Tag Archives: leaf burning

Some Days aren’t all that Exciting

This is a bastardized version of what I sent to Dale Bowman as a final follow up for his Wednesday fishing reports. Not much to say, not much to look at.

But some days are like that.


With the usual screwed up work schedule, I found myself on a balmy Tuesday afternoon with nothing to do. So I went fishing.

Overall it was a pretty uneventful day. The light was all wrong for the pictures I wanted. The wind was brutal with casts aimed one direction and going pretty much where ever they felt like.

Combed a three quarter mile stretch of the Fox that took about 3 hours. Was only able to land five smallies and miss eight more.

Took awhile to get this first little guy.

With the change in the seasons the bite continues to drop off. I miss September when there were more fish this size and some bigger.

One of the landowners had a nice leaf fire going. Since the wind was blowing so hard and changing directions, it was impossible to avoid the smell. Smoke was drifting everywhere. One of my favorite fall smells.

I considered continuing to go down stream, but the wind had won. I was done and there was still a fair amount of daylight left. At the downstream end of an island sits a duck blind where I’ve been known to stop, lay back and doze off for a few minutes.

Today I just stopped by to see if the view from the blind looked interesting. The clouds had rolled in along with the wind so everything looked a bit gray. I was hoping something would come in and land on the water, but the birds weren’t being very cooperative. I guess that’s how it goes some days while hunting.

A few views from the blind. Those that hunt waterfowl will appreciate the look.

I like the shapes.

The 10 day forecast shows temperatures barely making it to the mid 50s during the day and the nights getting down into the low 30s. The bite should continue to die off. Not sure how much more I’m going to bother getting out. I proved to myself a long time ago that fish can continue to be caught in that kind of weather, I don’t feel any real need to continue to prove it.

Besides, I’d rather go chasing squirrels and rabbits. The frosts have come to kill off some of the bugs. The leaves are almost all gone. Next weekend shows a couple of 50 degree days on the weekend.

My favorite for that kind of hunting.

I think a little nap propped up against a tree might be in order for one of those days.

Wild Asparagus, a Bridge, Beer and Leaf Burning

Who are you? Carnac? What does any of that have to do with fishing.

Everything is related somehow. Sometimes you just have to wait awhile till they all catch up with each other.

Saturday was a work day. There were things that needed to get done around the yard and it was going to be a gloriously beautiful day. Mid 60s, mild winds and plenty of sunshine.

The house I rent sits on a 100 X 150 foot lot. I guess that’s big. It’s bigger than anywhere else I’ve lived. By neighborhood standards though, it’s one of the smaller lots. On the lot and immediately bordering it to within a few feet are a dozen trees. A couple of big maples that refuse to change colors or drop any leaves. A couple of big old oaks that aren’t having that problem. A couple of big black walnut trees and a few that defy identification, mainly because I’m too lazy to look it up.

Except for the two maples, most of the other trees are almost done shedding their leaves. Most of the leaves wound up on my roof, in the gutters and covering just about every square inch of the yard. Starting on the leaf removal process had to wait though. We had a heavy frost over night and everything was covered with a thin layer of ice, including the roof. My wife may like to refer to me as the idiot, but even I’m not dumb enough to go climbing up on an ice covered roof.

I knew it would take till at least noon to dry everything out, there’s no point in trying to rake and blow around soaking wet leaves. This left me with a bit of spare time to kill.

On the side roads I take to get to the main road to work, I’ve found a stretch where wild asparagus seems to be growing quite well in that strip of land between the road and the corn fields. I decided to go do a little more exploring.

It’s much better than I thought. For over a mile, both sides of the road have one wild asparagus plant after another. This time of year they’re pretty easy to spot as they go to seed. Considering the amount of traffic this little two lane road sees, I’m surprised it hasn’t been picked clean. But then, I guess those living in the subdivisions not that far away would probably prefer getting their asparagus from a grocery store.

Over the summer I found a massive bunch of wild asparagus on an island in the middle of the Fox River. If nothing else, I know nobody will get to that bunch. It’s a shame I now have to wait till spring.

On the way home I stopped at the Marge Cline Whitewater Course. There sitting on shore was the new bridge that is to span the whitewater course so people can walk out to the small island between the dam and the course.

I was hoping this was forgotten about and the bridge was never going to be put up. I had sung the praises in a previous post of the benefits of having fewer anglers in this stretch. I’m afraid putting in the bridge will bring them all back along with all their garbage. I was just starting to get used to seeing this stretch of the river nice and clean.

Back at home everything was dry and I spent the next 4 hours blowing leaves out of gutters and then moving endless piles of leaves out to the curb in any way that worked. Blowing worked up to a point, the point where the leaf pile was 3 feet high and still had to be moved another 20 feet to the edge of the street. At that point it was quicker and easier to move it all with a rake. Low tech is some times better.

Of course one big pile was collected around the fire pit. It was time. A good beer was brought out and all it took was one small flame on one leaf to begin the next hour of burning.

And burn I did. To build it up even more, I went through the hoard of mother-in-law junk that’s stacked in the garage. Anything that was busted and broken and made of wood got tossed onto the pyre.

Too soon I was out of things to burn.

I settled into a lawn chair. Flames in the fore ground, waning light as a back drop, I opened another good beer and sat staring into the flames until they died into a pile of smoldering ash. I looked up into the maple that refuses to give up its leaves.

Sure looks like I’ll be doing this again next week.