Ladyfisher

This Week's View

by Deanna Lee Birkholm

May 5th, 2003

Another Fish-In, Another Day



We returned a few hours ago from the Central Washington Fish-In, clear sailing literally since we drove onto the ferry coming home without the expected 2 ferry wait. Sunday dinner in Ellenburg on the way, so no cooking to do when we returned.

Food probably is something I at least should avoid for a few days. We had a potluck Saturday night at the Oasis Park in Ephrata. Everyone brought something, and there was enough good food to feed the town! All who attended should probably be looking for a copy of Dr. Atkins diet. Good food, great conversation, and the nicest group of fly fishers anyone could ask for. We missed some who didn't make it - but the 28 who were there fished, caught fish, tried out some rods they hadn't seen, tied some flies, and some got a little help with their casting.

As Linemender (Cary Morlan) mentioned on the Bulletin Board, when he and Steve Zweber (Z) thought this Fish-In up they had no idea how many people would come. They knew they had the fishery and a nice place to hold it, but everything else was a complete mystery. Congratulations guys, you did a terrific job! My husband, JC, and I were the only people not camping - we sold or gave away nearly all our camping gear when we moved to Washington in 1988. So we stayed at the Best Western Rama Inn a mile from the Oasis Park. I must say, the Rama Inn is a really nice place, with all the amenities one could require and reasonable rates. Highly recommended by us at least!

JC had fished Rocky Ford Creek twice with our friend Jim Sisson a couple of years ago, but they had not been aware of all the water available to the public there. They had fished at what is called the 'first parking lot' and had missed two more farther down the road. We fished Saturday and Sunday morning at the 'third parking lot' both up and downstream. Several of our FAOL folks caught very good rainbows...in the 20 inch and up category - including one of our younger Chat Room people, 'ffb,' who I think landed 3 in that size range. A tip of the FAOL to ffb's dad, Bob, who brought his son to this event - and caught some fish himself! This camping trip is something they will relive years to come. It's more special than you might think - Bob was not an angler before.

James Martinez (SpanFly) was there with his wife Julie and their 2 sons. James caught his first fish ever on a fly rod this trip. (And it wasn't his only one!) Some of the group had float tubes or pontoon boats and hit a couple of the local lakes for trout and panfish too.

The award (there really isn't one) for who came the farthest is split between MikeMT from Kalispell, Montana and Webfoot from Glide, Oregon. Long haul for both - and having them attend was a big plus for everyone.

There were a lot of photos taken, some were probably even emailed to me when folks returned home. However, my computer refused to play when I got home (actually I think it is pouting since it wasn't used for 3 whole days, and our tecky folks were unable to get it back up on line despite some help on the phone, so it goes back to the shop Monday morning. ) To make it worse, JC has a new hard-drive and it appears the software for transferring images from his camera wasn't installed, so we couldn't upload the ones he took. Stay tuned, we will get photos up. I'll probably do a Central Washington Fish-In page so everyone can see what a great time it was.

I'm trying to remember if I ever saw a city park with the kind of facilities of the Oasis Park. The City of Ephrata owns and operates it, with campground, swimming pool, fishing pond, store and golf course! The campsites were nicely laid out and the manager Patti was very helpful. The FAOL folks were all in the same area and could visit back and forth. Great planning!

Like all of the FAOL Fish-Ins, this was yet another opportunity to meet folks, put faces on names and share the connection we all have as fly fishers. The common bond and the frame of reference allows almost instant friendships. What a terrific thing.

Our thanks to all who came and shared their time and experiences with us. Cary and Steve are looking at a date for a repeat next year! Check the Fish-In page for dates on it. This one lives!

Great job guys! You make FAOL look good! ~ The LadyFisher

If you would like to comment on this or any other article please feel free to post your views on the FAOL Bulletin Board!

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