Good Mountain Town Gone Wild

by Rebecca on July 9, 2012

in Outdoor Observations

Just your typical Amateur firework set off 10 feet from you…

I could write a book about Growing Up Garlock. The multitude of traditions, the many little quirks and family style occasions that mostly centered around the Outdoors that I grew up with and still live by. The 4th of July is one of those occasions where the Garlock tribe has always come together for good food and fun times.

Yay for Sparklers

Growing up, every 4th of July was spent camping in the mountains which meant usually I was only given a sparkler or two to light and hold safely over the campfire.

Sometimes other campers (that dared camp within the vicinity of a Garlock camp compound) would shoot off real fireworks and I can remember my elders grumbling about the morons that must want to burn down the forest.

Sparklers roasting over a campfire was actually a real treat in those days.

But about 10 years ago the Garlocks broke a 60 year tradition and found a small town, still in the Mountains of course, to celebrate their 4th of July.

I’ve tried to explain to the innocents who have never experienced a 4th of July in the small sleepy town of Garden Valley that for one night every year, there seems to be no such things as say, laws or even guidelines.

This man came prepared for the war zone

Civil disobedience is almost…expected. 

In the big city of Boise Idaho where I reside, a firework that ‘lifts off the ground’ is considered illegal and the cops WILL come for you if you shoot one off.

An hour away in a typically quiet mountain town, if your firework doesn’t lift off the ground at least 20 feet and threaten bodily harm to those around, it is considered rather boring by the watching mob.

I asked various family members what how they would describe this unique experience and this is what I got:

Cousin: Vietnam War

Aunt: WW3

Friend: Good Town Gone Crazy

Cousin: The War Zone

A Roman Candle Salute

In other words, it’s pretty crazy and all of us go with the full understanding that we will return to the late night campfire to assess the damage and tell our stories of how we got: Deaf ears, burns in various locations on our bodies, burnt eyes from all the debris, holes burned in our chairs and other various collateral damage.

Helmets are advised along with hand held rocket launchers and protective eyewear

We also talk about how it was a blast and we can’t wait to do it again next year.

I hope your 4th of July was exciting, injury free and full of amazing memories!

All photos by my daughter Kaitlyn ~ taken from behind the safety of her camera

Crowds are not a concern, neither are telephone wires…


Bandon and I ~ Smiling for Spring

I’m not sure how other people feel about this time of the year, but I’m fighting off the last lingering effects of Old Man Winter rolling me up into a nice sized cigar and smoking me for personal entertainment purposes.

I’m not an indoor person and this Lady Bear doesn’t hibernate peacefully during winter. I tend to pout and pace and if anyone believes the propaganda of my children, my lower lip starts to quiver and one eye twitches involuntarily through the whole of February.

I need the first couple of weeks in March to recuperate from the confines of winter captivity. If I can catch the hint of a few spring smelling salts like—birds returning and arguing loudly over their branch real estate—tiny buds of life on the trees—the ice cream man driving through the neighborhood blaring “Jingle Bells” on his loud speaker—my winter hangover feels instantly and indescribably better.

Now that life feels all warm and cozy again, my sights are set on the rest of the year. I have trips to take, fish to catch, hunts to partake in and adventures to experience. In the past I’ve gone about my outdoor life in a spontaneous spur of the moment manner, but this year I think things will be a bit different. My decision to go public with my fly fishing and writing has opened quite a few doors up that include actually fishing with other people. For the first time ever I’ll be traveling to meet outdoor people and having some come to my neck of the woods to experience my personal Idaho playground. The way I see it, my outdoor world just got a whole lot bigger and the new view started from this humble little website—I continue to be surprised.

For the people I’ve already corresponded with, talked on the phone with and made fishing plans….I’m extremely excited. For the people I haven’t made plans with… yet… I have only one question. Do you have a stream, a meandering river or a body of water that contains fish just waiting to be caught? Yes? If so….why haven’t you invited me to come fishing with you yet???? (insert tapping ladies foot here) I come prepared with my own tackle AND I can put a hook on my own line and untangle snags all by myself. No waterside maintenance required.

If any of you have plans to come to Idaho. Drop me a line, I’m rather new at the tour guide thing, but I happen to know where a few fish linger and I’m sure I could point out the honey holes like a seasoned cruise director.

See you on the rivers……… 


This is the second edition of Signs that make a person think…What The Hell? The first entry of signs that I had collected from various places is located here ~ Warnings and Other Reasonable Guidelines and I’m happy to say that entry inspired a few people to send over more signs…..

Without further adieu ~


yes-no-maybe-DRIVE AWAY

This sign was sent to me from Rod aka BackyardBass on twitter. He came across this ironic sign while fly fishing for red fish in Florida and he and his family had a good hour laugh about it. They figured it was a sign for the whishy washy people of the world. If you’re the sort that can’t make up your mind, than this sign is for YOU~

So the obvious question would seem, if one is going through a drive thru, why in the world would they need to park? Or, in an effort to confuse people, some smart ass developed this sign so that he could pull up a lawn chair and watch people park, unpark, park, unpark and finally drive away looking over their shoulder to make sure no one was laughing at them.

Any way you look at it, signs like this are put on this planet to confound the mind and put the huh in our days.

Better than Viagra?

The fine print: "Sold here, its Better than Viagra, ask for Iona stall 14"

This sign was sent over from Pete who is Captain of the Fishing Jones blog.

First of all, I should mention I live in Idaho. That’s, I-Da-Ho, lands of meat and potatoes. The Simple Life. The only thing that could qualify as exotic in this territory is the bikini strippers at the local Wagon Wheel joint ~~ and those bikini’s can’t legally come off and erode the minds of Idaho citizens. So, basically, I reside in a sheltered bubble.

