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Monday, October 6, 2014

Mirth Monday: Things You Would NEVER Hear A Redneck Say

Things You Would NEVER Hear A Redneck Say

"I'll take Shakespeare for 1000, Alex"

Duct tape won't fix that.

Come to think of it, I'll have a Heineken.

We don't keep firearms in this house.

Has anybody seen the sideburns trimmer?

You can't feed that to the dog.

I thought Graceland was tacky.

No kids in the back of the pick-up, it's not safe.

Wrasslin's fake.

We're vegetarians.

Do you think my hair is too big?

I'll have grapefruit instead of biscuits and gravy.

Honey, do these bonsai trees need watering?

Who's Richard Petty?

Give me the small bag of pork rinds.

Deer heads detract from the decor.

Spitting is such a nasty habit.

I just couldn't find a thing at Wal-Mart today.

Trim the fat off that steak.

Cappuccino tastes better that espresso.

The tires on that truck are too big.

I'll have the arugula and ridicchio salad.

I've got it all on a floppy disk.

Unsweetened tea tastes better.

Would you like you fish poached or broiled?

My fiance, Paula Jo, is registered at Tiffany's.

I've got two cases of Zima for the Super Bowl.

Little Debbie snack cakes have too many fat grams.


She's too old to be wearing a bikini.

Does the salad bar have bean sprouts?

Hey, here's an episode of "Hee Haw" that we haven't seen.

I don't have a favorite college team.

Be sure to bring my salad dressing on the side.

I believe you cooked those green beans too long.

Elvis who?

Check out last weeks "Mirth Monday" HERE

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

10 Unspoken Rules For Kayak Fishing

My thoughts on 10 Rules that would help make kayak fishing better. This isn't an end all be all list but some things that if we kept in mind, could help grow our sport.

1. Learn to Paddle a Kayak- Sometimes staying on a spot is very important and nature will try to push you off of it. Whether it be current, wind or passersby, learning to maneuver your kayak well will add time fishing and reduce frustration.

2. Wave at Other Kayak Fishermen- Some of us are social; some are not. A nod and a wave will usually suffice. If someone has time and/or wants to chat, they'll give you an opener. If you don't have time or don't want to chat at that moment, be courteous, answer the opener and let them know you are heading up stream. It takes some practice but it is well worth it to let people know you're not a tool. 

3. Take a New Guy Kayak Fishing- Getting on the water by yourself can be scary, especially for a newbie. If you talk about kayak fishing as much as I do, you know who would be interested in going. Take them out and do it with the intention of being the "guide". If your goal is to catch fish, you're doing it wrong. The goal should be for THEM to catch fish. Help them with technique, stay close for questions and encourage them along the way.

4. Chill Out- Most of the time the person fishing where you were wanting to fish isn't doing it because they are vindictive spot stealers. Most of the time they paddle by, think a spot looks fishy and decide to throw some bait at it. Maybe start with Rule #2. Very often I've seen kayak anglers invite another to join them and even tie up to them.

5. Kayak Karma- Believe me when I say there is such a thing as Kayak Karma. She is angry and vengeful. If you push people away from kayak fishing, she will get you. If you chew somebody's tail for no good reason, she will get you. Be nice out there because Kayak Karma is not only vengeful but she is the sister of the Fishing Gods and she WILL tell on you.

6. Even the Entry Level Boats are Cool- Show some excitement when someone tells you about their new Pelican kayak they bought. They wanted to kayak fish and now they can. Be happy for them. Don't tell them their investment is a piece of trash or too hard to paddle. We all start somewhere and not in the same place. Tell them "Welcome to the Addiction" or something along those lines.

7. Keep Safe- Make sure you are always obeying state water safety laws but above and beyond that, don't be stupid. Don't try to race across an inlet with a power boat headed at you on plane. Be careful with wakes around bridge pilings. Have the proper lights and maybe even more than required if fishing at night. Always tell someone where you are going and when you plan to return. There are many more but the bottom line is, Be Safe.

8. Teach- If someone has shown you how to do something, pass it on! In the medical field they have a mantra that I like a lot: "Watch One, Do One, Teach One." This keeps the fountain of knowledge flowing to future generations of kayak anglers.

9. Be Helpful- If someone looks like they are struggling loading or unloading, if someone drops some gear on the way to launch or if someone is looking puzzled while staring at their kayak, ask if you can help. It's pretty easy, most of the time they really appreciate the question, even if they decline help. I have had many a trip made easier by someone helping me put my kayak on my car.

10. Have Fun- This is supposed to be a fun sport. Don't try to over think it. If you struggle, ask for help. If you find yourself not having fun, talk to someone about it. Take in the nature around you. Listen to the sounds that are so rarely heard in a power boat. Watch how close fish and birds will get to you. Take pictures! This is the best sport in the world. Make sure you enjoy it!

