Thursday, October 16, 2014

Indian Summer

The Maples are on Fire
Indian Summer is defined as the period of nice weather that occurs after we've experienced a killing frost.  Here in Minnesota or Wisconsin our first killing frost is usually at the end of September and Indian Summer happens in the subsequent weeks in October.  Well, it is definitely Indian Summer in Dayton as the weather is just beautiful, 65 during the day and frost on grass overnight.  Our above normal precipitation this June has set up the trees for a spectacular show of color.  The leaves are just peaking in the metro area as this time of the year is one of my favorites.  Unfortunately the days are getting shorter which allows little time for all the things that need to get done.  The garden is pretty well done with the exception of a few carrots still in the ground and my potatoes.  I am sort of hoping my good friend Ricky Shermer may drive over any day now with his Kubota tractor with his 3 point, 6 foot rear mounted tiller.  What would take me 4 hours would take him about 15 minutes. If not I guess it's good exercise!   With October already half gone I'm needing to get in high gear if I want to have everything done by deer hunting, which starts November 8th.   My friend Carl Le Jambre stated it very well the other day....As we get older, life seems to keep accelerating.  No truer words have been spoken as I feel exactly the same way.  The clock isn't running fast as much as life is.  Oh well, I guess there's not a lot we can do other than enjoy those moments.   Carl lives in San Jose, California and is one of my respected peers.  He is also a big football fan with the Philadelphia Eagles as his home team.  I have known Carl for 23 years now and in that time the Packers and Eagles have played 17 times over that period with the record of 10 wins for the Eagles, 7 for the Pack. Although our distance has prevented any recent friendly bets lately, last Sunday night's game where the Eagles just blew out the New York Giants just prompted me to kindle our old bet for the November 16th game between the Eagles and the Packers.  The Eagles look pretty tough at 5-1 but with the game in Lambeau, I might have a chance!  Either way it will be good to see Carl and pay or collect, I'm fine with it.

18 inch Huge smallie.
Sunday was gourgeous as it presented an opportunity to get out fishing in the afternoon. On short notice I stopped by Tom Olson's place to see if he'd be interested in going out on the river for a few hours.  Basically if he showed up at 4:00, we'd head off and like clockwork he arrived.  It's a quick process to move a few things out of the way and we were off to Blair's landing.  Our main focus was to troll the deeper holes with crankbaits intending on catching a few walleyes.  With the water temperature in the low 50's, it should be a trigger for the fish to start congregating.  The first area was just up river as we fished a large current break cause by an eddy.  With a #7 firetiger shad rap and the water depth of 10 feet we pulled the lures up river to take advantage of the current.  Almost immediately something was tugging on the end of my line, about a 1 pound smallmouth.  Not a walleye but it was encouraging that the fish seemed active. After another small bass we headed up to fish the hole just downstream from Cloquet Island.  This has been one of my favorite spots and have gotten a couple of smaller walleyes earlier this year yet all we could muster was another nicer bass.  One big problem was the amount of leaves in the water, as we were constantly losing the action on the baits because they would hang up on them.  It was quite frustrating however we continued trolling as we were getting fish.  The next spot was the hole above the Steven's farm.  This area is simply a deeper hole in the river with no current breaks.  Tom has switched to a Bomber crankbait and was rewarded with our first walleye, a 12 inch fish.  Not large enough to keep it went back into the water hoping there were larger fish to be caught.  No such luck as we headed back to the first spot as the sun was getting low and the temperature was dropping.  As we trolled the edge of the eddy we started coming up to the front of the hole in 6 feet of water when I saw a big fish come up and slam my shad rap.  The water is incredibly clear as you can see 4 feet down and this fish was visible for the entire fight.  It certainly isn't the longest bass I have caught on the river but it certainly was one of the thickest and deepest fish for it's size.   Letting her go we drifted back down river where I caught a couple more small bass before we headed back to the landing.  I'm thinking another trip would be nice, this time trying jigs and minnows as I think we might be more successful.  I know the walleyes are in there, it's just going to take a little more time to find them.

1971 Ski Doo Olympique
I was in Phoenix last week and it nice.  Expecting 90 degree weather it actually rained both days.  I'm not exactly sure of the fishing around the area but I did get to spend a few hours with my friend Jim Tollefson.  Jim grew up on a farm northwest of Eleva and from the time I was 15 to when he graduated from high school we hung around together almost every day.  Whether it was me riding my bike the 3.5 miles to his house to help with feeding the cattle, haying, cleaning the barn, we always found time to enjoy ourselves.  In 1970 I had enough money saved to buy a brand new Ski Doo snowmobile, at 15 years old I was on the top of my game.  We didn't have trail groomers back then however there was enough snow to keep the trail open from the back of my house to Jim's.  Passing through what we called Indian Valley, up and across Old Baldy, the landmark hill north of town, through the woods, we really put on the miles.  I'm not sure how anyone could have as much fun as Jim and I did back then.  I guess we didn't have television (just 2 channels then), video games, computers, cell phones, and all the distractions that kids have today.  At 15 and 16 our parents didn't worry about what we were doing or if they did, they never said.  Like the statement at the end of the movie, Stand By Me...I'll never have friends like I did when I was 12, well, make that from 12 to 18.

No comments: