2012 Archived Daily Updates
1. High water mark for 2012 goes to the early
Manistee, MI King fishery that began in deep water in
late March & April (earliest on record). Instead
of traditionally trolling the shoreline for Brown
Trout the fleet quickly adapted fishing meat deep 3-5
miles out. King Salmon were targeted in 34-36 degree
water down 150'-200'.
12/30/12 Just felt the need to share today's featured photo of
the hyper-holo lure tape. I work with this
everyday and never tire of this dazzling pattern built
for the 21st century. Lure tape is supposed add
shimmering "alluring" effects. The more the
better. So, why not put the most active lure
tape on tackle in the first place?
2013 is going to be a heck of a year. I've
reached a major milestone that will be discussed in
greater detail after the first of the new year.
There are reel-signs on the horizon for the 2013
fishing season. Preseason activities like
fishing shows, seminars, and meetings are not that far
Small price, big victory is my story for today.
For 10 bucks replaced the old, cheap, noisy, CPU fan,
and stock substandard heatsink. This conquered
the annoying endless drone on the computer used the
most in my office
Click CPU fan swap
12/26/12 Finally achieved
acceptable symmetry with the new
1200 pixel wide redesign of this page. 90% of
visitors have their monitors set at 1280 x 720 and
larger. Changing from my old 1000 pixel wide
layout was a must do.
Click old design
12/25/12 Merry Christmas and thanks for visiting. I'm honored every time you do!
12/24/12 Merry, Merry Christmas to everyone on this Christmas Eve Day.
news for all! Today will be 8 seconds longer, as
we're finally on the road to more daylight. Recent
system snow/rain added probably a good inch to Lk. MI.
first day of winter in Manistee County, MI dumped 8"
of wet heavy snow. You know, the kind that
breaks branches and takes down power lines. Was
on generator power most of yesterday until late
12/21/12 Thanks to all who checked out my new article with
accompanying video. This was a first for this
website combining written content & media.
12/20/12 Decided to debut my new video and text based article today just in case the 21st (tomorrow) doesn't work out OK for us. Sound track is spot on. Super Black Mamba flasher looks and acts like fish are self evident.
Been burning the candle at both ends trying to wrap up
my new article before this weekend. Then,
possibly debuting this piece on Sunday. What
this article covers to the best of my knowledge is
ground breaking. Focusing another aspect of
trolling with downriggers. What is this new
thing? ...guess you'll just have to wait and see.
Among other things spent the best part of yesterday
...working on my new article, "Gettin' Down."
Still in need of minor rewrites, but most of it's
done. This article will feature about 5 minute
video showcasing what's it like on the bottom of Lk.
Closed today out respect for the Connecticut massacre
Mentioned this before and will do it again.
Periodically your computer needs to be cleaned out
with air pressure to get rid of the dust. Heat
sinks, or fins around the CPU will get clogged.
How fast? ...depends on the run time during the course
of a year.
12/15/12 If you look closely at today's picture, you'll see me
standing below the hardtop. Then, you'll see a
remote control in my hand snapping this photo with the
push of a button. Remote controls for cameras?
I'm all in at 110%.
Click for this pic
11 days to Christmas and 7 days away from the Mayan
doomsday calendar. We'll know in 8 days if this
ancient culture was on it's game.
Been in planning the planning stage for 2013 the day I
winterized my boat this fall. Learned a lot
about rigger cams and how necessary it to have the
camera on the correct angle. Weights I have do
have an adjustment swing-arm tail fin. The large
fin is to stabilize and keep the cam steady for good
Click action cam fish weights
12/12/12 Let's look at anomalies for today's theme.
Anomalies are out of the ordinary, or rare occurrences
Click 25 lb. King that was an anomaly
Ever wonder what happens when you hit bottom with your
cannonball? Well, wonder no longer, cuz I have a
series of 4 images lifted off one of my underwater
Learning is today's topic that goes hand in hand with
my new Gopro action camcorder. Did a test run
video with the camera mounted to my rocket launcher
i.e. rod rack on my hardtop. This was to see how
wide the lens would shoot and what the camera is
capable of covering. With a little tweaking?
