Eastern Sierras Good for MS



Just the thought of returning to the Eastern Sierras in a couple of weeks is rejuvenating on this hot Monday morning...

At 8,500' the cabin is visited by cooler temperatures, a great benefit for those with MS. The cool, 40-50 degree nights are perfect for this girl, with days hovering the 70s. With windows open through the night, fresh air breezing through and the rushing ripples of the creek below some much needed restful sleep was had.

And the location next to Bishop Creek is ideal as the growing waters carry trout from the high country. An excerpt from my diary of my last trip:


Knowing that the heat of the day wouldn't exceed my personal max of 80 Fahrenheit, I packed my bag and set out for the day. Today was special. We are heading to North Lake at 9,500'. The girls are going hiking. I'm fishing and photographing.

  • Fly rod
  • Camera
  • Lunch
  • Beer
  • Leather man
  • Simple first aid
  • Water

Roads less traveled, as a dear old friend would say. Eyes open, senses alert, time to absorb it all. For the first time in years I was off on my own, to do what I wanted, fish where I wanted, everything according to me. And why not?

The girls headed to the trail head, I followed. We were north of the lake by a parking lot or so. Bishop creek feeds into North Lake and we were walking along this tributary. There was no one fishing in there. Lots of fresh water steaming down, lots of overhang, brush, a natural spot for trout.

We had driven by the lake and the swarms of folks fishing, bait and spinning rods from the shore to fly fisherman making good use of their waders. And here I was. Fly gear in hand with lightweight pants and river sandals. The lake didn't even looking appealing and there were options.

I helped a couple of men with a photograph of their winnings, a stringer of 12" trout, caught on "garlic scented PowerBait". They never have had luck with flies. They came from the lake. I headed the other way.

Trying to stay calm on the stroll back was most difficult. Will the spot actually still be available? What was I missing? It looked perfect...

Hmmmm. No one there. Knowing the fish were flighty from my first stroll by, I proceeded to come up with a game plan. Simple enough, leave my bag behind and have everything ready to go with one simple cast. Rod, leader, tippet and fly ready to go.

Mosquitos were hatching, no doubt. My rig was set up with a "Parachute Adams" fly that I actually tied some 20 years ago with a friend. A pulled it all together and made a visual of my route. Walk to that point where the fly will be cast carefully, due to the many trees and bushes, to catch the current by this small overhang....

The fly landed and I let out a quiet gasp. My line had a small coil. The fly drifted down and a larger trout came at it aggressively, saw the coil and darted away. The line uncoiled as the fly drifted gently around a small bend when wham! Fish on. Not big but not here for size. Stripping line I gently pulled the little guy in.

I took his picture and let the barbless hook slip out of his mouth as he darted back to shelter. Wild brown trout. On a dry fly. In Gods country.

Enjoying this beautiful moment, I thanked God and praised the surrounding nature.

Feeling content I exchanged my rod for my camera and went for a walk. The fish were spooked in my little hole so best to let them rest for a bit. I will be back.

Walking back toward the lake was an exploration in visual beauty. The marshy meadows from snow melt creating a green canvas for the wild flowers going off. As the creek ran south toward the lake it picked up in size eventually flowing into a reedy fence some eight feet deep in places.

The fly fisherman were wading across the way taking advantage of the wind. I watched for awhile and a family of ducks bobbed by. The chatter from some bait fisherman came around the bend. Basically I was alone.

Alone and disgusted at the trash left behind. I had a small plastic bag and started to fill it up with cigarette buds, coffee cups and more. I never saw the fly fisherman bring anything up. I could hear them talking though. I think they liked the sound of their own voices.

Time to wander back to my hole.

Camera put away, just my bag on my back and eyes to see with. The hole was still open! Wow. Feeling blessed.

Again I leave my bag just beyond so the fish don't see me moving. I walk in and careful not to move abruptly, find a comfortable stance to watch the wild trout feed. Amazing! With water so clear you can see their eyes, the behavior of the wild trout was fascinating. Aggressive and protective. Two great traits for wildlife to survive. Two great traits for MSers to thrive and survive as well.

Time for lunch. Unwrapping my bandanna finds an apple, some cheese, nuts, banana and Sierra Nevada pale ale. All is good in the world. All is good!


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