So when an innocent Idaho mind like my own (my fish stories are all true as well, you just have to believe) sees a sign for fresh Conch Salad I immediately want to hurl. The way I see it, a fresh conch is akin to an overgrown snail on steroids. No thank you~ However, I learned something new from this sign, a google verification search and am more than happy to innocently pass it along for the largely male audience I have. If you can choke down an over grown snail without hurling, the side effects just might… *cough* I can’t do it. I can’t write out the side effects for conch consumption. (read the fine print under photo) I’ll just say this, if the effects last more then 4 hours, eat a baked potato, the antidote to all of life’s ahh ailments~~

And on that note, because really, what else could I write….this concludes today’s sign feature. Keep a watch out for me, take your cameras with you (that includes you Rob) and send me pictures of those signs that inspire the double take so I can feature them~

Thank you Rod and Pete!


~Irish Antifreeze~

~Irish Antifreeze~

Bonus Picture: In an effort to explain to me how fisherman in Minnesota stay warm, Karl the Trout Whisperer sent me a visual explanation. He wrote, “you mentioned it looked cold…please review enclosed photo…its how we handle the cold in the great north woods….Irish antifreeze…”

So that’s how the ice fisherman do it, stay warm that is……….and, I’ve studied that fishing hole and I think if I stood back far enough, I just might be able to fly fish it from the right angle! (grin)


Outdoor Adventures: Living The Dream

by Rebecca on November 30, 2009

in Outdoor Observations

I’ve been known to load up an SUV with bare essentials and fly solo for days on end (sometimes a week or more) adrift and 100% alone. I’ll grab fly fishing paraphernalia, a sleeping bag, a pillow, a few items of clothing, a single cooler for my diet coke addiction and food items if there’s any room left (priorities ya know). Ok, and I should mention because it’s my Fathers one essential requirement I take when I go on my trips, I also bring a gun. The big bad world has been warned~

Those stolen, or perhaps they are taken, times in my life are perfect for solitary decompression and quiet thought. My trips usually require a lot of drive time because busting out on my own and going 2 hours away from the house would seem……insignificant. I need distance and anything less than a 4 hour drive just doesn’t do it, not to forget here, fishing is always better the farther away one gets, cardinal rule.

Karl "Trout Whisperer" Seckinger

Karl "Trout Whisperer" Seckinger

I don’t mind the drive time. I usually listen to a book on tape, or crank up some good music, roll down my window and let life as I’m required to live it, far behind. I highly recommend such individual adventures. Time alone, and I mean, really alone….is good for the outdoor soul.

Today I find myself excited to put one more CD in my arsenal of drive time companionship. Recently I got the audio CD ”Outdoor Adventures” by Karl “Trout Whisperers” Seckinger.

Listening to this CD is like pulling up a lawn chair next to a campfire, kicking back and listening to a master storyteller mesmerize you with adventures from his life.

Karl’s adventures center around his time in the Superior National Forest. His stories have you fishing, hiking, hunting right along side him and his occasional companions. It’s definitely something I could listen to over and over……Check out this link for more information and an audio sample of what I’m writing about today…….Trout Whisperer CD “Outdoor Adventures” It’s the perfect mood setter when you’re driving to those far off destinations, or even when you’re stuck like a prisoner in your own home and need a mental escape ~

And on that note….I hope everyone takes time to venture out and find outdoor adventure on their own, alone and without influence of others . The gun is optional of course, except for me……



Disclosure Forms of the Outdoor Risk Variety

November 23, 2009

A few nights ago, my parents and I were discussing some of the tragic and hilarious outdoor trips we’ve taken with “risks’ in the past. A ‘risk’ is defined by someone you’ve never camped, fished, hiked, hunted or broke bread in the dirt with in. So basically, everyone reading this would be considered a ‘risk’ [...]

Read the full article →

Warnings and Other Reasonable Guidelines

November 11, 2009

Recently I read a great article by the Trout Whisperer and his words reminded me of a hobby I recently adopted. Basically, I kept running into signs in the Great Outdoors that made me stop and wonder, “For Real? Seriously? No they didn’t, oh yes they did!” So I did what any amused soul should do, I started taking pictures, proof style, so I could later [...]

Read the full article →

Fishing the Local Option

November 5, 2009

On Sunday my Father, my daughter Kaitlyn and I went down to our local river for a leisure afternoon of fly fishing and fall gazing. I would have posted a picture of the few fish we caught, but once Kaitlyn snapped a couple of  Bandon the Bashful dog and a couple of Dad and I, we got the fabled [...]

Read the full article →

Fishing Photography: What IS your secret?

November 2, 2009

Obviously I am not in the ’know how’ when it comes to photographing fish when I’m out on the water. Evidence of this can be found in 1) The lack of pictures on my hard drive 2) the pictures I do have are marginal at best. Visual confirmation of marginal can be found looking at the pictures I post [...]

Read the full article →

Fishing Mentors: My Dad Inspired Me

October 26, 2009

There are two people I can credit with mentoring my fishing evolution. Today’s entry is about my first mentor. I credit my own Father with introducing me to the Great Outdoors and specifically, fishing. He christened me when I was a 6 week old baby with a Mepps Treble hook to the forehead and I [...]

Read the full article →

Elk Finger Steaks Recipe

October 21, 2009

Growing up one of my favorite meals was Elk Finger Steak night. My Mom isn’t sure where this recipe originated from and that’s fine by me. As far as I’m concerned, she was crowned Queen of the Elk Finger Stakes when I was little and that’s where she’ll reign forever. I asked her to share [...]

Read the full article →