Page 16 - Vol02No03
P. 16

      California Trophy Trout

      by Rob Portil

        A six hour drive is always a questionable endeavor for a weekend outing. All questions

        were put to rest as we came upon the glory of Mt. Shasta half covered in snow and
        glistening in the midday sun.

        The drive to Sugar Creek Ranch starts getting good after you leave Redding headed

        north to Weed, Ca. Now there’s a name whose source you wonder about and ques-
        tion if it predates the sixties. Its town sign announces “Weed like to Welcome You” with

        a hominess that is inconsistent with its imbalance of gas stations to stores: they are
        nearly equal. Of course they’d like to welcome you, they can’t sell all that gas to just

        the locals.

                                                                      Mt. Shasta en route  Photo by Rob Portil >

        As you turn off highway 5 toward Callahan (no gas stations), you start climbing a thou-
        sand foot grade that gives you the million dollar view of Mt. Shasta on every other turn.

        Cresting the hills and dipping down into the Scott Valley leads you through some of the
        most beautiful private land in California and you realize from the lack of traffic on the

        road that not many Californians get over this way.

        Arriving at Sugar Creek Ranch is something shy of what you might be expecting of a
        world class fishery. The sign for the place is so small that you’re thankful for the precise

        mileage directions that let you know that you’re really here.

        You feel like you’ve arrived at an abandoned gravel quarry. You’re not far off in appear-
        ance, but very far off from the real story. Somewhere after gold was discovered here

        they got really serious about mining it and built one of the largest floating ore extraction
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