Monday, September 29, 2014

Mirth Monday: Only One

A fisherman returned to shore with a giant marlin that was bigger and heavier than he. On the way to the cleaning shed, he ran into a second fisherman who had a stringer with a dozen baby minnows. 
The second fisherman looked at the marlin, turned to the first fisherman and said, " Only caught one, eh?"

Check out last weeks "Mirth Monday" HERE

Monday, September 22, 2014

How To: Set Up A Campsite Kitchen

Thanks to the mass production of the automobile, the building of the interstates, and the formation of our national parks, America has become a nation with a rich and enduring car camping tradition. And for as long as folks have loaded up vehicles and set a course towards the mountains, eating well has been an integral part of the experience. With a bit of forethought, culinary ambition, and the right camp kitchen setup, there is nothing to stop you from cooking like a pro and eating like king.
BCRE_120427-0070When considered in the context of today’s fast-paced world, going gourmet and eating well in the outdoors is more pertinent than ever. If you’re chained to a desk five days a week and you spend your evenings in pursuit of your outdoor passions, you know that finding the time to cook well can be a nearly impossible task. When the weekend finally rolls around and you decide to drive up a quiet mountain road, turn off your cell phone, and set up camp next to a winding creek, you afford yourself the time to cook better than you probably do in your home kitchen. In addition to the simple pleasure of eating well, balanced and nutrient-rich meals are essential to athletic performance whether your plans include cruising mountain bike trails or battling your way up multi-pitch rock climbs.



The first step to assembling a killer camp kitchen is designating a chuck box. A chuck box can be as simple and economical as a large plastic tote or as complex as a hand-crafted wooden box (DIY tutorials are widely available online) complete with fold-out tables, equipment-specific compartments, and removable legs. The function of a chuck box is to keep all your cooking essentials organized and stored in the same place. That way, when you make an impromptu decision to load up the car and head to the hills, you can simply grab the chuck box and know you’ll have everything you need (except your stove, table, and well-stocked cooler) to whip up a tasty meal.


A reliable stove system is central to every serious camp kitchen, and we’re not talking about the lightweight backpacking variety. Depending on the amount of packing space in your vehicle, you can decide to go with a compact two-burner system that runs on a one-pound propane canister or you can equip yourself with a larger and more powerful two- or three-burner system that runs on a standard 20-pound propane tank. Generally, you just want to make sure that each burner on the stove you select puts out at least 10,000 BTU/hr, which is the average output of a household stove burner. A number of the larger models that run on standard 20-pound propane tanks will crank out an impressive 30,000 BTU/hr per burner, providing you with an immense range of culinary ability. Many models can also be accessorized with grill boxes and griddles, which make serving up a stack of pancakes or juicy T-bone steaks a simple task.


A quality hard-shell cooler is essential for eating well in the outdoors. While a soft-sided cooler may suffice for quick trips, a hard-shell will insulate far better and protect your food from being crushed in a fully packed vehicle. Unless you chop veggies with the lightning speed of an Iron Chef, it’s a good idea to plan meals and do prep work before leaving home. You can then label your sealed bags of pre-chopped veggies and meats specific to each meal, which allows you to start cooking with minimal prep time. If you plan on packing lots of canned and bottled beverages (which you should), consider bringing a second beverage-specific cooler. Beverage coolers are opened and closed frequently, which allows chilled air to quickly escape. If your food is stored in a separate cooler that is opened less frequently, your temperature-sensitive foods will stay chilled for a longer period of time.


Regardless of how much prep work you accomplish at home, there will still be food prep tasks that will need to be done in camp. For this reason, we recommend bringing along a sturdy camp table, and if you’ve ever struggled to balance a cutting board on your lap, chances are you’ll agree. A fold-up camp table is a great option, especially if your vehicle has limited packing space. If you happen to drive a pickup, a piece of plywood or a cutting board on your tailgate should do just fine.


From quiches to casseroles to hot apple pie, a Dutch Oven will allow you to bake just about anything you might stick in your oven at home. With a well-seasoned Dutch Oven added to your kitchen setup, you’ll have the versatility to prepare a much wider range of dishes, especially of the gourmet variety. The prized virtue of a Dutch Oven is its ability to evenly distribute heat, allowing you to cover it with charcoal briquettes, position it in hot coals near an open fire, or place it on the stove top. Some models even feature a deep dish lid that can double as a skillet. If you properly care for your cast iron cookware, which involves never cleaning it with soap and making sure it is fully dry before storage, your cast iron will eventually acquire a natural non-stick cooking surface that’s referred to as ‛seasoning’. Seasoning results from oils penetrating the surface of the cast iron over time, which will create a non-stick patina surface that’s wonderful to cook on. Not only is cast iron cookware revered by chefs of every discipline today, it’s been a staple of the outdoor kitchen for hundreds of years.


