The last couple of days Tina and I had the exceptional pleasure of hosting the "First Couple of Flyfishing" here at the lodge, Mr and Mrs. Dave Whitlock.
As many of you know Dave Whitlock was the first inductee into the North American Fly fishing Hall of Fame. The ceremony took place here in Mountain Home Arkansas near the White River, Dave's home river for over thirty years. The celebration was attended by 150 of Dave's closest friends and colleagues, the guest list reads like the who's who of everything! Tina and I were honored and thrilled to be able to just spend some time with this gracious and personable couple.
Most, if not all fly fishing enthusiasts know Of Dave through his now famous books, artwork, and dozens of popular and syndicated flies. He pioneered fly fishing with the likes of Lee Wolff, Flip Pallot, and many other famous North American Fly fishing legends. It would simply be too lengthy and voluminous to list all of his credits and contributions to the sport and art of fly fishing and fly tying. However, after spending several days with he and his beautiful wife Emily, it is my opinion that his Hall of Fame induction is for far more than his many fly fishing attributes.
Dave's humor and quick wit is contagious, and his ever present smile makes you feel comfortable around him immediately. His charisma and charm makes one feel like a long lost friend. It is obvious to everyone that his diminutive size has never affected his ability to make women smile sheepishly when he is around (including my lovely wife). He is a shameless flirt, in the nicest sort of way. He kind of makes you want to take notes, or go to charm school or something. I guess what I am trying to put into words is that Dave Whitlock is a very special man indeed.
His heart for doing things for others is obvious to anyone who spends time with him. His donations of time ,artwork, and written articles would fill pages,and the lives he has touched through his passion for fly fishing, the environment, and people would fill many,many books!
I had several informative and very interesting conversations with Dave, but one stands out in my mind clearly. Dave has travelled the world and fished and hunted with dignitaries from all over the world including several United States Presidents.
As he talked about former president Bill Clinton , he was obviously quite taken by his ability to make one feel like "they were the only person present in the room" when the former president engaged them in conversation.
Mr. Whitlock, I for one say Bill Clinton ain't got nothing on you!! And I bet he can't even tie a wooly bugger.Thanks for the good times.