The Pile

It can show it’s face any time of year, but in the summer it is ever present. To call it a living thing would be inaccurate. To say it’s an organizational system would be overly generous. Items are added and deleted, while others are always in the mix. A mound in the back corner of the garage it serves as the staging area for the next three months.

With nearly as many nights likely to be spent in the field as at home this summer there is little incentive to put gear back on the shelves. Often it is all thrown in the back of the truck. The Dodge can carry all of it. There will be times when pieces are weighed carefully and only a small selection will make the cut for an ultralight endeavor. The Black Hole Bags, which have been in service for over a decade, will be work horses all season. But everything will get it’s turn.

It can drive me crazy, but I’m trying to embrace it. The pile is emblematic of more than a messy garage. It means time is being spent outside and that every ounce of goodness is being squeezed out of summer. Anyone north of the Mason Dixon line has earned it. So from here on it’s all about shuffling gear and running with the throttle wide open. There will be time plenty of time to huddle around a campfire during hunting season to tell each other about it.


6 Comments on “The Pile

  1. I have the same type of system! LOL. I’m a tote and kit guy cause it makes it a little easier to convert from streams to the lake with my kids but at it’s core it is the same and the meaning and memories are the same as what you are talking about. It’s a constantly evolving and refining thing but God help me I love my “Stuff”.

  2. If I took a picture of my garage, you would probably recognize it! The top of my “work bench” is hardly visible. Only difference: here in the North Georgia Appalachians, we have year round trout fishing and minimal snowfall, so my piles exist year round and do not have seasonal significance. Blown out rivers are temporary rain-event based occurrences rather than seasonal runoff. Every so often I clean it all up and put it away, and find things I forgot I had… that is if the water does not lure me from my organizational efforts. It is a tough life, but somebody has to live it.

  3. “The Pile” may not be a living thing, but it surely supports life. Life is not possible without “The Pile.” If you do not have one, you are not living enough. I have an entire room dedicated to one, and then a secondary “pile” in the garage, and still a third that resides in my truck. Treating it like a living thing, I have tried to prune it like a plant, trimming off what could be considered unnecessary by some and helping others to grow their own piles by donating the trimmings, only to have my own sprout more in the absence of the trimmed items. It may not be a living thing, but it takes on a life of it’s own…necessary to sustain our lives.

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