© 2011 Aaron Atkinson

Dude’s Weekend

Last weekend I ventured into the wild to camp and fish the trout streams of northeastern Iowa with my five best friends. As we pulled into camp late on Friday evening the night sky misted as we staked our tents. Despite the saturated timber and howling wind, we managed to set up camp and get a fire burning. Plumes of white smoke felt like fine grit sandpaper on our road weary eyes and even now if I breath deep, I can smell a tinge of camp smoke.

Sometime during the night, likely around 2 a.m. when the sound of the rain ceased to grate against the nylon tent, it began to freeze. By the time we rose from our shivery slumbers, three inches of wet snow weighed down our tents. Fortunately the fish cooperated better than the weather and the six of us hauled in 26 rainbow, brown and brooke trout from the bluff-banked streams.

On our second and last evening, we sat , bundled in all the clothes we’d thought to pack, around a raging fire. The wind howled at our fire-shaded backs but the glow of the flames and of the friendship kept us warm and wearily content. We laughed at each other’s jokes and at the misfortune of the weekend’s weather.

And in between mouthfuls of fire-roasted trout and panfried taters, Eddie, steam billowing from his mouth, announced, “We should do this every year.”

One Comment

  1. Posted April 26, 2011 at 11:51 am | #


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