Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Prediction: Every Ice Out Record Goes Down In 2024

It has been an exceedingly warm winter and the two times we got major precipitation happened on days when it was warm enough to be mostly or all rain. The ice depth around the state right now is 50% below normal if not more. There is no snow and  March is starting with well above average temps. It is a perfect storm for every record in the book to fall. I think Platte Lake will be ice-free by the end of this forecast if accurate.


 

Tuesday, February 27, 2024

Boom!


 It seems like every year I am able to score a great deal on a lot of Hollow-body frogs on eBay. The Buy It Now on this lot was ridiculously low. I paid under $2 a frog.  I'm amazed that with the Gen 1 Phat Frog, it wasn't snapped up immediately.   

Monday, February 26, 2024

2024 Tackle Warehouse Opener

 

It got over 50℉ today, so Opened up my Tackle Warehouse today and took a brief look around. I need to do a thorough refresher sometime this spring. I kind of know what is there, but kind of not.

Friday, February 23, 2024

Sullivan Inlet Frozen & GOMH Tonight

 

Looking South

Into the lake
I just figured the Sullivan Inlet would be open and flowing. Amazin! It wasn't. I stopped at the Rock Lake Access where there was one parked truck and a couple of guys fishing far North. Nobody on Long, Platte, or Sullivan.


3 geese honking away



Water level is low
Will it get to 60 on Monday?
Update: It only got to 55℉ on Monday the 26th.

I Can See The Driveway!




I didn't feel like doing a bunch of When Will I See My Driveway? posts this year. I knew with the forecast that the driveway would be snow and ice-free.well before the end of February. I think this is the earliest I have called it, but maybe not.

Fantasy Bass Fishing at Toledo Bend

 

Not the way I wanted to start the year; Four of my guys didn't make the cut and the one who did currently sits in 35th. Ouch!

My Drain the Lake team is mediocre. Four guys in the cut and a poor use of Hack who bombed badly.

Update: 




Thursday, February 22, 2024

Fantasy Bass Season Has Begun

I have long said, 'Day one don't mean jack squat." Tomorrow will be a new day and I expect a lot of movement, so I am only a bit concerned about my fantasy team's poor showing today. 

 This was not the line-up I intended to go with for Drain the Lake. I switched out Combs, Hartman, and Hundnall on my Hellabass spreadsheet, but forgot to make the changes on my actual team, duh. 



Update: Day1 Scorecard


Wednesday, February 21, 2024

GOMH Wednesday February 21st

 

I went fishing tonight at the Grumpy Old Man Hole. No bites. I fished both sides of the bridge. Not as many swans around tonight. It got to 50℉ today.

Tuesday, February 20, 2024

1st Bullhead Of 2024


 It was a nice day, 44℉, but I was in turtle mode after I woke up, so ice fishing was out. I decided to pack up a tackle bag, and some long rods and head to The Grumpy Old Man Hole. I figured I'd be skunked, but you never know at the GOMH. I had been casting the spinnerbait around for about 10 minutes and was just about to switch to something else when the bullhead struck. No skunk, and a new record for my earliest open water bullhead; The previous record was February 27th, 2016. 





Saturday, February 17, 2024

BP's 2024 Ice Out On Platte Lake, Spit Ball


 I'm predicting March 16th for the ice to be off Platte Lake this year.  There isn't going to be any snow left in a couple of days, it is going to be a warm end-of-the-month, and the ice is probably under 12 inches. The earliest ice-off on Platte Lake that I'm aware of is March 19th. 



Snatcher Feb. Meeting Minutes

 The meeting was called to order by President Tim Benson at 1:03 PM 
12 Members were in attendance after Ruff showed up. 

The First Order of Business was voting on making the dues $80 for the year, approved.

We then let everyone air their grievances with the tournament schedule with the agreement that votes would come after.

