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Posted: Tue Mar 14, 2017 6:25 pm 
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What is your favourite experience after a long fishing trip. My favourite was seeing my cat try to figure out the fish for the first time. Here is a video that I took:
https://youtu.be/91enmk9HECQ


Posted: Wed Apr 26, 2017 9:18 pm 
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Location: Arden, NC
It's kinda dumb, but lately I have really enjoyed watching my youngest learn how to filet and clean fish. There is an art to getting the maximum amount of flesh with a clean swipe. I feel fortunate that "mom" is not around to see "son" with a very sharp knife in his hand. So far, he has listened well and no blood other than the fish. Learning that respect is a great lesson learned early.

Cheers,
Keith


Posted: Thu Apr 27, 2017 4:33 pm 
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Hi Kieth, Funny you should say that about the fillet knife. About 20*years ago l treated myself to a new 11" Uncle Henry bone handle knife and got a dozen stitches soon after. I don't think it had anything to do with alcohol after a full drifting trip off Montauk point. Ha nothing worse than blood in your fillets. After a friend trailered his boat 4 hours from the Bronx the day ends like that! Last thing I said was cuts like butter. Well it wasn't the best after fishing experience but one I won't forget. Best would have to be about 35 years ago we entered a king mackerel tournament on the Carolinas during a storm. and came in with a nice.1st place fish.No one else went out with 20* swells. Tight Lines Nick in NY


Posted: Thu Apr 27, 2017 8:54 pm 
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I LOVE a good plug of rum (it's me signature drink!), but have learned over the years that rum and knives don't mix. Neither does running a boat. I'm always amazed at how many drunk yahoos pass our dock so closely at night, and it's easy to tell they're drinking as you can hear them a mile away, usually cussing like sailors (or Marines!). Anyone that's been on calm water at night knows that sound travels a LOOOONG way. We can hear people talking pretty clearly on the other side of the lake, and it's not a short distance there. The local LEOs (DNR in SC) like to lurk around our point at night, another reason not to drink and drive the boat. (For the record, I sure will drink if I'm not in charge, so I'm not a teetotaler!) Easy pickings for those guys, as they really don't have much to do otherwise than harass the occasional boater. They've even pulled up to dock several times to ask to see fishing licenses. A boat DUI in SC is the same as a car DUI. Ouch. I think it is in NC too but I rarely fish at home (even though the French Broad River lies 400 yards from my back deck). Nasty river and too many snakes for this coward!

I did whack myself GOOD once years ago on a tuna when I had my 1960 40' CC Constellation at the coast of NC. Lots of blood (which I don't deal well with!) and left a small scar to always remind me to be careful on a pitching boat with a sharp utensil. I remember wrapping it up with duct tape and it healed, but that was stupid! Ethan just turned twelve, and he's at that point that I think he can handle learning some responsible stuff about fishing, including how to use a knife correctly, but with some good and careful guidance. So far he has done well, but "mom" has no idea. You know, some things are better left unsaid! :roll: He's gotten pretty adept at driving the golf cart too, something my older son continues to give my father more gray hair over (and me).

When I was a kid, we never told our parents where we were going, walked miles, put pennies on the train tracks behind the house as the trains were coming by and I shudder to think now about some of the other really dumb stuff I did, like riding a bike to school for 3 miles on a busy road every day at 6 years of age to kindergarten. (I'm not admitting anything further! LOL) Things have certainly changed over the years! :shock: My older son is 15 and getting ready to drive now, and I am so protective of my kids. :bash:

I have very fond memories of fishing the shores of Atlantic Beach for King & Spanish Mackerel, although I never trusted the CC in that kind of heavy water - old wooden boats creak too much! I did ride out Hugo though on that yacht and THAT is an experience I will NEVER forget.

Tight lines, Keith


Posted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 10:03 am 
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Best post-fishing experience?

A lot longer ago than I’d like to think about, I was visiting a new collector, Mark, that I had introduced to the hobby. I commented on the great photos of Northern Pike he had around his den, and on the one marked “22 lbs.” he had mounted on the wall! He mentioned that he and a few of his buddies stayed at a camp on Georgian Bay, Ontario every spring and always did well with big, early season Pike. His father had taken him for many years when he was a youngster, and Mark continued to visit, once a year. There was always a cabin available and he invited me and a buddy to join them the next Spring.

