Fishing

The Smart One’s

 

 

 

 

The smart ones. I cannot remember what the year was but it was time to take the ice shack off Brettuns Pond. I came over with my dad and we met up with my uncle Maurice who lived right next to the lake. I was still a teenager and full of piss and vinegar.  The problem that existed was the ice shack was way out toward the middle of the lake and in probably two and a half feet of slush. The slush was surrounding the ice shack. Being with the two smart guys, I was instructed to go out and tie a rope around the structure. They coiled the dryer rope around my shoulder.  I went to be the hook up man, tying it down for a pull. We didn’t have walkie talkies back then so hollering was a must. My dad and his brother used hand signals which they learned in the paper mills. I was looking up and my uncle is pointing this way,  my Dad is pointing the other way. I later found out this means pissing it in or out the deckle on a paper machine, or the edge of the paper. So my journey didn’t go off without some issues. During my excursion I slipped and fell, completely soaking my backside. It was a rather cool day so I was starting to get very chilled. I looked out and both my dad and uncle are sipping on a glass of snake bite they called it. I finally made it to the shack and secured everything. I look up and see the hand signs again. This time I understand they want me to get the hell out of the way. Ok, No problem, I give them both the piss in and piss out instructions. I looked out and both my dads International Scout and my uncles Dodge Ram Truck are pulling from the shore. They were taking the stretch out of the rope. Both vehicles have now gone the length of the driveway and not an inch of shack has moved. This is not going to be good, some smarts coming out of me at this point. It happened, SNAP, POING! The rope broke and like a sling shot it went completely to shore. The SMART ONES didn’t figure on this . Sip of the snake bite again, scratch of the chin from uncle Maurice. Lets do it again,they replied. I went again and this time they put block and tackle on a large spruce tree. Who knows, maybe this was the smartest thing of the day. I walked out, not falling I must add. I hooked the rope on again, gave the hand signals and off they went, two trucks hauling ass. POING- PING! The rope snapped again. I came back to the shore, again to meet up with them. I needed to find out what the third plan was. Can you make it again son? I replied no. They both looked at each other and looked at the level of the snake bite in their glasses. Both of them nodded in agreement that it was time to give up. This was the smartest thing I saw all that day. Who am I to decide when enough is enough, I respected my elders and would do anything for these two men. Good Day folks. D.H.Bilodeau 2015

Halo Around Me

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Why do people invade our space when there is a whole world around them. Go pick your own spot. For instance going to a shopping store. The whole parking lot is empty and the person just has to park next to you. Another is at the lunch table’s in the café, just has to sit right next to me. You know I like my own space, get out of my circle, cant you see the halo around me?

It just never seems to end. The other day I decided to go ice fishing. I look out and there is no one else ice fishing this pond. I am all cozy and my traps are set when I hear a snowmobiler coming my way. Yup, another one invading my space. This person also has set his traps right next to one of mine. He had the whole pond to set his traps, nope right next to mine. This is the guy, notice the trap to the left side of picture, he is setting his trap near mine.

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There are so many times that I feel crowded by people. If only they would take a minute and think about what they are doing. Maybe they do give a crap and I’m being a little sensitive, maybe I’m not aggressive enough. So what do you think? You ever feel this way about certain situations?

How about the times you are in a men’s public restroom and using the wall urinal. There is six of them on the wall and some dude comes in and just has to piss right next to you. Invading my space, it happens all the time around here. I wonder what the connection or magnetism to me really is. It must be the glow about me. Maybe it is like pigs in shit, or a fly on a shit shingle. I guess understanding why people do stuff is beyond my third grade education. Someday I might understand why people do things, for now I will just let it percolate. I just hope I don’t say or do something stupid and get myself in a verbal exchange. Good day everyone and keep your distance.

Bilodeau,D.H. 2014

A Peaceful Time

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At peace with the mind. It is this, that most people wish could have. Solitude is what a person needs from time to time to rest the mind ,body, and soul. This picture reminds me of many times fishing in Maine. There is many mornings or evenings that are just like this. One can be fishing for trout or salmon in the day or white perch and hornpout in the evening. There is such a calm about being in the boat, canoe, or kayak floating about with mirrored lakes. There is times when every stress that has been bothering you will be washed away during one night on the lake. Really, you should try it sometimes. Enjoy the day- I’m going out fishing.

