I spent a good part of Saturday attending to a spring ritual… cleaning out my fishing vest and reorganizing my fly boxes to make ready for the season ahead.

When I empty out my vest, it can be like opening a museum or a time capsule. And some of the things I find leave me scratching my head and wondering, “What was I thinking?”


There are, of course, some typical relics: The stale pack of gum. The vial of waterlogged aspirin tablets. The empty leader wrappers, dead tippet coils, and about 2 pounds of gravel that collected in the bottoms of my pockets.

But then there are the truly odd things… like a medium Fender guitar pick… a 1000-peso bill from Chile… a Sharpie pen… a tongue depressor… and an out-of-state Michigan fishing license (from 2003). I guess that spring vest cleaning is less of a ritual than I suggested.

So, whether you wear a vest, or a pack, do you ever dig in there and find some odd, archival item? Tell me something truly weird, and I’ll give you a glow-in-the-dark Rio LumaLux fly line, which is great for casting mouse flies at night.