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When it comes to fishing, guarantee not to make promises
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Making lists is the first step in missing the point, because it only increases the chances of looking back, judging based on check marks and failing to realize that life had its own plan and it would have been pretty great if you wouldn’t have been so preoccupied.

Same goes for results.

My buddy Klinger found a set of limestone falls with deep pools filled with fat cutthroat trout. I’d like to go there and catch some, unless Klinger wises all of them up to the fact that dudes are tricking them with fake food.

So it is with caution I have created a mental agenda for this summer with respect to where I want to fish, what I want to see, and also what I want to show the trio of cheechakos that will be visiting in July.

I’ve been instructed by the wives of those friends that are making their first trip, to keep them out of the stomachs of black bear.

This is my baseline goal.

I don’t even want to promise fish, because sometimes it doesn’t happen, and I can’t promise no bears, because the 3G coverage is spotty at best, and even if it was great, I’m not sure the carnivores would care about what I had to tell them.

I can say I have returned all nine people that have visited me to their Lower 48 homes intact, though Becker did go back to Virginia with a chunk of the back of his neck missing. For the record it was from a fall on a branch rather than a bear and we laughed, well, I did.

So I can’t promise absolute safety, though I do adhere to strict personal guidelines when afield.

I do know I will catch fish, but don’t want to get them too focused on stats, because as coaches, they know how dangerous and detrimental that is to the overall experience.

No one takes official life stats. If you think you need them for validation you’ll never find it, and if you start making outlandish guarantees or promises, that’s when the icebergs show up.

 If I planned something like catching a fish in every state and province until I reached the piles of hemlock and cedar my mom has waiting for me to chop, I might feel unnecessarily better than someone without the means to fish rivers that habitually pop up in popular fishing magazines.

Similarly, if I planned a trout in every river, and didn’t catch one, I might think there is something missing in my life though I am employed, have friends, a loving family, and am of relatively sound mental health. I’m also able to have one heck of a good time doing what I love to do every summer while I digest the hectic school year. If anything this is more of a testament to getting a college degree and a job with health benefits and more than 10 vacation days per year, than actually poking a foreign river itself.

Seriously, with all that’s going on who cares about the difference between a Rogue River cutthroat and a Skeena River rainbow?

So to my buddies ready to trace in the steps of the 1898 Gold Seekers (with the benefit of a few technological breakthroughs of course), I can’t promise you anything except for some trees and a lot of water.

But, I do think you’ll like it.

To contact Jeff Lund, e-mail