©Bilodeau,D.H. 2014

Maine As I Know It

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Born and raised in the State of Maine. Most people often associate this State with Downeast Maine and the coastal region. Everyone know’s the fact we are quite famous for our lobsters and clams. There is some really great places away from the coast that people do not hear about. This State is beautiful with the country area’s as well. The northern part of the State is where a lot of crops are grown, especially Northern Maine, in the County they say. Towns like Van Buren, Houlton, Caribou, New Sweden. The central part of the State is more populated with local farmers growing crops and tending to their milking cows. pic 2

Some of the jobs that I encounter growing up include working in these farms. I picked chickens out of the barns and put them in cages to be shipped out for processing. I also worked for a big company which most of the eggs this part of the country come from. Decoster’s Egg farms. The company has been bought out since. Many of young kids in this area worked these egg farms. I also could be seen working in the local cemetery’s digging graves. We would get two dollars an hour, not bad pay for a young kid.

Maine has a huge history of papermaking. Big companies like Verso, IP, Wausau, Sappi, New Page, Boise Cascade, Champion, Bucksport, Otis Mill, Georgia Pacific. These mills employed many of people throughout history. Loggers, and many of businesses that support these companies.

Shoe shops, woolen mills also were a larger part of the community. Lewiston and its Bates Mill employed thousands. You should do a search on Bates Mill. It was amazing the size of this cooperation during the day. Many of the buildings stand today in Lewiston and are a site to witness. pic 5

Maine has many of beautiful rivers and Lakes that pass through the State. You can see many of fisherman along the banks or out in powerboats trying to catch a salmon, brook trout, browns, bass, and many other species of fish. Fly fishing is very big here. LLBean company in Freeport, Maine is one company that has supplied the outdoor enthusiast for many years. Hunting is also very big in this State. Whitetail deer are plentiful also Maine Black bear, and Moose. You have to have a permit for moose. Turkey’s are plentiful also and many of hunters take advantage of this season. pic 4

Maine also is a great place in the winter. There is many ski area’s that are very popular. Sugarloaf, Sunday River, and Saddleback Mountain are some . You really can find just about anything to do in this State if you have the time. I have lived here just about all my life and at this moment I couldn’t think of any other place I would rather live. I have traveled to my workplace many times without even meeting one car. I like the easy life and the country. Maine the way life should be. Enjoy your day everyone. pic 3

©Bilodeau,D.H. 2014

My Little Stretch of Country

liverThe area where I live is such a nice quaint place that everyone should get a taste of the country living I have enjoyed. The area is surrounded by three lakes so fishing, snowmobiling, and hunting are real big in this region. The town consist of one Library, two convenient stores, Fire station, and  a few churches. There is not a lot of excitement in this region but this is what I have been accustomed to. The local landfill is a place for local’s to gather and chat. Hey how is so and so? I’m glad your brother is doing better. Small talk, but this is a place to bump into maybe some old co-workers from the paper mills.

There is one major road that passes through our community which is Route 4. The road is better than any other in our region so that tourist can make it to their Northern destinations on their weekend getaways. I am just plain happy to live where I do. I can grab a fishing pole and go down to the local boat landing, or find a stream that enters her. Life here is simple. The way life should be right? I could not stand living in a city in this stage in my life, not to say that I haven’t lived the city life. I lived in Phoenix, Arizona as a young man. One would give up their current life in their hectic lives if only giving a chance. I remember when I graduated tech school. The companies I interviewed with were in the tech triangle in California and one guy stated this to me. Sir, Are you prepared to drive two hours to work everyday in bumper to bumper traffic and to have an apartment which cost you 1000 a month? I came home from that interviewed and re-evaluated. I could move back to the East Coast and have more for the money and wouldn’t have to travel in bumper to bumper traffic. I moved back to the East Coast and have enjoyed every minute.

Sometimes you have to re-evaluate. Is this stressful life worth it or not. I’m glad I was wise enough at a young age to think out of the bottle sort of speak.

I can hear the loons this morning down at the lake, the barred owl made his appearance last night. The eagles are nesting in the tall pines near the lake.  The best part today around here is free fishing for anyone that doesn’t have a license. Life really is important- I’m going to the landfill this morning to go see my neighbors. See ya, Enjoy the day.

