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  • Our summer vacations were always spent camping. For some that may sound like cruel and unusual punishment – sleeping in a tent, wearing garbage bags when it rained, and no theme parks! But you would never hear a complaint from us. We loved it! Swimming in the pristine crystal clear streams of Missouri, sitting around the campfire at night, and getting up as the sun was rising only to look forward to another great day. Our favorite camping spot was Current River Resort later to become Pulltite. It consisted of 24 campsites all along the Current River in southern Missouri.

    As I reflect back, I think I was the one that benefited most from our camping trips. This is because our Dad would rent a canoe for the entire time we were camping – usually a week. Which meant my older brother Jon and I could pretty much have the run of the river as long as we went upstream, and upstream we went. This is where I learned to fly fish. Jon and I would wade with the canoe upstream through the rapids and once we hit the calmer waters get in and paddle further upstream repeating the process at each set of rapids until we were upstream far enough to drift for a while. Jon would be in the back with a paddle holding us in position and I would be standing up front with my fly rod and poppin’ bugs. I would flip one of my poppin’ bugs out and watch as blue gill would rise to look, back off a bit and the lunge forward striking my lure. Blue gill put up quite a fight on the end of a fly rod. What joy it was.

    That was before we got older and married and had our own lives and families. As time went by I was able to progress on to better equipment, started tying my own flies, and began fishing with some of my buddies. But almost every time I tie on a fly and roll cast out for trout I think of those long gone days that we would be the best fishermen ever. We are still close, but unforunately, we don’t get the opportunity to hop in a canoe and drift away.

    Thanks Jon for all the great fishing we did!
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