(This blog article includes pictures taken by P. F., perhaps with or without his consent, just keep that in mind..)
Tattoos. The trip started with tattoos. Sounds weird but it’s a thing and it would be more of thing if it weren’t for weather. My main SF tattoo artist (IG: @jacobsenart) moved up to Seattle a while ago, a major bummer because while he did awesome work for cheap having to fly up got expensive. Well I had to get that way for a second session on my second arm so why not see all my friends in the city that’s basically Santa Clara 2.0
My goal (as always) was to convince everyone I could into some terrifying climbing goals that might or might not kill us or otherwise provide great shots. Obviously that doesn’t jive with everyone, and it didn’t end up happening with this trip for 2 big reasons: 1) it rained the WHOLE time and 2) I was recovering from a big tattoo which isn’t great for those kind of adventures (I learned that dumb lesson by getting a tattoo and immediately going into the desert for some months, which caused all the ink to fall out and become an even worse tattoo than it was).
I don’t care how much all my friends tell me the PNW is great, it sucks. We showed up and the forecast called for like 12 days of rain. “No dude, when it’s nice it’s really nice!” yeah but it’s really never great. So I spent some time in Seattle getting ink pushed into my flesh then we tried to avoid all the rain by getting out to the East Side of the mountains. Fly fishing? Sure I had no experience of what it was like but it is in the Patagonia catalogue of sports so might as do it! Turns out it was great.
Having no experience in a sport is great, I got to follow Pat around learning about where to look, what to imagine, and how’d they’d find the really special spots. Years before I’d served the same role for climbing, learning it myself then taking all my friends to do it! You spend all this time teaching yourself then when you get to share it becomes real, really real, and all these weird conversations you had in your head become real memories. I highly recommend everyone give up everything they ever did in their life ever 2 years and take up entirely new stuff, it will keep you so young.
So we drove all around the east desert finding different river bends before it was time to try fly fishing. To be honest I was pretty much just posing, trying to get some good pics, and that I did. But once I tried to actually fish I figured out how meditative it was, there’s something extra special about the whole experience you get into a flow like no other sport. You get the flow climbing, skiing, running, and in all kinds of other sports, but this was the most meditative easy beautiful and calming sport I’d done. Having put a lot of time and effort into meditation recently, fly fishing was the closest thing I found to it.