This edition of Fish Untamed Reads covers the ethics of eating, serious backcountry fly fishing information, and a crazy museum heist story that weaves its way into the world of fly tying.
1. The Omnivore’s Dilemma by Michael Pollan
The Omnivore’s Dilemma details Michael Pollan’s journey to follow his food from creation to the dinner plate. He explores three facets of our modern food web: the industrial farm, the pastoral farm, and the hunt. For each path, he reflects on the costs and benefits of each style of food propagation. For those of us who enjoy keeping our own fish from time to time, this book is a reminder of the satisfaction felt from procuring a healthy meal from the field.
2. Fly-Fishing the Rocky Mountain Backcountry by Rich Osthoff
I’ll be frank: if you live in the Rocky Mountain region and enjoy fly fishing, you should own this book. Its utility isn’t limited to a regurgitated list of places to fish. This book covers everything from how to get started in backcountry fly fishing, to choosing spots and flies, to a thorough list of places to go in the Rockies. Each listing is brief but full of info, and includes plenty of off-the-beaten-path destinations.
3. The Feather Thief by Kirk Wallace Johnson
You probably don’t realize how interesting feathers are. I didn’t either, until I read this book. In 2009, Edwin Rist, a young salmon fly tier, stole hundreds of bird skins from the British Natural History Museum. The skins quickly made their way into the secretive group of tiers Edwin knew from online fly tying forums. Even a single skin of rare feathers can sell for thousands of dollars, and while some were recovered with their original tags, many were never tracked down. The Feather Thief covers the history of the feather trade, the museum heist itself, Rist’s trial, and the search for the lost feathers. This book is not one to skip.