©Bilodeau,D.H. 2014

Abundance Of Life and Sun

A new day with abundant sunshine brings a new color scheme to the outdoors. I was looking out the window this morning and notice a flicker. This is a fairly larger bird with spots and an orange or red patch on the back of its head. A master in the art of worm eradication, beats out the robins that are all over the lawn this morning. Colors are vivid I guess as one could say. The sky is very blue and the leaves on the trees around here are about to make an appearance. flicker

This is also trout season with the ice just going out a week ago. The brook trout are hungry and a good fly or a worn will do them fine. I always like this time of year just before the blackflies and mosquito’s are out in full force. You can also hear the rumbles of motorcycles which are coming out of hibernation, a good sign spring is here to stay. The children are starting to play softball and baseball in the local ball fields. Sound of laughter and the smack of a ball is also a sign spring is here. base

The children are about to be done with school and kids will about playing in their yards. Folks, be careful of children playing because you never know if they will run out into the road to chase a ball. This reminds me of a story I had when I was a kid. My cousin who lived down the street was so excited that he just received a Hobie Skate board and wanted the neighborhoods kids to see his new toy. We all assembled in his driveway and my cousin started to show us a few tricks. Hey! You want to try it? I jumped right in. Of course I want to try it. I moved down the driveway and was floating and enjoying the ride when I fell off. The skateboard went flying like a rocket and went into the roadway when a big logging truck ran over it. The look on my cousins face when he picked up the parts, he was so angry with me. I ended up buying him a brand new board and I repaired this one to keep for myself.hobie

The sun is warming up the air and the lawns are starting to green up a little. I think the sounds of lawn mower will be purring real soon.  The snow finally just came off my lawn like five days ago and the raking is complete. I’m really looking forward to all that warm weather brings. You probably wont see me laying on the beach but might catch me with a fishing pole or maybe wearing my cutoff jeans and jumping in the local swimming hole for a quick dip.  You might even catch me next to a campfire at night if I can get my spouse back into tent camping. Who knows what all this wonderful day is going to bring but I’m going to enjoy it anyhow. 73  De N1mua- 2011-07-10 03.18.17

©Bilodeau,D.H. 2014

One Degree Away From SUMMAH

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We still have frost on the pumpkin around here. The furnace is still running to keep some heat in this house. The woodpile ran out weeks ago and most people are just plain fed up with these cooler temps. For instance, I saw a very sad picture the other day of two children standing on the shore of their great fishing hole. They hiked through the woods with their dad to only be disappointed by the lake still skimmed over with ice. The law states around here in Maine that it has to be open water. They were able to fish because they tossed a ball out on the lake and had their dog fetch a few time. I saw fisherman the other day using a PVC pipe contraption the other day too. They stick this device under the ice from shore and the line goes through the pipe.

The other day I saw a couple driving a motorcycle with snowmobile suits on. They were also wearing their old ski jumping helmets and goggles from Lady Wellingham. Funny seeing people wearing the old snowmobile boots with the felt liners. I could have sworn I saw bread bags around the edges of the boot. This was used back in the day to keep the feet dry. Most of the boots in those days had leaks.

It is very sad to see the lumberjacks around here sitting on their front porches rocking in the chair and taking selfies of themselves with their Skidda’s in the background. The poor lumberjacks have nothing to do around here right now because they are between seasons. One being WINTAH and the other MUDD. There is not going to be SUMMAH season this year because WINTAH was extended.

The Firefighters around here have been so busy putting out stove fires and chimney fires. Most people ran out of firewood weeks ago and people are burning, literary, their undies. Really!  I saw a woman the other day burning her Ames Brand underwear in her outdoor wood boiler. A lot of people around here bought outside wood boilers and it makes no friggin sense to me why anyone would want to go outside in the freezing cold to stoak the fire. I wonder how Ames Brand underwear burn anyways? I have quite a few around here.

The farmers will have to have their cows warmed up this year by artificial insemination with heat modules inserted. The milk has been coming out creamy because it has not warmed up this SUMMAH so far. It is pretty weird driving down the road and seeing the lumberjacks and the farmers sitting on the same porch drinking Five Hour energy drinks mixed with Templeton Rye Whiskey. They really look like a bunch of goofs if you ask me.

