Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Winter Adventure Reading


  With yet another torturous winter freeze hitting the eastern states we yet again find ourselves locked up waiting out the ice (that is unless you are lucky enough to have one of those deluxe ice shacks up in the UP or Minnesota.)  You could sit around an mope about the lack of fishing you have been forced to endure or you can make the time useful and begin to fill your box with flies for the up-coming spring thaw.
  With that encouragement and sage advice properly handed out I now have to admit that I can only stand so much reading up on fly patterns and fishing techniques before I loose all interest.  When I find that happening (usually about a month into winter) I turn my mind to an ever expanding library of real life adventures from a bygone era.  Back to a time when the world was much larger and tales of epic adventures and romantic tales from far off places drove men to do amazing things.
    Last year while on vacation down near Savanna GA I stopped off at a local used book store to scout out some good deals of coastal fishing books.  Besides stumbling on a nice find of a 1950's book of fly fishing techniques, I also managed to have the owner give me a good deal on this book that lay in a haphazard pile near the checkout desk.  Having loved sailing and anything nautical including intrigued with tales from the men that sailed the wide blue, I immediately took interest in this book.
    Many years ago I read the classic by Slocum 'Around The World Alone' and was instantly a fan.   With this book I find that Slocum has inspired men for generations.  In late September 1934 Dwight Long, barely past twenty years of age, set out to have his own adventure sailing the world in his boat - The Idle Hour.  If you can find this book, which might be very difficult giving its rarity, and you like the adventure style travel writing then pick it it up.  It will make you want to buy an old tub of a ship with seams that breath as freely as a sleeping baby and set sail for the south pacific.
    Another book I have been working on is one that will make you think twice about a hasty departure.  Ernest Shackleton's adventure (or more aptly named misadventure) is one of legendary survival.  For those that know a little about the story then you know its a story of human endurance and shear will to survive.  For those of you that only recall the name Shackleton from the price of whiskey (from the actual expedition) that sold at auction for millions - pick this book up and learn how a crate of whiskey ended up on a desolate rocky beach in the antarctic. It is one hell of a story (best enjoyed with a smooth malt served neat).
  With those selections I leave you to do a little reading and waiting for the snow to melt.

 Yes I know the sketch of a lounging woman in a swimsuit has nothing to do with fishing but maybe it will make you forget about the the temperature howling past your window at the moment.  Enjoy...


5 comments:

Swamp Yankee said...

10" of fresh powder in the morning here on the Ct. shoreline, A book and a hot coco sound great, too bad I gotta go drive 10 hours in this $#!*. Ever been to the Mystic Seaport? Maybe I will have a read of the newest Drake magazine on my break. Stay warm!

Joel D said...

Fresh powder wouldn't be a bad thing if you're going skiing but not for driving. Never been to mystic but have hit quite a few coastal New England towns. All very picturesque. Be safe.

Howard said...

Colorado has been cold, but can't complain about the snow so far. Good time for a good book!

Mark Kautz-Shoreman said...

At this point, I'd take rain. I've read several Shackleton adventures. All good stuff.

Joel D said...

Settle in Howard - we still have a few months of winter to go

Mark - I'd take 50 degree weather at this point