Changes to the 2024 Tournament Schedule are:

Gull Lake was changed to Farm Island
Mission Lake Tournament was moved to Saturday, July 27th
Big Birch was changed to Lake Osakis after Ruff gave the lake a ringing endorsement 
The first two tournaments will start at 7:00 AM

Here is what was voted down
A motion to switch Little Boy/Wabedo with Gull River failed.
A Motion to change out Mission Lakes failed  

2024 Bass Snatcher Tournament Schedule
June 1st, Lake Osakis,  7 AM Start
June 29th, Little Boy/Wabedo, 7 AM Start
July 27th, Mission Lakes, 7 AM Start
August 18th (Sunday), Pelican Lake, 7 AM Start 
September 7th, Gull River, 7 AM Start
September 28th, Farm Island, 8 AM Start

Christmas Party is on April 13th, details to come later.
Liar's Meeting April 20th

The meeting was adjourned at 1:30 PM

Wednesday, February 14, 2024

Snatcher's Basshead Invite


To All Brainerd Lakes Area Bassheads, I am writing to let you know that the Baxter Bass Snatchers Fishing Club would like to add some more Bassheads to our Club this year. The Bass Snatchers are one of the older bass clubs in the state, formed in 1977. We have 6 club tournaments a year, one or two tournaments being farther than an hour from downtown Brainerd.  The club draws new partners each tournament with no repeat partners. The boater and non-boater are fishing for their own fish against everyone else including their partner draw. We have skill levels from a Bassmaster Open Bassmaster Classic Qualifier to relative noobs to tournament fishing. It is a great club for learning if you are teachable. We have the most experienced bass fishermen in BLA, drawing one of the "old guard," as I call them, is this club's greatest asset. We will have at least 10 guys with at least 25 years in the Club this year, with 6 of them topping 40 years. What wealth of knowledge and fishing stories. They won't be around forever.


Our next meeting is Saturday, February 17th at the Brainerd Elks at 1PM. The Club has not decided on what our dues will be yet.  If you have any questions, leave a comment or send me a DM. 

Monday, February 12, 2024

Tribute To Kaylee

 




Kaylee was far from a perfect dog. She came from the Leech Lake Reservation after having had a litter of pups, which probably got her kicked out of her living situation there. She had obviously never been properly socialized with people or other dogs, which made her a bit of a problem child. She had too much guard dog in her. She once attacked little Lilah in our entry way drawing blood. She also bullied Smokey the Cat, big Jake Winters, and Pete's Trigger. She nipped at S-I-L Renee and a home healthcare worker and would have nipped at several others had she been able to get to them. She was an independent girl who only came if she wanted to do it outside the house. She wasn't much of a snuggler for the first few years with us, but over the final few years, she became a demanding cuddle monkey who couldn't get enough. She loved to take car rides, going for walks, rolli polli's in the yard when the grass was green, hunting mice, and barking at the neighbor's dogs. At times a terror, at times a sweetheart. My Kaylee, Godspeed, Puppers!

Sunday, February 11, 2024

Super Bowl Sunday @ GOMH

 

I dropped by the Lake Place for a quick visit with Bella and Bean stopping at the Grumpy Old Man Hole on my way home. Current has expanded the amount of open water despite the cold temps last night. There were three trucks at Bulldog, nobody at Rock, and a couple fish houses back out on Sully. It looks like it's going to be a cool, not cold, and dry rest of the month. With no snow, the ground will thaw and soon begin to retain heat which leads to ice melting from underneath. I doubt I've got a month left of ice fishing before the shoreline is trash.



Saturday, February 10, 2024

Good Luck With The Boys Zim!

 

I am on record here on the interwebs saying Mike McCarthy should have been fired after the Cowboy's playoff loss this year. Jerry didn't agree and it's his vote that counts. Now they have brought on my guy, Coach Zim, which officially places me back on the Cowboys bandwagon for next year. I always rooted for McCarthy to stick it to Cheeseheads and I want Zim to stick it to Vikes fans, who didn't stand by a very good coach that has no control over who gets injured.

Thursday, February 08, 2024

The GOMH On The Last Day Of False Spring Feb. 2024

 



Your not-so-typical rainy February Day with temps in the mid-forties. I imagine lake levels will be coming up despite the coming cold. We got an inch of snow overnight to the 9th. We are in for a couple of weeks of winter now.
The sump line out of the house shattered for some reason. We are going to need to replace the whole thing. I was eventually able to jerry-rig a workaround so I could turn the sump in the window well off. 

