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TALKING TROUT: Keep those important items dry on the streams

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Trout Unlimited

It was mid-summer when Frank took an unexpected dip into a stream in Canada while on a TU Chapter trip. Other than hurting his pride a little, the water got to his wallet and soaked everything in it. I am not sure where Frank kept his wallet, but that evening he had to empty everything in it onto a table and let it dry.

Wallets are easy to keep dry. A couple of zip-lock plastic bags used properly can be an easy and economical solution. A standard sandwich size bag will hold most wallets, and if you combine two paper towels and a second bag, your wallet will stay dry through almost any wet situation.

Here is how to pack to stay dry. First get two double-zipper sandwich bags, wrap your wallet in a paper towel, insert the wallet and towel into a bag, squeeze all the air out and zip the bag completely. Next, wrap the first bag containing the wallet with a second paper towel and place it in the remaining bag, squeeze out the air and zip it tightly.

This will also work for cell phones and other water sensitive items. It is better to use a light weight bag for the inner bag as it will fit easier into the outer bag, which can be a freezer bag that is much tougher. If a bag leaks, the paper towels will absorb most of the moisture before it gets to the wallet.

Most trout anglers either carry a creel or wear a fishing vest or a wading jacket. Your water sensitive items should be kept in a bag in one of the zippered pockets. Personally I keep several other items dry in my creel for convenience and emergencies. The first on my list is a good number of folded paper towels that can be used to dry your hands, clean your glasses or used as a good substitute for toilet paper should that emergency arise.

Several band aids, ointment and a couple of feet of duct tape should also be kept dry. Duct tape can be used to close a deep cut or help to hold a loose guide on a rod or even hold a reel in place should the need arise. Just wrap several feet of tape on a short pencil and it will be ready for any emergency.

Hopefully the bags and towels trick will keep your items dry and make your trip to the trout streams more enjoyable.

Dream Trip returns

Every year, the Georgia Council of Trout Unlimited has a raffle to raise money to pay for the youth trout camp that it operates each year. This is the only fund raiser that the Georgia Council does, and the grand prize winner receives a trip for two with food and six nights lodging to a private cabin in Idaho near Yellowstone National Park.

The cabin owner is a former restaurant operator and “great chef” who cooks for the winners and see to it that his guests catch plenty of fish. The grand prize winner also gets two custom-built fly rods, fully equipped with reel, line and tippet, as well as two fly boxes full of flies. These rods will be handy on the float trip on the Madison River. To top everything off, the winner gets $500 to offset travel expenses.

That is a great prize for the first-place winner, but there are over a dozen runner-up prizes that will be given away including fly rods, reels, casting lessons, guided and non-guided fishing trips, original art work, two nights lodging at the Fire Fly Lodge with fishing on private waters as well as a variety of other prizes.

To purchase a chance, call 706-766-5083 or email pauldiprima@aol.com and I will be happy to get you some tickets. Or come to a TU meeting and get some there. Tickets will only be on sale until mid-March, so don’t put things off and help us fund trout camp.

Trout Unlimited meeting

The next meeting of the Coosa Valley Chapter will be Thursday at 6:30 p.m. at the Rome-Floyd River Education ECO Center at Ridge Ferry Park. The public is invited and members are urged to attend.