Puget Sound Fly Fishers member Phil Moore - “I left California and moved here to Fox Island (near Gig Harbor, WA) because there was no room to back cast in California”. Funny stuff. That’s a great excuse for a move. Speaking of moving, you want to take a look at Phil Moore when he moves. You can certainly see the 84 years. It takes the edge off a person to be sure, but with Phil, there’s something different about it. The man has lived fluidly and well. Who amongst us imagines they will be pulling a pontoon boat off a car top and using fins to kick the raft around a lake for 4 hours when they’re 84? That’s the work of a person of substance.
Phil came out of the heartland as a mid-western Ohio kid. Grew up in a small town. In 56 he graduated from the Naval Aviation Cadet Program in Texas, and received his “Wings Of Gold” as a US Naval Pilot. He was deployed aboard the USS Yorktown CVS-10 November 1958-59 as VF-92 (Detachment November), which was comprised of four F2H-3 "Banshees" and six pilots. “Our mission was to provide air cover for the USS Yorktown, which had been newly designated as an Anti-Submarine carrier”. During his military career he was deployed in a number of different tours of duty and finished his flying at the Aircraft Ferry Squadron 32 (VRF-32) at NAS North Island, San Diego.After his military career, he became a pilot for Pan American World Airways in 66, and flew 707 and 747 aircraft all over the world for Pan Am and United, until his eventual retirement, 27 years later in July of 1993. He and his wife Sue then traveled all over the US in a 40 ft. American Eagle RV for many years, before finally leaving their then home in Lake Tahoe and settling down to life on Fox Island near Gig Harbor.“I taught myself to fly fish. I was a gear guy early on, but fly fishing appealed to me. I swear I couldn’t find a place in California to back cast (smiling). A couple years after moving to Fox Island I found the Puget Sound Fly Fishers club, and I’ve been a club member since 1998. I joined so I could learn about the local waters. Worked out to be a great decision for me. I’ve made some good friends through the club and learned a lot. My wife likes the outings where we can bring the RV.
I’m a trout guy I guess. When it comes to fly fishing – I have to be honest with you - I’m not obsessed about the fishing part, like a lot of guys can get. I’m more drawn to the catching part actually. I’m a patient guy however, so I’ll put up with some fishing in order to get to the catching. My casting is my weak point. I can’t seem to sense when the rod is loaded like I should. Whatever casting I can do is based on my understanding of timing. I’m still studying on it and going to the PSFF casting events.
Age does take a bit of a toll on me. I may have lost the odd step here and there. The cold is what gets to you at this age. Slows me down more than I’d like. And I don’t much fish alone anymore. Need to be more careful than I used to."
He may have slowed a step, but his life has not. If you’re looking for an “old fart” to model your future self after, don’t look any further than this guy. PSFF is the better for having Phil Moore as a member. Let him be a lesson to us.