Only made it on the water up in the Boundary Waters this year. Never floated a boat at the cabin. Seems people fear for my life and see me being alone on wilderness water as a straight line to death. I don't think they fear me dying as much as my inevitable toasting on the coals. Odd thing is that thought hasn't entered my head. It's not that I'm stupid, though some'd disagree, more that I still have a sense of my limits. Not a vision in my mind at all of soloing down the rapids in the Canadian Arctic. Nope, none at all. These days my visions lean toward a couple of hours on calm water with a fly rod in hand. The intention would be catching a couple but wouldn't pass the line into burning desire. Yeah, I still desire these days but it doesn't burn anymore.
Over Christmas I spent a few minutes with El. Dean. Good minutes. If you've read a few of my posts then you know El. and I have passed a hundred or more hours paddling the same canoe. This spring will mark three years since we've shared the water. Three years too many. While we were talking, the thought struck me that the end of a tradition is rarely a decision. More that one day you wake up and you realize half a decade has passed. Years slipped by.
Anyhow, the upcoming year holds the possibility of another Boundary Waters trip, maybe two. In a week or two I'll put the bee in Brian's bonnet, then, when my grandson's summer schedule is fleshed out, set up the dates for his introduction to the wilderness waters.