Something Fishy

Something Fishy
t Doesn't Get Much Better

Monday, September 29, 2014

Our rat terrier/beagle/whatever mix, Missy loves to ride the ATV

Missy loves to ride on the Yardsport
     Missy, our new rescue dog, loves to ride on our little ATV, In fact, she just loves to go with me anywhere. The ATV is a little noisy, but she is always ready to go.
     I am hopeful that  riding on the ATV and walking along side here in Indiana will translate to walking along side and riding on the old golf cart in Florida.
     Missy provides a great deal of companionship. I grab a camera and a bottle of water and away we go.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Fall is a great time for camping, festivals abound near campgrounds

It is very enjoyable to sit around a campfire on a fall day.

     Fall is a great time for camping. The air is crisp, leaves begin to change color, and an evening campfire feels good, especially if it is warming a pot of chili. A long sleeve shirt is in order.
Fall has arrived, and so is some of the best camping of the year.
Summer’s oppressive heat and most of the pesky bugs are gone. A pot of chili or ham and beans on the fire makes sitting and enjoying the weather something special. It’s time for marshmallows and Smores.
Fall presents many opportunities for the RVer and camper. It’s just fun to get out and enjoy the weather, however there are lots of things to do. There are festivals, football tailgating, fishing, and hunting, including deer camp--a special time for many.
There are festivals galore throughout the Kentuckiana area. Many of them either have camping on site or nearby. 
There are far too many festivals to list. There is a website:, if you want to check them out. Hoosier festivals also can be found at (type in Indiana or the state you want).
Some RVers use their rigs for deer camp, while other hunters use tents. For many outdoors people, it is the favorite event of the year.
Deer camp has both the social and culinary aspects. The camp atmosphere may be better than the hunt itself. I suppose it is like the guys who go to the NASCAR race and never make it to their ticketed seat.
What hunters call deer camp varies widely. Some use the same cabin year-after-year. Others utilize campers, and still others set up tents. Many camps are quite simple, basically providing shelter, and others look like small tent or camper sites with many of the amenities of home.
(Indiana’s firearms deer season opens Nov. 15 and runs through Nov. 30. Archery season opens Oct. 1.)
Something that is a must at any camp is a campfire. A good fire starts with camp setup and may not go out until hunters are ready to head for home. It provides warmth, a place to cook, relax and swap tales.
Many deer camps are long-standing tradition. Some are on private property, or located in campgrounds, or setup where permitted on public land, such as national forests. Many hunters establish their camp a week or two prior to the season opener to insure they have the same spot they have used for years.
Several generations have sat by the campfires, told stories, heard stories--some of them many times. But that’s OK. It’s part of what deer camp is about. Sure there is the anticipated hunt, however reliving hunts from the past is a part of the experience. The deer get bigger and the weather and other hunting conditions get tougher over the years.
My favorite aspect of deer camp is food--the eating. In most camps, the night before the season opener is a feast. I’d rather get an invite to eat than to hunt.
Some people who harvest a deer early in camp, fry tenderloins or venison steaks. Some make strew with the fresh meat. That’s also a real treat. 

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Full moon has impact on fishing

Why does a full moon seem to impact fishing, and in particular the catching of fish? There definitely is something to it. No question in my old mind.
My friend Jim Mansfield kept detailed records over many years about the more than 100,000 panfish he caught. Without questions, his statistics showed fishing was better around a full moon. The best days seemed to be three to five days before the moon was full.
In late winter, I usually fish for shellcrackers (redear sunfish), and there is no question the crackers move into the shallows around lilly pads and snail three-to-five days before the full moons in March and April, depending on the weather and water temperature.
Whatever the reason, fish seem to be more active around the time of the full moon. Some hunters believe it impacts other animals as well.
Yamaha bass fishing pro Mark Davis says he tries to time his big fish hunts during the three days immediately preceding a full moon, regardless of the time of year. 
He also doesn’t know why bass seem to bite better during that time, but his years of experience as both a tournament pro and a guide on Lake Ouachita near his home have proven it is the most reliable time to catch a big fish. He really likes to be on the water when the sun and moon are visible at the same time.
“Overall,” concludes Davis, “catching a big bass now is all about finding cover close to deep water, and then fishing that cover extremely slowly. Don’t worry about leaving your lure motionless on the bottom for up to half a minute, because the bass definitely know it’s there, and they’re probably watching it.
“The less obtrusive and aggressive you can make it look, the better your chances for catching one of them.” 
People says the full moon impacts people as well as other animals, but whatever the reason, it appears to be a good time to go fishing. There isn’t a bad time to go fishing; some are just better than others.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Missy enjoys the warm Sunday afternoon sunshine

      Missy, our new rescue dog, is a pure joy. 
    She loves to explore the back yard, but also loves the sunshine. Yesterday was cool, the sun was warm on our back deck.
     While it seems there almost was no summer, fall is one of the best time of the year whether you are a hunter, fisher person, hiker, or a dog.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Fall isn't just for hunting; it also is the season for some of year's top fishing

