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Local Columns

Ice fishing — open water similarities

There are certainly major differences between open water fishing and ice fishing, but once we get past the obvious differences, it’s important to recognize the similarities. If we keep those similarities in mind, we will be more successful anglers on the ice or on open water. Here are some ...

Lures to catch fish

It’s been said more than a lot of times that “fishing lures aren’t made to catch fish, they’re made to catch fishermen.” When I was first getting into the fishing business I thought that was a pretty accurate concept. I learned quickly that lures that didn’t catch fish didn’t ...

Hybrid learning from a teacher’s perspective

As of October 29, Webster City High School has finished their first quarter of Hybrid learning. Students took 3 or 4 blocked classes that were 90 minutes long. They met in person for 22 days and were at home with remote work for 22 days. We covered the same content and standards that we ...

Ice-fishing ideas

Two weeks ago, it appeared that ice-on-the-pond was going to happen soon. Today, it doesn’t look like that so much. Not so long ago, for many of us, it was a pretty sure deal that we would be ice-fishing on or shortly after Thanksgiving. In today’s world, that bet is off. But the bet is ...

Fishing thoughts

The Open Water Fishing Season for the year 2020 is over for this angler. I don’t get out as late in the year or as much during the year as I used to, but I still get after the fish as often as possible and certainly communicate with anglers a good amount. Following are some comments and ...

Memorable ice-fishing outings

It’s another of those “in between” seasons. Just as there’s a lull between the ice-fishing season and the open water fishing season in the spring, there’s a lull between the open water season and ice-fishing season in the fall. Today I’m looking forward to ice-fishing and also ...

It’s time to think about ice fishing

There’s still time to take advantage of open water fishing, but it’s also time to think about going ice-fishing. This year, particularly this year, if you want to go on an ice-fishing trip, you need to make plans now. People are fishing more than ever, and competition for lodging is ...

A late fall fishing trip

I took my annual fishing trip to Kabetogama Lake in northern Minnesota in early October. I’ve been going to Kab since the late 90’s. On one of my first trips to Kab I fished with local angler Wade Watson. On this trip I was looking forward to fishing with Wade again. Lots of things have ...

A lesson never forgotten

In a few days we will observe the 58th anniversary of a world event I will never forget. Fifty-eight years ago this month the world came closer to nuclear war than ever before or, to the best of my knowledge, ever since. If you’re middle aged or older, you surely remember the Cuban missile ...

Small details can create big catches

In the autumn season, fishing can be good. Really good. Fish instinctively know that colder water will be arriving soon. Their metabolism will slow down and they won’t be eating as much. They need to rely on stored energy to keep them going during the next few months of cold water, so ...

Career planning

If you want to strike up a conversation with a kindergartener, just ask, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” Most 5- and 6-year-olds will slip their imaginations into overdrive and lead on you a fascinating journey in the future. Kindergarten is that wonderful time before we have ...

It’s the heat and the humidity

It was one of those humid 97-degree days in August and I was sitting at a drive-in restaurant patio table sipping an ice tea when I heard a familiar voice behind me. “So this is how the retired city boy spends his afternoons… sipping on ice tea? Can’t handle a cold beer like a real ...

Love from a child’s point of view

Some things kind of slip up on you. I got to thinking the other day that I have been a married man for more than two-thirds of my life. I was blessed to have more than 43 years with Cindy, my first wife, before she passed away. Julie and I have been married for more than six years. I’m not ...

Fall fishing memories

Many anglers across the Midwest declare late September and October to be their favorite times to fish and I would mostly agree. In the fall, the fish catching can be so good, for quality and quantity. In addition, the surroundings are pretty spectacular as well. The trees are in full color ...

Troll to find fish in the fall

To catch fish, you’ve gotta’ find them. That’s true at any time of the year. However, in the fall season, they can be in a lot of places, especially early in the fall. In the spring, the fish will usually be shallow. It’s spawning time, and the shallows are where they spawn. In ...

When you are loved by a child

Many men my age are grandfathers; even great-grandfathers. I have no biological grandchildren and I’m okay with that. There are always little ones who can use some grandfatherly love and indulging. Cindy and I had two little grandnieces who we loved like grandchildren. Before Cindy passed ...

Get ready for fall fishing

Boy oh boy oh boy, summer of 2020 is already starting to exit. There are lots more butterflies on the bushes, birds are gathering, and football practice has started. And many anglers are spooling up with fresh line to prepare for fall fishing. I’ve often said that June and October are my ...

With a song in my heart

During a quick stop at a local auto parts store last week I heard singing from one of the aisles. I peeked around a corner and saw a store employee singing away while stocking shelves. Always an unapologetic smart aleck I told the young man, “You know, there are America’s Got Talent ...

Late summer crappies

Crappies are an interesting fish. In mid and late summer they can seemingly disappear from a body of water that was infested with them just a few weeks earlier. They have a unique appearance: It’s hard to mistake a crappie for a different type of fish. Walleyes look much like sauger, ...

With all due respect, I’ll take the disposable needle

Medicine has come a long way since I was a kid and they used hypodermic needles over and over. If you were the poor soul who got a shot with a blunt needle it felt like the doctor or nurse was driving a 40-penny nail into your arm (or other even more tender portion of the anatomy.) Back in the ...