The Brother-In-Law Rod/Chopaka Lake
Part II
Coincident with the opening of the "regular" road into Chopaka Lake was an infinitely more momentous change in my family, the impending addition of a brother-in-law. However excited I became over the proposed addition of a grown male with a driver's license, a car, a love of duck hunting, and who EVEN flyfished there remained lagging doubts as to his basic sanity. My gratitude at the thought that he would take my oldest sister off our hands was strongly tempered by my bewilderment that he would actually want to. But, trying to make the best of an apparently inevitable situation, we rapidly indoctrinated him into the weekend ritual of duckhunting on the "property" just south of Renton, originally swampland buried seasonally by the fall rains, now buried permanently under the concrete slab of a Boeing manufacturing plant.
Larry's flyfishing skills, such as they were, consisted of a love of hiking and high lakes, a sagging and billowy old cane rod, and a propensity to troll around in aforementioned high lakes in a rubber raft, dragging an old sinking line behind the aforementioned tired rod. At age thirteen, knowing, literally, no
other human being that flyfished, I accepted his knowledge as infinite and determined to study and try learn everything that Larry had to teach in that regard. Larry actually cast flyline only rarely, and then only under duress. The waiting period for that old rod to unload and reload from forecast to back cast had a lot to do with the state of Larry's casting skills. But Larry was willing to be flexible, and, once I had armed myself with my own weapon, a $19.95 kit special from "Joe Klein's Mailorder House" in Chicago, as advertised in Outdoor Life, I started claiming all his free time to get driven to some actual rivers to actually flyfish. The rod automatic reel, line, poppers, flies, fly dope, and instruction book that one received for that amount of money are a whole other story.
major friend, support, positive influence, etc., and I eventually recovered even from his flycasting lessons without visible harm And he did take, and keep, my sister as promised. I owed that man
a lot.
The opening day for fishing on Chopaka Lake that first year was an event of major proportions in the family. The lake had been closed to fishing for longer than anyone could remember, and previously
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