JEFF SHATTUCK MUSIC

Stream/download free tunes, see photos, get the latest goings on from the blog.

• Missing Wyoming. Again.

As I type this, my audio files for my album have just completed uploading to oasiscd.com, where they will join my already uploaded art work files and be pressed into my first ever CD, Cerebellum Blues, Playlists One and Two. In other words, now would be a perfect time to go fishing. But I won’t be joining my Dad up in Wyoming this year to do a little trout hunting. No, ever since my brain injury in 2006, fishing has not been something I can do.

I really miss it. Not only was it a chance to talk with my Dad about politics and investing and computers, it was also a very recent family tradition, something we don’t have many of. Every year, starting back in 1998 or 9, my Mom and Dad and I (my sister was never able to join us) have trekked up to Sunlight Basin, an area of Wyoming so named because when it was discovered, trappers figured that sunlight was the only thing that could get to it regularly. Sunlight Basin sits between Yellowstone and the Beartooth mountains and down its middle runs the Clark’s Fork river, one the few rivers in the U.S. designated as wild and scenic. Mostly my Dad and I fished the Clark’s Fork on our trips, but in the few years before my accident, we had started using horses to venture up into the valley of Crandall Creek, which feeds the Clark’s Fork. Down near the Clark’s Fork, Crandall is beautiful to look at but not much to fish. Mostly, we would follow the jeep road along Crandall for a little ways, then hop out, fish Crandall for an hour or so and then head over to the Clark’s Fork. But upper Crandall, well, it’s the best fishing I’ve ever experienced. Tricky, too many ways to snag your lure, but the fish, well, they were big, strong, fast—and hungry. We always caught our best dinners on upper Crandall.

For lodging, we stayed a few different places the first years, but soon discovered Hunter Peak Ranch and it became our home away from home. Shelley and Louis run the place with love and you will not find a better lodge in Sunlight.

Maybe next year will be the year I finally go again. Maybe. The high altitude would probably still cause me problems, and then there’s the simple fact that my balance is barely good enough for city life, much less clambering down rocks to cold, fast waters. But my hopes are high. And I trust that whatever fishing luck I have left in the universe will accompany my Dad as he and my Mom depart tomorrow for Wyoming.