march 14th 2016

Just like that and another season is in the books. 79 days and nights on such a grand lake. Every year is different and again this year was different. With the late ice watching all the outfitters and resorts coming up with plan bees to accommodate there clients was very interesting. I had to start right in front of my place as that’s the only place I could find over 14 inches of ice. That shallow water bite can be fantastic and we did have a few nights of great fishing in 7 to 8 feet of water. Getting the houses out to buddy Hillmens highway was a challenge, but with my good friend Marty,s help we were able to improvise and get them over there with out going through Buddys southern berm. From there it was off to find the mother lode. Finding a good late night bite was brutal. Being we rent sleepers I would like the rattle wheels going off all night . We had some nights that the rattle wheels had to be pulled up but not what I have become accustomed to? I found some good fishy areas and the fish would refuse to bite? We slowly migrated out to deeper water driving over millions of fish to catch a few? The sunrises and sunsets never get old and again my phone is full of morning and evening pictures. The red barons v plow got a whole new face lift and was much needed as I demolished it last year chasing the very elusive but still catchable upper red lake crappie. Blue thunder two’s 2nd year on the lake and I could not be happier with its performance. What a great truck.” knock on wood” I expect to get a good ten more years out of her if not more. My good friend Wayne was able to come up every other weekend and we had some good laughs and epic cards games. Mother nature was very kind to us this year as every year is different. The houses flooded just about every ware we set up. Working on the lake everyday was a joy. there were a few cuss words now and then but that’s nothing new. I again met some great people that will or have become life long friends. My goal has always been to have repeat customers .That has worked out real fine as it sure is nice to see them year after year. I never stop learning new things on the lake and Buddy Hillmen taught me a few more things about running a ice road. Helping with Hillmens highway is a treat for me and its sure is nice being part of the team. I had a couple brain farts? One that really sticks out was when I pulled a truck out of the southern berm and then gave the guy my new tow strap and told him to drop it off at hillmens store when he was done with it. I learned a lesson there and will never offer my strap to another fishermen un less they ask. Marty has helped me two years in a row now and still has not experienced the wrath the red lake can produce. She sure can be a eye opener as Randy can attest to when we tried to get off the lake in a white out. We made the right decision and went back to the houses where we hunkered down. Wayne was totally amazed at the wife Kellie” the Hammer ” as she could come out to the houses day or night with all the confidence of a seasoned professional . My working vacation was just that as I went on the search for the mother load of the very elusive yet still catchable upper red lake crappie. Randy and Tammy ended up getting 14 which was pretty darn good. All the houses managed to get a few here and there as I kept moving them . I never managed to land on the mother load like last year when the hammer and I got 27 in a hour and a half the last night old Minnesota was on the lake. Oh well there is always next year. This year I changed up gears and kept my mouth shut in preparation for my crappie hunt. The crew were all rolling in last Thursday and I did not want to be over whelmed with fishermen like last year. It could not of worked out better as the fishing was outstanding with over a hundred elusive yet still catchable upper red lake crappies caught and released to fight another year. Jake and Gabrial kept 4 for a meal. Ole kept 5 to take home. The hammer and I kept 7 total since the end of walleye season. Brady, Shawn, Wes, Joff kept a couple for a fish fry Saturday night. Florida, North Dakota and Montana all caught some elusive yet still catchable upper red lake crappies after dark which was great to see. Old Minnesota had Don and his buddy and even after moving it Saturday it still did not produce a elusive upper red lake crappie. Don did land a dandy pike on his rod and reel and that may of been the reason there were no elusive upper red lake crappies under the house. Adam / Ginger ended up with only 4 and is still looking for that wall hanger. Tim and his son Leon managed to get 11. The guys in the white ice castle got 6 after I talked to them and gave the suggestion to move. Randy fished the exact same holes he fished where they got the 14 and got skunked. It sounded like Buddy Hillmen found the mother load with some clients / friends and caught 70 while his other group got 45 Saturday into the evening. Yesterday morning I headed out to bring the fleet home. The timing could not of been any better and it is such a relief to have them home and on shore. I slept like a baby last night as all the worries associated with having the houses and fishermen out there were gone for another year. The liter I picked up last year has been nothing like this year. Thank you fishermen as the word has got out that it will not be tolerated. All the outfitters and resorts are on board and not afraid to make a phone call if need be. It may sound kinda of funny but I’m hoping I can spend a few more days out there in blue thunder policing the lake for liter. There is nothing worse then seeing that crap floating in the water and washing up on the beach. I huge thank you goes out to all my customers as with out you I would have nothing to write about . As Dave the old timer said it a GRAND LAKE AND It Owes Me NOTHING! NOTHING!

Ole ,Marty and I are headed off to low to do some pike fishing tomorrow. Wish us luck