Moonpie and I spent the 14th through the 16th on the Blackwater above Joyners Bridge. The water was normal, clear, had flow and was 50 degrees. Air temps ranged from a numbing 19 to 50 degrees.
Trash was not to bad but I did see two dead deer in the water. I think these mortally wounded deer though and had not been butchered then thrown in the river like others I found this past year. I saw no other water quality issues. I went hoping the blackfishing was going to be as good as the last trip at our blackfish spot further upriver but it was not to be. I can’t figure out what is wrong with this place this year. It has not been productive at all for blackfish like in past years. I did catch 3 or 4 and 3 catfish, a bass and 3 speckel, but that’s about it. Oh I did pull up something that was a foot long a seriously gross. I really could not identify it but it looked like maybe it was a dead eel or snake, I don’t know cause I did not get my face any closer than the length of my fishing rod.
Whew! What a cold trip and the weather guys really did me wrong on this one also. I could not believe it snowed on me the second day for two hours off and on. That was ruff with a 25 mph wind blowing snow upriver against my face.
Well folks I got a phone call the first day out there that has changed my life. I usually do not have the phone on because I’m out there for so long I have to conserve battery power, but I was expecting a call from a friend. So when the phone rang I thought it was he, but no. It was Pearl August from the Volvo for Life Hero Awards with Freezing Deer on a conference call to me on the river! I did not know what to think at first but as the cold wind howled at me I heard her say “congratulations” you are a finalist in the Volvo For Life Awards. I was stunned, Freezing Deer sounded like she was about to cry and Moonpie started doing a rendition of Rare Earth’s “ I Just Want To Celebrate”. So that means that The BNRP will receive at least $25,000 and maybe $100,000. Of course there is the chance I could win a Volvo for life every three years, but I’m not going to hold my breath on that one. So thank everybody who voted me. The support I got from around her was phenomenal. Indeed the support I got from around the world was unbelievable. I told the Volvo people when they ask me what does it mean to me to be a finalist, I told them that to me the greatest thing is the fact that I have so much support and that people around here must really truly believe in me and what the BNRP does for this community. It really makes me feel good to know that.
That night by the light of a nearly perfect half moon Moonpie and I danced around the camp fire with great exuberation and fanfare in celebration, thankful that we are blessed with the two river’s we call Blackwater and Nottoway.