Time to get out and fish seems scarce

A co-worker mentioned the other day that he was out fishing and thought the water in a local trout stream seemed awfully low for this early in the season, but then he looked at the calendar.

Yep, we’re already into the second week of July and before we know it, the trout season will be gaining speed toward that dreadful last day of September.

It’s particularly frustrating to me because I’ve only been able to get out and wet a line a few times so far this season.

There just seems to be too many other activities eating up free time to get out and fish as much as I would like to.

A good example is last week when I was on vacation. Taking a good chunk of the time was helping to set up and run the food fest in Marquette over the Fourth of July holiday.

While the festival is a worthwhile cause and it’s enjoyable being involved with it, it would have been nice to take a day off from it and go fishing.

I was near good fishing waters a few days before festival activities began, but then I was involved in a little road trip to the Apostle Islands/Bayfield, Wisconsin area. And again, it was certainly an enjoyable trip and my wife and I had a lot of fun.

While the islands and Bayfield are interesting places to visit, one of the nicest places we stopped during the trip was at the Presque Isle River at the far western end of the Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park.

In the lower stretches of the river there is a wonderful series of waterfalls that are accessible via a boardwalk-stairs system that runs along the river. There had been quite a bit of rain in the area just prior to our visit, so the river was flowing at a pretty high level and the waterfalls were very picturesque.

The only problem was that in the stretches between the falls and above, the stream looked like it would offer some great fishing opportunities.

Alas, that evil lack-of-time disease struck again and off we headed to our next destination.

However, realizing this needs to change I am now vowing to take the time and get out on a stream or lake at least once a week, and preferably more.

I’ll update you on this as the season progresses, but for now there are a few outdoor-related items that arrived via email during vacation that I’ll pass on to you.

– The Upper Peninsula Sportsmen’s Alliance will gather in Munising Saturday for its quarterly meeting. The meeting begins at 10 a.m. at the Moose Lodge on the Superior and Lynn streets.

Special guests will be Michigan Natural Resources Commission members John Madigan of Munising and John Matonich of downstate Davison.

Included will be an update on wildlife habitat in the U.P. by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, along with discussion on several other issues facing U.P. sportsmen and women.

Formed in 1982, UPSA was created to unite all the sportsmen’s clubs across the peninsula to provide a larger voice to state wildlife and fisheries managers.

For more information on the alliance, contact President Tony Demboski at 779-1405 or at ardemboski@charter.net.

  • Results of the 2014 bear hunting license drawing are out, and there are a whole bunch leftover in one of the U.P. hunting units that are available to hunters.

In the Berglund Unit, there are 267 license up for grabs. The licenses went on sale Monday for hunters with lifetime comprehensive licenses who were unsuccessful in the drawing, will go on sale next Monday for unsuccessful applicants and July 21 for any hunters, including those who did not apply for one.

  • If any experienced hunters and anglers would like to help introduce kids how to get started in their sports, the DNR has the perfect venue for you to do so – the U.P. State Fair that runs from Aug. 11-17 in Escanaba.

During the fair, volunteers will join DNR employees at the department’s Pocket park to help youngsters learn to fish shoot a pellet gun and use a bow and arrow.

Pocket Park volunteer shifts are available during each day of the fair, and volunteers will receive a free lunch and commemorative T-shirt for their help. The deadline to sign up for a volunteer shift is Thursday, July 31.

To sign up or for more information, contact Janet Canode, education specialist with the DNR’s Marketing and Outreach Division, at 517-284-6033 or canodej@michigan.gov.

Editor’s note: City Editor Dave Schneider can be contacted at 906-228-2500, ext. 270.