How Much Are You Willing to ......

… go through to hunt the “Fish” ??

What kind of weather , water and terrain have you concured to meet the fish , where and when they are ??

No pain , no gain sometimes !!

I think most all fisherman and woman , have put up with some pretty uncomfortable and maybe even risky bussuness to “chase the fish” at one time or another .

What drives the fisherman as far as we go sometimes ??

I’m not an animal hunter (as in Deer , etc.), never have been , but I “hunt” fish !! … nephew “was” an animal hunter (the "was is another story , short of the long is he has been touched by an Elephants eyes) … but I can tell you this , I am “NEVER” going to sit in a tree in the 10 degree frigin freezen dark and wait for first light to hunt anything …

I’ve surf fished in a Nor’Easter
From land. I didn’t go out in a boat, but I did do some surf fishing during a Nor’Easter. I have also surf fished the Atlantic beach with whatever it is they call those little twisters over water - not dust devils but their waterborne equivalent - coming at us from the Pamlico Sound. We were tracking their progress and then ran back to the beach house just as they made landfall. The croakers were on! We were having too much fun. Another time I was fishing from my kayak and some buddies from their canoe. We couldn’t see each other 100yds apart the rain was so hard - my canoe buddies were bailing - but the smallies were hitting and there was no lightning so we just fished on. I’ve waded in Pennsylvania creeks with ice still on the edges. No waders. Too young and stupid. I’d stay in until my feet were numb and then come out and stamp my feet until I could feel pain and do it again. A wonder I didn’t lose any toes.

I don’t do this nonsense in boats usually, unless caught unawares. The forecast was clear for the day we were out in our paddle boats. But I will wade or hike in fish in just about anything but thunderstorms. If it’s too windy, I won’t use a fly rod. I’m much too poor of a fly-caster. Otherwise, I get to go so infrequently that I won’t usually permit weather to interfere. Though these days, I have proper clothing for most situations and carry fire-starting materials and shelter for emergency.

  • Big D

I live in Lightening Strike USA …
I love to fish … it could possibly cause my husband and I a divorce, because I could do it 24/7. Oh, he loves it too, but I’m addicted. Just kidding on the divorce part… we are two peas on a pod.

Florida is lightning capital of the world and when bad weather comes - I must call it quits.

Still in need of catching my Red - will it be this season?

But I’d stay out there if I could, but hubby isn’t interested in a charcoal version of me :wink:

I’m a serious fisherman
In fact most of my paddling is in pursuit of fish. I fish in the heat of summer 100+ degree days and with snow on the ground in winter when you have to periodically break the ice out of your line guides in order to cast. I often hike for miles to get to a special spot or paddle upstream against a good current to get to a hole that would otherwise be inaccessable - but the reward is that I catch a lot of trophy fish (I take pictures occasionally but don’t worry about documenting trophy fish as I’m not out to impress anyone but myself)

As a non-competitive
I take my fishing as it comes. If it looks like I will have a relaxing and fun time I go for it. If it looks like a PITA, forget it, I’ll do something else for awhile. Competition has its place in society. It can serve to strengthen us. Americans tend to overdo it. Without rambling further into this philosophy, I find it easier to work with Ma Nature than to fight her.

I fish in the rain, heat, and what
passes for winter down here.

Never thought of fishing as
"putting up with" challenges. I fish, therefore I am.

Does not really matter what the weather is like. I fish in heat or cold, dry or rain, wavey or frozen water. If I want to fish, I fish. There is NEVER a time I feel like it is “too tough to fish today.”

Now that said, I would not go if a tornado or hurricain threatens my existence.

I think I’m more of a softie than …
… I used to be . Maybe I’ve just gotten smarter about enduring physical discomforts such as “freezing” my butt off , or “frying” in the sweating Sun .

I don’t particularly enjoy either of those too much .

Although such conditions never bothered me enough to consider them a factor in the not too distant past , “they do now” !!

Like Big D , I have spent many a day wading in cold cold waters (not with ice though , what were you thinking Big D ??) … water temps. at 50 and air temps. hovering 40 mid day , late in the river season like mid-late Nov. , and early spring … this year we hit at 38* water temps. , but wasn’t going to walk in that !!

The fish bite was usually fantastic then (50*-55* water), but my teeth chattered constantly (just sneakers , jeans and a good warm waist coat and sweat shirt) . So now I understand that is apparently a sign of “hypothermia” , and I thought it was just kinda cold …

I’ll fish in cold water and cold air to this day without hesitation if the bite is on , but not wade in it any more . I still don’t own any special “immersion” clothing though … maybe I really haven’t gotten any smarter ?? But I do own a great breathable rain suit that is often pulled out and put on because I’ve learned , being cold is doable , being wet is doable , but being wet and cold at the same time and add a little wind , well that just sucks anymore !! … see what I mean about getting soft ??

As for thunder and lightening , that stuff has always made me look for the best shelter available to escape it’s path until it’s gone away !! … I’m not too proud to say that stuff scares me a little .

High winds that blow hard are a frequent pest that I don’t mind too much as long as the fish are biting , but if they are not , I sooner or later figure that out , usually later , lol .