Friday, February 02, 2024

Phenomenal Interview With Living Legend Rick Clunn


 For whatever reason Rick Clunn isn't an angler I have paid very much attention to here at Bass Pundit over the years. I've got nothing but respect for the man. He lives life his own way and walks the walk of trying to be as good of a man as he is an angler. That really comes out in this interview. This will be his 50th year fishing B.A.S.S., incredible.

Special Appearances by Milliken, Feiderman, "Fear My Heart" Carl, and Gussy.

Thursday, February 01, 2024

2023 Was Not A Good Year For BP's Goals Achieved

  

Green = Goal achieved
Red = Goal Unachieved
Purple = Partly achieved
Italics indicate it was a new Goal for 2023
Black = an explanation.

Fishing Buddies: 
1. Fish with Dad
2. Fish with Mike Thompson
3. Fish with Jim Bonin
4.  Fish With Pat Woodgate
5. Fish with Jeff and Renee

6. Fish with ToddIsabelle, and Mallory
7.  Fish with Kane Phongsavat
8. Fish with Jaimen Abrahamson
9. Fish with Dave Lindmark

10. Fish with Steve and Devin
11. Take Corey Hicks frog fishing.
12. Fish with Jamar at Eddy's
13. Fish with Eric Aske

14. Fish with Pete
15. Fish with Kiefer for crappies this spring. 

Dream Fishing Buddies:
1. Fish with Josh Douglas
2. Fish with Al Lindner
3. Fish With Nattie Up North

Bass Snatcher Goals: (Same Goals as 2020)
1.  Win my 2nd club tournament. 
2. Get "Wood" in at least one tournament. (1st-3rd Place Finish or Lunker or Co-Angler Challenge) I made the Club Super 6.
3. Get "Lunker" in a tournament.   (Preferably one over 5-8 to win the revolving big bass pot.)
4. Finish in the Top 10 at the end of the year. (I made the club Super 6)
5. Catch a limit at every tournament of the year.  (I've done this twice, but in 2012 I only fished 4 out of the 6 tournaments due to a bad back.)
6. Pre-fish with at least 3 boaters.
7. List the Rods I'm bringing for each tournament before the tournament.
8.  Win the Co-Angler Challenge at least twice. (First time I have achieved this one. I did at the final two tournaments of the year at Pokegama and Whitefish Chain)
9. Make the Challenge Cup Team
10. Finish higher than Tuma in a Tournament (He is the only long-term Snatcher I have not beaten on tournament day. He beat me on the tie-breaker on Whitefish Chain his rookie year in the club. That is the closest I have gotten)
11. Give each boater I fish a lure from my collection. (Herman didn't want anything)
12. Catch a 20+ Bag and make the Club's list of Top 25 Biggest Bags 
13. Fish the BASS Nation State Championship on Leech as a  Co-Angler (It didn't work out)
14. Pre-fish at least two tournaments with Roger Ubl (Mom's health and one car killed this)
15. Set Personal Bests on each lake for Bag Size, Big Bass, and Place of Finish
I got personal bests in all three at North Long and Alexander.
I  got best place of finishes on Poke and whitefish
16. Grade my performance in each tournament and also do this for all my past Bass Snatcher tournament recaps. (I still have to do the Blind/Serpent Recap)
It was an OK year


Technique, Equipment, & Tackle Goals:
1. Win something in Fantasy Fishing or Facebook giveaways/contests.
2. Officially Open the Tackle Warehouse.
3. Give Away some of my tackle
4. Catch 25 fish on a Frenzy Popper
5. Catch 25 fish on a Stanley Phantom
6. Catch bass cranking deep in Sullivan Lake
7. Sell some of my tackle (I don't remember if I sold anything.)
8.  Keep a Lures Lost List
9 Catch a bass, pike, and walleye on a Hot-N-Tot
10. Dedicate a rod to plastic worms (non-Senko). I had a dedicated rod at the beginning of the year, but I wasn't catching anything so I scrapped it. 
11. Catch 30 fish on a prop bait and throw them during the post-spawn.
12. Catch 5 bass on a Jitterbug.
13. Experiment with a Rocket Bobber and Wacky Rig

