I usually hibernate between Thanksgiving and Valentine’s Day. My rationale is that it’s too cold and there is not enough daylight for small stream or still water fishing to be productive. I come out of this stupor around March only to realize a month of the fishing season has been lost. Let me explain.
Thanksgiving is 4 weeks before Christmas, which is around the shortest day of the year. Using this 4-week duration as a measuring stick, it means that if one stops fishing 4 weeks before Christmas due to restricted daylight, then one should start 4 weeks after Christmas because the longer daylight hours have returned. This ‘start date’ would occur during the last week of January.
But not me. All too often I forget to crank up the fishing machine that I am (wait for laughter to subside) until Valentine’s Day. This makes no sense mathematically because Valentine’s Day is almost 8 weeks after Christmas….and I don’t stop fishing 8 weeks before Christmas. If I did, it would mean missing Tony Jelinek’s Upper Sac fish-out in the Oct/Nov time frame. And that won’t work because I’ve learned that if Tony is still fishing, then so should I.
So, here’s my point: now is the time to kick off your personal fishing season. It will be the first week in March by the time you read this article and this will be 10 or 11 weeks after Christmas. Yes, there is spring run-off and ‘yes’ the lake waters are still a little cold … but the longer daylight/warmer days triggers the bugs and the bugs trigger the fish. Hence, now is the time to get out of the house.
And don’t forget to trigger your camera and send Chris Kight a photo of that late winter striper, steelhead, trout or small mouth that you landed. And, most importantly, a photo of that late winter fish gives you bragging rights at the next general meeting.
See ya on the water.
Kim Lloyd, GBF President