Wednesday, November 30, 2011

LUMIX DMC-TS3 A Camera for the Outdoors

moreviewsAfter destroying two inexpensive point and shoots this year it was time to invest in a little better outdoor camera. My camera is almost like my wallet and  I usually have it with me or near me all the time. This means it sees tree stands,trout streams, ATV rides and every condition mother nature wants to throw at it . Outdoor photography   is dirty work and the camera falls in the snow,lays on stream banks and is handled with fish slimy hands .I took some  great photos  in the past with  my point and shoots but It was time to search out a camera  that was shock proof and water proof.  I chose the LUMIX DMC-TS3(FT3) by Panasonic. Quad Protection-waterproof, dustproof, freezeproof and shockproof, this should have me covered wherever Wisconsin takes me this year.  The built-in GPS function, compass, altimeter and barometer are  some of the extra bells and whistles  of the camera. Did I forget to say  WATERPROOF ? If you think you’ll  be seeing blog posts  of underwater walleyes and beatitful brown  trout from  Wisconsin FINtastic Outdoors you’ll have to wait awhile . I like the notion of having a little extra protection if I drop my camera into my favorite trout stream or lake  BUT that’s as far as it goes for now.You can get a mountain of information off the internet about buying a camera but I almost found it annoying .  Its SO much information to sort through it left me feeling exhausted after a night of research  .  Go to the stores,talk to other outdoor bloggers and photographers , and ask the camera experts to explain the features and it will help you .

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Almost Nuts

America's Mental Health, State By State

The report shows 24.2 percent of Rhode Island residents experienced some form of mental illness.Worst in the Country

The report shows 16.7 percent of Maryland residents experienced some form of mental illness.The Best in the country!

The report shows 21.2 percent of Wisconsin residents experienced some form of mental illness which is number 11 on the list.

That means I'm only three percentage points away from being certifiable !
What can I say, I'm crazy about fishing!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Don't Forget to Charge!

Every 3 months or so when your in the down season, make sure to charge your Vexilar and camera batteries. The worst thing for a vex battery is non use or sitting there for months dead.  I charge them at the end of ice fishing season and maybe twice in the summer.  Now is the time to take the battery out and make sure your contacts are clean . The small connectors can be replaced if needed and just go over the whole unit . You can wash the outer case in mild detergent and the same goes for the unit itself. Even though its 80 degrees ice fishing is right around the corner. If you follow these simple steps it will increase your battery life substantially .There is  nothing  worse than hitting the ice with a dead battery or having to invest in a new one to kick off the season. Work on the shanty starts Monday and I’ll post some tips for shanty upkeep later in the week. Until then get out and enjoy our Indian summer.
ice fishing

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Hank Williams Jr. Ditched By ESPN Over Obama Hitler Comments

"Hank Williams Jr. Ditched By ESPN Over Obama Hitler Comments"

Hey ESPN, its the other way around!
“After reading hundreds of e-mails, I have made MY decision. By pulling my opening Oct 3rd, You (ESPN) stepped on the Toes of The First Amendment Freedom of Speech, so therefore Me, My Song, and All My Rowdy Friends are OUT OF HERE. It’s been a great run.” 

Hank Williams Jr.

 I encourage all bloggers to repost this in their own 


  ESPN can't sensor the bloggers!

please pass it on....

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

That's Life

Twenty five years  ago we had:

Ronald Regan
Johnny Cash
Bob Hope




Sunday, September 25, 2011

What a Year! 2011 trout Season

Male Brown Trout
The 2011 trout season is in the books and for me it was filled with many  events that will make for great campfire tales for years to come.Wading through chest high snow to get to the stream, I started the season with a grand 20 inch male brown trout on my third cast and proceeded to land at least another 30 trout that day.  It was a great day on the river, tucked away in the pines, the wind howled on that day and the fish were really biting .The celebration would be  short lived ,for on my  way home my foot was heavy which landed me a nice speeding ticket.  It kind of brought me into the cellar for the day  but I was still excited and looked  forward to  my next trip to the stream . The very next outing in the same area I wound up driving into a four foot ditch that was marked as a road to the parking area .We ended up needing a wrecker to winch us out and adding  insult to injury ,we never caught a fish all day. Revisiting my  recent trout fishing memories,  I was very alert obeying all traffic signs on the way home and thank goodness because officer friendly was waiting at the same intersection for me .I smiled and waved with all my fingers extended as I passed.
Opening weekend went fine with many trout  caught and it was fairly uneventful. The boys and I camped and we were greeted with sunshine and mild temps the entire weekend. Between us, we must have caught over 200 trout over a three day span and my son landed his first fish on a fly rod at the ripe age of twelve .Both my sons have become very savvy trout anglers and I always look forward sharing a piece of the stream  with them .
 That brings us to Fathers day  weekend. Fathers day weekend started low key but by Saturday night, after 5 inches of rain , we ended up in the middle of a flash flood in Vernon county . It was a near panic situation for me and two boys as we abandoned the tent and sleepng bags as the river rose to a trechorus level in a matter of minutes. We ended up sleeping the night in a parking lot in Virouqa, Wi and traveled home the next day .
Flash flood
As  I sit here and recount my tale of trout I realize that it was a fairly wild year for me .No broken bones or horrific accidents but enough added stress to put a few more gray hairs atop my head.  I'll consider myself lucky but I will do it again and again until every last hair on my head is silver .  So how do you put a exclamation point on a year as such?One last trip and  a quad super slam of course! A rainbow,brown, brook and a tiger trout all in the same day,Saturday September 24.

