Breaking News: Fly Fishing on Kepler-22b (April Fool’s)
MidCurrent and TU Partner on Interplanetary Project
Today MidCurrent and Trout Unlimited are announcing a new partnership to study the feasibility of fly fishing on Kepler-22b, and to participate in the planning for the first manned mission to that planet.
As you have no doubt heard, scientists announced in December that they had discovered a new planet with the Kepler Space Telescope. As it turns out, Kepler-22b’s temperature and climate are ideal for fishing.
As we considered what this discovery might mean to fly fishing, we knew that a tremendous opportunity had been laid bare before us. With proper planning, we realized, the resources on Kepler-22b could be fully understood and preserved for fly fishers, whom we feel are the ideal stewards for future inhabitable planets.
Ever since TU and MidCurrent began exploratory meetings in January, we have been receiving daily calls and emails from experts, pundits, and thought-leaders about the need to address the Kepler-22b opportunity.
We were impressed by the level of interest in the topic, the sophistication of those already planning gear and strategy choices for the virgin planet, and the passion behind ideas for preserving its resources for future generations of fly fishers. Artists and photographers are already envisioning the angling environment and turning out some stunning depictions of catching what may be, finally, the really big one.
We’re taking this opportunity to publish some of the dozens of calls for action received by our Poisson d’Avril committee in recent weeks. MidCurrent and TU take these ideas very seriously, and we hope you do to. Collectively they are proof that the best minds in the industry can work together to plan a better fly-fishing future for us all.
Be sure to see the special link that allows you to sign up to be among the first inter-planetary fly fishers at the bottom of this page!
|Scott Bowen||Jim Babb||Paul Schullery 1 2|
|Tom Keer||Chris Santella||Conway Bowman|
|Pete McDonald||Jack Williams||Morgan Lyle|
|Kirk Deeter||Simon Gawesworth||Tom Pero|
|Jerry Kustich||Lou Ureneck||Mac McKeever|
|Kirk Werner||Andrew Bennett||Tom Sadler|
The Keppler-22b Fly-Fishing Colonization Plan
While The Keppler-22b Fly-Fishing Colonization (FFC) plan is in its most nascent stage, one thing is very clear: This movement requires several satellites capable of planet-sized photographic surveys, and we need long-range rockets to deliver these satellites to orbit.
The reasons are simple: Surveying. And primo cold-water angling.
The FFC needs to learn the position of the high-water mark of every river on Keppler-22b if we’re going to secure public access before developers arrive. Those developers are already buying rockets. The 600 light years between Earth and this new planet cannot become a hindrance to the FFC’s effort in this regard.
These satellites will photograph the surface of Keppler-22b, recording every headwater, river, and estuary. By establishing a high-water mark around every waterway, the FFC can then draw up the correct plans for land preservation, wilderness desigations, and access.
The National Air and Space Administration (NASA) is the governing body regarding Keppler-22b, and has already required mapping plans from the oil, gas, and coal industries, which are speculating about the quantities of “extractables” under the surface of Keppler-22b. NASA will not accept any similar petitioning without proper satellite images.
Rockets and satellites might strike some prudent anglers as huge expenses. They are. The possible results of such technology would over the years turn into billions of dollars in angling revenue, however, because of the potential for extreme high-quality cold-water angling on Keppler-22b.
The surface of Keppler-22b is likely to be significantly cooler than the average ambient temperature of Earth. This is due to its G-type sun, the same type as Earth’s sun, being smaller and cooler than ours.
This fact has led to informed speculation that the inshore waters, estuaries, and river habitats of Keppler-22b are potentially prime trout and salmon habitat. However, roughly 70-percent of the surface of Keppler-22b could be ocean, so coastline and river valley miles would be very limited in relation to the overall surface area of the planet.
With such excellent but limited trout habitat planet-wide, we intergalactic environmental stewards have little time to act. Preservation of all riverine and estuarial habitat must rank high on the FFC’s plan, as well as watershed protections.
Think about it: Keppler-22b could present us several entire continents the size of Africa or Asia in which smart, proactive fly-fishing colonization could create gigantic, all-public-access blue-ribbon wilderness zones, where all development is prohibited. These zones would offer the potential for all kinds of outdoor recreation—kayaking, bird-watching, nudism, rock-climbing—that the front-load costs of surveying, litigating, and protecting these zones would quickly pay off (not counting the 600 light years in travel).
As more and more is learned about the surface of Keppler 22-b, the picture becomes more clear that this is a giant cold-water fishery just waiting to happen. Imagine catching Patagonia sea-run browns, Taimen, and massive bull trout all in the same day. Imagine recreating every Atlantic salmon run on the American east coast.
