SRS Email and post followers: I apologize for doing this to you (re-publishing these same two “How Did We Get Here” posts). I had forgotten how to organize a new post category and thus started to put them all in one post. This is NOT the way to properly do this. So, I’m creating a “How Did We Get Here” category which will group all these submissions under the BLOG. But what this will do is send out a duplicate email notification to you about the same two submissions this one time. After I reorganize these two initial submissions, you will not get duplicate emails notifying you of a new entry into the category. Sorry for the intrusion.
My submission follows: ……UB
Sometime in the early to mid 1980s, a friend of mine invited me to join him to “go up to the cabin”. At the time we both worked at RCA in Lancaster. Before that we had attended Thaddeus Stevens State School of Technology (formerly Stevens Trade School).
I forget if my first time up was in the summer of fall. My friend had started archery hunting and suggested that I borrow a bow from someone he knew and start practicing. It was either that or we went up during the RCA shut-down that was for two weeks straddling the 4th of July. Either way, I fell in love with the place.
The cabin was way up in the mountains after we turned off the last black-topped road (SR414 ). Then it was another 10+ miles. Seemed like it took forever to get there. The driveway back into the place had two areas that had big, deep potholes that had standing water in them. I wondered if we would make it through them on more than one occasion. I think the driveway was about half mile long. So off the dirt road, another half mile… and finally we were there! The out-house was on the right and cabin on the left. An old stump from a large tree was across the driveway, beside the outhouse, and had many years of salt licks placed on it. There was evidence that white-tailed deer had been gnawing on this for some time. A couple of young hemlocks were down from the screened in porch.
The inside was basically one main room with 2 bedrooms off the main Kitchen/living area. Linoleum floor, propane refrigerator and, while they had wired the place for low voltage DC generator, we used a Coleman lantern or flashlights with lantern batteries, for light at night. A Spring House provided water for cleaning up. We would go to a different spring to fill gallon bottles for drinking.
I was told that the cabin was formed by my host’s Grandfather and a few friends. It was so… far… away from everything I thought. Any noise from traffic out on the dirt road was never heard. I remember hearing Wood Thrushes, and, I think on at least one occasion I heard and saw Rufus Sided Towhees. There were two logged out clearings near the place. We would walk the gated access roads used to haul out the lumber, especially at dusk, and see all the deer descend from the tree lines. We’d see a couple dozen deer almost every time.
Well, life happens. A few years pass with us going up to hunt. Eventually my friend goes off to school in Boston – I go to Penn State in Harrisburg. I continue to go up to Slate Run and camp out some when school is no longer in session. I started to get interested in fly fishing some time while I was in school. As I neared completion of my schooling, I met a young ‘kid’ behind the fly counter at Wolfe’s Store while on a trip up there one time. He sells me my first fly rod that I would buy – a graphite Cortland 5/6 weight. With this rod I experience my first ‘light bulb turns on’ moment with casting. It’s been all downhill from there. The passion started there, that special spot on Pine Creek, with a Rusty Spinner and a cast that was effective enough.
So I basically came to Slate Run with archery hunting in mind way before I got serious about fly fishing. But, truth be told, it’s fly fishing that dominates my past-time now.
I move out of state and fish in my new territory. But nothing seems to fill the void I felt when I left Pennsylvania. Someone told me that I’ll never have as good a fishing as I did in Pennsylvania. While there is great fishing here where I reside – that ‘someone’ was right.
Truth be told, we make our own ‘Heaven’ at times. Mine just happens to be in a small place in North Central Pennsylvania.
Till we see each other again….. UB