Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Running the numbers

I have used this image without permission, but it should be clear that I expect no monetary gain from its use.  Quite the contrary, in fact.

Though we have yet to provide details, it's probably apparent to most readers that our June fishing expedition didn't produce the kinds of fish - numbers or size - that we'd hoped.  Even now that the river flows are in check, fishing has not been good.  Fishing in New England, where New English Jonny lives, can be unreliable as well.  To insure success and reduce the pressures of planning, we intend to make our next get together in Iceland.  Jonny and I are both Atlantic salmon anglers, but Iceland will be new for us.  I think it will be a lot of fun.

A trip like this will not be without its challenges, though.  I was listening to a recent podcast about Icelandic salmon fishing wherein the interviewee mentioned that it costs an outfitter about one million dollars to rent a stretch of river...for the 90 day season.  Not surprisingly, then, the cost to an angler for a week of such fishing is quite expensive; it sounds as if about $15,000 for a few days of fishing is the going rate in today's dollars.  One should also budget in the costs of travel.  Iceland is an island that is farther from Indiana than is the moon.

This is going to require some planning, but hear me out.  First, I can't afford it right now.  But I've looked at my current income and that bit of it which might be called "discretionary" and I've run some numbers.  If I am religious about putting it away each month, I can afford the trip in about 40 years (let's say the year 2054).  I will be in my early 80s then, Jonny a bit older.  But we'll be retired, so time off work won't be an issue.  (And there's very little driving, Jonny!)  Now, if you've been paying attention you may have realized that I failed to account for inflation.   Doing so does complicate things, but in my earlier calculations I had figured in college tuition for both of my children.  In a fortuitous turn of events, though, my older ten-year-old child informed me that he's decided not to attend college. "Damn right!" I agreed.  And the younger one, the eight-year-old, has no chance of getting in anywhere.  The new numbers suggest the trip is, once again, within reach - still in the year 2054, but again, do-able. 

Even without the bothersome worry of college tuition, the numbers suggest no more fishing between now and then: all funds must go directly into The Iceland Trip.  Maybe I can fish until all of my current supply of flies and equipment has been lost, stolen or broken.  Anyway, there will be hardship all around. Divorce is inevitable.

But all is not lost.  It now occurs to me that if we can get at least some proportion of our 98 followers (97 if you consider that Jonny accidentally listed himself as a "follower" of his own blog) to consider chipping in and joining us for the trip, we can do this thing - by 2050 if half of you chip in, and by 2040 if everybody does their part.  We will provide "Angler's Culvert" hats.

Now I know at this point most of you are saying to yourself "Brayshaw, I am virtually certain that I am all in, but I have a few lingering concerns."  I'm not particularly interested in them, but if it will help, I will leave you with some more numbers.  According to the interviewee, in the last season they landed just under 3,600 salmon during the 90 day season.  In fact, at one point he says, sounding not even the least bit winded, "This morning, we hooked 22 and landed 14.  We get them with single-hand rods on size 18 flies."

1 comment:

  1. I like the way you think...always have to plan ahead. I'd just like to point out one error in your calculations , with the inevitable divorce on the horizon you can probably cut that 40 years in half cuz that's gonna double your "discretionary" income. Can't wait to see my hat!!