The Mythical Golden Trout
Logline: When a cash-strapped family camping in the Sierras discovers a huge nugget of gold, the local police chief rounds up a posse of clueless misfits and sets out to steal it from them.
Ray, his wife, and their two college-aged daughters take a camping trip to the mountains. The family has fallen on hard times, and they’re on the verge of losing their home. While fishing for trout in an alpine lake, they hook an amazing hunk of gold.
When Wyatt, the local police chief, catches wind of what happened, he deputizes three of his oblivious friends and sets off to track them down. In a desperate bid to escape, Ray leads his family into the back country with the well-armed posse hot on their trail.
The family treks deep into the wilderness — through the forest, past waterfalls and boulder fields, along the edge of a cliff. The posse finally catches up with them and pins them down in a meadow high in the mountains. Wyatt and his trigger-happy friends fire warning shots and demand that the family hand over the gold.
Cowering behind a boulder, Ray and his wife are ready to surrender, but their daughters come up with a brazen plan.
Author’s Note: This is a coming of old age story. When we reflect on rites of passage, we tend to focus on the milestones of youth — like going away to school, falling in love for the first time, getting married, and so forth. But growing old is a rite of passage too.