Chris Schultz

Outdoors Column

By Chris Schultz

Winsted-Lester Prairie Journal & Howard Lake Herald, Minn.

July 13, 1998

Is it mid-July or early September?

My seasonal clock is running fast or it has skipped a month or two.

Looking at the Ron Schara outdoors calender hanging on my wall, I know it's only mid-July and that Independence Day just passed us by.

Although that's what the calendar says, to me it sure feels like it's early September already and the holiday we had a week or so ago was Labor Day, not the Fourth of July.

Typically, I don't start thinking about fall until late August or Labor Day. But this year, for some reason, in early July I've found myself day dreaming about cool nights, falling leaves, ducks in the air, and roosters busting from cover.

In fact, the whole year has seemed screwed up and I'm not the only outdoor nut who has been feeling that way.

Maybe it was the easy winter and the early spring. April felt like June, May was nice, and then June was kind of like a normal September.

I'm not complaining. An extra month of summer would be nice to have every year. But, what will people think in September when they see outdoor nuts hanging their blaze orange deer hunting stuff out and getting their ice fishing gear ready?

Area lakes fishing report

The walleye bite has been nil to none, and the sunfish have moved off the spawning beds and into deeper water.

No, the northerns haven't lost their teeth, but they're not biting as fast as they were either.

We are finally getting into some kind of summer fishing pattern on our area lakes.

The sunnies have moved out of the weeds and the bigger fish have followed, making it a bit tougher to catch a nice bunch of fish than it was a week or two ago.

Anglers from around the area have reported good crappie fishing on Ida and Granite in about 10 feet of water. There is excellent sunfish action on Minnetonka with wax worms just off the outside weedlines, and super bass fishing in shallow water on lakes like Howard, Waconia, and Mary.

Joe's Sport Shop in Howard Lake reported that fishing has slowed a bit, but anglers are still hitting the area lakes in good numbers in search of panfish and a few deep water walleyes.

Dispose of grass clippings properly

Collecting and properly disposing of your lawn or grass clippings is an easy and effective way to help keep our area lakes and waterways clean and healthy.

There are several lake associations in our area that work very hard to preserve, protect, and enhance our local water resources. They need everyone to pitch in.

Collecting and properly disposing of your lawn or grass clippings is easy and it's something everyone can do to improve our area lakes and waterways. Clippings that are washed into lakes, ponds, and waterways is one of the reasons why many of our lakes become scummy, smelly, and algae filled in the summer.

Outdoor notes

  • Don't wait any longer to plan your fall hunting trips.
  • The Winsted Sportsmen's Club will meet at the Lake Mary clubhouse Tuesday, July 14 at 7 p.m. Items on the agenda include preparing a float for the Legion Festival parade, painting the clubhouse, and planning for the raffle.
  • Head to deeper water and try small leeches for big sunfish.
  • Early reports and signs indicate that upland game bird populations in our area and across the midwest will be higher than last year.
  • Pay special attention to your hunting dog when the weather is hot. Make sure they always have plenty of fresh water and don't overwork them in the heat.
  • If your outdoor calendar is screwed up and you feel like it's September already, don't worry, you're not the only one.
  • For more information on the outdoors, check out

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