Friday, March 1, 2013
What Makes the thought of the upcoming "Open Water" season so special?
As we approach the upcoming spring season, I often wonder: "What makes the upcoming open water season so special to Minnesota fisherman"?
Trudging through knee-deep snow to favorite perch or panfish areas often leads an anglers mind to wander towards spring. Jig fishing in shallow open water under a mid-May sunrise, or a possible trip one month away to the Rainy River for post spawn walleyes. These images replace the the current vision of red and green flashes on a Vexilar, right in front of their eyes.
For some anglers, its the thought of using new items for the first time. The first test ride in their new Lund, or dialing in their new electronics they received for Christmas. A new telescoping net stretched out for the first time of the year, with imaginary high-fives following right on cue. A freshly spooled reel paired with a brand new jigging rod, just waiting to be matched against anything that steps in its way.
A faint smell of two-stroke oil from an idling outboard tied to the dock enters the nose, and for once it's not from their ice auger. Popple trees and grasses blooming replace icicles in the nose. A cup of coffee from Dad's mug in a cup holder is a familiar scent from every opening morning since you can remember.
Sounds of a screaming drag enter and take over the gust of wind blowing snow across the frozen sheet of ice they currently stand upon. A north breeze pushing waves against the shoreline, or that first flight of geese returning from their vacation all give anglers the sounds of excitement they havent heard since the last walleye they pulled through 24 inches of ice weeks ago. New life is back in the Northwoods after a period of time where it seemed not much existed.
As I think about the reasons mentioned above, I realize everyone has their own reasons for what makes the upcoming open water season so special. Fisherman from across the state start dreaming of the season that is to be as soon as the long month of February nears end. New products, smells, sounds, or warmer weather; it all relates back to a tradition that is carried into every spring, almost like a religion.