The Yellow Breeches Round-About

Instructions to the Round-About:

Go visit your son Brent and his girlfriend, Catherine, in Arlington, Virginia. DSCN4824

Appreciate the beautiful (and rare!) weather for Washington, D.C.– clear sky, cool air, and low humidity. You got lucky with this, Bucko.

On Friday morning, visit the Adams Morgan district in D. C. for empanadas. Eat them on the street and watch a class of nursery-schoolers waddling by. The kids are like ducklings guided by adults. Each duckling holds to a loop on a long leash for security. Watch them at the cross-walk and imagine a pond along the Rock Creek Parkway as the city slows and catches its breath.

DSCN4828Visit the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception. Try to remember the long name of this excellent church, the largest in the Western Hemisphere. Although you may not be religious, amaze yourself at the architecture, marble and mosaics, at the way that mankind stares at the cosmos for a simple answer to its questions, and for absolvement of its sins and quandaries.

Visit the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park along the Great Falls of the Potomac. Take a long walk with a camera and appear to be a normal tourist. Try to remember the name of this long green park and natural resource.DSCN4836

Amaze yourself at the fact that you’ve been visiting the U.S. Capital for decades and have never before enjoyed a visit to this park. You’re a long way downstream from the Rivertops, pal.

A caveat: forget about fishing the Potomac for smallmouth bass. Not here, not at Great Falls– a Class V+ whitewater for kayakers. More than a few boaters have “crossed the bar” forever here.

DSCN4844On Saturday, stop at Warrenton for Catherine’s parents. With Brent, lead them on to Charlottesville. Meet with Richard P. and with Catherine’s brother Richard.  Help lead the pack to the Wild Wolf Brewery outside of Charlottesville (der vild vulff! as Brent would exclaim) and drink a flight or two of craft beers in the gardens of the Blue Ridge. Later that evening, eat a Mexican meal at Baja Bean near Richard’s house.

On Sunday (birthday of your wife Leighanne!), visit Carter Mountain Orchards outside of Charlottesville. Climb the Southwest Mountains in your new car for a view across the piedmont. Look for Monticello but understand that it’s somewhere around the bend. Buy some peaches from the orchard and some ice-cream (soft and peachy), too.

DSCN4879On Monday, say goodbye to friends and family, to food and drink and fun. Drive north to Boiling Springs and fish the Yellow Breeches Creek.

Further instructions to the Round-About:

Don’t expect much from the stream, with two hours of midday fishing. The fly shop will be closed. It’s Monday. Enjoy the Children’s Lake with L. Do your best in learning something more about the Breeches.

The water will be high and turbid. A storm will approach you, but try to focus on the stream.DSCN4893

Start off with a dry Black Ant. If you get no rises, go with wets or little streamers. You’ll probably feel the “skunk” today, and wish you were on the great LeTort.

But… you’ll be out there with a fly rod, and you’ve had a good four days down South. There’ll be no reason to complain.DSCN4912DSCN4908DSCN4899DSCN4906

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About rivertoprambles

Welcome to Rivertop Rambles. This is my blog about the headwaters country-far afield or close to home. I've been a fly-fisher, birder, and naturalist for most of my adult life. I've also written poetry and natural history books for thirty years. In Rambles I will mostly reflect on the backcountry of my Allegheny foothills in the northern tier of Pennsylvania and the southern tier of New York State. Sometimes I'll write about the wilderness in distant states, or of the wild places in the human soul. Other times I'll just reflect on the domestic life outdoors. In any case, I hope you enjoy. Let's ramble!
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10 Responses to The Yellow Breeches Round-About

  1. Brent says:

    Those adventures (with accompanying pictures of Madams Organ and the silver-furred rooftop voles) seem awfully familiar. A nice, creative write-up to put a wrap on a long weekend.

  2. Ah yes, and thanks again. Those “rooftop voles” give a nice sense of closure, huh?

  3. Bob Stanton says:

    That’s the Allenberry section of the ‘Breeches, correct? From what I understand, the limestone influence is somewhat diluted in that part of the stream, and it is more susceptible to higher temps and water level fluctuations than other area streams are. Looks like you had a blast, regardless of tough fishing conditions.

  4. Yup, that’s the Allenberry section, Bob. It wasn’t my first choice of exploration, but it seemed quicker and easier to access, given my time limitations. This was only my second time stopping at the Breeches, and I knew I should have gone in at the Inlet, but the fly shop was closed, and I had questions. Maybe next time, although I seem to have more fun at the LeTort. P. S., did you ever make the trip down to FL (as you mentioned, I believe, in a post somewhere)?

  5. LQN says:

    Quite the trip Walt and thanks for sharing. I grew up a few miles upriver from Great Falls, lots of good memories spent on that river and on the canal too!

  6. It was fun, Long, and you know, I used to drive by the Great Falls area many times when I lived in northern VA many years ago and I never really got a picture of the place until walking it and seeing the nature of it first-hand. At least you had the chance to appreciate it fully while you could.

  7. Bob Stanton says:

    Yeah, went to FLA at the beginning of the month. We did a lot of touristy stuff, but I got to check out some of the white sand dunes of the northwest coast and check a few more birds of the life list ( fish crow, least tern, and I think that I saw a Mississippi kite, but I’m not 100% ). Nice place to visit, but damn, it’s hot! We have a trip to the Smokies slated for the fall, so I’m really looking forward to that.

    • Okay. Yeah the kite is an interesting flyer. I’ve been to FL once and probably won’t return there, although I would like to see the Everglades or a similar area in the winter some time. As for the Smokies, that’ll be another great one for you in the fall. Such beautiful terrain.

  8. Kenov says:

    Let me know if you ever need some info. on the Breeches. I’ve spent far too much time there. It’s a fun stream, and a really peaceful place if you can get there when the crowds aren’t.

  9. Absolutely, K., and I will keep you in mind. Thanks.

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