I remember walking into this particular pond up to my neck so I could get my cast to reach the little island , which had previously been just out of range .

Lots of water snakes there !! … just had to go for it this time and the reward was a 5lb.-2oz. Bass , which nearly caused me to take the big swim because one more step went over my head .

Another time in a pond close to that one , these snakes were all over me trying to climb into my shirt !! … caught fish there too !!

Spent many a hour at night on the Chesapeake catching Stripers , sometimes the weather got a wee bit frightening , other times I just plain out froze to death .

The biggest thing I find anymore is , that I still don’t know when to call it a day … 12-14 hours casting , chasing and catching is still not enough , but I always feel beat up afterwards anymore … before I could go around the clock and just shrug it off .

Nothin I hate worse than to go out fishing with someone who calls it quits too early after a slow bite , or the weather get’s a little uncomfortable … that just makes me fish even harder … If I don’t have a good catch that day it’s not going to be because I gave up and quit !!

From before light to after dark is my policy on fresh waters , and from dark till light on the salt … only a select few have accepted this with me and came back for more , and they have been my constant fishing companions for ever now … they can’t seem to catch enough fish either , just like me , there’s always just one more waiting to take a bite , and he’s going to be the biggest one yet !!!

and of course … I’ve been skunked or nearly so on occassion as well … part of the game .

Makes me smile to remember
how miserable some of my fishing trips have been, but I enjoyed (nearly) all of them. Have fished in falling snow, heavy rain, deep cold, sunburn heat and clouds of biting insects in Canada. The only weather condition that ever shut me down totally was extreme cold, 25-30 below zero for steelhead. I lasted five minutes. Major ice freezing in the guides and I’d have to warm up for much longer between casts than it took to cast and retrieve. I made three casts and quit. Cold to the point of pain, even with gloves.

A friend and I on a makeshift log raft in a lake 8 1/2 miles from the nearest road fished all day in icy rain. We had rain ponchos over full rain coat and pants, with warm clothes underneath, and we hammered rainbows up to four or five pounds. A board member of the non-profit we worked for was along for the backpack trip and he finally froze out. He still talks about those two crazy guys who fish all day in icy rain and enjoy it.

As a teenager I would hike for miles to fish, and on one river gorge, two friends and I would hold the rod handle in our teeth so we could use both hands crossing a cliff face to a fabulous hole. Only fished that hole twice and fortunately lost the only fish I hooked. Have no idea how we would have carried a fish out of there. Summer run steelhead that we would hunt by sight in clear water and then cast to a specific fish we could see.

I flat out love to kayak rivers in rain when there is little or no wind. Fabulous combo of senses. In a SINK with rain jacket hem left out over the spray skirt, broad brimmed cap under a rain hood, it is comfortably warm and a great pleasure

re: "…never going to sit in the dark

– Last Updated: Oct-13-08 5:30 PM EST –

to hunt anything." Good for you, pilotwingz! You know your self and the limits of what is worth doing for pleasure. Made me laugh.

I do hunt stuff, far west style with rarely any tree climbing involved, though I have climbed a few impromptu to see moose and elk.

When I moved to Seattle and into an office for the first time, I kept my hunting quiet.

One early Fall weekend when a deer season opened, I went straight from work and started hiking up a switch back mountain trail just before dark. I hiked up the steep trail till 11:00 PM, slept under a tree till cold woke me at 5:00 am and hiked on in the dark for an hour so that I could be overlooking a basin above timberline at first light, seven miles and 5,000 feet above my vehicle.

On Monday morning, our cheery receptionist asked what I did over the weekend. "I went back packing," I replied.

"Did you go alone?" She asked.

"Yes," I said.

"You shouldn't do that. That's dangerous. You could join a hiking club," she persisted.

"Nobody wants to hike the way I do," I said, trying to escape.

A shrewder gal standing nearby asked, "Just what do you do that nobody else wants to hike that way?

I said that I'd gone from the office to a trailhead, hiked steep uphill till 11:00 pm, slept under a tree for awhile, hiked on in the dark before daylight, etc.

Her eyes narrowed and she said, "You're right. Nobody wants to do that!"

It had to be snakes…

One of my favorite holes has had some development nearby that has displaced a lot of snakes. In the early summer mornings, when I get to fish most, the fish wake up and move from one side of the stream to the other (the non-developed side where there is still forest) to hunt. It is off-putting to say the least. On one trip within ten minutes of my arrival, I stepped on a snake while wading, had a snake strike at my fly, and another strike where the leader joins the line. That was enough for me. I hate snakes. Freaking wierd perterbations of nature. They defy physics. It’s just not possible to climb a tree without legs. And that whole lifting themselves up on their tails to reach rocks three or four feet high - can’t be done. But snakes do both. Unholy aberrations. But, hey, that’s just me. I’m sure their mothers love them.

Anyway, I left the fishing hole, went to the grocery store to buy a cold case of beer, went home and calmed my nerves. It didn’t take much (just a cup of coffee and some time on the patio actually), but just knowing that case of cold ones was handy was enough.

  • Big D

From my experience …
… I have to say , snakes are just another creature squeeking out a living , like the rest of us .

