Time's a Wastin'!
Well everyone, in case you haven't noticed, it's MARCH! Which means that steelheading is just around the corner, even if it seems like the snow will never end. If you haven't already, it's time to get your gear together, patch those waders, finish tying flies or spawn, and quit dreamin' about seeing that first enormous square, spotted tail distorted by a boil the size of a garbage-can lid.
For me personally, I can't wait to step out of the car and get my first whiff of cedar mixed with balsam. To hear the sound of breakers over the the rush of snowmelt-laden water; or to see stars so thick I can't tell where the sky stops and water begins on the big lake.
Let's face it, whether you catch a fish or not, we are blessed with incredible opportunities every spring, and steelheading is so much more than simply fishing. We encourage you all to take at least one opportunity this year to pass along a little of what you know to the next generation. Whether it's a son or daughter, niece or nephew, or maybe it's the neighbor kid whose parent (or parents!) are away serving our country in the military; you can make a big difference in their lives.
As for me, it's time to change gears and shift into watch-mode. Nothing moving here yet, but I'm seeing the first hint of signs. The ice-out has already begun in SE Wisconsin, and is progressing north-westward slowly but surely. The male chickadees have begun singing their spring songs on warmer mornings, and the cardinals can't be too far behind. So I'll be keeping a much closer eye on conditions, my ear to the ground, and getting out actually scouting as time allows. You probably won't be hearing much from me over the next two weeks or so, but only because it's but the deep breath before the plunge. Until then, start getting ready because all to soon it's going to be time to, as the Hanson Brothers would say, start "Foiling Up".
I'll talk to you later, I gotta go put a fresh coat of varnish on the snowshoes, I think it's gonna be one of those springs...