I have a tendency to get ahead of myself no matter what time of year it is. It seems no sooner than fishing season heats up, I can't wait for archery elk season to come around. By the end of September, I am looking ahead to late season deer hunts in December and thinking about next fishing season again. In recent years, I have had to force myself to slow down and try to be more present in whatever season I find myself in.
"To fish when it's cold out or stay home and think about fishing when it's warm out?"
I am incredibly fortunate to live on the edge of the Rocky Mountains, where there is something to keep even the pickiest of hunters and anglers occupied all twelve months of the year. The long seasons can be easy to take for granted, and just as soon as you get into a groove with one, it becomes very tempting to start daydreaming about the next one up.
I have come to find a lot of value in immersing myself in whatever particular season I find myself in, rather than meticulously counting down days to the next item on my calendar. Of course, I will always be able to tell you how long it is until the archery elk opener - almost down to the hour - but outside of that, I have found myself wanting to make the most of the here and now.
Even at this stage of winter, when it's easiest to let time slip away while daydreaming about the months to come, there is plenty that I should be immersed in. This is the perfect time of year for planning and preparation. As much as I might want to sit around and scroll through photos from last year's drake hatch - maybe it makes more sense to look at some maps, review my notes, and pick out some new spots where I want to fish this season.
"Is this not one of the most perfect fishing holes you've ever seen? God, I can't wait until elk season"
When I break it all down - all of the different things that I love to do every year are fleeting in their own way. There are only thirty days of archery elk season. Perhaps another month of archery deer hunting, depending which states I can extend my season in. Four, maybe five months of quality fishing on freestone streams, if I don't count September towards fishing season - which I don't.
Nothing seems to last very long anymore, and looking ahead makes it hard to look at what you are currently surrounded by. Even if it's simply some down time to plan your next adventure - that's something worth capitalizing on. I don't fancy myself a big resolutions type of person, but if I were to make one for this year, it would be to ensure that I am staying immersed in the moment that I find myself in. As long as that moment has something to do with hunting or fishing, of course.