM; shop closed): $3.27 Gas on the Thruway (4:30 AM): $3.31 Gas off Exit 31 (6 AM): $3.29 Gas in Pulaski (11:30 AM): $3.15 (?) Gas in my waders (always): Free A December 31st, 2010, 3-hour drive home, grinning like a fool...Priceless.


Happy New Year from Ole Sal Trutta. He mentioned something about the taste of rabbit fur too, but I didn't catch it all on account of the new piercing interfering with his speech. The "holidays" now over, we shall be returning to our regularly scheduled programming any day now. So, Nate, um...quityerbitchen.

Travel Day, or, Dear Joe V: OUCH

3:22 PM, Wednesday November 17, 2010

Dear Joe,

I almost died today.

Twice.

First it was the suicidal doe as we were making our way to 390 this morning. I swear sparks were flying off her hooves when she realized she better get moving if she didn't wanna become a hood ornament. Seriously the closest near-miss I've had with a deer.

Made it to the Salmon OK in the end. 'Course severe winds and driving rain made the short afternoon a little less than pleasant. At least it made the dunking I received crossing back over the river a little less annoying. Tell you what though, did a number on my knee and shin. First legit fall I've had and it was a good one; if the water was a little deeper, probably wouldn't be as sore now. Camera's probably out of commission for a couple days and seriously shortened the life of my brand-new Goretex waist-highs. Rod's OK though, that's all that matters.

Did have a bump today but nobody landed anything. We're headed to You Guy…

Salvaged, or, Dear Joe IV: Free-Range Balogna

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9:12 PM, Tuesday November 16, 2010

Dear Joe,

"Down at Oak Orchard Fly Shop, we don't F* around!"

Hahaha. I'll never forget those words (though that's only my best effort to reconstruct from memory what was actually said).

We stopped by the shop last night. Managed to bash my brains in on the car and prompt a laugh-fest doing so, but that's another story. Anyway, we were regaled with tips, tactics and theory in bombastic fashion and no uncertain terms. Seriously, the man was cool, helpful, and entertaining. Hooked us up with some stickers too. I grabbed some sweet speys (Gold Heron, Lady C...no, not that C).

Anyway, the place we ended up today, he had "joked" about a placemarker-shop that sold "free-range bologne." Weren't sure we were on the right track this morning until we actually saw a sign for "All Natural Free Range Bologna." Ain't that some shi.

Long story short, we got into some decent fish. Had at least 6 grabs, landed…