Saturday, February 17, 2018

What Triggers the Spawn Season for Bass

With the memory of deer season fading, my attention begins to shift towards my first love in the outdoors - bass fishing.  It is time to get new line on the reels and organizing my tacklebox so I can grab the exact bait at the right moment.  The thought of large fish just a few feet from the shoreline is enough to make any angler drool.  But, what exactly triggers the bass into their spring ritual of courtship?

A bass will begin to be romantically inclined as the water warms to the magical 60-degrees Fahrenheit.  As the water warms, they go through several phases where they move up from deeper water to a more nearshore location typically off of points or creek channels.  Big cold fronts can cause them to push back towards deeper water.  But, at some point, the 60 degrees is held and continues to warm.

So, the real question is how does water warm up with an ever-changing atmosphere?  Air temperature is in reality only one variable in the warming of a lake.  But, when the warmer spring air begins to rain, the real change begins to take place.

As the season's transition from winter to spring, the cold fronts still produce the rain, but they lack the arctic-style temperature changes of just a month ago.  Wild vacillations in temperature on any given early spring weeks are quite common where the high temperature may range from 50-75 degrees.  Mix in a rain on a 70-degree day and you can change the temperature of a lake quite dramatically.

When this change begins to take place, bass begin to get aggressive.  They must pack on some weight to carry them through the trauma of the spawn.  Females will be at their heaviest weight of the entire year and are far easier to catch.  From fast moving baits to slow crawling, they will inhale them.  Bigger is indeed better at this time of the year.

Start planning your off days now so you can have the time you need to target some of the biggest fish of your life.

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Get Out There! 2018


Welcome to 2018!  New Year, new start, a fresh beginning.  It's a genesis which literally means, "In the beginning..."  So what are your goals for 2018?  Where are you going to go and what are you going to do when you get there?

This is a great time of the year to begin to put your dreams on paper and begin taking consistent small steps toward making those dreams a reality.  We have had a dream for years to purchase a house with some land.   We have been searching for three years and in 2017, God helped move that particular item from the dream column to the reality side of our ledger.  We also adopted a baby girl in 2017 and she has been such a delight and wonderful addition to our home.

We are in the process of beginning construction on a pond to fish and enjoy.  I also killed a deer on our property for the first time this hunting season.  It was so rewarding.  Knowing that the work we put in is happening on my own land where I can enjoy the fruit of those labors for years to come.

In 2018, we are planning to begin raising chickens and start a decent sized garden with a wide variety of produce to enjoy for the entire year.  We have a tree full of native bees and are hoping to catch one of their swarms in a bee box to begin doing a little bee-keeping.

We are learning new things every week.  We are staring at the television less and are outside far more minutes than inside.  Our children are involved and are learning to use their hands at a young age.  In short, we love it.  More importantly, we love the fact that we are no longer just dreaming of these things but instead are actively doing them.

The challenges are great being that I am in a wheelchair but that is simply not going to be an excuse.  Where there is a will, there is a way.  To borrow a quote from the great missionary and apostle Paul, "I can do all thing through Christ Jesus who strengthens me." Phil 4:13.

If I can, you can friends.  Get Out There!