I never think of a snake as having any premeditated intentions of biting just because we see each other … though I would never believe it won’t bite if for some reason it thinks I’m cramping it’s space .

I give almost any snake encountered the right of way usually … but I’m known to pick them up occassionally as well … many are very tame and calm down quickly after being handled gently .

Water snakes are one of the exceptions , they are a curious lot and are will readily bite you if you show any sign of dominance or aggression (just don’t throw stuff or swat at them) … they will boldly swim right up to you to check you out , where practically all other snakes I’m familiar with , make reasonable attempt to avoid you .

Ever since my first encounter with a grand ol Black snake (not racer) , I have always been inclined to pick the Black snake up … some have bitten me because I did not attempt to “pin” it’s head down first … but all the other Black snakes I’ve picked up this way never seemed to mind and would act as if they were a pet … you could set them on your shoulders a let go .

I would never fool with a viper or highly poisonous snake unless there was good reason to do so … not for curiousity sake any more …

If those water snakes spook you a little Big D , your not alone … but try to think of them as having no choice in their existence either , just like us .

After all , we are entering their place , we are the often encountered stranger on the water and in the wood …

I recognize that I entered their space
That’s why I left it as soon as possible thereafter.

Just for the record, that stepping on the snake thing was an accident. I was just wading and looking ahead of me rather than directly down at my feet. The water was low and the bottom relatively smooth, so I was looking where I was casting rather than where I was stepping. I did not expect a snake to be underwater like that.

They do not spook me a little. They spook me a lot. I know they are just another of God’s creatures, same as each of us. To the degree that they cannot choose to sin, so far as I know anyway, they are actually holier and more righteous creatures than am I. Nevertheless, they are freaky wierd and I’d just as soon be somewhere else when there’s a bunch of them around. These were what we called Water Mocassins in central Pennsylvania where I grew up (which are not the same kind of snake called Water Mocassin in the south - the PA variety are non-poisonous and called brown water snakes down here in VA).

  • Big D

I would imagine it’s that

– Last Updated: Oct-20-08 1:45 PM EST –

whole connection with the "serpant" in the Genesis D...but I'm just guessing here. ;-)

Lots of folks creeped out by snakes, it's a survival thing left over in the primordial section of our brains when avoiding snakes was critical to surviving back in the day.

I'm willing to put up with a LOT of adversity to chase smallmouth. Have broken ice in backwaters of the Doah with my Kayak, had to swirl my rod in the water to melt ice out of the guides on occasion, have suffured deydration in a blistering summer sun, and braved thunderstorms of biblical propotions, and run high water that was to any sane individual too high to do safely, let alone fish in. Just last month, I organized a long weekend down near Radford, VA for about 50 folks from . The weather reports were NOT all that pleasent, but about 25-30 of us showed up anyway for a very wet and chilly weekend. But we caught fish, drank beer, put our gear through a class A 'leak-check', honed out skills at starting a fire using wet wood (it's real easy if use those "yulelogs" from Lowe's, played beer pong with a bunch of vacationing elementry school teachers and in general had a heck of a good time. (note to self...NEVER try to out drink teachers, I knew were in trouble when one of the teachers broke out the tequlia)

Someone once said: "Adversity becomes adventure upon fond rememberance" (not sure if that was Grubbie or not D) but it's definately true for the most part.

Screw the weather report..get out there and fish.

Something we agree on Big_D
We have these obnoxious creatures around here known as prairie rattlers. Just the sound (which usually takes me by surprise) makes my blood run cold.

Genesis and snakes
That story just proves that neither Adam nor Eve had a lick of sense. First, they didn’t clear out when the snake came over to them. First mistake. They’re wierd and should be avoided. Second mistake was not clearing out when the danged thing talked. The only thing worse than a snake is a TALKING snake. Third mistake they made was actually listening to it. I wouldn’t listen to a cute and fuzzy little talking rabbit (or at least it would have to be VERY convincing), but a SNAKE? Jeez-o-flip that is just crazy!

  • Big D

D…we fish with a couple of fellers
that we should treat as ‘talking snakes’ and run in the opposite direction when they open their mouths!!<br />

Oh…wait…we might them.


Seriously, I know a couple of folks who snakes just wierd them out and I think absolutely no less of them for it.

I give em a lot of crap about it…but think absolutely NO less of them. :wink:

Extreme fishing?
How about sitting in the middle of a lake, temperature well below freezing with a 20 mph wind; cutting holes through 24" of ice to find the water, and no more shelter than a snowmobile with a jury-rigged wind break. No heated Ice Houses here, LOL.

BB, sure hope you caught some fish …
… that sounds just a bit too uncomfortable !!

I know there are quite a few who go ice fishing , and have seen the pictures of some pretty nice catches .

I know what it’s like to work outside in the winter , some days just tear you apart … oh that wind !!

Sounds WAY too much like work!
I work outdoors a good bit myself regardless of the season and my tolerance for the cold gets less every year. The only way “ice” and “fishing” go together is in keeping my catch and lunch cool on a nice warm day! If you catch any that way, you deserve them for sure!