Tuesday, November 27, 2012


If anybody thinks me and Team X aren't serious about this fishing deal just check out the box at the right of this photo, how many people do you know that take 800 fish hooks to Mexico? But with this post I want to do a primer on what's important to have stowed away in your luggage...One of my favorite blogging techniques, a list...
1. Krocodile lures in 1 /12 to 2 1/2 ounce. If you could have only one lure to take to Alaska it would have to be the Pixie, same with the Krocs and Mexico surf fishing.

2. Celery Salt . I know they have it there...but try to find it. The perfect Bloody Mary - Medium glass of Herdez brand (Clamato) or (kermato) , a dash of Maggi ( stout Mexican Worcestershire) , a dolup of creamy horseradish, a sprinkle of Tajin spice and a good sprinkle of celery salt...float in an ounce of Jimador Blanco  Tequila and stir it with a celery stalk...walla......

3. Horseradish...you're going to need that for your Shrimp cocktail sauce as well.

4. Licorice...if you're like me and enjoy an occasional licorice binge you gotta bring your own, its not there. You can get red vines....BUT that AIN'T  licorice.

5. Shore Lunch fish batter...my friend Keith Holtan turned me onto this stuff years ago. So for a guy who eats and catches more fish than a seagull its essential. Of all the batter mixes out there, Mexican, American, Paul Prudomme to Emirel Lagasse, that stuff from Minnesota is the best. Period.

6. Maui Babe...If you want a dark tan, that's the undisputed winning product. I don't know how it works, hey, it might even have paint in it but I don't care. My friend Mike Sheets from Ketchikan Alaska lead me to the Maui Babe. After 3 days in Mazatlan Mike looks like Aristotle Onassis.

7. Pedometer...Thats MP's department. But its nice to know when you get that 10,000 steps in so you can stop walking, be guilt free and have a Pacifico.

8. Old Bay....peel and eat boiled camarones.

9. Books....ya gotta have some 'start up' trading material.  This year my friend Dick Hahn sent me Joe Mckinnes book about Alaska,  Going To Extremes .  So I have that and 3 other non-fictions. I don't read novels much as I kinda feel like I wasted my college days so now when I read I want to learn. Right now I'm reading Jon Mechums book about Thomas Jefferson, The Art of Power.

10. Warm clothes... I know that sounds strange but we've been stuck down there before without a polar fleece hoody when it gets into the 40's and 30's at night, and try to find one down there....One year I told my friend Daniel Lizzaraga who sells hats on the beach that if he could find a gross of electric blankets he could set himself up for retirement....brrrrrrr......ooops don't complain about the cold Jeff, its only 5,127 miles from Soldotna....

Well that's kind of a start. If any of you are going to Mexico and need counsel on what to take just holler...I'm pretty good at it. I'm starting to pack now and trust me, I won't forget the pic of jet-dog for the refrigerator.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Punkin Chunkin

That's the darnest thing I've ever seen.  This morning I got asking around the gym who might have seen it yesterday and nobody did and the amazing part is that it was on at the same time as the Jets 92-14 loss to the Patriots.mmmmm. I guess maybe the only ones who saw it was us and our Northern family, Bob , Melonie and Jed, who are expert at finding the unusual and quirky in Fairbanks Alaska, the town on the edge of nowhere.
Now that's my kind of guy....anybody out there that might think this ol US of A is falling behind the world in technology of even desire needs to see Punkin Chunkin 2013. Trust me, if we got people out there that will design a tool to throw a pumpkin 3 to 4000 feet, and for free, well, I think America is doing just fine. Stumbling across this on thanksgiving day in a weird way kinda rekindled my patriotism....we're an incredible country, that's all I can say. They had all kinds of devices from catapults to air cannons but my favorite was the Centifigal Force class.....man when they wind those babies up that pumkin is in for a ride.
So for me and Mpeasy....its a new T-day tradition...Nice food, a game of Scrabble, a walk on the river, a couple home made songs and Chunkin Punkin....I highly recommend it.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Keeping Track

