Tag Archives: king solomon’s mine

Snakes, why does it always have to be snakes …

King Solomon’s mines were no different, immense wealth hidden away by inclement terrain, protected by idol worshiping cannibals and unspeakable terrors, whose existence was part fact and part fable.

I’m thinking along these lines as I hear the Yolo County flood control officer tell me of the Central Valley’s “lost trout stream”, whose canyon a narrow scratch through waist-high tick-laden scrub, flanked by impenetrable sheets of rock whose reflective capabilities amplify the stifling heat, whose trail-less slopes offer unsteady footing for deer and the most practiced outdoorsman.

… that being the Good News …

… and while this self-same official confesses they don’t fish, they are adamant they took a family member there who caught trout just prior to being chased from the ravine by hordes of Rattlesnakes unleashed by enraged Buddhists.

Buddhists, why does it always have to be Buddhists

The thought of a splinter cell of camo-clad Buddhists gives me pause -what with Karma being the kissing cousin of an Angler’s Luck, something even the most rational, level-headed, and scientific angler will tell you is something never to trifle with

… and while I might scoff at private property, barbed wire, and enraged land owners packing weaponry, the notion of being luck-less with rod in hand suggests throwing streamers at a balky lawnmower might be as rewarding.

rattlesnake_creekThen there was that bothersome “infested” word she used, “… the canyon is infested with rattlesnakes …”

Which doubled my enthusiasm given that how many and how big the trout were is always proportional to the danger present, and as only headhunting cannibals can rival angry Buddhists, ticks, and snakes snapping at every exposed extremity,  means I’ve stumbled on the Lost Dutchman – the Flying Dutchman, and Noah’s Ark – all captured on the greasy folds of a hastily narrated paper map.

Given that John Muir gave no hint, Audubon was afraid to commit an image to paper, and Father Serra crossed himself and returned to the coast, the trout are likely both wild and lonesome,  especially so given their remote location and inclement surroundings. Quite possibly they’ve given up insects all together – relying on a diet of rock-scalded rabbit and white rice, perhaps even bits of human flesh, as no one that has seen the creek returned alive … except the Yolo County Flood Control employee, and since she don’t fish can’t be considered people

Committing all those directions to a hamburger wrapper and retracing that tortuous path in 4-wheel low, resulted in one long distance glimpse of my quarry from the ridgeline above. I was warned that it was too early to fish as it is still discolored by Spring runoff and three times its traditional flow.

I dubbed it Rattlesnake Creek, and while I can surely make it down without loss of life, getting back up is liable to be hellish – not to mention all those skinned extremities from rock hopping down the narrow canyon, or passing out from the heat while attempting to add waders, vests, and tackle to the mix.

rattlesnake_swim_good… and if to make matters worse, as I stood in mid current framing a potential scenario where I might attempt the outing alone (as my fishing pals are unadventurous and complete pussies ), I had one of the rattlers that infest my Little Stinking swim up and attempt to share my waders. A reminder that they swim just fine – and even perched on a rock in midstream safety would still be an issue.

But only because Rattlesnake Creek is a trout stream, if it was full of Smallmouth, them snakes would fear the water more than my ponderous tread ..

… if it was full of Smallmouth, I’d be scared to go too …