Saturday, August 23, 2014
Saturday, August 16, 2014
Late summer, early fall top time for catching big catfish; Ohio River excellent cat fishing territory
Wednesday, August 13, 2014
When Tony Stewart’s sprint car hit and killed fellow driver Kevin Ward, Jr., last weekend in upstate New York, it was a tragedy for all involved.
I’ve seen drivers exit cars numerous times, and often there is good reason when it appears a fire is possible. I’ve also seen them shake a fist or exhibit some other response to another driver. But this time, the action resulted in a death.
I know nothing more about the tragedy than what I’ve seen and read, but in no way do I believe Tony would ever intentionally strike someone running on the track. He is a passionate person, but not the kind of person who would run down another.
The incident brought to mind part of a column I wrote about Tony and his love for the outdoors back in early April of 2011. It follows.
Tony Stewart ran out of gas on the final lap of Saturday night’s NASCAR race, and it dropped him from third to a twelfth place finish, however a favorite project of his continues racing ahead.
Stewart owns more than 400 acres near Columbus. It is named Hidden Hollow Ranch and is a place for Tony to get away when he isn’t battling on the NASCAR circuit.
But, the ranch has become more than a place for Tony to relax and enjoy the outdoors. It now is being used to study habitats and deer-related issues in a partnership with Tony and Mississippi State University.
Hidden Hollow Ranch is becoming an outdoor laboratory for biologists in a partnership with Mississippi State and the Catch-A-Dream Foundation, which grants hunting and fishing experiences to youngsters who have a life-threatening illness.
Since 2001, the Foundation has granted wishes to 339 children ages six to 18 from 45 different states.
According to Stewart, who started his racing career in a go-cart at Westport, IN, the cooperative venture between the school and Catch-A-Dream fits well with his interests in wildlife and providing outdoor opportunities to young people.
The two-time NASCAR champion began hunting about six years ago, and since has become a bow hunting enthusiast, when he has time to get away from the track.
Tony has hosted seven ill youngsters for hunts at Hidden Hollow.
He said hosting such events and spending time in the field, “is what relaxes me.”
Stephen Demarais, a Mississippi State professor of wildlife and fisheries, said being able to study Indiana habitats will help scientists determine whether wildlife management policies translate from the Southeast to the Midwest.
Mississippi State has an information-sharing program in place with state agencies in Kentucky, Missouri and Michigan and at Purdue University, he said.
According to researchers, growing deer herds have put stress on habitat, and creates problems in parks and urban areas, and creates increased human-deer conflicts.
Tony hasn’t said how much his effort toward the project at Hidden Hollow is worth, but he said he hopes the relationship between himself and the organizations is a long one.
In all of his philanthropic activities, his foundations has provided more than four million dollars to various organizations.
Sunday, August 10, 2014
Monday, August 4, 2014
Sunday, July 27, 2014
|Mark Davis shows one his favorite rigs for big bass.|
Catching big bass in winter’s cold water equates to fishing lures slow, very slow. However, the same slow action applies to hot summer bass angling as well, according to Yamaha fishing pro Mark Davis.
In an interview provided by Yamaha’s media folks, Davis says slow fishing is a key anytime of the year, but especially when the water is really cold or hot.
“It will probably surprise a lot of anglers, but right now is one of my favorite times to go after a really big fish,” notes Davis, who caught his heaviest largemouth ever, a 12-6 giant,
“On many lakes, the bass are still in a type of transition and haven’t completed their move to deep summer structure (June and early July).
The real key to catching big bass anytime of year, however, emphasizes Davis, is fishing extremely slowly, which takes not only patience but also confidence. In fact, when Davis is really looking for a trophy bass, he fishes slower than he does during the winter months when bass tend to be more lethargic.
“Big bass will never be far from deep water, even in the spring when they’re coming to shallow flats to spawn,” continues the Yamaha Pro, “so that’s the first thing I look for. I like to find creek channels or ditches leading from deep water into the shallows, or points and ledges that have steep drops into deeper water.
“Then I look for cover like logs, stumps, bushes, or vegetation around those depth changes, because these are objects that bass use, and if they’re present, the fish will stay longer in that area.”
Davis prefers fishing soft plastic lures like creature baits, big worms, and stick baits on a Carolina rig when he’s hunting big fish. The reason is because these types of plastic lures are still extremely effective when fished slowly. He rigs them Texas-style, with the hook imbedded to make them weedless.
“When I feel my Carolina rig weight hit a piece of cover as I make my retrieve, I stop and let the lure sit there from 10 to perhaps 30 seconds,” he says, “because I want to keep the lure in that area as long as possible. Even if I’m fishing vegetation and feel the sinker hit it, I’ll still let the lure sit there a long time.
“I may be fishing with a leader as long as six feet, so I’ll shake my rod a time or two, let the lure sit there again, then crawl it into the vegetation. I know the bass know my lure is down there, and I want it to look as tempting to them as I possibly can.”
Depending on the type of lake and the water clarity where he’s fishing, Davis gradually works deeper water as the summer progresses. Instead of concentrating in eight to 12 foot depths like he might in May, for example, in June he works his way out to about 15 feet. The more off-colored the water, the shallower bass will be.
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HUNTING NOTES -- Squirrel season is almost here. Indiana’s season open Aug. 15 and continues through Jan. 31, 2014.
Kentucky’s fall squirrel season starts Aug. 16 and runs through Feb. 26, 2015.
Indiana’s early goose season is again scheduled for Sept. 1-15, and is designed to reduce the number of resident geese.
The daily bag limit: is five and and possession limit: is 15.. Shooting hours: half-hour before sunrise to sunset. HIP Registration Required
The is no early season goose hunting on Kankakee FWA and Hovey Lake FWA., near Mt. Vernon.