Sunday, June 10, 2007

Fishing San Pablo Reservoir

Epic day fishing San Pablo Reservoir with Gumbo, Maria and Bill. All out of power boats so we rented a row boat. The oars were mismatched, so rowing was somewhat lopsided, but we managed to row far anyway. Temperature varied between t-shirt and sweatshirt, but the wind played mellow, so no complaints, although Rocket got plenty sweaty in his lifevest. I let Bill pick the first spot, but after no bites for a good while I let me fishing intuition take control and rowed us to near where I caught a fish last time I was there. Bill professed doubt due to the depth of the water (14'), but Maria brought in a nice big trout after ~20 minutes, so I savored full vindication of my anchor spot choice. Once again the fish swallowed the hook and we made a big bloody flopping stinky mess trying to get it out, with no success, perfect eating size anyway, stringered that bad boy up and hung him off of one of the oar locks. I got all elated, Maria seemed less so, Bill was pretty happy, Gumbo became very interested. Then Bill became hard to convince that it was time to go, not wanting to get left out of the caught-a-fish club. After a reasonable time, in the interest of mitigating tired toddler behavior, I asked Maria to please pull up the anchor. My elation continued, but no one else seemed near as excited, which was slightly off-putting, but not everyone can feel just like me all the time.

As I had been expecting, Bill & Maria changed their mind about cleaning and eating the lovely trout by the time we got to the cars, so I got to take it home, where Gumbo and Robin watched with fascination while I removed the innards & such. I cooked it right away and we all ate some, but Gumbo ate only one of the eyes, after which he decided that he doesn't like fish eyes anymore. The eye from the cod must have been tastier. I myself have never eaten a fish eye and don't know what put the idea into his head to start with. Next time maybe I'll rig for sturgeon, and whatever I fish for I'll use a bigger hook so they don't be swallowing the thing, too bloody.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Finegold 2007

Memory jumps and skips spiralling outward in a zig-zag mental fall from grace. Just got back from camping in the Sierra Foothills east of Fresno. A little piece of paradise called Finegold, big orange dragonflies still buzz the back of my head, shoulders and forehead glow from too much sun. Frogs and rabbits came to me, imparted time-release knowledge I'll overstand someday. Rode my mountain bike to Crook Mountain, peered down at Millerton Lake at deepest dusk, flew down through the invisible dust drift curves which gripped my wheels with ferocity, almost throwing me once, imparting silent time-warp two-wheel drifts other times. Not a lot of smells out there, too dry, except near the creek. I mistook the bullfrog croaks there for horse brays, laughed about it later. The kids had a blast, although I did find little Gumba covered in large black ants once, and massive red welts cover the boy from who knows what type of critter. When we'd driven three quarters of the way home Gumbo asked "Can we go to Finegold?". Later, while getting him ready for bed I asked,

"So, which do you prefer, Burning Man or Finegold?"

"Finegold!" he answered, without hesitation.