My family and I spent the long Thanksgiving weekend with family “out west”. Of course we feasted on turkey and lots of other goodies and watched football (GO HUSKERS!), but we also managed to spend some time in the field and on the water. Here is a quick report.
One of the advantages of having no closed fishing season and living where there are a diversity of hunting and fishing opportunities is being able to combine hunting and fishing efforts, sometimes on the same day. We are getting closer to ice fishing, I hope, but as long as there is open water there are still some fish to be caught. If you have not got the hint from me yet, the Lake Ogallala trout fishery is excellent right now and is going to get even better in the coming years. If you would like to catch some quality rainbow trout, fish much larger than the 10-inch catchables we stock around the state, you will want to be fishing Lake Ogallala and associated waters now and in the coming years. I intend to fish those waters every time I can and my son, father and I did so again last Friday. We only fished a couple, three hours before we hurried home to watch the Huskers put one on the Buffies one last time; the wind made it challenging to get a good drift, but we caught fish. We fished with spinning tackle, it would have been even more challenging in the wind with fly gear. My son and I were doing some experimenting with different hooks and baits, but I want to fool with that some more before I give you my “take” on that. We did not keep exact count, but I am sure we caught and released at least 20 rainbows; average size would have been 14-15 inches, but we had some fish up to 17 and 18 inches and all of them were fat little piggies.
There you go, no blurred backrounds, many of you will be able to figure out exactly where we were fishing.
The second part of the hunt/fish combo was some pheasant hunting. I believe the bird numbers in southwest Nebraska are very good to excellent this year; anyway I will say we saw lots of birds. The weather was relatively dry and mild when we hunted and in at least one area there were huge fields of corn still standing; we saw lots of birds flying into the standing corn. We tried to bushwhack those birds in the late afternoon/evening when they came out of the corn to go to roost, but those stinkin’ pheasants seemed to always do something just a little bit different than what we expected. Anyway, we did not kill as many birds as we would have liked, but we will be back and one of these times those roosters are going to pay!
I was born near the beginning of November and have always figured that meant I was born to hunt pheasants. I love hunting those colorful, tasty birds, but have to admit to you that nothing frustrates me more than pheasants. First you have to find them, then you have to get them buggers to quit running, then you have to have nerves of steel when one flushes from between your feet, then you have to hit them, and then you better hope you hit them well or you are off again to try to run ‘em down. When it all comes together you are privileged to harvest one of the most beautiful and tasty game birds on earth, but some days it seems like them stinkin’ pheasants are just trying to make a fool out of you.
That is my story for now.