Thursday, October 6, 2011

20 Questions: Brett Prettyman

I first met Brett Prettyman in Lake Charles, La., at an Outdoor Writers Association of America annual meeting. That was in 2006. But I've known Brett Prettyman's work for years. He's among the last of dying breed–the outdoor writer for a metro daily newspaper. Back in the days when I was a journalist here in eastern Idaho, I'd read Brett's work and, from afar, try without success to match the quality of it. His work in the outdoor arena is unmatched. I hope you'll take the time to check some of it out.

Brett writes about hunting, fishing and the outdoors for the Salt Lake Tribune, where he's worked for over 20 years as a journalist covering everything from minor league hockey to the 2002 Olympics. While I've known Brett's work for years, it's only been in the last five or six years that I've come to call Brett one of my most trusted friends. He's the real deal, a hunter and an angler who understands the connection real sportsmen have with the outdoors. And he balances his life as a professional journalist of the highest repute with a wonderful family that includes his amazing wife Brooke and a houseful of great kids that will one day realize just how fortunate they are to have they parents they do.

Brett's on my short list of folks I truly admire and respect. I hope, after you read his responses to the Eat More Brook Trout 20 Questions Challenge, you'll come to admire him, too.

On to the questions:

1. What is your idea of perfect happiness?
Spending time with my wife and kids in the outdoors.

2. What is your greatest fear?
In his element.
Snakes and grizzlies.

3. Which historical figure do you most identify with?
Can't think of one.

4. Which living person do you most admire?
My wife, Brooke. Not sure how she keeps the family on task and maintains that beautiful smile through it all.

5. What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?
Lack of patience.

6. What is the trait you most deplore in others?

7. What is your favorite journey?
Capitol Reef National Park with the family

8. On what occasion do you lie?
Fishing, doesn't everybody?

'Phins fan? Sadly, yes.
9. What is your greatest regret?
Being a Dolphins fan.

10. What or who is the greatest love of your life?
Wife and family, hands down.

11. What do you consider your greatest achievement?
Calling out fly fishers in Utah to do something about the proposed lodge on the Green River at Little Hole and getting a proper result.

12. If you were to die and come back as a person or thing, what do you think it would be?
A dentist, so I can continue to inflict mouth pain as a profession.

13. What is your most treasured possession?
A father-in-law who stood up at our wedding and said "I don't really consider this as losing my daughter, but as gaining a fishing partner".

14. Where would you like to live?
Pretty happy here in Utah, but the Pacific Northwest

McManus ... a Prettyman fave.
15. Who are your favorite writers?
Aldo Leopold, Edgar Rice Burroughs, Pat McManus

16. Who are your heroes?
Soldiers, conservationists and my wife, not necessarily in that order.

17. What’s on your iPod?
Shuffle – first five
1 – O Death – Ralph Stanley, O Brother Where Art Thou soundtrack
2 – Edel & Weiss – Space Yodel
3 – Arthur Smith and Dan Reno, Dueling Banjos
4 – Johnny Cash – Give my Love to Rose
5 – Depeche Mode - Pleasure, Little Treasure

18. If you were a pet, what would your name be?

19. What would your profession be if you couldn’t do what you do now?
Wildlife biologist. What I wanted to be until I realized I was not cut out for the math. Decided if I couldn't be one I would write about wildlife.

20. What word or phrase do you most over use?

BONUS QUESTION: If there is a Heaven, and you go to Heaven, what would God say to you upon your arrival?
"We have plenty of fly rods in here. You don't need to bring your own."


  1. Chris, I am enjoying these 20 questions. Great idea. But I think I needed an extra cup of coffee this morning before listening to Space Yodel...not sure how that can reside on the same iPod as Ralph Stanley and Cash :-P

  2. Being A Dolphin fan myself...I can understand his pain! Thanks for the post.

  3. Another good one Chris! I've got an interview set up with one of our local outdoor writers as well. Keep it going!

  4. Thanks Howard... I think this is a great way to keep the blog fresh, what with all the day-job stuff I've got on my plate. Glad you're enjoying it, and thanks for the note.

  5. Mark...

    Space Yodel. I couldn't make it through the whole thing. I have a feeling Brett listens to it on late-night drives home from fishing... that would keep me awake. And a little edgy.

    Glad you're enjoying the 20 Questions... I'd love to have a prominent Texas fly fisher take the challenge... feel free to send some suggestions ;)

  6. I too am enjoying 20 Questions, Chris. Great idea. Had to stop Space Yodel after 10 secs.

    Do all Dolphins fans listen to Edelwiess, Brett? I'm a Pats fans and most of them listen to AC/DC. Thanks for sharing and I look forward to reading your work.