...full coverage of the transom will happen.
12/9/12 Evaporation test
started back on 11/26 ended yesterday on 12/8.
It was an eye-opener to see how much
faster evaporation takes place in the low 70s
temperatures compared to the mid 40s. At least
twice, as ...fast proved in today's photo.
Santa came a bit early for my fishin' bud, Todd the
Rod and I. Santa delivered a new 2012 Gopro Hero
2 to Todd and mine was the 2013 Gopro Hero 3.
Price point on both units is right at 200 bucks.
These cameras are tiny. Like 2.25 by 1.5 inches
less the water proof housings. Both cameras shot
amazing quality 1080i full HD.
Pearl Harbor Day, "a date which will live in
infamy." We lost 2400 Americans in 1941 on
today's date. Please take a minute, or two in
Sale of my tackle manufacturing company has had offers
that were declined. There's a difference between
selling and giving something away when my
inventory/tooling is worth a heck of a lot more.
Not to mention the value of my established webstore.
Posted a photo of Todd B with his hand where the water
level used to be at Onekama, MI's boat ramp. I
launched there twice last summer and had to back out
with the outdrive in the up position to gain water
Click Onekama boat launch
...the Ironman of the Year Award (drum roll please)
...goes to website member, Steve S. He fished
out of Kewanee, WI this past Sunday & ended up decent.
Today's photo shows Onekama, MI's channel to Lk. MI.
You plainly can see the sandbar obstruction building
on the N side of the pier's concrete retaining wall on
Portage Lk. I fished out of this port twice last
August. A first for me. The safe deeper
water was hugging the S pier and it was only about 7'
Click Onekama. MI channel
12/2/12 Action sport HD camcorders are wonderful in my book.
These tiny sentinels can record every bit of action on
your boat ...with just the push of one button.
12/1/12 Road trip to take some photos is on the agenda today.
Weather is on my side with today's temp in the high
40s, tomorrow in the 50s and Monday is predicted to
reach into the low 60s. Not too shabby for the
beginning of December!
11/30/12 Today's featured photo
of Lk. MI's bottom at first
glance doesn't have much to offer without captions.
Photo was siphoned off an underwater video shot on
11/29/12 Too many ideas for today's update. My mind is
flooded with wanting to talk about how uplifting it
was to review unedited raw video fishing footage shot
1" of rain equals approx 10" of snow is a rough
guideline that can vary depending on how wet the snow
is. Unless the forecast changes drastically?
Moisture content from November snowfall in Manistee
County, MI looks like .5" to the outside.
Semi scientific best describes my test for rate of
water evaporation. 2 bowls with an inch of water
spread over a surface area of 2.75 inches. One
bowl will be kept in an unheated breezeway at about
40-50 degrees. The second bowl will be in the
house in 72 to 75 degrees with a humidity around
evaporation test bowls
11/26/12 Snow gods tested their snow machine on Manistee, MI
with 2 inches. Total snowfall stands at 3 inches
Click for 11/25/12 Manistee snow
11/25/12 Just waiting for some inspiration to descend upon me
for next week's updates. Then, I came up with
the idea of revisiting accomplished goals during the
course of 2012. Conquering, for lack of a better
word concerning my You Tube efforts, because using the
editing software is intense ...with most of it way
over my head.
Small Business Saturday is a way to recognize local
independent businessmen and their stores is today.
Small business is kinda a misnomer, cuz no business is
small if you want stay in business. Small
business (like me) has to innovate to compete.
65 degrees for the daytime high in Manistee County, MI
was not hard to take yesterday. This is by far
...the warmest Thanksgiving I've seen here going back
to 1985 when I first began guiding for Steelhead on
the Big Manistee River.
11/22/12 Have a safe and enjoyable Thanksgiving!
