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Rain Dances ....

Last night I fell asleep listening to the sound of rainfall on the roof over my bedroom. A week ago, I fell asleep listening to the sound of rain on my tent in the mountains of north-central Pennsylvania. The rain that fell a week ago was just enough to settle the dust on the dirt roads, but not enough to bring the much needed relief that our mountain streams so desperately need. Last night I said a quiet prayer for those little ribbons of water, hoping that the rain was falling there too. Fishing these streams in the autumn is often a spectacle; both in the shades of bright color found in the fall foliage, and in the even brighter tones found in the wild fish that swim in those cold waters. Last week’s trip was different than others in the past; and my time spent camping and exploring those thin blue lines felt more like a funeral for a friend than a fishing trip. Many of those streams were reduced to mere trickles of water and in some cases, stream beds that were completely dry. Some of the roads saw a steady parade of heavy trucks carrying fracking brine, supply water and residual waste from an energy extraction industry I remain highly skeptical and fearful of. I know all too well that nature is a mixture of extremes; from beauty and resilience to harshness and downright cruelty, with or without mankind adding to that struggle for survival. Pictured this week is a stream that is classified as a Class A Wild brook trout stream. Under the current drought conditions, there is barely enough water to keep a crayfish wet, let alone support a healthy population of wild brook or provide the conditions needed for successful spawning season. Say a little prayer for these waters and do a little rain dance for extra measure. Till next week ….


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