Faith

Fly fishing in New Mexico.

I was driving home the other morning from my son’s school, where a prospective head of school had fielded questions from an auditorium full of parents. One father had asked how the candidate would promote critical thinking in an environment so well known for its “indoctrination” of our nation’s youth. He seemed to accept this reality, yet expressed hope that debate would be encouraged on controversial topics. One of them, no surprise, was … Read more

Working to keep the Rio Grande cutthroat trout off the Endangered Species List

Extensive efforts in southern Colorado and Northern New Mexico to restore habitat for the Rio Grande cutthroat trout (RGCT) have been underway since at least 2003. State agencies, tribes, federal agencies and Trout Unlimited have cooperated to bring this species back to more of its historic range, applying expert knowledge and considerable experience to restore this important native species, which is also the state … Read more

Corridors paved with water

A view of the mountains in New Mexico.

When teaching guide clients how to read a stream, I stressed three basic conditions that dictate where a trout will hold: access to food, access to safety and access to shelter from energy-sapping currents. A healthy and stable abundance of any or all of these conditions affords trout the option of staying put, perhaps enabling … Read more

Our duty to comment on public lands plans

American’s have a birthright to federal public lands throughout the nation. Forests, rivers, grasslands and more offer exceptional recreational opportunities for each one of us, and we have a duty to speak up on how they are managed. In New Mexico, two large swaths of public lands are revisiting management strategies. The Carson and Santa … Read more

Small-stream tactics in the age of non-native invasives

Native Rio Grande cutthroat trout. Contrary to many conservation-minded anglers, I am one who believes that, along with cockroaches, coyotes and Siberian elm trees, brown trout will survive the apocalypse. They possess many of the traits we Americans admire most: they are intelligent, confident, adaptable, rugged, ambitious and breathtakingly handsome. And for the time being … Read more

Ranches

According to one stereotype, a rancher’s commitment to the lifestyle is mainly self-serving. The fences they build are as much to keep the public out as to detain resident wildlife (translation: elk) for the purpose of selling high-dollar hunting opportunities. When not dewatering streams, they restore and stock them for their own fishing pleasure and that of paying anglers in search of lunkers in a crowd-free … Read more

Four flies for spring

After another two feet of mountain snow in mid-May, I’m starting to wonder when fishing season will begin. I know, I know, there’s fishing right now. All one has to do is make peace with less fishable holding water that’s cold and muddy. Don’t wade too deep, fish big stuff, and keep your line tight enough to feel the … Read more