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Wind and Mud


By Rick Zieger

We had gotten just enough rain to cause the fields to be slick. No going to many of my normal ponds. They were still a little muddy from the rain we had received earlier. But I was over the cold (thanks to some antibiotics) and in need of wetting a line.

I decided the place to go was the water supply for the town. You can drive right up to this and launch your boat if you want. I can park close to the water and then I can get the canoe in the water that is only about 20 feet away.

I don't fish here often but beggars can't be choosers. I am hopping that the crappie might have moved in along the rip-rap of the dam. I find that this is not the case. I spend the first hour casting in many different places and at many different depths. All with no success.

Now it begins to become more difficult. The wind begins to blow harder. In fifteen minutes it goes from a gently 5 mph breeze to about 20 mph. This is not good for my casting, especially when trying to cast into the wind. So I cast with the wind. I think that I had some strikes but could not really see the fly line move. There was too much wave action to tell if the fish were moving the line.

Time to change tactics. I paddle, slowly, to the east side of the pond. I let the wind push me across the pond with two fly lines out. I am going to see if a slow drift will work. Nothing else has, so it is worth a try.

I am about a quarter of the way across the pond when the line goes under water. This is an indication that there is a fish on the line. I get an eight-inch crappie to the canoe. My first fish, after about one and a half hours of trying.

I cast that line out again and continue to drift. The canoe has moved about another 30 feet and there is another fish on the other rod. It is a carbon copy crappie. I get two more as I go across the pond.

As I am paddling back the wind continues to increase in speed. I decided that this might not be the best time to be out on the pond. I head to shore and get the canoe loaded. By the time I am ready to leave the wind is gusting to 35 mph.

I get home and get the canoe put away. I get the fished cleaned and put in the refrigerator. I then decided to try to get part of my garden ready to plant. I can get the tomato cages in and get some mulch out.

As I am putting the cages up the wind stops. It is hard to tell there is a breeze. But the garden is going in and that needs to be done.

Hope you can get out on the water. ~ Rick Zieger

(Written 04/12/08)

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