March 11th, 2002

By James Castwell

Seems like I have been travlin' all my life. Searchin' and snooping into things to see what there might be for me. Time was, I took up camera stuff, got a 35 SLR and some do-dad's for it and set about taking pictures of all sorts of things. Inside, outside and what they call 'table-top' pictures. Got lucky and even sold a cover shot for a national fly fishing magazine. Sold that camera, upgraded it to a nice Nikon, sold that and ended up with a digital job which does all I need these days.

Photography does not have it for me, doesn't 'light my fire', so to speak.

There was a period in my life when archery looked promising and I jumped into that game too. Got kind of good at it, went into the target end so I could cleanly dispatch game when and if I found any. Found some, dispatched some, took some awards for target. Got out of it. Still got my bows tho. Lots of fine old memories, some not so fine, but, that's archery for ya.

So I have been on a journey, from one thing to another, always trying to learn something new. I found out a little about life in the process and it relates to fly fishing. In fact, they are pretty well linked as it is. It is not the traveling and the journey thru ones life (mine at least) that causes any problems. It's getting either detoured or coming to the end.

With the camera thing, for me it is just a means of capturing a moment in time for some use. I guess lots of folks get all wound up in the game, but not me. Archery was fun for a good number of years, but, it too came to an end. A fellow can get just so good and that's it. Maybe I should have taken up bowling or golf, but it's too late for that these days. Nope, I will stay with fly fishing, I don't seem to find an end to that.

I didn't start with fly fishing, like most of us, I started just fishin'. The biggest problem I had back then was, ' a whole worm, or a half.' Then it took off from there, and I am still trying to figure it out. Works for me.

I was lucky enough to move a few times and that allowed (more like forced) me to learn new things about it. Starting in Michigan, then to Montana and now out here west of Seattle, Washington has given me the chance to learn many aspects of the game. Matching the hatch was it in Michigan. Raising my insects in the basement, learning the names, taking their pictures, all helped me to enjoy fishing the Au Sable by Grayling.

Montana demanded bigger rods, longer lines and new flies. It was like learning all over and very enjoyable. The coast of the Pacific ocean was another thing all together. Yikes! Pitching a fly into the surf was a challenge, and I loved that too.

But, along the way I have often become 'side-tracked,' taking my eye off the ball, forgetting to take the time to go fishing. To smell the surf, watch the birds, to notice the tiny wild flowers; I spent too much time working, I still do. I know I need to get out more, I want to, but it just doesn't seem to happen. And now I spend my time working on this web site.

I will hit the 'Fish-In' this summer, perhaps a trip for bonefish (I hope) and some salmon here in the fall. There is some cutthroat fishing out here, and steelhead too, but I just don't get turned on by those things. Nope, it's dry fly for trout, the surf for salmon and sight-fishing for bones that I seem to have settled on. And that's alright I guess. It seems like there are so many fish, so much water, and so little time.

I suppose I am once again on a journey of sorts, this web site thing, and I still don't know what I want to do when I grow up either. I wonder where it will take me, and will I know when I get there? ~ James Castwell

Till next week, remember . . .

Keepest Thynne Baakast Upeth

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