Saturday, November 9, 2019

Oh Look !

Lance: A steel-tipped spear carried by mounted knights or light cavalry

Lance Travel Trailer Model 2295

If you want to see all the goodies inside, go here:

No, we didn't get as decadent as adding the fireplace. Besides it's only electric.

When you get to the site, be sure to click on the 360 button and let it show you around.

Fishing next Thursday. They've started planting Lake Camanche, but don't expect much.

Stay tuned.

Wednesday, November 6, 2019

Soon A Replacement

This is a hint: A steel-tipped spear carried by mounted knights or light cavalry

Come back Friday afternoon for pictures and an explanation. 

Stay tuned. 

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

The Garden Is Toast

We've come to the end of the growing season. Three mornings of frost and the "Out of control" garden is gone.


Quite a difference between July and yesterday morning. 

What's left went into the green recycle bin and the 6 or so Winter Squash are finishing their ripening cycle on the counter in the kitchen. 

The Freedom Express is officially gone and insurance payment has been made. Now all we have to do is find one we like as well as we did the Freedom Express since they don't make that model any more and buying a used one is out of the question. Won't camp in someone else's dirt. 

Downcountry lakes should be cold enough to plant soon, so maybe fishing shortly. As I get older, I have less desire to fish in the freezing cold than I used to, which explains why I've not be fishing upcountry. Lake Tahoe, which is lower than most of the upcountry lakes, was 12 degrees this morning. 

So stay tuned. Won't e long before I have a "real" fishing post. 

Happy Halloween everyone. 

Thursday, October 24, 2019

The End Of An Era

Well, it's been two weeks since the Freedom Express was stolen. The insurance company has now considered it gone and has started the settlement process.

In talking to the claims processor, apparently a stolen travel trailer is not an unusual thing. When they comment that they are "extremely familiar with the settlement process", it pretty much says it all.

I had one occurrence last Thursday that kind of settled this whole stolen thing in my mind. 

I was coming home from a birthday breakfast with my son (it was the big 50) and I noticed a trailer sitting on a piece of ground, right next to the highway that looked to be still attached to the truck in front of it. The trailer was completely covered (to the ground) with a gray tarp. You could not see any part of the trailer. 

I immediately went around the corner from my house to the Highway Patrol office and asked them to investigate since they were the ones to write the stolen report. The first question asked: Was it on private property. I assumed it was. They couldn't do anything because they can't just access private property without at least something telling them it was my, or looked like my trailer. 

And if I took a look at it..........Trespassing. 

What better place to hide a stolen trailer than in plain sight? 

At that point, I was done with the Freedom Express. Now I wait for the insurance company to tell me how little they are going to pay me for the trailer and it's contents. 

But then (once I have that number) I'm going to do two things. One, find a new trailer. We're already making up a list to look at. And two, I'm going to file a claim with Pacific Gas & Electric for the difference between the amount the insurance company settles on and the original cost of the trailer. 

After all it was their fault (in part) because they shut off the electricity, which shut off the security lights and security cameras, which precipitated the theft. They created the perfect storm for those zeroed in on MY TRAILER to make the heist. 

From rumors around the area, mine wasn't the only one. 

The new trailer will be in a more secure lot (with a gate), have a hitch lock that even the Hulk couldn't break, wheel locks that he couldn't break either and surface to surface rockets for anyone not authorized to take the trailer. 

So now maybe life can get back to normal (not hanging by the phone waiting for that important call that never came) and get some fishing in. Winter is coming and they should start stocking the downcountry lakes fairly soon. 

While I've been waiting for the above mentioned call, I have been inputting distant relatives that I've researched and the total on the DNA linked tree is now at 2819 and the Family Tree which is directly from me, is 1279. That means I've been related to more than 4000 people and I'm not done yet. 

Stay Tuned. 

Thursday, October 10, 2019

And Then it Was Gone

Tuesday Night, Midnight and Pacific Gas & Electric with a "Weather Event (their phrase for high winds)" coming, they shut off the electricity to 800,000 people in Northern California.

Wednesday morning was a bit of a challenge. No electricity, no electric coffee pot. So there I am pouring hot water (we have a gas stove that works without electric. You know the old match to the burner trick) over the coffee grounds to get some ersatz coffee.

Then I had an epiphany (seems I get these quite often). Why not get the camping coffee pot out of the trailer. It works on the stove top just like an electric one and makes good coffee.

Around 9ish I drove over the RV lot where I store the trailer, when not in use, and for some reason my space was empty. Then I noticed (I am very observant) that the Winter tire covers, blocks that the leveling jacks go on, and the wheel chocks were strewn for about 50 feet up the aisle in front of where the trailer is usually parked.

