"Over the Hill" in Alaska? - Alaska Fly Fishing Trips

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“Over the Hill” in Alaska?


I remember my 30th birthday in Alaska like it was yesterday, and I remember thinking how cool it was to have it while I was guiding in Alaska. This year I will have my big 40th while at camp. I have never put much thought into my birthdays, but as I approach turning “Over the Hill” this week, I wonder… is it time to grow up?

I’m sure some might think, “Alright it’s time to get over that guiding stuff and get on with a real job/career.” And I have certainly pondered that thought a time or two, but is that societal pressures or the inner me talking? I do know the wilds of Alaska have captured me over the years. Those who have experienced Alaska know how captivating and special it is, and for me, I feel especially fortunate to have spent so much time on the Alaska Peninsula.

A simple Alaska Peninsula birthday gift

The funny thing about birthdays in the Alaska bush is you just never know what and if you will get a birthday gift. And if you get a gift from your fellow guides, you might expect something along the lines of a box of flies wrapped in a sock. Of course, this will need to be returned to them to get through the next day of guiding, because that was probably the last clean pair of socks and a box of guide flies. But hey, it’s definitely the thought that counts.

To the right is a photo of a memorable gift given to me on my 30th made by Willa Kriebel, the camp chef. She made this with clam shells found on the beach near camp. I was a bit obsessed with moose at the time, so the gift was perfect.

by Head Guide, Ted Mendrek

Posted in All Posts, Guide Journal