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One of those days



The outdoor brick bread oven has been built. The class was held the last three days and all went well. We met some really neat people, the dogs (especially Tippy) made many new friends. We made sure she was still with us as they left, a few really took to her, and she would have willingly gone with them. We had a neighbor cut a few cedar logs for us lengthwise to sit on, Lesley and I cut some short logs for the logs to rest on, and the site in general was looking good. She also got all of her stuff from the local bakery that went out of business. Things like racks, huge bread pans, a large maple table, lots of small, misc stuff. The Mason that tought the course building our oven was obviously wishing he had got there first to get some stuff. He said by the time he got there it was all gone. Then he saw it in our basement. Next another mason will be coming to finish the outer shell of the oven, and hopefully in a month or so it will be putting out bread. I have to make the wooden door for it, I am now designing it. Another challenge.


Yesterday was one of those days. You know, where lots of little things just don't go right. About noon, I asked Lesley if she minded if I went fishing. As always, she made my lunch, helped me get ready, and wished me well. I told her where I was going, and I should be back by dark, if not soon after dark, come looking. I was going to be alone, the lake is remote, and there likely would not be anyone else there.


Loading the canoe on the SUV, I lost control of it, it slipped off the top and dented. Fortunately is is aluminum, and the dent was not serious. Finished loading after repairing a tie down rachet for the canoe. Off I went. Got to the parking area, preparing to off load the canoe, and lost it off the top again, it hit the ground and the previous dent popped out on it's own. Put on my bug jacket, as they were fierce, and off I went. Got to the lake after about a 200 yard carry, went back for the rest of my gear, and then the fun began. The canoe launch site is very mucky and muddy. Years ago someone had put a couple of logs over the muck into the water so as to make launching possible. I put the canoe alongside the logs, and was carrying a rock to put into the front of the canoe for ballast. I do that when alone to help stabilize the canoe. Hopefully next year Tippy will be mature enough to perform that function. Anyway, as I went back to shore to get another rock, I lost my balance and had to step off the log into the muck. My tall rubber boot was instantly stuck. I had no choice but to step into the muck with the other foot. Now both boots were buried in the muck, my feet inside. Lifting up my feet was impossible. I sat down in the muck, finally got both feet out of the boots, and crawled out on the muck. I then went back and finally retrieved the boots.


I then got launched, and tried to use the rod and reel I had intended to use. The reel broke and was unusable. Fortunately, 20 years in the military taught me to always have a backup plan, so I used the other rig I had brought along. I padddled to my favorite spot and had the best fishing I have had in years. In about 30 minutes I had my limit of really large bass. During that time I lost nine, three broke my line, three others broke the snaps at the end of my line, but I did manage to put my limit (six) on the stringer. During the fight, one wrapped himself around the stringer attached to the canoe. What a fix! I had to net the entire stringer, lift it into the canoe with a half dozen fish flipping around, and sort it out. Finally got it done. Three of the fish still had the hook in them when they were cleaned. Removing it would have killed them immediately and I was fearful of getting a hook in my hand, so just cut the line and rebaited. I always use pliers and gloves unhooking fish now, a change from my pre-stroke days.


I then realized I had to come home, I had my limit of fish. After all that difficulty getting there, the fishing was so good I had to leave after only an hour or so of fishing! About that time, a light sprinkle started, increasing my motivation to go home. I got unloaded and reloaded the canoe on the SUV without incident, just exhausted. I got home and the first thing Lesley said was "you're home early" I said to Lesley "get the camera". You know you have had a good day when that is the first thing you say when you get home. Lesley was helping unload my gear, the tackle box fell open and lures went everywhere. Just one of those days. I cleaned the fish, Lesley froze them and washed my smelly, muddy, fish blood stained clothes, I had a badly needed shower, finally had something to eat, and rested the evening away.


I saw no one else that day, had the lake to myself.I also had to extricate myself from the muck alone or wait for Lesley to arrive with help many hours later if I didn't come home. Funny how you do what you have to do when the time comes. The fact that my foot and leg have not been particularly cooperative lately suddenly didn't matter. Fatigue was no longer an issue.


Doing these things is why we live here, even when we are having one of those days.




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George, I'm glad your expedition turned out on the positive side. Yes it was good that Lesley knew where you would be in case you weren't home by dark; however, the worrier in me thinks what coulda happened with you out in the area alone. Way to go for your accomplishment at doing something you probably did pre all the time without hesitation. Please use caution in the future - we don't want anything serious to happen to you,

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WOW I love bass fishing.. Sounds like quite an adventure.. Be Careful.. I have had to crawl to logs to get up.. We are on 5 rural acres.. I carry my cell phone outside with me. I could be stuck for hours also...


Maybe you could get a group of the fishing guys or people who use the lake together to workr on the boat launching area. I was a member of a Bass club and worked on some of the local lakes.


I don't know what they are called, but I have seen some roof racks with rollers and pulley to assist getting boat up and down off vechicles. You may want to check it out.


Glad everything turned out for the good.



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Just a quick reply to those that have commented. Fred, they were all smallmouth bass, limit here is six a day, largest would have been 3 pounds honestly. It was 16" and quite round and fat for a smallmouth up here. The entire stringer was weighed enmass, and it was 12 lbs. To Bstockman, the lake is in the BWCA wilderness, no ramps or people improvements allowed. Only canoes are allowed. I really don't tell others around here where this lake is, it is little fished at the moment, I'd just as soon keep it that way. My favorite spot on the lake is quite small, sometimes the bass are there, sometimes not. This will likely be the last time for this summer I will fish that lake. The weeds become very thick soon. When the bass are there it can be a real fast time. I have thru trial and error learned to be better at getting the canoe up and down from the SUV.

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