Lately I’ve felt like a dog that’s just been let out of his cage, over-excited by the total and sudden freedom running like a maniac until he can no longer stand. Having a desk job where you sit for 8 hours a day, week after week, for 14 years straight doesn’t prepare you physically for spending all day everyday active and on your feet.

Not a day of my freedom has been wasted and I have been sleeping well to say the least. As we settle into this new lifestyle, we still break up our week with varying activities. This includes one or two days a week getting away from the homestead. So far, we have had no trouble occupying ourselves with cheap hobbies including trout fishing.

Picture of Tony fishing.Dinner, caught with my $10 fishing rod

Pack a picnic

You can be lazy and try to find a restaurant with some outdoor seating, but in my opinion, money cannot buy better food nor better ambiance than a good picnic. So to prepare for our adventures this day, we packed a quick picnic cooler. It took me all of 5 minutes to construct a couple of sandwiches with leftover roasted chicken and fresh lettuce that I grabbed from our garden.

Picture of chichen sandwiches.

You can trout fish any streams and rivers

We were headed to the countryside to visit a local flower farm and do some picnicking. On the way I recognized one of my favorite stretches of river to fish. I had found this area a prior summer when I hiked the majority of the river’s length in search of good trout spots. Since we were on no particular schedule, we pulled over and started to fish a bit.

While the wife hiked up river, I found a nice spot where the water tumbles over some rocks. I started casting into a deeper pool under the shade of a tree. After feeling a few bites, my rod bent over. I could see a rainbow trout darting about with my line. It was a good fight but nothing my $10 rod couldn’t handle. I easily landed my first trout of the year.

Picture of trout.

Concentrate on your trout fishing skills, not equipment

You don’t need fancy gear to fish, just a fishing license and willingness to explore the waterways. I don’t us an expensive rod, or even fancy lures. Cheap basic gear will do. Catching fish is more about luck and perseverance combined with an understanding how the water runs and which deep pools are frequented by trout.

This was the first time I fished since quitting my job. I’ll take my luck as a sign of good things to come. We decided it would make for a fitting dinner with the first crops coming from our garden. Luckily, we had our picnic cooler to keep our fish on ice while we continued on.

Take time to enjoy the nature

After a quick and productive stop along the river, we moved on. Our eyes were now scanning the countryside for a scenic picnic spot. We made it to the flower farm and did a quick tour. We were there just to look, preferring to propagate our own plants from cuttings, or trade with friends for free. By this time, we were ready for some food. We headed back toward a public park on a lake that we’d passed. A nice view on a sunny day makes everything taste better.

Picture of picnic.

Cook a nice trout dinner

Back home, we turned our attention toward the fish dinner. We harvested some fresh salad greens from the garden, and it was also time to take the garlic scapes. I descaled the fish and coated it with olive oil, salt, pepper. Stuffed it with some dill, then into a hot oven it went until crispy.

A nice thing about fresh ingredients is that you do not need to do much to make a tasty meal. Another fulfilling day of enjoying nature. After a delicious dinner, we enjoyed some home brews and once again, a good night’s sleep.

Picture of trout dinner.