You will have a blast and make many new friends at the LaCrosse Meet! This is a common theme for member meets. You are correct when you say that the membership misses out on much...And the state of the economy does not help much. But as Erabbit put it, as long as two members can get together you will have a meet!
I lived several years in Colorado and I am aware of the climate swings! But Montana, Idaho, Washinton and several other states in the north west, I have never been to. This year davesett2000 and myself were to fish our way from Washington to the Lacrosse Meet, about a month to do this. But job changes and fuel costs and other misshaps kind of put that trip on hold. Rest assurred that this trip will be made in the future. As far as the LaCrosse meet goes for me, I will not be there. I usually do that trip every other year. It is expensive (3 thousand miles round trip). Do yourself a favor and read through the entire 2008 LaCrosse meet thread, including my journal. That should answer a lot of questions for you. I have provided a link for you to check out nonresident license fees. https://www.wildlifelicense.com/
If I was going again next year I would go for a minimum of a week (not counting travel time). But anyhoo, I look forward to hearing from you again and I do enjoy your posts on this site.
LM since 2005 Bushwacker Deputy Sherif