The ladies around here have giving up on putting laundry out on the line to dry. We have so many ticks around here that the clothes on the line are starting to become an attractant. Also, it is so cold that I saw icicles hanging from one pair of jeans the other day from the crotch area. It was funny because it was hanging in a fashion that is looked like a weiner. Just no one getting a break around here.

I went out the other day to get some worms for fishing. My dad taught me when I was a kid how to fetch these little slimy things. You put water on the lawn after supper and then when it is dark you go out with a flashlight and the shiny slimy suckers will show up. You have to be quick and snatch them real quick or they will pull back in and go back into the earth. This one night I went to get them I could see ice crystals on the tops of their heads, or is it tails? Darn cold around here!

I know we will get a chance for SUMMAH sometimes, maybe it wont be until the flies are filled on the fly strip. Good day everyone-I’m going out to get some tick poop, I hear it burns good.

©Bilodeau,D.H. 2014

Fishing Adventure

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The ice was becoming a problem. I was on a 320 foot fishing vessel in the North Atlantic and we were fishing for crab. I was laying in my bunk after a twelve hour stint putting the pots in a line. We were going to let the pots sit for six hours so I had to sleep. The noise was something else and it seemed like the hull was being damaged every time we would hit a chunk of ice. I dozed off again and really was in a deep sleep when all of a sudden I heard a loud crash and felt the ship move to the port side and tip up. I fell out of my bunk and all of a sudden water was gushing all over the place. The alarms were going off which meant all men to stations.

We left out of Burbank and it was a great day. The sun was shining and the gulls were flying around the ship. It really was a great day and I had a smile from ear to ear. I was going fishing for the first time in my life. I was going to be a green-horn and this meant paying attention really close to what the old salty dogs were doing. We traveled for hours and hours to get to our fishing spot. I thought that the first thing I would be taught is the safety stuff and how to get into my gumby suit. I wondered if there was a life raft, no information was giving. I really had concerns about this fishing trip. How was I going to save myself if something happened. I didn’t want to sound like a wussy so I kept my mouth shut. The ship moved forward at thirty-knots of so and was moving along at a pretty good clip. We should arrive to our first fishing spot in due time.

I picked myself up after falling out of the bunk. I hit my head it was bleeding really bad. I grabbed a towel that was on the floor and wrapped it around my head. Boy did I have a pounding headache. I had to get out of here and see if anyone else was injured. I went up topside and didn’t see anyone and looked up to the bridge and couldn’t see the captain. Where had everyone gone? I looked out over portside and way out in the distance I could see a life raft. I couldn’t believe my eyes. Everyone had jumped ship and left me here all by myself.

The ship was listing to one side but the engine’s were still running. I went into the bridge and tried calling SOS on the radio but all I could hear was squelch, or static. I frantically kept trying every channel on the radio and nothing was heard. I had taking some nautical classes in high school and decided that I had to try and get this ship to land somewhere. I looked at the map and plotted a path which took me to the Northern Tip of Canada. I moved the power handle to the Fast position and the ship moved forward a little faster. Several hours had gone by when I looked out over the bow of the ship and I could see land.

I could see a cove of some sort and I felt the only way I was going to get to shore was to beach this vessel. I was within five-hundred feet when I could hear some screeching at the bottom of the ship. I must of been scraping on the reefs bellows. The ship was still moving forward and I could see people at the waters edge in preparation of my crash landing. The ship hurled forward and crashed on the shore. I fell forward and then backward and banged my right knee on something hard. I lifted myself and checked myself for any other injuries. I was safe and on land. I climbed down the ladder and was met by this Canadian man. Bonjour my friend. Nice to see you parking this ship in my lagoon today. I was so happy just to know I was alive.

I waited for word about the rescue of my shipmates. They were never found. I survived this ordeal. Never again will I go out fishing, you never know when your luck will run out.

©Bilodeau,D.H. 2014

The Tahoe Experience

800px-Emerald_BayOne can only imagine how a parent must feel letting their son leave three days out of high school. My brother and I had planned this move at the beginning of our junior year. We both had worked part time to save enough money to move from Maine to California/Nevada region. Lake Tahoe was nestled up north in the Sierra Mountain range. I moved to a town called Kings Beach in California which was a few miles from the Nevada border and only miles from Incline Village, NV.

