Author Archives: rivertoprambles

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!

“Fishing and Eating in Saloons”

[Part 4, the last in my Rocky Mountains series for 2020.] The sportswriter Red Smith and his small son were fishing in the north woods long ago and would customarily break for lunch in a local tavern. At one point, … Continue reading

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Yellowstone Getaways

[Part 3 of a 4-part series that reflects a recent Rocky Mountain road trip with my daughter.] Sandhill cranes fed near the roadway to the geyser basins. We took a morning hike to Fairy Falls, a columnar drop of 197 … Continue reading

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Feral Thoughts, Wyoming

[Part 2 in a 4-part series on a Rocky Mountain tour & camp-out with my daughter.] We immersed ourselves for a much needed bath in the cool waters of the Snake River, near our Station Creek campsite. Our next move … Continue reading

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Mountain Times, Colorado

[The first in a 4-part series that reflects a recent road trip, camping with my daughter through the mountains of Colorado, Wyoming and Montana. I hope you enjoy the ride.] Our first Colorado night was spent in Monument at Terry’s … Continue reading

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The Hemlock Grove

Preparing for a long road trip into western places where I like to believe that a fly-fishing spirit can really soar at times like this, it’s good to remind myself that one needn’t go far in order to find a … Continue reading

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Strange Fruit and Other Start-Ups

1.  I had a couple of non-related flashbacks to the late 1980s. In the first one I recalled a winter night, trundling off to a movie at Alfred U., in which our four-month-old son experienced his first theater production. Woody … Continue reading

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Transitions

Anticipating an August road trip out West, I recalled several earlier trips taken with my wife and kids– one trip just two years ago, and others, oh, way back… Perhaps the highlight of one westward transition occurred as we stopped … Continue reading

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Narragansett

My quest for saltwater species taken with a fly rod continued to elude me, defying all odds, on coastal Rhode Island. There were no fish seen or caught in my pleasant trials along Quonnie Pond, at the sand bar on … Continue reading

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Common Sense is Like Running Water

I have a new book of poetry just released from FootHills Publishing in Kanona, New York. From the High Hills to the Bay is a 72-page hand-sewn book with spine– pretty cool, even though I understand that poetry is not … Continue reading

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Reflections on a Gentle Art

  The Genesee River near Shongo, New York was flowing weakly and with water almost too warm for trout survival. I found a stretch of river cool enough for an evening of fly fishing and began hooking and releasing hatchery … Continue reading

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