It was in the early 2000s when we began embarking on our annual ‘Mancation’ to the Snowies to spend a few days in the high mountain streams together, learning the nuances of fly fishing, the blind leading the blind. Amazingly, we managed to bumble our way along and learned a bit as we went. We even caught a few fish, enough to keep us coming back anyway. It started out with just Steve and I. We met as teenagers and quickly discovered a shared love for fishing. I’d grown up fishing the saltwater of the NSW South Coast in places like Tuross and Bendalong on family holidays, and then spear fishing around the Five Islands off Port Kembla. Steve had grown own up in the proximity of some pretty productive lakes- first Lake Tuggeranong in the Nation’s Capital, and then Lake Illawarra where he’d explore the best spots in a small tinny or wade the flats close to shore. I’m not sure exactly when we first discovered our shared passion, those early years seem to all morph into one, but somewhere, one of us mentioned ‘fly fishing’, and we were both immediately on the same page.
Now looking back, I can see that our initial discovery of this shared passion has led us on a journey of adventure and we have built many cherished memories along the way. Reflecting on the past twenty years, one of the constants has been the ‘upcoming fishing trip’- that beacon of adventure that beckons us onwards and gives us something to look forward to when the days get long and the demands seem endless. The adventures have been many and varied. Our annual ‘Mancation’ has grown to include other mates over the years. We don’t always head to the mountains- we all have slightly different preferences. But we are mates, and we love to share adventures together.
Sharing the passion has enabled us to encourage and support each other, to connect on deeper levels than just the fish we’ve caught, and it’s always been with the stunning back drop of a beach, creek, river, lake or ocean to help invigorate us in a way that only nature can. In these places, adventure just happens and we feel refreshed.
This is one of the reasons we love fly fishing so much- it is the places it takes you, the people you meet and the memories you make along the way- all packaged up in the pursuit of a primal past time where anticipation is always building and you never quite know what adventure lies around the next bend. Over the years our responsibilities as husbands, fathers and colleagues has grown. Life has unfolded, a meandering journey like so many of the rivers we love to fish. We have always encouraged each other to hold on to this sense of adventure and cherish those opportunities to get back to the simple pursuits. Doing so adds so much richness to our lives and energises in a way that no carton of Redbull or triple shot latte could. We now find ourselves embarking on a new adventure together with the launch of Meander Fly Co. Like so many of our adventures over the years, it’s just kind of happened and we’ve been enjoying the ride. We hope you enjoy what we have to bring you, but most of all, we hope that in some way you are inspired again to seek adventure, better still, to share this adventure with good friends and enjoy the richness that our pastime has to offer.
If you have adventures you’d like to share, please send photos with brief captions to firstname.lastname@example.org or Instagram using the hashtags #meanderflyco and #equippedforadventure so we can spread the inspiration!