Friday, June 19, 2009

Outdoor Preservation

Have you ever walked outside and stopped just to hear the sound of nature at it's best. It doesn't matter what time of day ( or night ) it is, you can always hear nature at it's best. Whether it's the rain falling, the birds singing, squirrels playing in the trees, the wind blowing, frogs, dogs, coyotes and even people are all a vital part of this our mother earth. Now lets pretend that for some wrong reason we began losing some of our natural habitat. Lets say we lost the frogs and the birds from our world. Just what exactly would happen? First thing we notice is we lose some beautiful sounds, then we might notice that there are alot more bugs that the birds and frogs might eat and finally we might find that we have lost creatures of beauty that are normally taken for granted will always be there. Now let us look at reality. In today's world of the outdoors there are so many creatures that are being harmed by chemicals that most of us don't even know exist and many of the population could care less about. Chemicals are used daily by farmers, large companies and residents everywhere trying to eradicate some sort of pest problem which in turn actually does more harm then good. These chemicals have actually been found in our streams, ponds, soil and even the very foods we eat contain some sort of chemicals. We are the watchdogs of our mother earth and have all the say in whether or not we want our outdoors to be destroyed and turned into barren wastelands with no beauty to it at all or we want a lush beautiful green world for years to come. We humans are the only ones that can protect our lands and waterways from certain death and it's every ones responsibility to act on that tiny thought in the back of our mind. Preserving our outdoors is a must-do if not for ourselves then for our future generations. Think of your kids growing up with no parks to play in, no woods to hunt in, no streams with fish, no skies with birds, no pets, and so on. Is this the outdoor world we want our kids growing up to? By working together we can give future generations an outdoor world we can be proud of. Although there are some anti-outdoors people out there that could care less about our outdoors and some outdoors people with little respect for our outdoors, we can all become more protective of the great outdoors to combat their effects and prevent the destruction of our outdoor world. Everyone has a cause in today's society so lets make ours the great outdoors. Protect and preserve mother earth.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Fishing Update.

Saturday evening, June 6th, my daughter Amanda,two of her kids Dustin and Danny, her boyfriend Daniel and a family friend James went fishing over at Rock Island State Park and they came home with a cooler full of catfish. They didn't get home till 1:30 a.m. so they waited till Sunday to clean the fish. Everyone had a great time with the exception of the slippery rocks which caused everyone to fall at least once. June 10th, I ended up going off catfishing by myself and when I got to Rock Island, they had the turbines running which meant high water. I waited to see if they would shut off the turbines and meanwhile decided to drift fish my bait through the currents hoping to catch a catfish. As things worked out I did hang one but the hook pulled off due to my kids using my rods and not knowing the proper way to tie a secure knot. I then moved above the turbulent waters and just as I was setting up to fish the turbines began shutting down so I moved back to the bridge and settled in for a 5 hour stay. My plans was to stay until 2:00 a.m. but ended up leaving around 12:00 midnight with 3 nice catfish of which the biggest was 10-12 pounds. These fish were taken to my workplace and given to my plant manager ( Jim Wilkerson ) who had been wanting a mess of fresh fish for over a year but couldn't find time to go.Jim told me he was going to smoke the largest catfish and bring some in for me to try this coming weekend. I've never tried smoked fish before so I guess I'm in for a treat. I enjoyed the relaxing time I spent by myself fishing. It was quiet and peaceful except for the sound of the waterfalls just below me.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Free Fishing Day With The Grandboy's and A Tragedy

Today was free fishing day for everyone in Tennessee and the rest of the week is free fishing for 15 years and under so today I took my grand boy's fishing. We got up a little later than I wanted to but still managed to get on the road by 4:50 a.m. for a road trip that took us 45 minutes. Once we reached our fishing hole the first thing we noticed was the generators were off and the water levels were fine. We had alot of area fog this morning which helped out with the length of time the fish would bite. See down where we went the fish bite up until the sun hits the water then it's all over with till just before dark. We tied on hooks and picked our locations along the bank then everyone baited up and began fishing. After about an hour of fishing Cody hooked into a really nice catfish which gave him an awesome fight. This seemed to break the ice and the boy's started bringing in fish faster then I could get them on the stringer, mostly because they were scattered up and down the bank giving room for all to fish comfortably. Cody got the second fish, Kaleb got his first fish and then Kaleb got his second fish then tragedy hit. Cody walked up behind Bobby ( who was squatted down by his rod ) and not watching where his rod tip was just happened to stick it into the seat of Bobby's shorts. Bobby jumped up quickly and began screaming and crying. The hook had hooked him in his ( excuse the language ) ass and he had grabbed the rod while Cody was trying not to move it either. Unfortunately both boy's were tugging on the rod which was moving the hook making things worst till I managed to cut the line and get Bobby to hold still and listen to what I was telling him to do. I quickly assessed the hook, explained what had to happen and began to use my multi-tool to cut the eye of the hook so I could get the hook though Bobby's shorts where I would be able to see better if we would have to go to the hospital or I would be able to get it out myself. Once the hook shaft was through Bobby's shorts he began working the hook around fighting back the pain and finally removed the hook on his own. I then checked the site for bleeding and damage and found none whatsoever. Bobby then decided we would stay fishing longer but that he would quit fishing at which time I keep him with me and talked about the accident and explained that accidents do happen but not very often when people are careful. As we talked Bobby became more at ease with his injury and was finally able to sit down and relax, then finally began fishing again. After talking to Bobby, I then called all the grand kids over to me and explained that for now on they were to leave their rods on the bank where they were fishing and retrieve their bait then return to their rod and bait up. Cody was scared the whole time I was removing the hook and was letting Bobby squeeze his hand until it was over.Cody apologized over and over the whole time until we left and even on the way home. On the way home we all discussed the accident and the fun we all had fishing and their were all wanting to return again this evening for more fun fishing. Accidents can happen at any time regardless of how safe you think you are being. Though this accident wasn't real serious it could have been a really bad outcome for Bobby in more ways then one. He could have had to go to the hospital and he could of given up fishing for life but he remained a strong trooper throughout the whole ordeal, listened to me and choose to continue fishing. Bobby told me he's been hooked every time he's gone fishing but none of the times were real bad.Bobby cleaned his wound upon our getting home and has been at my house most of the day today. I've checked with him on how he was doing and he says he's okay. I'll be checking with him tomorrow just to follow-up and make sure he's not getting infected but I pretty sure it will be fine. All in all they all said they had alot of fun fishing with the accident as an exception. Above are a couple of pictures my granddaughter took with her camera phone of the fish and us all. The first is Kaleb on the left and Cody on the right then (left to right ) one of Pepaw (deerslayer ), Kaleb, Cody and Bobby. Though I didn't weight the fish I estimate the big fish to weight about 15- 17 pounds.