These things could happen. But we need a plan, and the plan needs rockets.
—Scott Bowen is attending the Wookiee Nation Spey-Casting Competition on Kashyyyk.
“Houston, We Have Lift Off”
According to the Washington Post’s Brian Vastag, “the search for Earth-like planets circling other stars is heating up, but the latest discovery is not too hot at all. It’s not too cold, either. Instead, the temperature on the newly announced planet Kepler-22b could be just right for life — about 72 degrees, a perfect spring day on Earth.”
What does that exactly mean for fly fishermen? It’s simple. Water temperatures that are not too hot and not too cold. In other words, Kepler22-b rivers and streams will run at the optimal temperature of between 55 and 65 degrees. Fly fishermen live for those temperatures, when insects hatch vigorously and fish eat continuously.
Every day on Kepler22-b promises to be an epic day, and fly fishing culture in general will closely resemble a well-branded Florida example of perfection: Disney’s “Small World.” Think of Kepler22-b as a Small World of fisheries.
Most anglers are intimately familiar with those magic water temperatures, as they are ideal for a trout’s metabolic rate. When temperatures fall above or below that sweet spot, a trout will metabolize a stomach-full of food every four days. When temperatures are right in that perfect range, the same trout processes a stomach full of food every day, meaning that it needs to eat.
The liability of that consistency for trout fishermen is that there will only be three hatches all year long. Anglers will see Hendricksons, Red Quills, and tan caddis, but that is it. Because there is no seasonality on Kepler-22b, anglers will experience those hatches every day. There will be no high or low water, no fall foliage, and no winter midging.
Dyed-in-the-wool fly rodders consider that consistency to be a sort of Sodom and Gomorrah of trout fishing. One unnamed angler yelled “Remember Lot’s Wife!” to a crowd of would-be extraterrestrial anglers. “It’s just unthinkable that so many anglers want to go to Kepler-22b for this monotonous experience,” he said. “It’s like fishing in a hatchery.”
Space travel used to be a Buck Rodgers deal, but no longer. Sir Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic is likely to offer regular space travel to Kepler-22b. According to their website (www.virgingalatic.com): “tickets cost $200,000 and deposits start from $20,000. If you are interested in discussing your reservation with us directly please fill in the booking form below and we will be in touch as soon as possible to answer any questions you may have. Or you can contact one of our Accredited Space Agents around the world. They have been specially selected and trained by us to handle all aspects of your spaceflight reservation.”
Suspiciously, Virgin Galactic has not yet mentioned baggage fees.
—Tom Keer, Blade Runner Endorsed Fly Fishing Guide, Moonraker III
Yet Another Place to Fly Fish Before You Die
A proper mood needs to be set for the adventure. To this end, the Kepler-22b Fly Fishing Consortium has landed on a mode of conveyance that marries the necessities of space travel with the conventions of earthly fishing transportation. Guests will fly to Keppler-22b in a pale blue 1972 Chevrolet Suburban retrofitted (thanks to the design assistance of Car Talk’s Tom and Ray Magliozzi) with jet propulsion engines powered by a combination of vegetable oil, solar energy and Rainier beer. Passengers will have several in-flight entertainment options, including an infinite loop of “Running Down the Man” portrayed by hand puppets and a hip-hop retelling of “A River Runs Through It” (produced and recorded by will.i.am). Beverage service will include Rainier beer (unless it’s needed for fuel) and corn nuts that have been painstakingly aged in the pilot’s fly vest. —Chris Santella, author of Fifty More Places To Fly Fish Before You Die, not yet dead, at one of those places
I can’t believe the secret is already out there. Then again three years is a long time to keep anything fly under wraps in the age of instant information gratification.
It’s rolling around a Class G star, the same deal as our sun. Do you know what this means? Neither do I, but they do, and they’re the ones who run the Kepler telescope. 22b is in the hospitable zone of that particular Class G, meaning all that theoretical water swirling around rock is ripe with untapped ambush points.
It’s surface gravity, in one calculation, is 2.4 times that of Earth’s. That’s how much bigger it is than our planet, but it could be significantly denser, rendering an intermediate sink line the equivalent of a Rio T-1400, with a half mile per second sink rate.
Getting there presents a problem. Not an insurmountable one. We’ve already sent probes deep into space. (I think I went to Mars once in college but all I remember is hearing the Allman Brothers.) We’re ill equipped to travel 600 light years in reasonable time, but quantum physics may provide a shortcut. Physicists have already proven sub-atomic particles can exist in two places simultaneously—maybe they can work out a system for instant travel. Hook us up, Sir Roger Penrose.