My brother and I flew to Reno Nevada and our oldest brother had awaited us with a limo ride to Lake Tahoe. This was amazing. I remember looking at the Sierra Mountain range and my brother pointing out the fact that was where I was going to live. Lake Tahoe sits in the mountain range at 6300 foot elevation. A magical place to see for sure. Eighteen years old and in a new part of the world. What an experience of a life time.

My oldest brother hitched me up with a job at a local casino working in the basement where the warehouse was located for the Hyatt Hotel. They had five restaurants and full bakery, and meat department in there. I worked this job for just a little bit, interesting that my boss was from Mass. It didn’t take long and I decided I wanted to work in the casino somewhere. They had a buffet, all you can eat place. I started working there part time and also Valet Parking. Both jobs were interesting and I met a lot of good people. I still have one connection today to a lady I worked with out there.

Life of living in a tourist area did however get to me and it was time to move south. I moved to live with my brother in Phoenix, AZ. I still will not forget the beauty of Lake Tahoe and I’m going to take my wife out there someday. The skiing was incredible also, Squaw Valley, Kirkwood, Northstar, Alpine Meadows, Ski Reno, and Heavenly.  I could ski at Squaw for 10 dollars back then with company discount. Another thing I miss about the Tahoe area was the natural hot springs. One place I would go to cost three dollars and you could stay all day. It was kinda of a weird place because a commune owed the hot spring and they were a very interesting group to say the least. The woman had to shave their heads for a year for purity and stuff like that. Whatever, that was what they were into.

If you have never been to Lake Tahoe area, I repeat, GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! You will not be disappointed. It is gods country, the most beautiful place I have ever been witness too.

©2014 Bilodeau,H.D.

Brighter Days

imagesDNNVRDPYIt is amazing how a sunny day can really change your outlook on the day. Your mood changes with it also. A swing in the pressure slightly and Maine has been put into a gleaming day of sunshine and blue skies. The birds are hitting the feeder, it really makes me happy to watch them in the feeder, which reminds me that it is time to buy some more. The squirrels are out gathering what food they can, expecting another cold spell, better get ahead you know.

It is a day of listening to music and stoaking the woodstove. It is still very cold but a warmer day with temperatures in the mid twenties. Not bad for this part of the country during our winter spell. People are out in their fishing shacks today and enjoying moments of standing around and telling fish stories with the sun at their faces. What a glorious day to be outside on the lake. Eagles are making their appearance for the anglers to view. They are in search of small bait or junk fish that have been left on the ice.

The music in my ears, sun in my eyes, come together to make this one of the better days of winter so far. You can only take so much cold and faded skies before you start walking with your shoulders down and getting a little depressed. They call it camp fever here, we do start getting real sick of being inside. I do not have a snow machine and do not ski anymore, so to have a day to enjoy the sun. even if standing with my face to the sun is a bonus. Have a great day everyone, I’m going to take in a little more sun.

©2014 Bilodeau,H.D.

Sushi For A Maineah? You Kidding Me!

untitledThe famous saying ” you cant get there from he’ah”  is a Maine saying.  I look at Sushi in kind of that same retrospect. You cannot get that here. This is not true because you can get Sushi in Maine. A true home bread Maine resident was never brought up on eating raw fish. The fish we had was a bucket of hornpout or white perch, no tiger trout. We would of never thought to wrap this up in a rice patty and eat it like that. We might put a stick through the gills and roast it on the campfire.

I never could understand why someone would want to eat raw fish when cooking it seems like a better solution. Another thing is that Wasabi stuff you dip the rice cake into. I hear that will kill any bacteria on the fish you are eating. So next time you decide to eat raw fish, make sure to use the Wasabi. It works better than Listerine for killing off the bacteria. Sorry but I’m not eating anything that looks like a pinecone stripped down from a squirrel.imagesOXCBP642

There is something to say about introducing weird suppah’s to us Mainers. We might nod and say we like it. The truth is, we would rather be eating steak and potato’s. I was born and raised on steak and potato’s, no honey I am not going to eat that rice cake stuff rolled in squid. I don’t need diarrhea for a week, the Wasabi is way to hot for me which will give me Hemi’s, and I will take a T-bone for suppah, Thank You.images

Hope Everyone in the Northeast is staying under the radar and stoaking the fire, it is darn cold here. Still nursing this cold, but saw doctor feel good. She gave me a prescription of Sushi and Wasabi. Where is she from anyways? Please give a few comments, love to hear some on the Sushi debate.