 It has been a year of great highs and lows but as I put my gear away tonight I can't help but think what stream I will hit first come February.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

One Last Shot

Going to hit the stream one more time before it closes. Soon we will be counting the days until we can fish again and I will be struggling though the snow banks to catch a glimpse of trout that have been untouched and resting in their deep dark log filled holes in the off season. That is also a peaceful time on the river so its something to dream about after that last day of September . I think its 8 days to go.

I'm off......

Monday, September 19, 2011

Yes, fish bite twice!!!

I have on occasion thought I have caught the same fish twice  in an outing in my many years of fishing but could never really prove it other than saying I did. Well I  had a surprise when cleaning fish yesterday. I was perch fishing on Lake Winnebago and I was using a technique called dead sticking. Its nothing more than hanging a bait over the side of the boat and watching your rod tip but now days everything has to have a fancy name. Anyways, I saw a bite and set the hook and my line broke. Images of a monster perch swirled in my head like a kid on Christmas Eve night. I proceed to catch a nice bunch of  perch and headed home to clean. I was on my 5th perch when I saw a line out of one's mouth. Sure enough,there was my tube bait and red hook swallowed by a perch.
 When I started to think about it and how odd it might be, its really not unusual for a fish to bite twice. The hook feels no different than sharp spiney fins and the soft tube body must feel no different than a minnow. I did ,however, set the hook hard and thought I rocked him pretty good . I was wrong.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Lake Winnebago remains strong in September

Fisherman on Lake Winnebago  will remember  the summer on 2011 as one of the best on record for ALL species. Anglers have been blessed this year with perch, bluegills and a great walleye bite that has lasted through September. Years ago the lake  bite for walleyes would start around mid April and by the 3 week of June it was tough going for walleye fishing. We have always had a  strong shad and trout perch hatch and by the third week of June  they would be perfect eating size for the walleyes thus the bite died . Many things have happened since then to change how and when fish are feeding on the lake.  The shad  and trout perch are still here but competition from whitebass, smallmouth and a huge Largemouth presence might be making it harder for the walleyes to find a meal.Don't forget the ever present sheephead and perch are also at the buffet table competing for food.  The spring hatches have to last all the species  into next spring when the young of the year arrive once again . Besides some competition for food, Lake Winnebago simply has tons of fish in it right now. We are in great shape on the lake and I think ice fishing will be just as good if not better. I would look to areas not often fished because new patterns are emerging on the lake every day. Look for perch,bluegill and white bass to provide great  early ice action .  Here are some pictures of  2011 catch

Thursday, September 8, 2011


Wow people , I've been slacking . Its been at least a couple weeks since my last chance to really sit down
and give a meaniful post.The last few weeks I have always felt rushed or had poor content so I opted to not post at all .Fishing hasn't been on the top of the list ,kids back to school, and redecorating the living room, the fishing poles have been neglected. Oh, the damn priorities. Well, in the past weeks I got the opportunity to do a review for   The great people there contacted me so I jumped at the chance. The idea is that you provided them a photo and they   turn it into a piece of art on canvas. A few weeks back you might have looked at  my  "Lighthouse in a Storm" picture. I took 50 photos that night and I got a couple gems out of the batch that I thought would work great. So I went to their site   Followed the diretions and within a week I  received my print.
 They shipped UPS and the box came well packaged, nice and neat. I was awestruck when I opened my box.  . I chose the 16 X 20 canvas and It is absolutely gorgeous . Cant wait to get it hung in our newly painted living room.  I know my buddy Trout Magee would love this stuff. He has so many great pieces of art work just screaming to jump on a canvas.
 Cofisher at Windknots & Tangled Lines got a chance to review this product as well  I believe. This would make great stuff for family portraits and gifts for Grandma and Grandpa . Hoping to get out fishing again soon and maybe get a photo of a monster trout or walleye
for another canvas. Well until next time,
Good Fishin!!!!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Lake Winnebago Bluegills

Looking over  a body of water the size of lake winnebago can seem overwhelming if your looking to find bluegills.Don't let the size of the lake scare you into thinking its a needle in the haystack approach to finding fish. Weeds...weeds...weeds..... The much cursed  zebra muscle has cleared the water on lake Winnebago. The result was sun penetration which gave our lake some beautiful weed beds . I'm looking for weed beds in front of feeder creeks,man made channels and bays. I fish directly outside any place that typically holds fish in early spring. After the bluegill spawn and are done feeding  they move out to the weeded flats directly adjacent to theses creeks and channels. Now of course not all weeds are created equally. . You will find floating weed masses and if you can motor to the middle of these  often you will find pockets .  I anchor in these pockets and fish a small ice jig under a  float.Typically it takes a while for a area to settle down after you approach it with a motor. Big gills area very spooky in these weed flats so a stealth approach is needed.Give a spot at least 15 minutes and move on. On calm days I will just use a trolling motor and 14 foot cane pole and flip weed pockets or weed edges in 3 to 5 feet of water .  Staying mobile is also advantageous on days . It seems you'll catch a few big ones and the school breaks up a bit and moves.   Other days the fish will hold tight and the same spot will produce all day. When the bite dies don't just assume the fish quit feeding ,move until you find some additional active fish. 