11/21/12 Posted a picture yesterday of the entrance into
Solberg's Marina in Manistee, MI. There's at
least 60 slips that depend on this very shallow
channel that you can hop across now. This
scenario is the same at the ports of Arcadia and
Onekama where the route to Lk. MI is in strong
Click entrance to Solberg Marina
11/20/12 5 sections on my new article, "Gettin' Down" are
showing progress. To the best of my knowledge
there's never been another piece written about fishing
has covered the subject matter I'm after. It's
my job to break new ground. In turn, sharing
what I learned about underwater videos capturing
flasher and meat rig movement.
Started on a new article that will debut around
Christmas time. Topic will focus on what I
learned about underwater and web videos in general.
Only scratched the surface on this fascinating subject
matter. Shooting video in the fish world has
been both challenging and rewarding. Capturing
POV, or point of view is like playing Pin the Tail on
the Donkey. Made it work in my You Tube movies
mostly thru trial and error. My most excellent
crew, John J and Todd the Rod deserve a lot of credit
for making this happen!
11/18/12 Low water is the big
story this fall that has long range ramifications for
all of us. Marinas are going to take a hard hit
with cost to dredge, if they can get permits to do so?
Permits are the fly in the ointment here, cuz every
marina will be waiting inline until the red tape is
cut. Let's hope the DEQ-DNRs are racing to put
groundwork in place.
11/17/12 The sale of my
tackle manufacturing company is in the wait and see
mode. Yes, I do have interested party that I've
sent detailed financial info to. Good thing
about the this potential buyer is ...as a group
they've used my tackle and seen the results.
Deer hunting around my place in Manistee County, MI?
Bucks are scarcer then hen's teeth. This is a
radical departure from what I consider the norm.
Most years I see several spikes, fork-horns from
velvet on. Not so this year. Seen one OK 6
pointer 3 times and that's been it. Usually, it
no big deal to see 8s and 10s.
luck to all hunters on the firearms MI deer season
opener today. Forecast for my area/Manistee, MI
is partly sunny with high temps in the mid 40s.
11/14/12 Today's featured photo of the Big Manistee River
empting into Manistee Lake shows how serious this low
water crisis is. In the photo ...the exposed
sand bars where the geese are sitting used to be under
a good 3' of water.
Being your own boss has it's privileges. With
that being said, I'm taking today off from daily
updates and focus my attention elsewhere.
Snow for firearms deer season beginning on this
Thursday? Don't get your hopes up. Checked
the long term forecast. Prediction is more temps
in the 60s a week from today. In the 1960s thru
the 1980s is was a 50/50 proposition for snow on
opening day, generally the 15th of Nov. For
about the last 5 years it's a no show for any snow.
Today is Veterans Day our time to honor our service
men & women.
Firearms deer season is 5 days out beginning this
coming Thursday. Long range weather forecast
does not include snow. Daytime temps for next
week are mostly in the 40s. Snow on opening day
has become a rarity the past 5 years.
11/9/12 The Pine Creek photo from yesterday shows how low the
water is. The Big Manistee River where it
empties into Manistee Lk. is dreadfully low.
Exposed sandbars at the mouth look more like a beach
nowadays ...compared to just a few years ago.
11/8/12 Today's featured photo is Pine Creek taken on Election
Day 2012. The Salmon spawn was over with only a
few carcasses left. It's captivating how fast
the Salmon come and go after creating another
generation in the grand cycle of life.
Need to clear up some loose ends before moving
forward. A few days ago I posted a photo of my
30 some year old GM 305 V8. Please notice the
rust and crud inside the water passages. This is
why I fill the block in my new motor with antifreeze.
Antifreeze has rust inhibitors for winter's long
Click 30 year old GM block
11/6/12 Go vote today! Let's get this mess over with.
My privacy has been invaded by the apostles and
disciples from every point of view with a constant
barrage of nonstop annoying phone calls. Plus,
people beating on my door at dinnertime to evangelize
for their candidates i.e. political party in what I
view as a flawed system.
