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Lake Lenise
posted by John : May 3, 2013

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Grandma Soltys, my last surviving grandparent, passed away. She was ready and I think she was happy when the time came. She was 94.

It was my father's mother so he made the long trip back to New York for the funeral. When he returned we decided to spend some quality time together without kids, like it used to be.

And since I grew up fishing (we only hiked when you had to hike to get somewhere to go fishing) we returned to Lake Lenise. I don't remember too many trips there. My fishing memories are more focused in Montana, Alaska, and Kiritimati (Christmas) Island. Dad, though, says Lenise is where he pretty much taught me to fish by paddling around in a raft while I trolled.

In preparation for the trip, I had patched by bellyboat, cleaned out my fishing vest, and even put a new leader together. Yeah, I know how to do all those things. I don't fish as much as I used to because (a) taking the kids fishing is harder than hiking and (b) dogs can't fish. However, the kids are getting more interested and older so maybe this will become more regular.

After a short hike through the "desert" of Eastern Washington in 80F weather (it was raining on the west side of the mountains!) we were in the water. Immediately, I was losing air. So much for my patch job. Back to the car for the pump and a roll of duct tape. (Don't tell me you don't carry duct tape everywhere, too. That's criminally negligent.)

Back in the water we trolled with various flies and lamented the slow day. Nobody was doing really well so it wasn't insulting to not be getting fish left and right. Dad picked up a couple and even I got one. We wrapped it up after a couple of hours and a half dozen fish.

Throughout the day, Dad and I talked about Grandma. It was clear Dad was feeling old though it's unclear exactly why, since I'm the one that's scheduled for a mid-life crisis. Nonetheless, it was a great chance to reconnect and reawaken my interest in fishing.

And I'm not the only one that got something out of the trip. Dad learned that Frapaccinos taste GREAT.

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