Scientists estimate the surface temperature is around 72 degrees Fahrenheit—San Francisco weather. I’m guessing there’s a 22b equivalent of the striped bass foraging its rocky coasts so I’d transport a selection of mushmouths, clousers, half-and-halves, deceivers and any other archetype fly that works for a host of species.
If I’m there first I’m banning the use of umbrella rigs and immediately granting the 22b stripers gamefish status. By decree, anyone caught with crystallized fish fillets in their freezer will be tazered.
Fly fishing 22b is the next big thing, so hip that I’m making a line of mesh trucker’s hats emblazoned with the word “Extrasolar.”® Cash only, please.
–Pete McDonald, earthside (we think)
Invasives? We Don’t Need Any Stinking Invasives
Another planet with liquid water is exciting but also means we have some responsibilities. As the Senior Scientist at TU, my first concern is that we don’t inadvertently or purposely transport some of our earthly aquatic species to Kepler-22b. Brown trout, brook trout, rainbow trout, and many other species have been transported to places far from their home ranges much to the detriment of the native fauna.
We owe the native species of Kepler-22b a chance. So, I’ll be sure to check the coolers to make sure they contain only approved beverages. Also, watch those wading shoes—especially any felt soles—to make sure they don’t have any mudsnails or algae clinging to pores in the fabric. Although, given that Kepler-22b is 22 million light years away, all our gear will probably have plenty of time to dry out and any hitchhiking organisms should be pretty dusty before we get there.
On the flipside, we don’t want to bring any alien life back to Earth either. Catch and release should be the order of the day.
As to the fish fauna of Kepler-22b, rocky reefs and oceans look like the most abundant habitat. That type of habitat can be pretty fishy on Earth. Small fish eat smaller organisms. Bigger fish eat smaller fish. I would try for the bigger fish—at least within reason.
—Jack Williams, TU’s Senior Scientist and head of INUBB (Interplanetary Nuh-Uh to Bucket Biologists)
The Depth-Charge Karboomaroo Fly Line and Other Goodies
I’m currently working on a signature series fly line called the “Kepler-22b Ultra Depth-Charge Karboomaroo 2000” fly line. This line will revolutionize deep water fly-fishing, and is meant to bridge the gap between planetside fishing and extraterrestrial needs. It will come in 3000 -to 10000-grain sizes and has a sink rate of 100 to 500 feet per second. We are partial to the colors of the rainbow here in California, so the line with come in some really out-of-this-world colors.
I’m also working on developing the appropriate fly rod to use with the Karboomaroo. My team has consulted with a number of top secret Chinese Grapho-Nano-Boron-Kevlar-Glass manufacturers and we are in the R/D phase right now. The rod will be tentatively called the GNBKG 2000 BCXB2012. Plans are still not fixed, however, since our Chinese intel reported last week that Orvis, Temple Fork, Hardy, Sage and even some cane rod guys had undercover operatives snooping around our factories.
But let’s not forget the basics. Before heading to Kepler, we would want to figure out how to put in a Whole Foods franchise there. If that worked I’d plan for a Starbucks, Jamba Juice and maybe even an IN and OUT Burger joint. Shoot, why not a Target, Walmart, Bass Pro, Dick’s Sporting Goods, and a Big 5 !!!!
On the other hand, if Kepler-22b has as many big fish as has been reported (by sources I cannot mention), then I would rather have the place to myself to enjoy with my wife, son and the very select group of friends. ( You know who you are.) With them, my iPod, a copy of 101 Cat fishing Tips: For the Absolute Beginner, dental floss, and one dull razor, the picture is pretty much complete.
—Conway Bowman, off the coast in Mare Xenis on one of the Galilean moons of Jupiter, fly fishing for rainbow sharks
Forewarned Is Forearmed
We’ve known that invasive species live on other worlds since The Andromeda Strain. And heaven knows there are species on earth that other planets can do without. So the responsible travelling angler will take precautions both before and after fishing on Kepler.
Make sure to rinse the didymo, whirling disease spoor and Pabst Blue Ribbon off your boots before setting foot in Kepler’s soon-to-be-hallowed waters. Earthly plant matter should not be introduced to the environment, even if you manage to get it past the Intergalactic TSA guys (Kepler’s guides can surely help you out in that department anyway.) Needless to say, dinosaur DNA in amber is a complete no-no.
Likewise, check, clean and dry before heading to the spaceport for your trip home. Kepler’s aquatic insect life is far from fully catalogued, and unpleasant surprises are possible. The last thing you want is to be sitting at your dining room table, slumping back in your chair and having a six-foot Green Drake come bursting out of your chest.
