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27 July 2008

Vacation 2008 Notes: Day 2 (part I)

Tuesday, 8 July

Dad and I bought Idaho fishing licenses on Monday. Our plan was to get up bright and early and try our luck at one of the rivers we had passed.

Our first stop was Henry's Lake Outlet. Dad got out and started fishing upstream from me. It seemed like the kind of water that would be good for trout, but I didn't get any strikes after 10 minutes or so. I blame that on Dad being upstream. I got out and moved a bit further up than him and realized that the ground was quite soft and marshy where I was. At that point I made the decision to go amphibious on the fish. In the water, but still no luck. The water was significantly warmer than I expected. We decided to cut our losses after 30 minutes. (Dad got snagged right away and spent a good chunk of time attaching a new lure, and I don't think he appreciated the marshy spots either--he didn't want to get his tennis shoes wet or something.)

Our next stop was Henry's Fork of the Snake River, about 4 miles down from its origin at Big Springs. The river was surprisingly wide and shallow, and quite still. It was clear that we would spook more fish than we caught here. Plus, being at Mack's Inn, we could probably expect canoes, kayaks and the like to start appearing at any time. The temperature differential between Henry's Fork and Henry's Lake Outlet amazed me. Henry's Fork was cold enough that my bare skin could hardly tolerate it.

On to the Buffalo River. We saw it on the map, but did not know much about it. When we got there we realized it was similar to Henry's Fork. Wide, slow and still--and cold too. I had already lost the mood to fish, and snapped this picture instead.

Disappointed, I realized that hubris had prevented me from asking a local (these were had to find anyway) where I would have the best luck fishing.

There were a few places on the highway that Dad wanted to go back to: a field of yellow asters and an eagles nest. We found them and enjoyed taking pictures (dad) and watching the eagle for a bit.

When I got home (before 8) the kids were up, which surprised me. I was counting on them to sleep in after staying up so late the night before. No doubt, Nicole held the same hopes.

I had promised to take the boys fishing that day. It was imperative that I make good on that promise in order to maintain the delicate peace that exists between parents and children on long vacations. A disappointment would doom us for the day. Likewise, if we did not get the fishing obligation covered early on, we would hear about it all day, so much that we probably wouldn't be in the mood when the time came. The plan was to head to Henry's Lake, where all the brochures assured us that the fish would come easy.

Only they didn't mention the wind. The boys, overwhelmed that they actually had the opportunity to fish, promptly forgot that they had been nagging me about it the last n days and commenced to throwing rocks in the water. Alyssa, to her credit, actually touched her fishing pole, even though it never had a hook on it and never made it into the water. She thought she was fishing just the same.

Editor's Note: It has taken me roughly one week to write this post. I'm going to publish it now as Part I and start writing up Part II. Maybe it will get published next Sunday.