Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Little Gem

Last week I returned to Little Lava Lake. This beautiful spot, high in the Cascades mountains was where I really learned a lot about fly fishing. And it's not really the lake, it's what happens there. Sitting under the shadow of Mt. Bachelor, a dormant volcano and Central Oregon ski destination, the mighty Deschutes River emerges from this lake as snowmelt from underground springs. The river literally begins as a small stream exiting the lake. About a quarter of a mile from this watery eruption the river, about the size of a large creek, flows through a small meadow. It is in this stunning spot where I have caught rainbow and brook trout, and now, this year a few Oregon Mountain Whitefish.
My day there this year was the latest I've ever been there. I usually go in July or August and once or twice in September. But never in October. Last week there were no mosquitos and very few people. The water was icy cold, but the beauty of the place, even on a cloudy day remains. This site has become a kind of cathedral for me. I always manage to see more wildlife there too. As usual, I saw osprey and deer. In years past I've seen a family of otters, a great blue heron and numerous ducks. While standing hip deep in the swirling waters, fish rising all around me, a Kingfisher perched nearby to check me out. Always something new. One of these days, and it better be sooner rather than later, I'm going to spend a week there. I'm going to spread out, sleep in, walk all over the place, downstream, float the lake, drink in the sunsets and sunrises. I'm going to get my fill of this place because I want to keep it with me forever. I only hope that it will last, in it's present form, for future generations.

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