Forewarned is forearmed.
—Morgan Lyle, stocked-stream expert, Intergalactic TSA no-fly list since 2009
Report: ITU Kepler22-b Fly-Fishing Expedition an “Awesome Success” Despite Tragedy
Interplanetary Trout Unlimited News Release
Dateline: Palimpsest Lagoon, Ganymede
April 1, 2212
Contact: Juliana Marbury, PIO
ITU’s Ganymede headquarters are abuzz this week with the triumphant return of “Team Earth,” the first interstellar fly-fishing expedition, just back from their exploration of the fishing opportunities on Kepler-22b, a water planet about 600 light years from our solar system. Though their trip was cut short immediately after landing the first fish—affectionately dubbed “Izaak” by team members—ITU Executive Director LaBranche Hardy immediately pronounced the entire project an “awesome success.”
Team Earth leader Mottram Cutchin, freshly revived from twelve years in physiostasis aboard the luxury interstellar sport cruiser Starfisher, was effusive in his praise of the potential of “Kaytootooby” (accent on the third syllable), as the boys affectionately refer to the planet they so long dreamed of visiting. “It was sure too bad about those guys on Whalers 4 and 5, but everything else went perfectly. All in all, it was a hoot.”
Queried about the transport systems that delivered them to the planet’s surface and back home, “Cutch,” as he is affectionately known by his team members, had nothing but praise. “Hyperspace is a trip. Beaming five whalers from orbit to the surface and back¾well, the three of them that came back, anyway¾went without a hitch.” Asked about the generation he spent in stasis on the outward and homeward journeys, Cutchin’s only comment was, “Somehow we need to involve more fiber next time.”
According to team reports, all five of the sleek custom proton-drive whalers had just settled to the surface, and team members had barely begun casting, when Cutchin himself hooked Izaak. This was in about 40 meters of water, where the bottom was in easy reach of his power-diver shooting head.
“I was using a Darkside Deceiver; you know, the one I developed for the larger terraformed lunar tailwaters. I’d no more than begun my retrieve, than WHAM! he nailed it. Cleared two of the whalers on the first jump. I’d just tailed him and dumped him into the cargo tank when all hell broke loose. Next thing I knew, this big honkin’ fish, must have been 200 meters long, came out and inhaled Whaler 4. It was an amazing sight, a classic head-and-tail rise that took in the whaler like a mayfly on the Test. Almost flipped all the other boats with the ripples from the rise form. We’re definitely gonna need heavier tackle next time.”
Whaler 5 had likewise been consumed before Cutchin could signal the Starfisher to retrieve the remaining boats. “We really hated to call it off after that first fish took so quickly, but some of the guys were a little, well, you know, put off by the other guys dying and everything.”
Izaak survived physiostasis on the homeward journey in excellent condition, and in fact grew from his modest one-meter size to twelve meters by the time the Starfisher reached the Ganymede spaceport. In his brand new porta-quarium home, he (his actual gender is as yet unclear, but his blue moustache has led team members to assume he is male) will soon begin a special ITU “Star-Trout Tour” in cooperation with several leading outfitters and tackle manufacturers, with stops at all the major outdoor shows at every planet in the solar system.
Rumors that famed fly tier Whit Kelson is secretly developing a life-size whaler pattern for use on the next trip are as yet unconfirmed, though sources close to Kelson say that extraordinary quantities of deer hair have been rushed to his corporate headquarters on the shores of Ithaca Chasma Stillwater, Tethys.
—Paul Schullery, former fly fishing history expert and first successful inventor of a time-travel device which solved the problem of rematerialization mortality, from somewhere in the future
WAR DECLARED! Brutal Kidnapping of Vermiculatium Empress Sparks Outer Rim Tinderbox!
United Press Intragalactical News Release
Dateline: Vermiculatium, with Outer Rim bureau reports
GST 008.2 Galactic Disk Rotation 437
Contact: Darth Adverb, PIO
Though reports are still sketchy and conflicting, it appears that the entire Cosellian Sector of the Outer Rim has been plunged into a historically unprecedented and rapidly expanding binge of slaughter and planet-scale devastation by the kidnapping of Vermiculatium Empress Blue-Barbel The Elegantly Elongated III, about four Galactic Standard Days ago.
The political situation throughout the Outer Rim had been growing increasingly tense recently, but no knowledgeable observer anticipated this bold move, which was carried out by contract mercenaries of unknown species and planet of origin.
