Since my college days in in the Ozarks, when I scheduled classes to allow for plenty of "stream time," I've been hooked on the sport.
Watching a Brown run at a dry fly, breaking the water as it scoops up what appears to be a tasty morsel--hard to beat in my book.
Just being out in the woods, wading a stream, camping on a river bank--it all adds up to renewal and regeneration.
I'm a card carrying member of Trout Unlimited (http://www.tu.org/).
Trout magazine comes with membership. In the latest issue (Winter 2008), I learned that what's good for trout turns out to be good for people.
Here's a sampling for your consideration:
In the current Farm Bill (the same one that funds the Food Stamp program for low-income families, as well as the free and reduced lunch programs for our children), TU is lobbying for $6 billion in funding for conservation and water improvement projects to protect the habitat we humans share and enjoy with the fish of the land!
Hardrock Mining Law reform provides for action to improve 40% of Western headwater streams that have been degraded by pollution from abandoned gold and silver mines. The recommended bill would clean up old mines that compromise the health of fish and folks.
Clean Water Restoration Act (H. R. 2421 and S. 1870) would allow for the ongoing regulation of streams and wetlands development--again, provisions that benefit trout and the rest of us.
The Energy Bill needs strengthening so that regulatory protection does not allow oil and gas exploration on public lands without the application of Clean Water Act regulations.
Fish-friendly agency budgets that fully fund conservation programs, including fisheries and a number of conservation projects, are also targeted for support in the next authorization legislation.
Trout lists several other legislative issues, but you get the picture.
Take care of the trout and we'll be insuring higher quality of life for ourselves!
Got a pole? Or, maybe a canoe?