May 05, 2018

Just Another Friday

The wife and I went wandering yesterday.  We ate supper at a small town in Crawford County.  Supper went quickly.  I ran into a childhood friend there.  John Rundle and his sister Becky were eating supper too. John invited us to sit with Becky and husband and him.

 We talked about the old days and his dad.  John was my best friend throughout my youth.  We had many adventures as stupid snot nosed kids.  A couple of times we almost didn't escape death because of our short sightedness. Our youthful naiveté almost burnt us to death a couple times..... almost drown us...almost blew us up...almost ended us up in jail. We talked about the weather and how it was finally green around here.  Forty-two years have gone by since we got out of high school and we are still best of friends.

I had a couple come up to me at the restaurant and ask me where to fish in the morning. Trout opened that next morning. I gave them a couple possibilities and they went on their way after they profusely thanked me.  John asked me who they were after they left.  I told John I didn't know them from Adam. Barb toned in and said: "Bugs is well known in the trout world these days." We smiled and slapped each other on the back and said good bye.

We went our separate ways after high school.  He had a family and became a school teacher and recently retired. I wandered the world in the army for 7 years and ended back where I began.  I married a hometown girl and had one daughter and went back to college.  I did 30 years in law enforcement.  I am retired now also.

It is amazing how fast and how slow the years passed. Barb and I talked about the misadventures of John and Bugs on the way home.  Bugs is my hometown nickname.  I asked her if it was ok if I took the long way home.  I wanted to talk and appreciate the greens of spring.

We took another side road that Barb told me she had never been down before.  As we slowly drove and talked I told her that this road had one of my photo subjects on it.  I sometimes wonder if she gets sick of me talking about time and it moving so quickly and so slowly.  I slowed down slightly and quit talking.  I wanted to see if she saw it without being prompted.

Barb let out a "WOW!!" and turned to me and asked if that was my oak tree.  My smile answered her question. She said:  "I see why you were enamored with this tree."  She thought it was fitting to see it after we had talked to John and reminisced about the old days.

Life sometimes takes a while to figure out.  There will be detours and road blocks along the way. Many springs and falls will pass.  People will come in and out of your life.  The leaves may fall off the tree and the snow might fall.  There will be another Friday.

Monday Planting Day

I have 8 roots of the pinks like above and also 4 of the whites and 2 of the reds. One side of my deck will be bleeding heart land.

The rest of my front deck will be adorned with a couple dozen morning glories.  Some will be new colors.

May 04, 2018

Foodie Post

Rainy days take me off the streams and rivers and I tend to migrate to the kitchen.

May 02, 2018

A Day Like No Other

It is July in the heart of the Wisconsin driftless area.  You question your choice about fishing. The morning was a little over cast and 74 degrees but that changed quickly. The sun breached the horizon and the blast furnace began to bake us. The humidity is so high you can almost feel the moisture in the air as you breathe.

Your waders are a sauna. The fishing has been poor.  The stream temperatures are in the low 70s and the outdoor temp is 88 degrees.  You have 100 yards to go before your vehicle so you trudge onward. Our anticipation prior to the outing was replaced with a let's get it done quickly outing.

You wade in the stream to get some relief from the stifling heat and humidity. Your eyes are stinging from the sweat on your brow causing the sunscreen to run in your eyes. We even quit talking to each other because it just seemed too labored and senseless.

You catch a trout and it almost feels hot to the touch when you unhook it.  You decide to forego fishing and just walk in the stream in the deepest runs to keep yourself from over heating.

You can see the vehicle 50 yards away.  You are relieved because heat stroke is a real possibility on this awful day in the pristine green surroundings that the heat and humidity resemble the jungles of the Amazon.

The stream is silent.  There is not even a whisper of a wind.  The mosquitoes are nowhere to be seen on this mistake of a day to go fishing.  These temperatures are not good for the fish when you release them because there is a lack of oxygen in the water on crazy hot days like these.

The last run before the truck you visualize what the temperatures will be like inside your vehicle.  You need to cool down big time before the oven like blast that will be the vehicle locked and closed up for hours while you trudged through the insane heat.

You wade up to your wader tops just before the truck.  There is an odd sensation that you have not felt all day.  This water is actually cool.  You take out your thermometer and it is 20 degrees cooler than any stream temperature you have taken all day.

You are a little refreshed and decide to research why there is such a change in temperatures.

You hear a low roar coming from ahead of you. As you get closer the sound gets louder. There is a wow moment at what you see cascading down from the hillside not 10 yards up stream.  You follow the sound and low and behold there are 2 of them.

There at the head waters of a pristine Crawford County stream you see them.  The first is a small spring and ten yards from her is the "mother" of this stream.
You take turns cooling down where she comes out of the hillside.  Both of  you are dumbfounded and relish the seat in the spring. 

A temperature is taken while you are seated.  The findings are awe striking.
The outside temperature was 88 degrees and the life blood of the driftless was 42 degrees.  As we sat there our smiles returned and we were renewed.  The fishing was poor that day but the discovery was like no other.

May 01, 2018


I left Wisconsin in 1977 and wandered around the world in search of beauty and a place to call home.  I returned in 1984 and to this day I wonder why I wandered.

April 30, 2018

Quality Not Quantity

Went out with Bruce Ristow again this morning.  The last time we went out we caught nearly 100 trout during our fish.  I told Bruce the stretch I was taking him on was "not" a numbers place.  I told him the average size of fish was better on this waterway.

We hit the water at 9am.  The weather forecast said 72 degrees for the high and clouds were to move in by 10am.  The weather man had the temp correct but when we stopped at 2pm the clouds had not materialized.

Bruce was throwing size 3 blue fox in silver color.  I was throwing a size 9 gold panther martin.  Neither of us were having any luck for the first hour.  Bruce changed to an all gold colored blue fox and I changed to silver blade yellow body with red spots panther.  The fish liked my panther.  Bruce soon changed to the panther martin in the same color.

Bruce started to really kick some tail.  He quickly passed me with numbers and size.

I quit taking photos of smaller trout due to our success.  Bruce chuckled when I told no more little fish photos.  He told me our little ones were big for his normal outings.

I caught another which was a little bigger than this one.  It needed to get back in the water quickly so no photo of my big trout of the day.

About 100 yards from the vehicle I heard Bruce saying something.  I walked towards him at a slow pace and then I recognized what he had said so nonchalantly. It was "Len do you have your net handy?"

Big trout of the outing and a fitting last fish for us.  47 trout between us.  We caught maybe 5 guppies between us.  The average trout was over 15 inches.

The sun made almost all of the trout hug the non-sunny side of the stream. If it would have been overcast we would have for sure caught more.