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Fishing in God's Creation

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BringAnExtension

Memorial Day

Memorial Day weekend is coming up and I have things like a long weekend, grilling and fishing on my mind.  But as I was heading home last night, I took an extra look at the memorial in Shieldsville.  I remembered to keep gratefulness to the men and women of our armed services in mind. 

MemorialDay2016 (2).jpg

 

OUR DEBT TO THE HEROIC MEN AND VALIANT WOMEN IN THE SERVICE OF OUR COUNTRY CAN NEVER BE REPAID. THEY HAVE EARNED OUR UNDYING GRATITUDE. AMERICA WILL NEVER FORGET THEIR SACRIFICES.
President Harry S. Truman
United States of America

Normandy Visitors Center

BringAnExtension

2016 Walleye Opener

As has become tradition for a good friend Captain Dave, he invited me to the opener on Mille Lacs.  I think that this makes the 10th or so opener spent on the big pond.

Mille Lacs has certainly had controversy lately, but that is not what this entry is about.  It is about tradition.  It is about spending time with good friends.  It is about getting out on a lake on the opener and chasing my favorite fish, the walleye. 

We had to be prepared for this opener.  We almost had to alter our normal plans.  The 2016 open water season has been declared catch and release only by the DNR.  I am ok with that.  It was also originally decided not to allow live bait on the lake.  I am ok with that too, but we probably would have changed our plans.  You see, Captain Dave likes to fish with a leech under a slip bobber on a plain red hook.  Without live bait, his favorite method for fishing was out the window.  We started looking over other area lakes for a slip bobber fishable lake. 

Fortunately, the DNR relented and decided to allow live bait again.

The weather did not favor us this year.  After a somewhat early spring, with the spawn being complete, winter roared it's ugly head.  We woke on Saturday to a little snow on the boat tarp and 28 degrees.  If that wasn't enough, there was also the NW wind at 15, gusting to 25.  It would not be pretty out on the pond.

Opener Snow.jpg

That's ok we are Minnesotans.  We live for this stuff.

We pitched a shut out in the morning and were quite disappointed.  Lots of trouble getting the anchor to hold and even more trouble getting fish interested in our baits.  It never even reached 50 degrees that day.

However, the evening was a much different story.  We relocated to another part of the lake, hoping to avoid some of the wind.  We found a fishy looking spot and anchored.  While it started slow, just before dark things got busy.  We stayed out until our leeches ran out.  We took our cold bodies off the lake and cranked the heat on the pickup.  Another year of opener memories behind us.

Opener Bundled Up.jpg

 

The lake is an amazing resource.  For all of the negativity out there about Mille Lacs, my personal opinion is that the future is promising.  We caught fish from at least 3 year classes, possibly 4.  And yes, most of the fish were from 2013. 

I now look forward to fishing my local lakes on much nicer days.  But the 2016 walleye hunt is under way

BringAnExtension

A Change of Season

I was fishing with my bride on Labor Day.  She was watching docks come in as many people were wrapping up cabin season on French Lake.  She was lamenting the fact that the summer was coming to a close.

I reminded her that this is our season.  September promises the start of fall colors, better fishing and football.  Ok, that last one didn't impress her one bit.  I have already found that fish are more aggressive.  The area lakes are filled with hungry fish.  They are smacking jigs tipped with fatheads - orange seemed to be the color yesterday.  No longer are they picky and I can usually put a nice walleye in the live well. 

October (hopefully) means the end of mosquitoes and less yard work.  Nice fall days are followed by crisp nights. 

This year, mowing has become a tedious chore.  While the farmers may have liked all of the rains this year, my lawn does too and I am tired of mowing every 5 days. 

The fishing should continue to be good and I fully intend to put more hours in the boat in the coming month.  Get out and enjoy, winter will be here soon enough.

BringAnExtension

Deer Crossing Signs

The other day on my way home from work, I noticed that a new deer crossing sign had been put up along a road.  This was at a location that I had passed for 15+ on my way to and from work, and I can't recall ever seeing a deer there.  I started wondering how the county, MN DOT, or MN DNR decides to put up a new deer crossing warning.  As it turns out, I decided that this particular sign had been put up by a private party because on my way to work the next morning, I noticed that the crossing was marked with a sign on the left side, which is not something that a government entity would have done.

Anyway, my curiosity still led me to do a little research.  It turns out that the MN DOT no longer puts up new signs because they are not effective (deer can't read anyways).  They are experimenting with signs that include motion detectors and lights. 

 

MnDOT’s position
Since 2005, MnDOT ‘s policy has been not to install new deer crossing warning signs and to remove
existing signs that have reached the end of their useful life.. MnDOT is researching other methods that
may result in fewer deer-vehicle crashes. In 2001, MnDOT installed a deer detection warning system on
Highway 23 in Marshall. The system uses the standard deer crossing warning sign in conjunction with
beacon that flashes when deer movement is detected. The system was upgraded in 2007 and shows a 33-
57 percent reduction in deer-vehicle crashes. More information on the sign can be found here:
www.dot.state.mn.us/guidestar/2006_2010/deer_detection_and_warning_system.html

 

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