Contour HD camcorder I used on loan from
Calumet Marine is a good buy overall, but like all
video cameras does not do well in low light
situations. Picture fades out around 10-12' back
when mounted on a cannonball.
2012 season? ...have to rate mine as incomplete.
Lk. MI's October weather never cooperated when there
was an opening for me to go. 2011 was a far
different when I closed out the season with at least
15 fish from 10am till 2pm. That kind of EZ
middle of the day action can carry you thru an entire
T.G.I.F. Lot's accomplished this week building
tackle for 2013. Decided to name the new 2013
black on black Mamba, the Stealth Mamba. Short,
simple and to the point work best. In the shop
we have to have EZ definable names to handle items for
orders. Stealth Mamba fits that criteria
11/1/12 November already? ...as 2012 continues to shrink away.
In about 10 weeks will be looking forward to a brand
new season with all the promise it has to offer.
returning Chinook/King Salmon were taken at the Little
Manistee Harvest Weir in 2012. This is 2k less
then last year (2011). Fall run Steelhead was a
dismal 283 fish, or 4966 less then the 1996 high water
mark for this specie.
10/30/12 Remnants of massive mega Hurricane Sandy is
ushering in a rare occurrance in MI weather.
That being a storm that moves from the E to the W.
Entirely opposite of the norm. LK. MI seas are
going to be huge. Here's what NOAA has to say:
10/29/12 After a string of relatively mild winters ...I'm not
seeing huge numbers of deer?
10/28/12 Firearms deer season is about 2 weeks away. Snapped a photo recently of young 6 point with a red patch on top of his head. Decided to name this critter Red Buttons who was a comedian in the 1950s & 60s. The tip of everyone of his antlers has been chipped off for any number of reasons. It's hard to say when the rut actually begins, but from what I've seen lately, it's either here, ...or not too far off. Click for Red Buttons the deer
10/27/12 There comes a day when you finally realize winter is
one the way. This moment happened yesterday with
me seeing mostly bare trees devoid of foliage.
This past Thursday's warm breezy conditions denuded
most of the trees. Like normal only the oaks
have leaves now as fall continues to wane.
Yesterday was the warmest day we're going to see for a
long time. Traverse City, MI got to 80 degrees.
My place was easily in the mid 70s.
Don't think for an instant that we're not doing
production for the 2013 season, just because I have my
business up for sale. Like the new 2013 test
black on black Mamba unveiled yesterday.
on black test Mambas
10/24/12 I'm sure you've heard this saying before, "once you go
black, you never come back." In my case it's
very true to what's put in the water. I can
recall only a few times since 2004 black was not part
of the spread.
4 2012 boxes proving this point
Making a firm point that will resonate with all is no
EZ matter. I've been on a quest for the magic
color that will catch Great Lakes Trout and Salmon
Took my most intensive inventory to date for the sale
of my tackle company. Found some interesting
reel-facts to be shared with you this week. This
data will be on firm ground with the underwater videos
posted earlier this month.
10/21/12 On 10/5/12 I said the only moving part on my flashers
were the ball bearing nose swivel. Technically,
that was a wrong conclusion on my part!
10/20/12 A new state record was recently confirmed by the DNR! The new record comes courtesy of a Great Lakes muskellunge caught on Saturday, October 13 at 10:30 a.m. by Joseph Seeberger on Lake Bellaire in Antrim County. The fish weighed 58 pounds, measured 59 inches long and had a girth of 29 inches.
10/19/12 Planned retraction will have to wait for another day.
Finished the 2012 3rd installment of July, August &
September for the all the pages:
Ownership comes with responsibility to complete
projects. Started on my storage building 1n
2010. Lots to learn with this being my first
journey into erecting pole barns. Site
preparation meant taking out trees and having fill
sand hauled in.