Upon determining that the kidnapping had been sponsored by their long-time rivals in the Timurthean Federation, Vermiculatese forces lashed out, their battle fleets swiftly plasma-bombing the Timurthean homeworld and about 40 of its protectorate planetary systems.
Timurthean Minister of Culture Exquisite Object XI was off-world at a competent accessioning seminar at the time of the attacks, and is thus the only surviving member of the governing council of Timurth. In a statement issued from an undisclosed location earlier today, Mr. Object estimated that the incineration of these planets resulted in the loss of “about three trillion sentient beings plus at least 71 presidential candidates and oodles of really nifty works of art. It’s going to be a heck of a mess for the fine-arts insurance companies, what with the recent elevation of art prices in the Outer Rim. Our hearts go out, and all that.”
The kidnapping occurred as Empress Blue-Barbel arrived for breakfast in the Imperial Casual-Dining Nook at the Summer Palace Gardens. Observers say that suddenly a perfect replica of a Vermiculese Nasal Leech¾the rarest of delicacies and the empress’s favorite snack¾raced through the room. The empress, naturally assuming it was a special treat from the Imperial Chef, chased it down and consumed it. Just as her attendants began to cheer the graceful style of the imperial predation, she was brutally whisked away on an invisible cord attached to the bogus nasal leech.
Imperial Guards gave chase but were only in time to capture two of the mercenaries’ small surface vessels. The vessel carrying the empress was lofted into orbit, where it was received by a mother ship that immediately took to hyperspace.
The captured mercenaries have been of little help in explaining this strange turn of events. Vermiculatese security staff characterized them as “extremely primitive beings, unarmed except for long sticks of indeterminate function. The only being among them with advanced intellectual capacity was the one they call ‘Depthfinder.’ His vocabulary is very limited but his analytical skills are spectacular. As he has claimed to have been enslaved by the others, we are considering offering him sanctuary.”
The mercenaries are being held for trial and ceremonial consumption. A Mark XIV hyperspace tracker drone with full plasma armory is currently searching for their homeworld, which will be slaggized, then towed into the Perpetual Darkness beyond the Outer Rim.
The identification of the sponsor of the mercenaries was determined from a translation of the script on the hulls of both of the captured vessels. Security staff linguists recognized that “Team Earth” was simply a clumsy rendering of “Timurth,” whose empire has now paid dearly for its ill-considered aggression.
During recent tensions on the Outer Rim, there have emerged ever-more complex treaty entanglements among the three dozen empires that currently make up 90 percent of the inhabited planetary systems in the galaxy. Most observers predict that these standing alliances will inevitably draw virtually every military power in the galaxy into the violence. Media commentators agree that most of the galaxy will be rendered uninhabitable before lunch on Friday. They further predict that this will lead to a collapse in the housing market and subsequent economic hard times.
—Paul Schullery, former fly fishing history expert and first successful inventor of warp device which solved the problem of rematerialization mortality, from somewhere in the future
TROUT Seeks Kepler-22b Queries
Kirk Deeter, newly appointed editor of TROUT magazine, is soliciting writer queries, specifically for Kepler-22b-related feature stories. Actually having been there, Deeter suggests, is a plus, but not necessary.
“I think the discovery of another fishable planet opens vast new opportunities, not only in terms of the actual angling, but also regarding the stories fly fishing writers can generate,” Deeter said. “Sure, TROUT likes to focus on conservation topics, but I think Kepler-22b affords additional avenues to think outside the box and break new ground with lifestyle and service-driven articles… stuff that will really revolutionize what people read about fly fishing.”
- The Best Fishing Towns… on Kepler-22b
- Ten Hot Fly Patterns… for Kepler-22b
- Lefty on Casting… on Kepler-22b
- How Tarpon Changed My Life… on Kepler-22b
- Interplanetary Nymph Strategies (Take That, Czechs)… for Kepler-22b
- Three Knots You Need to Know… for Kepler-22b
- Dealing with High Water… on Kepler-22b
- Photo Gallery: Pretty Women Holding Large Fish… on Kepler-22b
“You see, it’s the ‘on Kepler-22b’ that changes everything,” explained Deeter. “It’s literally a brave new world!
“Heck I was even considering an amazing story for a cover package: ‘How to Get Abs Like Lance Armstrong… on Kepler-22b.’ Unfortunately, Outside magazine is already planning to run that.”
— Kirk Deeter, who is totally jazzed about extraterrestrial night-fishing with monster mouse patterns
The Ultimate Do-Over
The idea of colonizing another planet is an exciting prospect for the future of mankind. It will be a chance for us to start anew, working from a blank slate and learning from any mistakes we may have made here on Earth. How often does a species get the opportunity to do that?!