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Summer Time Trout

So what makes a guy leave the comfort of home and all the fishing on Lake Winnebago and trade it for 8 foot tall nettle plants, biting flies and mosquitos? The love of trout I guess. My son and I had a couple days before his fall football begins so we took a trip over to the southwest corner on the state to get some last minute trout fishing done. We had the pleasure to camp at Kick
apoo Stump Dodger Campgrounds in Gays Mills, Wisconsin . This place is really nice and quiet, very clean and out of the way. They are equipped with RV sites and tent sites. They all include a fire pit and picnic table and firewood, water and electrical hookups are also available The rates were 10.00 for a tent and 18.00 for a camper which are super cheap . Jim Showen is the owner and a great guy. They even have a swimming pool and nice hot showers. I really recommend this campground as its one of the the cleanest around. . Be sure to check out their web page at

The trout fishing this time of year is all what you make it. You need to be prepared to fight the bugs and itch weed and super tall grass. Gnats are a big problem but a 50/50 mixture of vanilla extract and water in a spray bottle does the trick. Be sure to have mosquito spray along too as there is no lack of those biting devils either. The fish are still there and are plenty hungry but early fishing is a must. The cool temps of the morning are easier on the fisherman and the fish. Fish were feeding on top in almost every pool we fished early. By 9:00to 10:00 AM you could feel the heat of the day set in and the fish drifted to their day time hiding spots deep under grass covered under cuts.Towards fall the evenings will cool fast also and you can get some evening fishing done as well. Several apple orchards, wineries, and great scenery are just a few of the other things a person can enjoy if you’re not on the trout stream .We never caught any monster trout the last few days but we learned, laughed and had a nice shore lunch .

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

NOAA Radar picks up fly hatch in Wisconsin

Is this crazy or what?
Mayfly hatches have been showing up on NWS La Crosse's radar over the past few weeks, with one of the strongest returns showing up on Friday evening. Below is an image from 9:17pm with the high reflectivity being a Mayfly hatch along the Mississippi River.Man, the fish are eating good.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

New Photos

Along with the heat wave comes some great
opportunities to shoot the sunset.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Friday Morning Rant! THE HEAT

I don't care where your living right now it seems that America is on the burner.Folks ,its not Al gore
beating the global warming bushes like some want you to believe. 
 Ella Fitzgerald  sings it best! Its  just too darn hot!
Enjoy the music......

Thursday, July 21, 2011

A stroll down memory lane

We were talking the other day about the best shows of all time and everyone seemed to pick something from present to as far back as the eighties.I went one step further  and jumped back a little  earlier. Make sure you click and play the music and watch. Its pretty neat. . I even got a video from back  when wrestling was real :) :)

Schlitz didn't make Milwaukee famous , the Crusher did!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011


Its to hot to fish so photography in the evening is a good bet. Great weather sky last
night in our harbor in Fond du Lac WI

Monday, July 18, 2011

Monday Morning Ponderism

The only thing I will ponder this week and maybe weeks to come is how the US Womens soccer team lost to Japan.......... :(

Sunday, July 17, 2011


Sit in the air conditioning, close your eyes and play this song and I guarantee you will see
a flag pop up!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Friday Morning Rant! Rep. PAUL RYAN and $350 bottle of wine

Conservative Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) and a few friends were caught at a fancy eatery on  Capital hill this week  drinking a bottle of wine that cost a mere 350 dollars . ! Here's the kicker, they ordered a second bottle of the same wine. How detached are these guys from us regular folk!. Susan Feinberg, an associate business professor happened to be at the restaurant and confronted the table of three. The other two guys with Ryan were suspected lobbyists .
This is the same guy who wants to cut programs for the elderly and poor

He made a feeble attempt to explain  saying he  didn't realize what the bottle of wine cost. 
Just the kind of clown we need on Capital Hill in times of trouble.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Monday Morning Ponderism

Keeping with the outdoor theme and spending time outside
 lately brings us to the latest ponderism.

Why didn't Noah swat those two mosquitoes just as they 
got onto the ark?

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Its good to be unofficial!

 Fishing has been great on Lake Winnebago. It has been easy to jump on any rock reef and pull a limit of walleyes in short order. Sturgeon, crappies,perch, catfish, white bass,sheephead ,walleyes and sauger are among of the living  on this particular reef .  The sturgeon are jumping and rolling on the surface around the reef as well .The boys gave me a nice compliment the other night. They said I was the best unofficial guide on the lake. Its good to be unofficial!  Now to clean and fry!