10/17/12 Contingency plans are a must. If my webstore and
tackle company do not sell this year leading into next
I'm fully prepared to move forward. This will be
done sometime after the holidays in 2013 with the
reopening of the webstore.
10/16/12 Today there's 2 topics on my mind. First, if I
can average about 5 fish a trip from April into
September in hours of 8am thru 10:30-11:00am?
...anybody can. Providing they use the knowledge
base offered on this website. Big lake trolling
knows no boundaries where all can succeed.
Granted, my 5 fish average is a drop in the bucket
compared to my 20 years in the charter business.
But there's a tremendous difference between fishing
everyday, or just few hours once week, or two.
Most worthy news is the Army Corp of Engineers is
delaying the Asian Carp barrier study with stalling
tactics that will not cure this looming problem.
Acting in 2015 when these Carp are on our doorstep now
is way wrong. It's almost criminal to neglect
this issue that effects the entire Great Lakes
watershed. We need more then lip service!
10/14/12 Rain, rain and
more rain that we didn't get last summer.
Octobers can be wet. This helps draw in
Steelhead into the river systems.
10/13/12 Experiences aboard my boat do not translate to
everyone, but we caught 12 to 14 pound Kings in April
thru and into September. Never seen a growth
spurt that reflected the August herd of Salmon that
remained for the most part 12 to 14 pounders.
It's like this year's crop was frozen in time.
Contrary to the 2011 over 20 bruisers.
10/12/12 Days since about mid-September have been chilly.
Night time lows have not pushed the freezing mark too
hard. First killing frost/freeze was last
weekend at 30 degrees. My boat is not winterized
yet and plan on at least 2 more outings on Lk. MI
before my rig is stored for winter's long nap.
10/11/12 Lk. MI is within .4ths of an inch of the all time low
water level. High water mark was established
back in 1986. Let's hope we get some water
before next year.
basket of loose thoughts: this year was warmer then
average until fall hit. Lk. MI has been
especially rough, or you'd have seen some fish
reports. 2012 crop of acorns are huge around my
place and numerous. Deer will be eating these
Technical details of the new 4 minute video posted
yesterday say the original video was 504 megabytes.
This was shrunk to 40 megs ...then uploaded to You
Tube. You Tube's proprietary software compressed
the 40 megs even further.
10/8/12 Video update of 10/7/12 spawning Salmon in Manistee, MI Pine Creek:
After seeing the lack of available light to
shoot video at depths past 80' down attractor/meat
fishing has a leg up over other methods.
Attractors with meat churn up the water (sound), add
visibility (sight), and natural smell (scent).
10/6/12 Haven't covered the 2012 poll results dating back
to 2003. There have been no dramatic shifts over
time. Once again those fishing meat had the
highest percentage when you combine cut-bait and whole
bait adds up to 37%. Spoons have remained pretty
stable since 2003 with 25 to 30% of the votes.
Click 2003-2012 Poll Page
10/5/12 After reviewing the 1/10/12 underwater video
footage 3 things came to mind. First, was the
new crystal ice chip holographic tape on the 2013
Super Mambas. The moving sparkling holo effect
was very visible 80' down in low light conditions.
Topics that warrant further discussion are:
water levels, poll page tackle usage shifts, Lk. MI
temp, video camera frame rate speeds, acorn crop, etc.
Lk. MI bottom from 30' to 50' is mostly sand off
the Port of Manistee, MI then it changes. After
50' there's a drop-off the locals call the "shelf."
Part 2 with the downrigger camera showed some
improvement. Have decent videos at 30, 40, 50, &
80 feet down showing my flashers and meat rigs.
The video camera had better results under a cloudy sky
unbeknownst to me then in Part 1 that was full sun a
few days ago. Lots to learn here before I make
10/1/12 Tying up loose ends after the closing of the
webstore at midnight is job 1 for tonight.
Thanks to everyone who's purchased my tackle making
2012 my most successful season since 2007 prior to the
Great Recession that hurt everyone.