The first thing that needs to happen is the renaming of the new planet. Kepler 22-b sounds too futuristic–like something out of a science-fiction novel. Something more user-friendly, more familiar, is needed in order to entice people accustomed to life here on Earth to commence on a long journey. We shall call the new planet “Earth II.” It will be branded as the Second Coming of the New Promised Land; billed as an angling utopia.
Many of us long for the days of yore–simpler times before everything in life, including fly fishing, became so complicated. A fresh start on a new planet is our chance to go back in time as we travel 22 million light years into the future: we’ll embark on a giant leap forward and arrive in a place from the distant past. After all, we cannot assume that there will be instant infrastructure or electricity to provide the modern amenities we’ve taken for granted here on planet Earth. As settlers on the new planet, it seems fitting that fly anglers should also take on the role of pioneers and forego modern technology–that will evolve in time just as it did here. As we commence anew we’ll use silk lines and bamboo rods (not even fiberglass will have been invented yet). We can, in fact, have the good old days on Kepler-22b/Earth II.
But before we can wet our silk we’ll need to establish good fishable, moving waters. If there aren’t any rivers, anglers need not worry–the government scientists and engineers that were sent to the new planet will quickly devise a way the extract what we need from beneath the planet’s surface. Soon fresh water (but just water we will be promised–no contaminants) will gush from the ground and flow down the mountains. Fly anglers will rejoice, temporarily, until they realize these new rivers don’t automatically come with a population of fish. Fortunately for the anglers on Earth II, government fisheries experts will also be sent to the new planet to establish many hatcheries. Once the new rivers are teeming with fish anglers will have everything they need, and life will be good.
But there is always room for improvement and we won’t be living for long in the dark ages on Earth II. Soon the leaders of the new planet will see the opportunity to enhance civilization by harnessing the power of the recently created rivers. We’ll build dams! Not only will the construction of these dams put thousands of new inhabitants to work and bolster the new economy, but the reservoirs will provide cheap hydro-electric power and an ample supply of water for irrigation and consumption to meet the demands of a rapidly expanding new population. Fly anglers on Earth II will also benefit from the tailwaters created by the new dams, ensuring that anglers aren’t inconvenienced by great fluctuations in river levels or temperatures. Tailwaters will be embraced as year-round fisheries and our new angling utpopia will be complete–well, just as soon as modern fly lines are invented.
The future looks bright. Bring your sunglasses.
—Kirk Werner, author of the Olive series of kids’ fly-fishing books, in the habit of staring at the stars wondering if their might be any woolly buggers on Kepler-22b
RIO Plans Kepler Tapers, Seeks Alien Testers
Everyone at RIO is really excited to read the news of the discovery of Kepler 22b. With the early findings indicating vast oceans and the potential for temperate conditions, it is an ideal place for us to set up a new product testing program with the indigenous aliens. The early suggestions seem to show that the air temperatures on Kepler 22b are perfectly suitable for our coldwater fly lines, though not knowing what the gravitational pull is, would make it tough to decide on how a line will float or sink. We might find that even our fastest sinking lines end up floating! Also, the unknown light spectrum could cause a few problems making a fly line that is visible.
Probably the greatest challenge, though, is making a fly line with a core that will handle the unknown species that might roam the depths. If there is life in the oceans, they might be as tiny as plankton, requiring ultra small flies, super-refined fluorocarbon leaders and fly lines (and rods) well below the 000 sizes that are considered “light” today.
Indeed, the fly lines needed might be so light, we could use that old spool of 1 oz core material that has been sitting in the core-room for the last ten years. This would make a fly line that is no thicker than regular 6lb test mono—think of the possibilities with that!!!
A harder challenge will be if the aquatic life forms were relics from a prehistoric era, and proved to be similar to the Liopleurodon—weighing over 20 tons. We have experimented with ultra strong cores, and believe that with the right feedback we could make a line that could handle such species.
Finally cleaning the fly line could be a real bitch. If there are any Sulphurous oozes from mud beds or sand bars, we’d have to invent a new fly line cleaner that would react with the Sulphur in a positive way. The fly line cleaners we currently have would react violently with the Sulphurous ooze, creating noxious gases – which probably isn’t very good for the local environment.
We are waiting for a little more info from NASA about this new planet, but have already got a number of volunteers willing to go and test these distant waters, should the opportunity arise.