© 2014 Bilodeau H.D.

 

John and Ralph

  untitled They had been planning a trip to Alaska for three years. This was going to be a camping trip like no other. John called Ralph again to make sure he was bringing his 30-30 rifle and enough ammo to last the two weeks they planned in the deep woods. Ralph asked John to make sure he had all the fishing gear and if he had to go to the store for anything. You know, last minute stuff. Looks like we have everything and Ralph told him he was going to pick up John at 0500 hrs. Be ready be square. John was wondering what he meant by be ready be square. Ralph always was making comments like this that totally made no sense. Oh, that was the way he was. A good nights sleep and off for our vacation of a lifetime. The airplane was taking off at 0700 hrs and we better be on time.

Ralph was honking the horn early this morning. John woke up early and had a coffee so he was quite ready. The trip to the airport was non eventful, with Ralph chatting all the way. Some people just talk to much, John had a headache now. The two of them gathered their gear and took them to customs to check it in. The rifle was going to be mailed by Ralphs’ wife and would arrive before they landed in Fairbanks. They both loaded into the airplane with John taking the window seat. images

The trip so far was very long and one can only read the magazines in the back of the seat so many times when you start going a little stir crazy. The plane had been flying for about four hours when suddenly there was a loud bang, a vibration under foot. The plane started gyrating up and down and baggage started falling from the cargo holds. We could hear alarms going off and the oxygen mask had extended. John and Ralph looked at each other and both knew that they were in big trouble. The plane started a decent like no other and the angle inside looked like we were going straight down, nose first. This went on for about a few minutes when the plane felt like it was starting to level off when all of the sudden the whole fuselage exploded. I could see people flying in the air and both John and I were bouncing off the walls of the plane. I hollered for John, and kept hollering. There was smoke bellowing, black, and I could see some fire ahead of us. People were screaming to the top of their lungs. Coughing, this black putrid smoke, to get even a little breath of air. The plane came to a stop and I knew we had crash landed somewhere. images

Ralph, Ralph ? Yes, I am right here John, you going to be ok? I don’t think so I’m coughing up blood and my right arm is severed. Please tell my wife I loved her, nonsense John, you are going to make it. Remember we are going on this camping trip together. We are going to walk right out of here and continue with our trip. Ralph? I’m not going to make it, you are my best friend, Tell my children I was the best daddy and I loved them. At that moment Johns’ color changed and he was gone. Ralph was devastated, his best friend was gone. imagesYL59QIUJ

Ralph had to figure out how to get out of the airplane. The smoke was choking him so badly that he had to escape now. He could see people gathering to the right side. This must be where the exit is located. Ralph made his way to the doorway and jumped. A slide was deployed upon impact so that emergency rescue was possible. Ralph slid all the way down to the bottom not knowing where he was in the first place. It was daylight, that he could tell through the black smoke. When he finally was able to get his feet underneath himself he took a look around to see where they might of landed. Certain things stated to look familiar, scents around him smelled like coffee. He could hear a bark in the distance and someone next to him where he was standing. Oh god where am I ? A voice, so gentle and pretty had  spoken. Honey! I made you breakfast, and made sure that all your bathroom supplies are packed. I wanted to make sure you was ready for the trip.imagesYZXJ2I7C

©2014 Dwayne Bilodeau

Precarious

driving_on_ice_02Being on the edge, lack of stability. Often I have thought about this when looking out over the ice covered lakes around the region. Fisherman have brought their vehicles out onto the ice to get closer to the ice shacks, not wanting to walk. I for one have practiced this method. Taking a chance that the ice would be thick enough to hold the weight of my truck.

Stories are read in the papers of people who have lost their life going to the bottom of the Lake not being able to release themselves from the cold and icy waters. So precarious are the thickness of the ice at times. The sun has been shinning and warm temperatures for a three day spell. The ice in one place can be thick enough but what if your near a rock, an outlet, or inlet. What if you have never been to this lake before and not sure of where the inlets and outlets are located.