You know how I like lists. Every fishing season in my gear shed / sauna / world headquarters I post a list of goals for the year. It helps me bare down on my job and reminds me what I'm all about.  I think just having goals is really as important or maybe even more important than achieving them, its what I know about life, you've got to keep moving forward, its the only direction. This year my list was short and sweet, lets see how we did....
1. I really need one of these babies to go on the wall with my other very cool fish. Ernie catches them, of course Slah catches them, I've see Jason catch them...and I can't. Well this year I'm locked and loaded , I've got Mirro Lures, I've got swim baits and I know where to go, so we'll see.

2. I think I deserve a half check for this. I never actually biked the entire loop (Kenai-Slowdotna via spur highway then K-beach) but I biked the equivalent 25 miles many times.

3. For two years now I've been working on a song who's title is She gave me luggage for Christmas (and I didn't know I was going anywhere). This year I've added a few songs to my repertoire but I just can't get that darn thing so I'm happy with it. Writing songs is the toughest unimportant thing in the world.

4. I'm kinda high strung. But age has this way of mellowing us out so this one I get a check for. Its a no brainer, this just happens to you. Years ago I used to hear people say "man I gotta mellow out".....I always thought this was kind like wanting to be senile. But now I know....if you're like me all you gotta do is live long enough to get perspective, and you'll calm down...

5. Years ago my loved ones coerced us into buying a timeshare  from them because they new then about timeshares what I know now....know what I mean?.  But the good news is we had a week expiring so we're off to Maz, you know what I always say about a party, come early, stay late.

6. Yikes....theres some things a guy shouldn't joke about. I apologise if I've created bad moe-joe with an attempt at humor. I don't really want to catch the last salmon and I don't want you to either.
Subtract 2 checks for this deal, I deserve it.

7. If you ever see me running around without my front teeth again its because I got to weighing less than MP.  I started my fall training season on Sept. 18th at 203 pounds. This weekend I hit 189. So I think this check is a done deal. For the first time since I started my new life in the gym 10 years ago I'm weighing less than 190 pounds. Cool man.....with a little encouragement I could post a picture ya know...

8. You're talking to a guy who's only mowed the lawn once or twice in his life. Truth be known its one of MP's favorite things, executing the grass, so why would I deprive her? But his year she went to Moooontana and I had to get it done. The mower is self propelled but holy moly, that baby's fast....MP had to tell me about the variable speed control bar....well after I was all lathered up like an old 1/4 horse.

9. Now that last one my business partner / counselor and common sense meister put on there. I don't know why she thinks I'm irresponsible with money but she does. Like Woody used to say " I must have money, they keep sending me checks".

I'll end this edition of the life and times of a fit and calm but frustrated song writer who really wants the salmon forever with a pic of the river, of course....that's why we call it Mile 14.  Yesterday at about noon it was 10 degrees when I heard a boat. We didn't get a pic but sure enough as Geno would say, an I.B.R.B. (itty bitty rubber boat) ran buy...how and especially WHY I don't know. But he was dodging those ice chunks and his buddy in the front was hunkered down trying to avoid frostbite....wouldn't it be better to just watch the Bronco game like everyone else?
So happy thanksgiving to all of you that come to Mile 14 for a rest from the world. Me and MP have a lot to be thankful for....and we hope you do to.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Just Us

In my thousands of hours on the Kenai River I should know to never be surprised by its beauty. I've told people for years that its a living thing, always changing, new every day. So last night at sundown, 4:30 for us but two hours  later for the rest of the world we went down to the launch for a sauna. It was the perfect mix of elements, snow falling, light fading and the tide was up making for a lake like stillness, wow.
Even though Mile 14 is on the edge of town, its eerie quiet...all the folks from the summer homes across the river are gone. Kenai Riverbend across and down from us is winterized, the fish are over so the Eagles are slowly but surely looking elsewhere, I suppose the seals to have moved on south a bit looking....its just us.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Snow Story

