Author Archives: Vic Bergman

Crowsnest Pass, Alberta photographer

Bamboo Trout – Part III

I’ve been able to get out fishing a few times since my last post. Each time, I used my Shakespeare bamboo fly rod. I acquired this rod in a trade about thirty-five years ago. It’s a 9-foot, three-piece, 8-weight outfit. I’ve nicknamed the rod, Romeo, in honour of William Shakespeare, England’s “Bard of Avon,” not to be confused with William Shakespeare Jr., inventor of the level-winding fishing reel and founder of the Shakespeare Fishing Tackle Company, who produced my fly rod. To my knowledge, William Shakespeare Jr. and his father, William H. Shakespeare, of Kalamazoo, Michigan, were not related to the English playwright, poet, and actor, whose name they shared.

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Bamboo Trout – Part II

Over the past month, I’ve been able to get out on the water a few times by myself. With temperatures climbing above 30 degrees Celsius (85°F) on some days, I’ve been fishing the cooler headwater reaches of a couple of local trout streams. It’s places like this where I enjoy using my bamboo fly rod the most.

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Bamboo Trout – Part I

As a young boy, I used to go for my haircuts at George’s Barber Shop in Coaldale. My father would usually take me here when it was time for a trim. The shop was located in a small, white stuccoed building just off Main Street. Inside, it was set up like any other barbershop of the day. There was a barber chair, along with all the usual accouterments of the trade – hair trimmers, clippers, scissors, razors, combs, and towels. There were chairs where customers would sit and wait their turn while conversing with George. What set George’s Barber Shop apart from the typical barbershop was the array of fishing tackle that was for sale. The walls were covered with all sorts of lures, spinners, lines, and other fishing paraphernalia. Clear plastic boxes stacked on shelves were filled with colorful trout flies. There was a rod rack near the front where bamboo fly rods were on display. I’m sure there were fiberglass fly rods in the rack as well, but I remember being drawn to the bright, honey-coloured cane rods.

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Blairmore Cemetery Repair Work

There are about a dozen heritage cemeteries located in Crowsnest Pass. Many of the early citizens and founding members of our communities are buried here. Some of their graves date to the early 1900s. Many of the descendants of these people have also passed away or no longer live here. As a result, some gravesites have been neglected over the years and have fallen into disrepair. Exposure to the elements, combined with the growth of trees, bushes, and other vegetation, has taken its toll, particularly on some of the older graves.

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May or December?

Less than two weeks ago, we were enjoying summer-like weather in Crowsnest Pass. It was sunny and warm, with daytime temperatures registering in the mid-20 degree Celsius (75°F) range. After a long winter, people were glad to be able to be outside wearing t-shirts and shorts. A lot of people were out biking, hiking, and walking their dogs. The nice weather also drew numerous anglers onto some of our local trout waters. Life was good.

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Frank Slide Bouldering

Bouldering has become an extremely popular activity in the Frank Slide. On any given day, you will see multiple groups of people hiking into the vast expanse of the slide in search of limestone boulders to test their climbing skills. On their backs, they carry padded foam mats – crash pads, to be placed at the base of the boulder. It’s the only form of protection from injury they have, should they fall. This type of free climbing is made without the use of ropes or harnesses.

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Several weeks ago, I made a day trip to Writing-On-Stone Provincial Park. The park is located near the Alberta-Montana border, 42 km southeast of the town of Milk River. I grew up less than an hour and a half drive from the park but had never visited it until now.

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A River Never Sleeps

Visiting a river in winter is an experience unlike that of any other time of year. From a distance, a river blanketed in snow and ice may appear as if it is asleep in the season. Upon close examination, all is not as it seems.

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Art Exhibit – Crowsnest Pass Gallery

Due to the current health restrictions, the Crowsnest Pass Public Art Gallery is holding an online version of their annual No Particular Topic exhibition. The exhibit runs January 24 – February 21, 2021. Click on the link below to see all the artwork on display.

No Particular Topic Online Exhibit

One of my photographs, Crowsnest Pass Alberta – Your Adventures Await, will be on display. More information on this photograph can be seen on the Exhibits page of my website.

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Christmas 2020

It’s going to be a different Christmas this year, to be sure. Things will be a lot quieter than what we are accustomed to. Most of us will be staying at home with members of our household. I suspect a lot of people will be celebrating Christmas dinner with their families over FaceTime, Skype, and Zoom. It’s a good thing Santa is immune to the pandemic and has been provided world-wide clearance to make his rounds, come Christmas Eve.

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