With the popularity of all of the survival shows on the Discovery Channel it has many of us thinking how we might do if we were stranded in the wilderness and had to survive on our own. If I were stuck anywhere I think along an Ozark stream this time of year would be my best chance for survival. With fish biting, young dumb squirrels gathering nuts for winter, and many edible fruits and fungi ripening I think I could live for quite some time right now armed with a flyrod and a .22 rifle. A few days ago Amy found several different kinds of edible mushrooms growing as well as many paw paws ripening on the trees. In addition walnuts and hickory nuts are also falling adding another enjoyable edible seed to the mix. The mushrooms found their way into a pasta dish last night, and today we hope to find some more so we can add them to the deep fryer when we fry the suckers we hope to gig this evening. What a great time to be a hillbilly!
Thursday, September 16, 2010
As the season winds down we are once again able to take a deep breath here in Southern Missouri. Both kids are now in school with Eli turning 7 on Sunday and Molly 5 years old and in Kindergarden. The summer was hot and fairly dry with very few rainy weekends, what rain we did have on weekends was relatively quick and then gone. Weekday buisness was steady and our new rental RV's went over well, being full every weekend and quite a bit during the week. The hot weather really helped cabin rentals during the week as people did not want to sleep outside with lows in the 80's. Campers were very well behaved for the most part, we had a few noise complaints but were not called in the middle of the night at all this year (that's a first). We continue to have more and more repeat customers which allows us to weed out the bad eggs and send them elsewhere. As we look toward off season projects our major renovation will be to expand the campstore. Amy is looking forward to having a bigger (air conditioned) space to show off here wares, and I am looking forward to having an area designated for fishing supplies. Each year we are getting more and more fishermen which helps extend our season later into the year, and starts it off earlier in the spring. Another project will be to put a deck on the back of the riverhouse which overlooks the river, and that paired with last years riverhouse renovations will make it a really great rental house every month of the year. I have added a wood stove in the great room which really heats up a space that before always stayed cold in the winter. With the fireplace and propane heater in the other living room the riverhouse now stays toasty warm even on the coldest nights. We are kicking around the idea of renting the riverhouse like a trout lodge in the winter allowing people to rent it per person, with several groups being able to rent it at the same time. The whole place can still be rented for $150 per night, but also offering it by the person if it is not yet rented might keep it full more in the winter. Let me know what you think about this idea, with 2 bedrooms and 2 living rooms I think there would be plenty of space for like minded trout fisherman to coexist.
Trout fishing has been outstanding the last few weeks, I've been out at least once a week for the last 3 weeks and have been catching several fish per hour every time out. Last night caught 3 rainbows and 1 brown in an hour, and a few weeks ago landed a 21 3/4 " brown on Eli's 4 wt (see picture). That evening was my first time out in months and with my leaders in shambles I decided to use Eli's rod which had good leader and tippet. I hooked this fish right in front of the house and was quickly taken down to my backing. In typical brown trout style he dug deep and bulldogged around doing as he pleased. With no net I was finally able to follow him into shallow water where I could scoop him out, get a few quick pictures and send him on his merry way, one of my biggest fish ever on the smallest rod I have.
We've still been putting a few people out almost every day with Saturdays being 20-30 canoes, but the river has been very quiet and most days I have been seeing less that 5 canoes go by. Great time to get out on the river if you are looking for a nature fix. Hopefully with the rain we have been having it will lead to a colorful fall and not wash the colors out, it has sure been good for the river.