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A Westerner Looks at the Beaverkill
Roderick L. Haig-Brown
August 10, 1959
In the heat of summer, a visitor recalls his spiritual pilgrimage to a great river
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August 10, 1959

A Westerner Looks At The Beaverkill

In the heat of summer, a visitor recalls his spiritual pilgrimage to a great river

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Western eyes and a western heart could not ask for more than this. It has all been going on for a very long time. The fathers of the sons and the grandfathers of the grandsons fished here on earlier opening days, grew up with the clubs or on the free water. Halford and Skues and Pulman, Walton and Cotton and Berners made spiritual pilgrimage across the ocean to the Beaverkill. Gordon, Hewitt, LaBranche, Atherton, the Darbees, the Dettes and many others caught the spirit, interpreted it anew, sent it out across the vast continent. Today it reaches the many millions who seek respite and reward in the fly streams from Atlantic to Pacific, from Mexico to the Arctic Ocean.

I would go again to the Beaverkill when the rhododendrons have opened their buds on the slope above the Home Pool, when the trees are in full leaf and the air hums with warmth and life and the river is low. I would hope for a hatch and a few great trout rising steadily here and there, "critical and hard to please." But if there were none, it could scarcely matter. The river would be there and its banks—and all about me the shades of great fly-fishers. They would know I searched faithfully, and in an honorable tradition.

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