Spring's arrival presents outdoors person with many choices
According to the calendar, spring has arrived. It seems to be far overdue. No getting around it, it was a really lousy winter.
As we begin to experience some better days, it’s time to think about the wealth of opportunities and choices spring brings us. There are almost too many for most folks who love the outdoors.
Of course there is yard work and other spring chores, but after the snow and below zero temperatures, we deserve to move some of the fun things toward the top of the list.
Crappie, bass, trout and even catfish action is upon us. Big muskies become active at Green River Reservoir. Turkey season is almost here as is morel mushroom hunting, and Kentucky’s spring squirrel season starts in early June.
And should you not really be into fishing and hunting, there is no better time for a hike in the woods with your favorite camera.
Crappie are among the favorite fish of spring. The action will continue to improve as the water warms.
Although crappie fishing can be productive throughout the year, the best time to catch these tasty fish is around the time of the spawn.
Generally, the best action and the spawn occurs when the water temperature is between about 58 degrees to 66. However, when the water temp reaches the upper 40’s to low 50’s, the fish will begin to move to spawning areas where they will make their nests.
Spring brings with it some of the best Kentucky muskellunge fishing of the year.
Kentucky anglers looking to tangle with a big muskie are fortunate to have an abundance of options – from Cave Run, Buckhorn and Green River lakes and their tailwaters to native muskie streams like the Licking River along with Tygarts and Kinniconick creeks.
Not having a boat doesn’t mean you have to sit idly during this active time. There is good early spring bank fishing at Cave Run and Green River lakes.
Kentucky turkey season opens April 12 and runs through May 4. Turkey youth season is scheduled for April 5-6., and the state’s spring squirrel season will be May 17 through June 20.
Depending on the location and weather, morel mushrooms will begin to pop up at the end of March, and usually can be found into early May. The blacks and tiny white morels appear first, followed by the larger whites, and then the big yellow sponges.
There are days when you can turkey and morel hunt in the morning and crappie fishing in the afternoon. (Forget the yard work for another day.)
The woods are beautiful during spring, and this year shouldn’t be an exception. It is amazing the variety of wildflowers to be found and the forest floor and the variety with of blues, yellows, whites and reds, and a variety of shades in between.
There also is an abundance of wildlife taking advantage of the meals they can make from the new green sprouts, and box turtles seem to travel everywhere. And if you get out early enough, the birds provide a morning symphony.
Fortunately, we are blessed in this part of the country with a wealth of places to enjoy a spring walk in the outdoors. Most of our local and state parks have trails we can enjoy close to home. For longer treks, there is a 65-mile north to south trail across the river in Land Between the Lakes as well as many others in the Bluegrass state.
There are good resources for these longer hikes with numerous books which can be found in libraries, book stores, or on the Internet. There also are Internet websites to help people find trails and get in touch with hiking and backpacking clubs.
Get out an enjoy spring in the woods whether you hike, fish, hunt or some other activity. But, don’t forget the bug and tick spray.