When it snows, we know....Just how much wildlife there is here at Mile 14. Its one of me and MP's favorite things, to go out after the fresh snow and sleuth out all the fresh tracks of who's around. MP has this wonderful way of thinking it the same animals all the time and that they live with us rather than migrate through.
The coyote has to be the hardiest critter on the Kenai, well other that Dan France that is. They will scratch through 2 Feet of ice to get to a fish skeleton, but this guy was after something alive, well, it used to be.
He calmy walked across the parking lot to the downriver tree line. He stood right there and pounced to the grass, a span of about 4 feet....man I'll bet thats a sight.
 He landed and thats where he got him, just a drop or two of blood tells the story.
 He drug it up the parking lot and I suppose it died here, no hair, no feathers...mmmmm.....maybe a vole, maybe a rabbit or spruce hen....we'll never know, its just a snow story.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Fit 2012

Ten years ago when I was 49 I went into the gym on my fitness quest, I've done great. I've lost a lot of weight and built muscle, every year I'd set goals, sometimes achieving them and sometimes not...but, I was always hurting myself. Last year one of my goals was to bench press my own weight which I did, and promptly screwed up my shoulder so bad that I thought I wouldn't be able to surf fish. So this year I decided to start acting like an adult and just strive for overall fitness and it couldn't be going any better. One of my goals is absolute....I HAVE to lower my cholesterol. My other goal is to get leaner, that jelly role around my mid section is driving me crazy and this summer I had settled in a little over 200 pounds. Since I started 10 years ago 200 pounds was my Alamo, I said I would NEVER weigh over that amount again. Here's a pic taken of me today and what I've been doing different this year.

So how many 59 year old body builders have you ever seen? Not too many right ? Well, you're looking at one less. Its no wonder my cholesterol was off the chart. For years during my training season I was eating 15 or 20 eggs a week, red meat and protein shakes. Done with that, since my blood panel last April I've only eaten a few eggs and steaks and no shellfish. I've tripled up my fish oil and am using quality fish oil thanks to the recommendation of my friend Greg Davis. I'm eating lots, and I mean lots of oats. Vegetables, a load of those babies. I started on the diet September 18th and weighed 203 pounds, this morning I was at 192.

I'm still lifting weights. I used to think that if you add weight you add muscle, now my strategy is to maintain the muscle I have with less weight, more repetitions. Instead of lifting every day I'm lifting every other day. For the first time in many a year ALL my joints feel great, I'm almost entirely pain free. I actually had myself convinced that success in the gym meant tolerating pain....yikes.

Every morning I do 40 minutes of hard cardio. Every week day in the afternoon I walk 2 1/2 miles.

My new snack food is celery and hummus. Instead of trying to get 200 grams of protein a day I'm eating enough chicken , fish and turkey to supply half of that.

I haven't eaten a  single DQ blizzard, Lays tater chip, black licorice or any of the things I'm weak for since September...Its kind of funny, I have great discipline when I set my sights on something, my only problem in life has been that I haven't spotted to many of those 'somethings'.

I used to think carbohydrates were the enemy. I've learned that you gotta have them, they're the fuel for your energy. But, complex carbs only..." if its white, it ain't right".

For the last 5 or 6 years I've tried to go to Mazatlan under 190 pounds, it hasn't happened but it will now. I was just eating to much and getting to big, the leaner me will walk farther, fish harder and live better. The way its going I might even qualify for another Speedo picture eh?..(sept. 2010)
That's our friend Zack Loyd doing pull ups, pretty cool deal. With October being Breast Cancer awareness month some of the folks at the gym decided to stage an event for a mens health issue, prostate cancer. So Zack stepped forward and took pledges, how many legal pull ups can he do in 4 hours ?...I guessed 500....wrong. Zack did 1025 pull ups in 4 hours and raised well over 3000 dollars for Prostate cancer. I'm proud to say this is the kind of people we're hanging out with....I'm just glad I had a gamblers instinct and donated a set amount, the folks that donated per pull up, well, ....ouch.