A few years ago I witnessed a man that had falling through the ice. This was a beautiful day and warm temperatures. It was also the last day of fishing which was the end of March. This man wanted one more chance to catch a trout. I was driving by the lake and noticed at first at how black the ice looked. This usually is indication that the ice is about ready to be open water. From the corner of my eye I saw something splashing in the water or ice. This man was about 200 feet from shore and was trying to self rescue himself. He had put himself in a PRECARIOUS position that morning. The signs were all around him of the possible dangers. I stopped my vehicle and with my fire radio called in for assistance. He was able to self rescue himself. He was very cold and he was put into an ambulance to warm up.Thin-Ice-630x389

I still think about this one incident of a family out for a joy ride one night on the lake who ended up at the bottom of the lake. Sad story yes, driving at night puts you in a much worse condition. You certainly cannot see where the inlets and outlet are located. Sometimes the ice will fracture from pressure on the lake and a big crack will open up. You could drive right into one of those and the next morning the crack would close right back up.article-2537078-1A85BC2000000578-123_634x367

I know we all take chances, I for one. The older I get, the wiser I get. With that said, I will think three times now about driving my truck out on the ice. I don’t want to put myself into a precarious position. What do you think about this? There is a reward for being safe on the ice.33980_3887727172115_1911327579_n

©2014 Dwayne Bilodeau

Lets Sell Everything Honey

Upper-Deck-1024x613I was inspired this morning when on Facebook when I read a story. This story is about a friend of mines brother who I knew. He grew up in Central Maine. A very smart young ambitious young man. He went to college, married, bought a house, and cars. He followed the American dream. He realized later in his life that he and his wife were not happy. About a year ago they started selling off everything they owned. Finally they bought a 30 year old boat and now living in Florida, in the boat. They have a skiff and use that to get needed supplies. The stress in their life, I’m sure, has been reduced and they are so much happier. No house to deal with, no car payments, and get to look at the ocean everyday. I clap my hands to this couple for making drastic changes in their life. I think we all could use a change, don’t you think?
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The Big One Got Away

Dwayne in Weld

Fishing in Maine in the winter can be a lot of fun and very cold at times. I decided to go fishing for the day not far from where I live. I went to the garage and retrieved my ice-fishing traps. I grabbed my Jiffy ice auger, and my bucket for bait. Several stores around here sell bait during the winter. The truck was started early so it would be nice and toasty when I hopped in it. Off to the store I went to get those shiners, little fish that shine. I like them because they are tough as nails and don’t die off easy. I told the store clerk I wanted a dozen, she asked me so how many do you want? Huh? I told her a bakers dozen, Huh? Alright I said 12, bakers is a little extra. I drove to the lake to meet a friend who was just taking up fishing and was really excited to start. We met at the lake and I look up and see and eagle soaring around looking for left over bait. This is bait that is not performing, or was hit by a fish and all chewed up. Hi Joe! I wave to my friend and he is so excited to start. I get out my Jiffy ice auger and start it up. Varoom! Varoom! You can only drill five holes or only have five lines in the water per license holder. I still can understand why the State Inland Fisheries couldn’t make it easy with six lines in the water. So off drilling holes and its time to put them in the water with bait. I hear a loud piercing noise and look up into the sky. There is the eagle again, looking at me with those piercing eyes like he want to eat me. The lines are all set and I’m waiting for the trap to go off. When you get a fish bite the flag fly up and someone hollers FLAG. Another thing that happens when your fishing is you drink a lot of coffee, just kidding, that is good for peeing. Beer really is the energy drink for ice fisherman. The extra high energy is from eating wild game, usually deer meat. FLAG my friend yells! I’m off to a mad sprint, well walk with a skip for me. We both get to the trap at the same time and the reel on the trap is spinning. I wait for it to slow down a bit because I don’t want my  hand to get rope burn. Ok I grab the line in my hand and give it a quick tug. This sets the hook in the fishes mouth hopefully. Well I feel the line has some weight on it so I believe at this point the fish is on. I start pulling up the line without I must add getting it tangled and get the fish up to the hole. Wow, my friend tells me it is a huge monster fish. The mouth starts coming out of the water and I’m getting excited myself. I get the fish halfway out of the hole and it slips back into the hole. I reach with all my quickness and try to scoop him out of the hole. You know those suckers are slippery for a reason because you only get a chance with a hook and not a chance with your hands. The big fish slips back through the ice and eludes me this time. I hear that noise again, I look up and the eagle is laughing. I’m taking up hunting next. The picture above is me in Weld, Maine. This trout didn’t get away. Webb Lake