Well, next May we were there, joining Mark and three of his fishing buddies- 6 of us, three boats. Fishing was all he had promised! Not a fishing story so I won’t bog you down with the fishing details. This is about the legends and traditions of the “first fire”.




As an ancient tale goes, Georgian Bay is ruled by the God of the Northern Pike, a lordly fish that went by the Indian name of “Mamoo”. It was only if you had the blessings of the Mamoo that you would have a successful trip! To win favor with Mamoo, certain rituals had to be carried out at the campfire that was built on the evening of the first day of fishing. Just a note, sometimes the fire got a bit out of hand and threatened to burn down the entire camp, hence “camp fire”. Over the years, the fires had burned a 10-foot wide opening, straight up, through the canopy of pine trees. Mark LOVED campfires! I was curious upon my arrival there as to a circle of dead pines near the cabins. It was soon to became apparent that it was the site of one of Mark's past camp fires! The new site was a bit further away from the cabins!

At any rate, some of the rituals:

1) The bones (and the innards, head, tail, etc) of one Pike that had been caught that day had to be burned in this first fire. Mark was in charge of providing the bones. In the evening, after all had gathered and the fire was burning, he would stand, raise his eyes upward and all were silent. He then threw the bones and all into the blaze. Sizzle, pop, steam... Pheeew! This was the cleansing ritual- the smoke intended to make us all clean of spirit for the Mamoo. Whether it did that or not may be debatable, but I’m certain the smell did help keep the mosquitos away!

2) Considering the meager supply of firewood the camp owner would provide (at least as far as Mark was concerned!), it was inevitable that at some point, someone would have to sneak down to the woodpile and “borrow” a new supply. Yes, sneak, as the owner charged a fortune for additional wood! This task fell to the one with the poorest catch of the day. (By the way- anyone catching a Bowfin was automatically assigned this task- another tradition in itself!). If caught in the dastardly deed by the owner, the “sneaker” would then be responsible for paying the firewood fee on his own.

3) The evening would progress with plans being made and discussed, who was leading in the pool, weather forecasts, etc. During this time would begin the ritual of creating “Sacred Stones”. Obviously many beverages would be consumed over the course of the evening, and each empty bottle would be tossed into the fire. I asked about that, and Mark just said “wait until the morning”. I met him at the pile of ashes the next morning and he was busy digging through them with a stick, pulling out lumps of something- some small, some bigger. He handed me one and said to take a close look at it! Smooth little “stones” that the light would shine through! Most were brown, but a few were green. The legend is that some of these Sacred Stones were to be thrown into the water as tribute to the Mamoo to gain his favor! OK, we did... And it seemed to work every trip!

4) If at any time during the evening someone would stumble into the fire or downright fall into it, Mark would quickly jump up and shout “gentlemen, we must douse the flames”! (See No. 5 below). This would usually occur after many Sacred Stones had been started.

5) As the evening wore on and an ample number of Sacred Stones had been initiated, it would eventually become time for the “closing ceremonies”. Mark would announce “It’s time to retire- gentlemen, we must douse the flames”. Puzzled, but following the others, buddy and I lined up with them in a circle around the fire. “Begin” came the command. Sizzle, pop, steam... Pheeew! Again! This time, I think it even kept the bears away!

6) The fisherman with the best catch of that first day was then allowed to leave the campfire first and lead the rest back to the cabins, usually at a quick step. Being the high rod became a very enviable position! Later that evening, I kept hearing the door to Mark’s cabin opening and slamming shut, then a hissing- I figured it was just Mark making sure the fire was out.




Thanks Mark, for some great fishing times and unforgettable campfire memories! Some time, we’ll talk about the actual “Legend of the Mamoo”! Best--- Joe Walkowski (ORCA)


Posted: Wed Jul 19, 2017 9:28 am 
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I enjoyed reading that story, Joe. Thanks! Reminds me of summer camp as a kid.


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