Anyone know Stealhead Joe?

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by obiwankanobi, Oct 22, 2013.

  1. obiwankanobi

    obiwankanobi Active Member

    A friend of mine at work pointed me to a well written article in the latest issue of Outside magazine that detailed the life of a steelhead guide on the Deschutes named "Stealhead Joe". Interesting read and its too bad that his depression caused him to take his own life.

    Anyone personally know him or have been guided by him? Just curious to hear your stories since he sounded like a very interesting person.
  2. Itchy Dog

    Itchy Dog Some call me Kirk Werner

    That was a great read. Tragically flawed character.
  3. steelydan

    steelydan Newb seeking wisdom

    Great journalism.
    Wish I'd known him.
  4. Stonefish

    Stonefish Triploid, Humpy & Seaplane Hater

  5. David Dalan

    David Dalan 69°19'15.35" N 18°44'22.74" E

    Never met him, read the article. Wonderful and sad. Well written IMO as well.
  6. Derek Young

    Derek Young 2011 Orvis Endorsed Fly Fishing Guide Of The Year

    I found it interesting, how in the story, the comments/responses, and the actions of all involved - he was illegally guiding and yet while it doesn't appear some looked the other way, seemingly little was done to change the behavior/help the guy. Was it enabled, because of the "aura" of a great guide on a famous river, or were people afraid to confront it, in a manner that was (more) meaningful, perhaps even preventative to his demise?

    Either way, it's a compelling story - everyone has demons, everyone finds their place to fight them.
  7. Luke77

    Luke77 I hope she likes whitefish

    I thought it was a well written article and was entertained reading it, however I couldn't agree more with Derek's statement below, as I thought the exact thing while reading it.

  8. formerguide

    formerguide Active Member

    Remarkably well written, and a poignant tribute to a troubled man. Very moving read, one can only feel sorrow for a man driven to such an end...

    Thanks for sharing.

  9. David Dalan

    David Dalan 69°19'15.35" N 18°44'22.74" E

    Hopelessness is a powerful opponent. Not easily conquered by outside influences. From the article, I think the arc of his life was on a downward trend since losing his relationship with his lady. Something about that section left me feeling like something inside him began to die that day.

    I think the illegal guiding looked like the last effort of a man trying to cling to some sort of normalcy. By that time, I honestly think he was almost at the end of his fall. And it looks like the severity of his hopelessness may not have been clear to those around him.

    Tragic? Always. Preventable? One would hope, but I am not certain.
  10. Dipnet

    Dipnet aka Tim Hartman

    Thanks for the link to the online article, Brian.

    It was a good, albeit sad and tragic, read.

    Mental health issues are very prevalent in our society and often mis-diagnosed. I recently lost a very good friend due to these type of problems and that made this story a bit more poignant.
  11. Steve Saville

    Steve Saville Active Member

    Really good read and tragic as well. I love that river and would live there if I could. Sadly, I never met Joe though I most likely couldn't have helped him. I try to keep fishing in perspective. It's fishing, not life or death and so I count every day on the water as a good day, catching or not.
  12. Ryan Higgins

    Ryan Higgins Active Member

    Powerful read.