MATT SCHUBERT’S OUTDOORS: The link between Chicago Cubs fans and fly fishing

CHICAGO CUBS FANS beget Cubs fans.

And this, as most baseball fans will tell you, is a form of child abuse.

It’s a problem that has plagued the populace for more than a century (101 years to be exact).

To ensure a lifetime of pain and disappointment for one’s progeny? Most societies would reject that out of hand.

Ah, but those Old Style-swilling North Siders proudly don the scarlet “C” each spring like a red badge of courage.

(Yes, that actually required two 19th Century literary references).

So how can we as a society sit idly by and watch this happen?

Well, some believe character is built upon such loyalty.

They say it takes courage to cling so resolutely to the hope that things will turnaround, despite all the evidence to the contrary.

Of course, many others, including Albert Einstein once upon a time, would call that insanity.

Luckily, I don’t have to worry about such things.

My parents (St. Louis Cardinals fans) obviously cared for my well-being.

The Cardinals have their low moments, but every now and then they win the big one.

It’s a healthy balance.

There isn’t too much winning (see New York Yankees) and the entitlement it creates, or too much losing and the bitterness that comes with it.

Know the fly

Believe it or not, there is a piscatorial parallel here.

(And, yes, it took approximately eight inches of newsprint to get there.)

You see, much like baseball fandom, we often pass along an affinity for fishing to our progeny.

Yet some of us probably do the little tykes a disservice by pointing them toward fly fishing.

For if the requisite knowledge isn’t included, a lifetime of disappointment and fishy financial decisions awaits.

It’s a cruel future to inflict on any fisherman.

The 2010 Northwest Youth Conservation and Fly Fishing Academy, set for June 20-26 at Hicks Lake in Lacey, can keep that from happening.

The week-long academy (open to ages 12-16) focuses on conservation, natural resource stewardship and fly fishing essentials.

Among those “essentials” are fly casting, fly tying, knot tying and reading water.

Morning and evening fly fishing activities on Hicks Lake and the Deschutes River will give students hands-on experience.

Faculty and staff include wildlife resource professionals, fly fishing and fly tying professionals and local fishing club volunteers.

Obviously, they are people who know what they are talking about.

The cost, which includes food and lodging, is $275.

For more information, visit www.nwycffa.org, or contact Mike Clancy at 360-753-1259.

Scholarships

Both the Olympic Peninsula Fly Fishers (Port Angeles) and Gray Wolf Fly Fishing Club (Gardiner) are willing to help.

Each club is offering academy scholarships to deserving youth anglers.

■ The Olympic Peninsula Fly Fishers will select one or more applicants for a scholarship to the camp.

Applicants must submit to the Fly Fishers a name, address, phone, e-mail, birthday and brief essay on why they want to attend the academy and what they expect to learn.

A brief recommendation from a science teacher or counselor with their name, address and phone number is also required.

Scholarship applications can be sent to OPFF, P.O. Box 2971, Port Angeles, WA 98362.

■ The Gray Wolf club is also offering a scholarship for the academy.

Those interested in nominating a youth angler for this can contact Dave Bailey at 360-681-7043.

Spock’s flock

Alert Spock and the crew of Starship Enterprise.

A pair of California gray whales were spotted in some rather shallow water in Dungeness Bay earlier this week.

It isn’t every day our fellow mammals can be found inside Dungeness Spit.

But these two were swimming around 10 to 20 feet of water in the bay on Monday, feeding on the many crustaceans that call those waters home.

The spotter said it was the first time he had seen such whales there, and perhaps the last. There have been no sightings since.

No word on whether the whales have responded to the alien mother ship yet.

For the sake of humanity, let’s hope so.

Lift discount

The Hurricane Ridge Winter Sports Club will be offering a $2 discount on lift tickets for anyone who brings in two canned food items this weekend.

Each of the cans donated will go to the Port Angeles Food Bank.

The Poma lift will be in operation on Saturday and Sunday, as will the bunny and intermediate rope tows.

Full-day lift rates are $10 for the bunny lift, $20 for the bunny and intermediate lifts and $25 for all three, including the Poma.

Half days cost $10 for the bunny, $18 for the bunny and intermediate and $22 for all three.

For information on skiing and snowboarding at the Ridge, visit www.hurricaneridge.com.

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Matt Schubert is the outdoors and sports columnist for the Peninsula Daily News. His column regularly appears on Thursdays and Fridays. He can be reached at [email protected]

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