Lures Lost In 2023:
Texas Rig: |||| ||
Dark Sleeper KO: ||||
Berkely Minnow: |
Rap V-Blade: |
Monsoor Swim Jigs: ||||
Berkley Cutter: |
Ult Jerk Shad: |
Northland Spinnerbait: ||
Herb's Dilly: |
Billy GOAT: ||
ToadZ: |
Turbo FattyZ: |||| |||
Texas Rig Tungsten: |
Ish's Phat Frog: |
Bobby's Perfect: |||| ||||
Teckel Whacker Frog: |||
Dark Sleeper: |
Terminator Pop Frog: |
SP Phat Frog: |
LiveTarget Frog: |
Berkley Stunna: |
Hack Jig: |
Mission Spinnerbait: |
Big Blade Chatterbait: ||||
Glow Demon: |||
T.H.E. Jig: |
PB Twitch: |
JH Lure Box: 3 Bubble Walker 80, 2 Bubble Walker 128, 2 to 4 Jackhammers, 1 or 2 Big Blade Chatters, 2 Livetarget Wake Gill FS, 1 LT Wake Gill Jr, Plus a few things I don't remember that were in it. Losing this box sucks.

Blogging:
1. Blog about it when I achieve a goal most of the time
2. Record all fishing trips at Fish Swami
3. Fish at least 200 days and blog about them
4. Get unblogged trips from 2021 and 2022 at Fish Swami blogged at the Log Blog

Fish Catching Goals:
1. Catch* 3,500 Fish (Caught less than 2,700 fish in 2023)
2. Have a 100-fish day.
3. Catch Devin's Birthday Bullhead On May 20th
4. Catch A Fish Every Month
­čŚ╣January
­čŚ╣February
­čŚ╣March
­čŚ╣April
­čŚ╣May
­čŚ╣June
­čŚ╣July
­čŚ╣August
­čŚ╣September
­čŚ╣October
­čŚ╣November
­čŚ╣December

Crappie:
1. Catch a new personal best.(14.75/1.80lb on 5/9/22)
2. Catch* over 500 Crappies this year.
(Caught 108 in 2023)
3. Catch my personal best number of crappies.
Due to hurting my back didn't get much ice fishing done early in the year and it was a marginal year at the GOMH with only 28 silver bullheads landed.)

Dogfish:
1. Win my 3rd Minnesota Bowfin Club Grand Championship
2. Catch an MN State Record fish. (11-4  or 35" x 20")
3. Catch a new personal best.
4. Get the Minnesota Bowfin Club Grand Championship stuff done in a timely manner this year.
I'm quitting the MBC Presidency.

Pike:
1. Catch* over 1,000 this year. (Caught 1,130 in 2023)
2. Catch a 38" or over/personal best.
Platte Lake winter kill is why I finally achieved the 1,000 pike goal.

Bass: 
1. Catch a 21plus inch or 6lb Largemouth (6.5lbs/21" PB)
2. Catch a 21plus inch or 6lb Smallmouth (20.5" PB)
3. Catch* over 1,500 bass this year.
(Caught 1,218 in 2023)
4. Catch* at least 10 smallies. (Caught 7 SMB in 2023)
5. Catch a 25lb 6 Fish Bag
6. Have a 50-bass day 
7. Catch over 500 bass on Frogs/Toads (Only got 395 Frog Bass in 2023)
8. Catch 5 bass over  5lbs/20-inches (0 in 2023)
9. Catch 25 bass over 4lbs/19-inches (30 in 2023)
10. Get Steve and Todd at least one 4lber. Steve only got out a couple of times.
11. Get Belle, Mallory, and Devin a frog fish.
Winter kill torched my bass goals, no doubt about it. I got some small smallies at Mille Lacs

Walleye:
1. Catch at least 100. (I caught 83 eyes in 2023)
2. Catch 30"/10lber or new personal best. (28.5 is PB)
It was a decent year for walleyes at both the GOMH and Eddy's.