Weather: Sunny & 68
After a couple of days of rain, this morning we awoke once again to clears skies and warm sunshine. We hung around the house for most of the morning before deciding to take the entire family to the river for some fishing. We packed up the truck and headed to the tackle store first to pick up a few items and to get Robin's fishing permit for the day. After that we headed over to Centennial Park, a spot we had not fished before. After driving through the campground and to the fishing area, we quickly realized there was no room for us there as there were folks fishing every 5-10' down the bank. After seeing this we decided to go exploring for another spot we had heard about. Unfortunately, we were unable to locate this new spot and so after 30 minutes of driving around, we headed to the spot we had spent our previous days on the water at. We arrived at the parking area and began putting on our gear. We had everything on and were getting ready to grab the fishing rods when I realized I had forgotten the boys life-jackets. After standing for a couple of minutes frustrated and in awe of my bone-headed move, we loaded up the truck and headed back to the house to get their PFDs. Finally, after a 30 minute round trip, we were back where we started at the parking spot and were on our way to the water. We arrived at our spot to find we were the only ones there, which was exactly how we liked it. I rigged everyone's fishing poles and we waded out into the edge of the river. Shortly after everyone had began to fish a large bald eagle flew by and landed in a tree just above us. Robin grabbed her camera and began taking pictures as the rest of us continued fishing. The eagle, as it turned out, had his eyes fixed on a certain dead salmon which a group of seagulls were feasting on, on the island in front of us. After a few minutes he swooped down and scared off the gulls, taking their food in the process. He drug what was left of the fish up on the bank, grasped at it a couple of times and then flew off with it in his talons to a tree just down the river. Needless to say everyone was excited as this was the closest we had come to a wild eagle. Once the eagle flew back across the river we continued fishing for the next couple of hours without any luck. Around 6:30 I made one of my many "last casts" and hooked up on our first and only fish of the day. It was a small trout that didn't put up much of a fight. I wrestled with it for a minute, let the boys check it out and then let it go to fight another day. After a few more "last casts" we headed back to the tuck where we took off our gear and headed back into town to get gas and a few groceries.
After leaving the grocery store, we headed home. We pulled into the driveway as normal and began unloading the fishing gear and other items we had. I grabbed the life-jackets that had caused me so much aggravation earlier in the day and walked around the back of the cabin to put them in the storage bin. As I started to lift the lid on the bin, I heard a loud grunt/snort which startled me. You see the day before we had seen a black bear at the cabin, literally 20 feet from the back door. You can imagine the different thoughts running through my head after hearing this sound but when I looked up, I saw a large female moose about 30-40' from me. I was surprised to say the least but she certainly didn't seem to be. She stood there chewing the grass she had just picked while looking me over. I slowly walked back around the side of the house and stuck my head in the front door to let Robin and the boys know she was out there and to have them look through the french doors on the other end of the house to see her. I walked back around the opposite side of the house with Cole and we stooped and watched her for a couple of minutes while she stood picking grass in the edge of the yard. After those couple of minutes she continued walking through the yard, stopping to pick from time to time, until she had made it all the way around the house to the driveway. We all stood on the deck watching here, amazed at what a large animal this was. She stood and watched us too for what seemed like a couple of minutes before slowly walking around the truck and off into the woods between us and our neighbor. It was awesome to get to see such an amazingly large creature.
Now as I sit here typing this and thinking back over all the events of the day, especially those of the early part, it would have been very easy to have become so frustrated that we simply gave up on our fishing trip and decided not to return to the river after forgetting the life-jackets. However, in doing so we would have not experienced the blessings of the evening, such as seeing the eagle or the moose, if we had not first endured and overcome those roadblocks and frustrations of the afternoon. As discouraged and aggravated as life may make us sometimes, we all need to remember that the only way to see the finish line is to actually finish the race. "Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us," Hebrews - 12:1
God Bless & Safe Travels!