from Deanna Lee Birkholm

June 15, 2009

Promises Kept ....

Some twenty years ago when we moved from our beloved Montana, we gave up fly fishing entirely. There were no trout here, no bugs which hatched on a dependable basis (at least that we had found at that time.)

We did some exploring, but we didn't find 'trout' waters and finally packed away our gear. Some time later an acquaintance asked if I would be interested in helping to teach a fly fishing class - especially a 'woman's class. We discovered the rods we had used in Montana weren't quite suitable for saltwater salmon fishing, and bought a 9 ft. 7 weight G. Loomis signature rod Good grief, that seemed like such a big rod at the time.

Those many years ago there actually were salmon available off the beaches locally. And some good sized ones at that. Probably the most favorite for about a half dozen fly fishers who seemed to hit the beach were gathered at Point No Point, in Kitsap County Washington. We spend a lot of time there over the years.

Both my wonderful husband JC and I caught our first Pacific Salmon on a fly there. Many salmon later it is still a thrill to play and land such a beautiful creature.

Below are a few photos from Point No Point.

Point No Point Looking West
Point no Point
Beach photos from
Point No Point Lighthouse
Lighthouse photo from


On Tuesday we had an "perfect wind" for a right handed caster than means the fly is going past and behind you far enough away to keep from wearing it in your hat or ear. Some folks who cast left-handed solved the problem by casting toward the beach and then dropping their backcast behind them in the ocean. Clever eh?

Just before dusk I walked the beach we had traveled so many times. JC had a couple of favorite spots, especially on a low tide, so I stopped at the first one, the point, and opened the small jar I had brought with me. I poured a handful of ashes into my hand and threw them as far toward the ocean as I could.

I repeated the disbursing of the ashes at another five places and then sat on a huge log and wished I could change so much of what had happened just such short time ago. Forgive me, I know you all cared for JC as well.

But I have promises to keep. Favorite streams, a lake in Yellowstone where the mayflies windrow and cutthroats suck them up like a vacumn. Fish we never believed existed, much less have the opportunity to fish for - bonefish, barracuda, water the color only God could have imagined it.

With a little luck and God's will, I will leave some of those precious ashes in his favorite places.

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