My old digital point and shoot camera took its last swim last week and while its sad to see it go, it definitely used its nine lives well. That camera was fully submerged in water on more than one occasion and always beat the odds and survived. Eventually the luck is bound to run out but for a piece of electronics it had unusual lasting power. At this point I can't even remember when I first got it although I suspect it was around 5 years ago meaning that I've had the camera throughout my entire death spiral into this addiction called steelhead angling. It was far from fancy, with only 4 mega pixels but it went some amazing places and always seemed to do justice to the light, color and beauty of a given moment. The camera was there for my first spey steelhead, spent a summer in the Hoh River Rainforest, another in Alaska. Needless to say its taken some pretty amazing photos over the last few years and it will be missed.
Here's a couple of favorites:
All this nostalgia for gear that has served me well over the years got me thinking about what else, if anything I own that has had that sort of lasting power. Certainly not any pair of waders or wading boots I've ever owned. The current pair of wading boots are only a year old but are literally disintegrating off my feet to the point that gravel can pour in the sides. So much for dropping $200 on a fancy pair of simms wading boots. If they're all gonna shit the bed within a year of purchase why not buy the cheap ones?
One product that I've always been completely satisfied with is the Airflo delta spey line I have on my 6/7/8 CND. The line is entering its fourth year of service, has fished literally hundreds of days in that time and has yet to crack, abraid or otherwise turn to a piece of crap. I've had other lines do that in 4 months. Not only is the line durable, but it's versatile, and buttery as hell. After fishing heavier tips all winter with a skagit compact, I've been fishing lighter tips and smaller flies to match the late spring conditions. Its always nice to put on the delta and launch some smooth single speys after a long winter of water anchored monotony. I love that line for light tip fishing and dryline, in fact I love it so much I just recently traded an extra skagit compact head I had sitting around for an 8/9 delta for my heavier rod. It casts just as sweet as the lighter version and should be ideal for bigger water, both dryline and sinktip fishing when conditions do not demand giant flies.
This weekend we're headed down to Amurica to pick up the sailboat and sail it back to Vancouver. Planning on dragging some flashers and hoochies behind the boat the whole way, figure odds are eventually it will run into some salmon. I know absolutely nothing about ocean salmon fishing but in talking to a friend who guides here in Vancouver it sounds like the fishing for feeder chinook has been pretty darn good of late. We'll have to see what we find.