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Thursday, September 30, 2010

Among the Disappearing Islands of the Chesapeake

Yesterday I fished the Bay again with Major Ski but this time with his father, pictured here and Lou, the Mad Russian as well. Ski's father is my age and clearly enjoys fishing but is not as fanatical about it as the other four men who were on guide Capt. Pete Dahlberg's boat.

On this trip as well as the Chesapeake outing with Capt. Brady earlier this month, much of the time was spent on the opposite side of the Bay from our launch at Solomons Island. Brady Bounds displayed a huge amount of knowledge of the physical and social history of the islands along the Eastern Shore which are shrinking and disappearing into the Bay as water levels rise. Unlike Brady, Capt. Pete did not grow up in Bay Country but in Upstate New York near where I was born. Nevertheless, in learning to fish and guide in the Chesapeake he has learned a lot and took us to one of the most interesting areas, Holland Island. Author Tom Horton has written of stopping to play with island children when he was ten and on a fishing trip with his father:

Now only a lone, long abandoned house sits as evidence that this was once a thriving community with its own baseball team. Odd to be fishing in waters where the ruins of old roads and buildings lie beneath the surface, but the catching was good and we all went home with rockfish and speckled trout to eat. Temperatures were in the high 60's and it rained from the late morning to our return to Solomons in mid-afternoon. Thanks to Lou Sagatov for the picture.

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