It’s been 12-13 years since I was here in Steamboat Springs Colorado. I traveled down to pick up my brand new Hog Island Drift Boat. A few months prior I had fallen in love with the boats after demoing one for a few days. I also dug John St. John the owner of Hog Island. A real river peep kinds guy that has floated some amazing places and has stories for days of the beauty that makes up American Rivers. His passion for the rivers and what they can do to people, how they connect us to the planet and each other, and the struggles they face is above and beyond what you see in many people in the industry. A role model in that regard.
I met him when I was young and wet behind the ears with rowing rivers. But the Hog opened up a world to me I didn’t even know existed and I fell in love. My passion for fishing, the outdoors, and rowing rivers just compounded after buying the boat. I was an experienced kayaker and canoe paddler at that point. And had done some intense rafting. But the world of angles, and hydrology, and how a drift boat can move in syncopation with a river not just on top of it. The boat changed the way I fished and has turned me into a very experienced oarsmen.
There isn’t much that’s scares me in terms of water, respect yes, but fear no. I’ve hit a lot with that boat. Caught air, wrecked in class IIIs, done IV’s, 20,000 plus miles if river and it shows…both on the boat and me. It changes you when you spend so much time on river. Being here with John and in a place where the kind of life I live is fairly common with the locals it is comfortable here. Fellow river rats.
The boat is getting worked on, I am working a lot already this season, my girlfriend and I are in need of some time away, this trip and the ability to live this life is not taken for granted. I have had the privilege of experiencing some amazing things via my Hog Island Drift Boat, after the trip here and we are back on the homewater we hope to float another 20,000 river miles, and run hundreds more guide days. Book a day, cone out and see what being riverside is all about. See the fixed up Hog, and maybe catch a few wild trout.
See ya riverside anglers.