It’s been a cool summer and hot weather didn’t arrive till the end of August, and the TV weather guy says we still have hot days ahead. 
However, leaves are beginning to swirl to the ground. Their color is changing. Particularly, the change is starting in my two Walnut trees out back. It may be part that fall is coming. 
It has been an unusual summer. Until the last few weeks, it has been quite cool. My grass never turned brown. It still is bright green and constantly in need of attention from the mower.
Fall probably is my favorite season. However, I have very little enthusiasm for what follows. Winter. 
It is true, Winter has some virtues, although the old mind struggles to enumerate many. It seems the number shrinks as my age increases.
However, summer really isn’t over. There will be more warm days and the water temperature is still warm. It is a time when big catfish are feeding prior to winter months. There isn’t a better time to land a big catfish. Their feeding frenzy, especially in rivers and big lakes, usually lasts through the middle of September when the water begins to cool.
And when the water begins to cool, it marks a time for crappie fishing action to pick up.
Crappie fishing can be as good in the fall as it is during the spring spawn. In fact, it can be just as much fun and productive as there are fewer people and boats on lakes and streams making noise and spooking the fish.
Fall crappie fishing can be a bit more challenging than spring action because often the fish are more scattered. They are harder to find. They also may be more unpredictable.
During fall, the water temperature eventually becomes about the same at all levels and crappie can be found at most any depth. However, once you find them, they can be caught.
During fall, a day in the outdoors can combine squirrel hunting and crappie fishing. My old friend Bayou Bill Scifres used to call it “squirrelshing”.

Ground cherry pie, not your typical pie from a tree Washington whacked

Recently our family gathered for a cookout and to celebrate my son’s birthday. My daughter insisted he must have a cherry pie--one of his favorites.
After a relatively cool summer, the weather had finally turned not warm, but hot, so neither me or my wife were anxious to heat up the oven and bake a cherry pie for the event. The grocery bakery came to mind.
By chance, I stopped by a Dutch country store where the folks there sell bulk foods, meats and a number of home grown products. The store has a greenhouse and gardens for fruits and vegetables.
On Saturday, the store usually offers baked goods. When I looked into a cooler, there was a ground cherry pie. I picked up a bag of buckwheat pancake mix as well as several other items and took them to the checkout area. I also retrieved the ground cherry pie. It was already baked and ideal for Erik’s birthday.
“Is a ground cherry a particular type of cherry?”, I asked the young woman wearing a long dress and bonnet behind the counter.
“Yes,” she replied, “but maybe my mother could explain it better.”
A minute or two later, the mother appeared.
I asked her the same question. She indicated a ground cherry is much different from the regular cherries I know.
“They grow on a bush,” she said. “We plant them in the garden. Someone came in this spring and wanted ground cherries, but I told them they wouldn’t be available until fall,” she explained as we unloaded several boxes of tomatoes.
When I asked what they taste like, she explained they were somewhat like a cross between a cherry tomato and pineapple.
Although I knew we would still need to bake a regular cherry pie, I decided to buy the ground cherry pie and try something new.
“When you come back in, I’d like to know what you think about the ground cherry pie,” added the lady.
I haven’t had a chance to offer a review, but must say it is different. The cherries look a bit like orange colored gooseberries, and I can’t say they taste just like any other fruit or vegetable. The pie was good, but I would prefer any good, cherry, apple or peach pie.
Ground cherries more frequently can be found at farmer’s markets in late summer and early fall.  Apparently, they grow wild in some areas along the edges of fields and fence rows, or can be planted and harvested. They also are known as husk tomatoes, strawberry tomatoes and dwarf Cape gooseberries. They are about the size of a blueberry.
Ground cherries and not cherries or gooseberries. Their papery husk looks a bit like a small Chinese lantern. Like tomatillos, they are members of a family that  produces peppers, eggplants, tomatoes and potatoes.
They taste a bit like a super sweet cherry tomato with a hint of pineapple, but it is difficult to describe. And, no, they don’t taste like chicken.
According to one internet site, harvesting ground cherries is easy. The cherries usually fall off the bush. Gather the ground cherries that have collected on the ground, avoiding those with husks that are dark in coloration
The husks should be beige, with a dry, paper-like quality. The fruits should be a rosy yellow color  when removed from their paper-like wrappers.
If the fruits are still tinged with green, let them sit in their husks in a cool, dry place for a few days and they will become sweeter.
Although those who tried the ground cherry pie at Erik’s birthday gathering gave it a passing grade. It may be a dessert that needs an acquired taste.
P.S. The regular cherry pie won the family taste test contest.

Monday, September 8, 2014

KDFWR, QDMA offers Nelson County beginning deer hunting, prep class

Kentucky’s Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources staff and members of the Derby City Branch of the Quality Deer Management Association will team to offer a hands-on course designed to give first time hunters basic instruction in deer hunting.
The course also will provide information on preparing venison for the dinner table.
According to KDFWR’s Jason Nally, the course includes one night of classroom instruction followed by a day-long field course. 
The cost of the course is $30 and includes a 2014-2015 Combination Fishing and Hunting License for Kentucky residents. This fee will be waived for Kentucky residents who show a current annual Kentucky combo hunting and fishing license.
The classroom portion of the workshop will be held at the Nelson County Cooperative Extension office and will cover a variety of topics including deer biology and behavior, the history of whitetail deer in Kentucky, finding a place to hunt and basic hunting strategies. The class room portion of the course will be limited to 30 participants. 
The field portion of the course, will be held at the Otter Creek Outdoor Recreation Area in Meade County, and will include an introduction to firearms and archery equipment, deer processing and preservation, tree stand safety, hide tanning and the identification of plants and habitats important to deer.
All workshops are recommended for ages 16 and up and participants are encouraged to attend both the classroom session and field portion of the workshop.
        To register for the course or for more information, contact Jason Nally at (502) 477-9288 or e-mail him at The deadline to register for the course is Sept. 26,.