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The Alaska Chronicles: An Unwashed View of Life, Work, and Fly Fishing Hardcover – April 1, 2009
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Bald with honesty, frequently on the edge, technically accomplished, and willing to take risk--we need more writers like Miles Nolte. --The Fly Fish Journal
Forget about lilting odes to delicate fish. The Alaska Chronicles is a hard-edged look at the outfitting business, stripped of all the hype and glamour. Direct, forceful, and engrossing, it offers a glimpse into a fly fishing life few have seen, and even fewer would endure. --The Trout Underground
Just when the idea of the alternative occupation seems to have lost its center, along comes Miles Nolte who risks dignity and normalcy to give us a guileless narrative of life as an Alaskan fishing guide. Nolte's equitable but unsparing take on guides, clients, and his own foibles is as engaging as any book of its kind. --MidCurrent.com
From the Back Cover
On September 20, 2007, Miles Nolte posted the final installment of his summer job memoir on The Drake magazine's Internet message board. For seventeen weeks, Nolte had used his laptop and a satellite Internet connection to transmit his semi-daily account of what it's really like to be a fly fishing guide on a remote Alaskan river.Sitting in his tent above a river packed with migrating salmon and gluttonous trout, he wrote about anglers that he enjoyed guiding and others that he couldn't wait to get rid of. He described epic fishing days and days of bitter disappointment. He typed about wolves and eagles and beavers and bears. Lots of bears. There were periods of sunny weather and dry flies, followed by stretches of relentless rain, wind, and cold. And beyond the trials that nature doled out, Miles also described how overworked outboards don't always start, tents sometimes catch fire, and dysfunction often runs rampant among divergent guide and client personalities that are thrust together in a desolate and trying environment. By the time Miles returned from Alaska, his online musings had attracted a loyal and vicarious following of anglers and guides from around the world. They praised him for his articulate candor, and they thanked him profusely for transporting them with each new post to a place they may have otherwise never reached. Departure Publishing is proud to present The Alaska Chronicles, a fishing guide's memoir that originated and evolved in a most unusual manner. If you've ever fished Alaska, or if you hope to someday, this book will leave you with an insightful view of the outfitting business and a newfound appreciation for North America's most pristine and prolific coldwater fishery.
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Secondly, too often books by fishing guides are written under the guise of the wise, old sage, imparting wisdom to the rest of us. Nolte tells it like it is, or at least, how he sees it. He's impatient, frankly critical of his fishing camp's management and downright disparaging about some, or at least one, of his fellow guides. He sees his paying anglers as ordinary people, full of expectations, only some of which can be realized. Fishing is not always easy and not always good. He's generous with his help to those anglers who are trying hard to do what's needed, and contemptuous of the lazy and those unwilling to learn.
I'm headed to an Alaska fishing lodge this fall. Nolte's book will be very helpful in making my expectations more realistic. And it will certainly encourage me to be as nice as possible to my fishing guide. The Alaska Chronicles is highly recommended, especially for fishermen, even more for fly-fishermen, and most of all to fly-fisherman headed to our 49th state on a fly-fishing expedition.
Mr. Nolte, you owe us another book, quick!