I went this past weekend with the men from my Men’s Bible Study up to the mountains for a fishing trip. We stayed in a cabin owned by a friend of our Pastor’s. The cabin was at 10,000 feet up near the town of Jefferson (Colorado) in South Park. Friday we went up to Boreas Pass, I had never been there before, it was quite something. I got a one day pass to go fishing with the guys on Saturday. I’m not much of a fisherman anymore, I used to be but that was a long time ago.
As I said, we got up to Boreas Pass Friday afternoon, on the road up out of the town of Como (just off Hwy 285). We followed the road up to the high pass (11,467′ by my altimeter), crossing over the old railroad grade at several places along the way. I heard that the tracks are still there in places, they never (apparently) went back and pulled up the rails as they did on, for instance, the Rio Grande Southern (RGS – famous for the “Galloping Geese”). In Como, you can still see the old D,SP&PRR (Denver, South Park & Pacific Railroad) Roundhouse. I didn’t get any pictures of that, nor did we stop in Fairplay to see the fabulous railroad museum there. There’s always another day for that!
Up at the pass there is an old bunkhouse that is still kept up and rented out in the winter time as a ski lodge for cross country skiers. I got a pretty good picture of the Bunkhouse, and I did manage to get a good picture of the sign over the outhouse. =)
So, we had a great time, with fellowship and prayer, and time spent studying God’s word together. We fished too, and between the 7 of us we caught 1 fish! Is that something? It was a great time, fishing was secondary to our purpose for being there at least for me. When it all comes down to it, when you go fishing it doesn’t really matter whether or not you catch fish – you have fun anyhow!
A funny incident that happened Saturday: We decided at the last minute to take my Tahoe instead of Rick’s Suburban. He had just filled his tires with air, but forgot and left the valve stem extender in on one tire while driving back from the gas station to the church so the tire was pretty much flat when he got there. Oh well… It didn’t matter anyhow, I was prepared to drive my Tahoe anyway, I had just filled it with Ethanol. I thought the guys would mostly get a kick out of a car that runs on alcohol since 5 out of 7 of us are alcoholics who don’t drink any longer! So, we took the Tahoe instead, and it turned out to be fun since I had the canoe on top and we got to paddle around the lakes and try fishing from a boat.
My Tahoe has had this problem though that I’ve not been able to diagnose. The turn signals went a little crazy about 3 months ago, the lights have all been dim (except headlights), and the cruise control was not working properly, it was like there was a short in the system somewhere but I was unable to find it or diagnose it. I had checked every bulb, every fuse, all the relays and everything I could reach in order to try and track this problem down. Naturally, I had driven around with it like this for 3 months in Denver with never a policeman giving me a second look. But, in South Park, the first County Mountie that I passed (we never even saw him until he pulled us over) decided he didn’t like the fact that my brake lights did not appear to be working properly.
But, he says: “When you went around that corner back there, only your 3rd brake light was working, but when I pulled you over they were all working.” So, he did not give me a ticket. Those small town guys live for that kind of stuff on weekends, they have little else to do apparently. I explained to him how I had replaced the turn signal switch this past week (just 2 days before the trip!) because all the troubleshooting advice I had gotten pointed to that switch as being the problem (a $100 switch!). It was not the switch however. =( Anyhow, we thanked the officer, went on our way and 2 hours later the problem I’d had in this car for 3 months fixed itself! I kid you not – somehow or other, bouncing down the dirt roads fixed the problem. It must, therefore, have been a loose connection all along and I probably would never have found it unless I disconnected and reconnected every single connection in the brake light and turn signal and cruise control circuits! Can you beat that!
The sermon in that story, if there is one we decided is that God is great, and I should go fishing more often with my buddies.
It was a beautiful weekend, we saw lots of wildlife and South Park was decidedly the greenest any of us had ever seen! It’s been a very wet year here in Colorado and that made for some very unusual conditions (to say the least). The trees were all green too, and there was little, if any, evidence of Pine Beetles anywhere along Hwy 285 or anywhere else we visited. We made about a 110 mile circuit on Saturday, fishing first in Tarryall Reservoir, and then over to Antero Reservoir. Greg and I fished in Tarryall Creek for part of the day, we paddled the canoe about 1/2 mile up the creek. We saw a whole school of brookies or browns, we didn’t get close enough to definitively identify them, but we caught none of them either.
I haven’t lost my fly fishing technique, but the fish weren’t biting either. Sometimes you catch ’em, and sometimes you don’t. We didn’t get out very early Saturday morning either though. It was a great trip all the same. It’s good to get out there in God’s creation and go over things like Psalm 1, Psalm 19 and Psalm 119. We studied those all while out there and decided that worship is first and foremost above all else.
I think I got out with Dr. Tom for his first minor excursion in a Canoe. We were watching Antero carefully, the wind comes up there sometimes real bad (and suddenly!), but it appeared calm enough to launch the canoe and paddle around. So, we did, but then the wind comes up and is blowing like 12-15 knots (we had whitecaps all around us suddenly) and we turned around and paddled hard to get back to shore. I’ve paddled a lot worse than that, but I think Dr. Tom had never experienced that kind of conditions before, at least probably not in a canoe. It’s quite exciting really. It takes some hard work with the paddles to get back to shore when it’s like that. At least if you want to get back to where you started from, and not wind up on the far shore where the wind blows you! I could tell you plenty of stories about being blown around by the wind and storms I’ve seen in the ocean – let me tell you!
It was a worthy adventure.
God is great!