Fly Fishing on the Rio Grande

A Note from the Editor:

Localflavor is thrilled to have the father-son team of Taylor and Nick Streit sharing their expertise with us this month. The Taos-based Streits are world-class anglers with a combined total of forty-five years of teaching and guiding under their belts. Taylor has authored several fly fishingbooks, and both he and Nick have traveled to countless rivers worldwide in search of the perfect catch. But (lucky for us) there’s no place they’d rather be than fishing Northern New Mexico’s own Rio Grande.

We have been fortunate to travel to some of the world’s best fly-fishing destinations, from Alaska to Argentina, and  people often ask us where our top place to fish is.  The answer usually surprises them, because although other rivers and lakes in far-off lands have produced more and bigger trout, the Rio Grande—when it is fishing well—is still our favorite place. The lonely river offers more than just the fishing.  A truly wild world lies between its banks, where the angler is surrounded by nature in its rawest form, from the quiet to the chaotic. There are times when the water seems to leap around you; at others, it glides peacefully by. And, let’s not forget, you might just have a have a huge trout or pike attack your fly at any time, too! Continue reading

Sweat and Miracles

Gardening requires lots of water—most of it in the form of perspiration. –Lou Erickson

Milagro is Spanish for “miracle” because it takes a miracle to grow grapes here. –Mitzi Hobson

If, perchance, you are interested in making wine, whether commercially or for a hobby, Milagro Vineyards owners, Rick and Mitzi Hobson have three rules to abide by: keep your day job, keep your day job, keep your day job.

The Hobsons lived in Albuquerque’s North Valley until 1985; Mitzi was an educator, and Rick was an engineer who sold mechanical equipment. They moved to Corrales in ’85 and began growing grapes as an “experiment.”

“We liked to drink and eat, and it was totally to be the fun part of our life,” Mitzi explains when I inquire as to how one comes to oversee ten acres of grapes in the little village of Corrales. “It was about getting family together to mark the seasons and celebrate.”

Then the (unpaid) work began. Their land was a field of alfalfa and Christmas trees, so the initial task was to dig them up and haul them to local parks to be donated. The next task was the primary planting of the grape vines, another rigorous ordeal that required long hours and a lot of assistance from family and friends. “We kept wondering, ‘This is what we’re doing for fun?’” Mitzi laughs in recollection.

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