If your chosen campground permits an open fire, don’t be afraid to try some good old fashioned fire-roasted grub. (Not to mention, a hot bed of coals is ideal for use with your Dutch Oven.) Stick-roasting edibles is fun and delicious, and it has been around since man discovered fire and realized it could do wonderful things to meat. Another great option for open-fire cooking is the use of aluminum foil. With a thoughtful array of fish, meats, veggies, and spices, fellow campers can assemble a foil dinner to their own liking and be personally responsible for cooking it.


  • tailgategearlistLarge Pot
  • Medium Pot
  • Frying Pan
  • Dutch Oven
  • Hot Pad or Leather Gloves
  • PlatesBowlsMugs
  • Cutlery Sets
  • Measuring Cups
  • Cutting Board
  • Matches or Lighter
  • Spatula
  • Whisk
  • Large Spoon
  • Large Knife
  • Paring Knife
  • Lantern or Headlamp
  • Wine Key
  • Can Opener
  • French Press or Percolator
  • Hand Crank Coffee Grinder
  • Basic Spice Kit (olive oil, salt, pepper, sugar, red pepper flakes, garlic powder, chili powder, rosemary, oregano, allspice)
  • Dry storage food items (chips, cookies, peanut butter, etc)
  • Roasting Sticks
  • Biodegradable Soap
  • Sponge or Pot Scrubber
  • Paper Towels
  • Trash Bags, Resealable Baggies


Friday, September 19, 2014

Mirth Monday: The Business Man

One day a fisherman was lying on a beautiful beach, with his fishing pole propped up in the sand and his solitary line cast out into the sparkling blue surf. He was enjoying the warmth of the afternoon sun and the prospect of catching a fish. 
About that time, a businessman came walking down the beach, trying to relieve some of the stress of his workday. He noticed the fisherman sitting on the beach and decided to find out why this fisherman was fishing instead of working harder to make a living for himself and his family. 
"You aren't going to catch many fish that way," said the businessman to the fisherman, "you should be working rather than lying on the beach!" 
The fisherman looked up at the businessman, smiled and replied, "And what will my reward be?" 
"Well, you can get bigger nets and catch more fish!" was the businessman's answer. 
"And then what will my reward be?" asked the fisherman, still smiling. 
The businessman replied, "You will make money and you'll be able to buy a boat, which will then result in larger catches of fish!" 
"And then what will my reward be?" asked the fisherman again. The businessman was beginning to get a little irritated with the fisherman's questions. "You can buy a bigger boat, and hire some people to work for you!" he said. 
"And then what will my reward be?" repeated the fisherman. 
The businessman was getting angry. "Don't you understand? You can build up a fleet of fishing boats, sail all over the world, and let all your employees catch fish for you!" 
Once again the fisherman asked, "And then what will my reward be?" 
The businessman was red with rage and shouted at the fisherman, "Don't you understand that you can become so rich that you will never have to work for your living again! You can spend all the rest of your days sitting on this beach, looking at the sunset. You won't have a care in the world!" 
The fisherman, still smiling, looked up and said, "And what do you think I'm doing right now?" -

Check out last weeks "Mirth Monday" HERE

Monday, September 15, 2014

How To: Pick the Right paddle Size

By Tom Watson
Besides knowing what to look for in a kayak, a beginner is also challenged with knowing what is the best paddle length to choose. Opinions vary slightly as to what is the most efficient length for a particular paddler although the range of methods is fairly narrow and commonplace throughout the paddling community. Determining the proper kayaking paddle length to use is based on several factors, from body stature to boat dimensions to paddle stroke preference. Before getting into those dynamics, a few comments on how lengths are expressed.
The industry standard is to use metric units to measure and describe paddle lengths. Tell a fellow kayaker you use a 72.22" paddle and you'll probably get a blank stare. Say you need a 220cm, however, and most everyone will immediately know – and picture – what length you are talking about.
If you are still a little rusty on your innate metric conversion abilities, know this: 2.54 centimeters (cm) = 1". Keep this in mind when you are comparing the difference in length between a 220cm and a 230cm paddle. We are talking 3.9"; that's slightly less than a 2" difference on each end - out to the blade tip from the center of the shaft.
Although slight, it can make a modest but accumulative difference when you consider the effects that could result from using a paddle of less (or more) than an optimum length: compromised form, banged knuckles, inefficient paddle angle or power face contact and others. Multiply any of these by a thousand strokes and imagine the potential you are losing each time you execute a stroke using a paddle that's the "wrong" length.