—Simon Gawesworth was born in Kent, England, a location currently hidden from intergalactic telescopes by clouds of lukewarm, vaporized British ale
Ununoctium Spey Lines: Big Casts, Big Fish
I try hard to stay at the forefront of spey technology, so I’ve been really excited to work with Rio on the development of T-33.6 for use when spey fishing on Kepler-22b. Getting big Intruders turned over in an environment with 2.4 times Earth’s gravity would be a real challenge with conventional terrestrial sinktip materials; the exceptional mass of T-33.6 will facilitate tight loops and easy turnover for the first really big ones we find on Kepler.
“We had some challenges manufacturing heads with this density using traditional materials like tungsten,” said Simon Gawesworth, VP of Marketing at Rio. “Once we figured out how to work ununoctium [the heaviest element on Earth] into a supple sinktip material, it was all smooth sailing.”
As we all know, having spey setups with appropriately matched components is the key to consistent casting performance. At this point, collaborative work on 1740 grain Skagit heads and 21.6 weight spey rods is in its infancy, but we’re hopeful that we can get a few quality development cycles wrapped up on the at-least-22-million-year journey to Kepler.
—Andrew Bennett, two-handed rod aficionado, measures middle seat flight time in light years
A Proposal for Saving Coldwater Habitat That’s Out of This World
Saving the village by burning it to the ground? Fellow fish lovers, let’s take a page from this time-honored military maneuver (proven, if I’m not mistaken, by my assiduous reading of history, to win the eternal allegiance of aliens) by applying such a thoughtful strategy to saving the salmonid-filled silvery lacework of pristine waters surely awaiting us on Kepler 22b.
How? With decoy rivers, that’s how. Set ’em up—knock ’em down.
Like those sham western store fronts in the old cowboy movies. Yes! We can do it, folks. With centuries of devasting river-wrecking under our ever-expanding American belts, we have all the rock-moving, water-sucking ingenuity required to construct a whole new world of fake Madsions, fake Beaverkills, fake Ausables, fake Yellowstones, even fake Columbias. You name the trout streams and salmon rivers, big or small: we can re-create them all. Sort of. Enough to fool the bulldozer brigades, anyway.
Let the celestial Corps of Engineers, Bureau of Reclamation, et al have at them. Dam, drain, divert, ditch, dredge, dewater—go, go, go. Blast yourselves silly, boys and girls of the planetary playpen. Pummel away. Then stock the hell out of the remaining channelized ruins with millions of flacid hatchery fish. All in the name of putting people first. I’m getting weak in the knees just thinking of the jobs.
Meantime, we on the side of the real fish and their real habitat bide our time.
As soon as all the deliberately deceptive “rivers” of Kepler 22b are reduced to ruin, trashed beyond recognition, we fly Christo back for galactic ceremonies unveiling the original wild streams—as lucid and lovely and naturally productive as they were when we discovered them—which lay hidden, glistening and glorious, camouflaged beneath vast swaths of aerial-photo shopping-mall-pattern gift wrap.
—Thomas R. Pero, founder of Kepler’s first publishing house, Wild Asteroid Press, and chairman of KOSFW (Keep Our Space Fish Wild)
Jim Babb Reports from Sector Seven (via the Schullery Device)
No one was surprised when a crew member on humanity’s first interstellar expedition snuck a fly rod aboard. After all, didn’t Alan Shephard spoil one of the first moonwalks way back in 1971 with a six-iron and a Top-Flite?
What was surprising was the disappointment in the sport-fishing community when the news came back that Kepler 22b, the most promising (and closest, at a mere 600 lightyears) planet yet discovered, the most similar to Earth, did indeed have all the water (and elbow room; Kepler 22b is 2.4 times larger than Earth) any sane angler could hope for, and yet it didn’t have a single species that would take a fly. At least not as we understand “take.”
Granted, osmotic absorption lacks the soul-thrilling tingle of a trout rising to a mayfly. But then it’s been a very long time since a trout rose to a mayfly on Earth, except in the climate-controlled preserves. And who among us can afford to fish there more than once or twice a lifetime? For the rest of us, it’s carp, carp, and more carp, with the occasional peacock bass now that they’re naturalized as far north as the Connecticut River.
But the proposal being currently circulated, that we transport carp to Kepler 22b, seems wrongheaded on many levels—not only biologically insulting, but insulting to the slime eels.
I understand that slime eels don’t exactly stir an angler’s heartstrings, and that they don’t so much fight as simply sulk for several hours and then dissolve in what can be described as a fit of pique. And that waiting for them to envelop your “bait” with their external stomachs can try the patience of even interstellar tourists accustomed to cryogenic sleep.
Still, so many voices calling out for carp, carp, and ever more carp . . . You have to wonder, in these depleted times, just who will speak for the slime eels of Kepler 22b.
