You can argue length, tube size, rocker, and obviously brand, but for me the choice was easy. An Aire 130R fit the bill for what we needed in a boat.
Her maiden voyages included the Eagle, Colorado, Gunnison, and the Arkansas. While rain haunted us most evenings, only the Colorado was threatening but clear as dusk approached.
The Eagle’s evening storm was relentless. Pounding the crew with rain and hail with strong gusts of wind pushing us back to the put in. As the sun disappeared and the rain subsided, the clouds of mosquitos engulfed the swarms of baetis and caddis. Armed with headlamps to get us home, we stayed out late, getting every fish that would rise during the celebrated “magic hour” on the Eagle.
After an early morning and a late night few restaurants are open past midnight, and even fewer in the mountains. One such restaurant exists in the town of Minturn boasting a famous Reuben sandwich. Legendary they told us it was, and it was indeed the best any of us had ever eaten. Magusto’s Reuben sandwich was simply fantastic.
While most trips are judged by the amount of large fish put in front of a lens, the fact is every trip is full of less than desirable specimens. Those on board the red boat are humble enough to showcase some of our more modest accomplishments.
One thing learned over time is that fishing from a boat is different than working a bank on foot. Our crew had neither the patience nor the desire to throw an indicator and instead opted for streamers and topwater. Few methods of fishing are as rewarding or exciting as throwing streamers along a bank from a casting platform. Repeatedly thrashing tandem streamers against a bank will eventually reward the angler with that perfectly aggressive predatory response.
As night fell for the last time we gave homage to the Angling Gods for their generosity on our adventure. Until we meet again…