Here are the major factors that will ultimately suggest the proper paddle length to initially consider:
Body Stature
A good friend of mine is exactly my same height, 6'7" tall. We often turned each other on to new kayaks on the market we could comfortably lower our tall frames down into. Despite our equal height, most of the time a super fine fit for one was an uncomfortable contortion for the other. What's going on? My height is in my legs; his is in his torso.
The length of your torso becomes one of the elements when using your height to determine which paddle length will work best for you. Most tables chart list just your height against various paddle lengths. Taking your torso height into account as well can help reaffirm what the height charts suggest for a proper paddle length.
Torso vs. Paddle Size Chart
Kayak Design
Simply put, the wider the kayak paddled, the longer the paddle needed. In order to keep proper blade placement in the water, you need to be able to reach beyond the gunwales of your craft while maintaining proper paddling form. You don't want to be banging your knuckles on the deck, nor do you want too much or too little of the power face of the blade in the water.
Here again, there are many variables that come into play. A shorter person in a wider boat may need the same length of paddle as does a taller person in a narrower kayak. Paddles in tandem kayaks generally are longer than those used in solo kayaks and so on.
Another factor is the height of the seat surface in relation to the gunwales. Two kayakers of the same torso/height in the same kayak may need different paddles if the seat height was different in each boat.
Stroke Angle Preference
Do you prefer a high stroke that brings the power face closer to the side of the boat in a less acute angle of entry to the water? Or, do you like the lower stroking angle often used for casual touring that puts the shaft at a more acute angle to the surface? The same paddler, in the same kayak, would use a slightly shorter paddle for the former style, slightly longer for the latter.
You can see that finding the ideal or optimal paddle length depends of a variety of factors relating to the physical shape of the paddler, one's individual paddling style and the type of boat with which the paddle will be used. These are all gray areas that limit any black & white statement about which paddle length you should choose.
On-Water Method
By far, the best and ultimate method for determining that ideal length is to get out on the water and paddle using proper techniques in a kayak you will be using with your paddle. Demo days are a great way to help you test paddle a kayak. Most reps will be able to suggest a starting length of paddle for you to try. Once you find a boat you like, you may want to try a few different lengths of paddles as well.
Testing a paddle will mean using proper form (torso twist, upright posture, proper hand positioning, good forward and sweeping stroke styles, etc.). You don't want to choose a paddle based on poor paddling form. Of course the beginner's form you've acquired could be the result of using an improper length of paddle from the start.
As you can see, it's a matter of trial and error and seeking – and following - good advice from those more experienced.
Quick-Pick Method
There are two quick and fairly accurate on-shore methods for determining a proper length of paddle to use:
  1. The first method involves holding your arms out, elbows bent at about right angles in normal paddling posture and grasping the paddle as you would normally. Your hands should be about 2/3 of the way from the center of the shaft to the shoulder of the blade.
    Kayak Paddle LengthKayak Paddle Height
  2. Select a paddle you think is about the right length and stand it upright (vertically) alongside you. Reach up with your arm fully extended, hooking your first finger joints over the top edge (tip) of the paddle. If you can reach further/completely around the top edge or, conversely, if your fingers don’t even reach the top, choose a different length accordingly.

By the Numbers
Here is a compilation of measurements from several paddle manufactures that cross reference height and boat widths to suggest the proper range of paddle lengths to consider:
Kayak Paddle Sizing Chart
Kayak Paddle Sizing FactorsChoosing the right paddle length you should use depends on many factors that are determined by your size, paddling style and type/size of boat. The more you develop and fine tune your paddling and experiment with different paddles, the easier it will be for you to determine what’s the best length for your paddle. And if you are like most avid paddlers, you will soon have several in your arsenal from which to choose.

Now, deciding upon the shape of the blade, feathered/unfeathered and paddle weight and material is a whole other related matter…
Be safe; Have fun!

*presented by

Friday, September 12, 2014

Mirth Monday: IM A COP

 "Doin' any good?" asked the curious individual on the bridge. 
      "Any good?" answered the fisherman, in the creek below. "Why I caught forty bass out o' here yesterday." 
      "Say, do you know who I am?" asked the man on the bridge. 
      The fisherman replied that he did not. 
      "Well, I am the county fish and game warden." 
      The angler, after a moment's thought, exclaimed, "Say, do you know who I am?" 
      "No," the officer replied. 
      "Well, I'm the biggest liar in eastern Indiana," said the crafty angler, with a grin.

Check out last weeks "Mirth Monday" HERE