— James R. Babb XVI, Sector Seven, Province of Maine
Sweetgrass Rods Taking ‘Boo to Space
Sweetgrass is already on it. We have contacted the agricultural department at Montana State. The university has agreed to research a hybrid bamboo plant appropriate for the speculated climate on the new planet. If successful, seeds will be ready for the maiden voyage of explorers. The plant itself should have many uses. This fast growing grass can be eaten in its early stages, but as it matures the material will be able to be used for building, fuel, and, of course, crude fishing poles. As the explorers discover what is available on the planet for future anglers, Sweetgrass is developing a compact milling device that can be transported to Kepler for the purpose of making split cane fly rods. Given the complexities of making synthetic composite rods, I am confident that the bamboo fly rod will be the tool of choice in this newly discovered world-and Sweetgrass Rods wants to be in on that action.
— Jerry Kustich, currently designing a rod finish that works in zero gravity
Instant Travel Will Solve Weather, Guide Booking Problems
It’s not unusual when I hire a guide here on earth to hear him say at the end of a long quiet day, “Well, you shoulda been here yesterday.” Or “Too bad you can’t stay another week. The weather’s changing, and the fishing’s sure to pick up.”
Thanks to The Schullery Device®, which allows speed-of-light travel to new fishing frontiers and possesses the ability to bend time, we can make some immediate adjustments in the calendar on distant planets and be there when the fishing is hot. Of course, the best days might already be booked even on Kepler-22.
— Author Lou Ureneck, the first surviving tester of The Schullery Device
Tenkara Is Not Dapping, Especially on Kepler-22b
The chance to fish the unmarred waters of Kepler-22b is great news for us tenkara devotees! New water is always fun to explore and since space travel will put a premium on what gear we can take along, the simplicity of the tenkara set-up—a telescoping rod, a line, a couple of spools of tippet and a handful of tried and true kebari—we would be good to go!
—Tom Sadler, from a planet called Washington, DC
My Sustainable Kepler-22b Fishing Lodge and Chum Slick
Since Kepler 22b might be an all-ocean planet, I’d construct a highly specialized, large (100′ x 200′) floating platform that would serve as my home and fishing lodge. It would be environmentally sound and entirely self-sufficient, powered by solar panels and windmills.
The engine would be completely electric powered by a large bank of batteries charged by the wind and sun, with an auxiliary bank of batteries for backup. The windows on the structure would be large and the roofs would retract, letting as much natural light in as possible and trap heat when the roofs are closed. I would compost, but I would also have a small low-emissions incinerator for any waste. My platform would also have a mini desalination unit for fresh water, as well as a cistern for capturing rainwater.
It would have a large organic indoor garden with grow lights, so I could have fresh vegetables, as well as a small range that a few chickens could roam free around that I would get eggs from, rear and occasionally slaughter for food. Additional food sources would include fish and seaweed. This platform would have several rooms and living spaces with glass floors, so I could see the ocean below. In instances of bad weather and rough seas, this platform could be locked down, sealed and submerged (by flooding ballasts) several dozen feet for so below the surface to evade the wind and waves. It would contain state-of-the-art electronics including GPS, radar, sonar, underwater cameras, a mini reconnaissance submarine (remote-controlled) and much more.
This platform would be affixed with a grinder and a huge tank that held and dispersed chum constantly. I would have a perpetual chum slick going all of the time so I could catch fish whenever I wanted for dinner, for fun, to study and examine, as well as for when I needed more chum. I would have several elevated casting decks affixed every 50’ along the edges of this craft. All day long, I’d catch fish, take their picture, study and document each species I caught, highlighting their characteristics and cataloging them. I would also keep a daily journal about my fly fishing adventures, documenting the various techniques and flies that were seemingly most effective for the various species of fish, the locations, memorable and incredible moments and more. My day might consist of waking up early and sitting with some coffee near the chum dispenser, looking into the water at what kind of fish might be in the chum slick and considering what gear I’d need to catch whatever species might be lurking around my platform. Then I’d go into my tackle room, select the rods and gear I’d need and commence fishing. After I’d caught several fish, I’d have some breakfast, write down my morning’s observations in my journal. Then I’d tend to my garden and chickens, take a nap, then begin fishing again late-afternoon into late-evening. After dinner, I’d turn on the underwater lights and sit in a dark room looking through my glass floor at the various fish that the light attracts. At night, I’d dream of fish.
—Mac Obi-Wan McKeever
Be On the First Ship!
There are a limited number of spots, and while you will need to pass a psychological test there are no casting-distance requirements. Early registrants are given preference.