One of the things that I really love about the home brew community is just how friendly everyone is of each other. I had a great experience last night that I just felt like sharing.
A few days ago I was browsing craigslist, and stumbled across an ad for a guy trying to get rid of some fresh Cascade about 30 minutes away from my house. Not only that, but his price for them was $1 per ziplock baggy. He said normally you can get about 3 oz of fresh hops in one. With how much hops are at the LHBS per ounce, this was a great deal. I contacted the guy and we set up a time for me and a friend to come down and pick the hops.
So last night we leave to pick the hops, and bring him a couple of our most recent home brews. Of course it starts raining while we're on our way over. When we get there we meet the guy, and he's pretty cool. He showed us around his back yard, and told us some guy came earlier from hours away and completely cleaned out over half his vines. Still he had plenty left though, and after chatting with him for a bit, we set to work on the vines. He showed us how to trim the vines back to make it easier to get the hops without killing the plant, and we stood out there in the rain for a about an hour picking hops and talking home brewing with this guy that's at least twice our age. We ended up with a little over 20 ounces of hops... for $6. And today we get to brew a wet-hopped IPA! Awesome.