Between myself and the gentleman who is in charge of the RV lot we estimated that sometime after midnight (when PG&E shut off the power) when the security lights and security cameras went off, someone backed up to my trailer, hooked up and took off with it like a bat out of hell. Thus the scattering of the covers, blocks, and chocks.

I called the sheriff's department, who referred me to the Highway Patrol and filed a basic stolen trailer report. About 15 minutes later a Highway Patrol car pulled into the parking lot and I finished the report with a very nice officer.

I reported it to the insurance company and they said that after two weeks it's considered gone. 

So I wait for a call.

The no longer Freedom Express
I have both sets of keys. If I do get it back, what is it going to look like. The slimebag who took it will have to use a pry bar to get the door and the storage doors open. Probably taken by some drug addict to sell for more drugs. I hope it was worth it and I hope they catch him. 

We really liked that trailer.

We thought we lived in a relatively safe area. 

We never thought something like that would happen in a secured parking area. 

Thanks, Pacific Gas & Electric. 

Insurance will cover it. PG&E has stated that any financial loss (like your refrigerator or freezer or your camping trailer) because of a "weather event power shut off" is your problem. This is definitely a financial loss. 

I have many nasty words in the back of my brain, but will refrain from using them so I can keep this post PG rated. 

Stay tuned. 

Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Aaaah, the Secret Lake

You know the Secret Lake (the one that everybody knows about). Yuki and I had visions of Brown Trout, cool mountain air, and floating crickets at the inlet.

We were set. Purchased 30 large. Sounds kind of gangsterist, 30 Large.

We left La Casa Kautz at a little after 0900. Stopped for donuts and coffee in Pine Grove and we were on our way up Highway 88.

The Secret Lake, Fall, Spawning Browns. I was giddy with anticipation.

Turned right on Tiger Creek Road, got in about 2 miles and THE ROAD WAS CLOSED. WHAT???

Who would do such a thing to two fishermen with great expectations?

The local energy company (Pacific Gas & Electric) has been on a campaign to (finally) remove dead trees and anything that could cause a power line failure, which in turn could cause a catastrophic fire like the one last year that erased the town of Paradise, California or any of the many others that burned hundreds of thousands of acres.

So, when will the road be open? The gentleman we talked to said not until the end of the year. By then it'll be butt deep in snow at the Secret Lake. He suggested we could fish Lake Tahoe (funny guy) or San Francisco Bay (he's becoming less funny), possible Pyramid Lake (now I'm ready to hit this guy with something).

And then he casually drops this little tidbit. The area below the Power House on Tiger Creek and the Secret Lake will probably be closed to fishing from now on because of over fishing. They say, "Don't kill the messenger" and it was a good thing I had a seat belt on because I was on my way out of the truck to do just that.

So we sucked it up, made a U-all can turn, and headed back to the highway.

My dreams of 24 inch Browns........Gone.

Our options were Bear River, Silver Lake, or Caples Lake. We decided on Bear.       

Found the lake to be a tad low, but it is October.

The white strip across the top of the dam is the high water mark.
I drove down the side of the lake and backed up almost to the dam.
Then we crawled down the rocks (in the picture below) until we could find a place to sit and put out 4 rods. Yuki did two with crawlers and immediately brought in a 10/11 inch Rainbow.

Fishing down there
I put out one rod with rainbow Power Bait and the other a cricket (remember I had 30 Large) under a bobber. 

And there we sat until 1:00 pm when we decided to call it a day.

Took a few shots around the lake for you viewing pleasure.

Across from us

To our left

As it turned out, Yuki 1 - Mark Zip. 

I am saddened that the Secret Lake is no more. I'm saddened that the area below the Power House is no more. But Winter is coming and they should start planting Camanche shortly. Big Mt Lassen Rainbows are on the horizon. Excitement is ramping up. 

Stay tuned. 

Thursday, September 26, 2019

A Genealogy Post

A while back I had an epiphany. My genealogy partner and cousin Dan back in Wisconsin and I have been racking our brains (small as they are) trying to find a connection between our family (He's descended from my Great-Uncle Christoph) and the family I created from several DNA matches on

When we backtrack our family it comes to a screeching halt at Great-Grandfather Gottlieb and Great-Grandmother Auguste Louise Albrecht. 

The old guy in the front row on the left is Great-Grandfather Gottlieb.

So here's what the epiphany was. If we can't make a connection by going backwards from our family, maybe I can make a connection coming forward from the DNA family and maybe stumble across our great-Grandfather that way.

Now, you have to remember these old German families, for the most part, had 12 kids in the family and their families had 12 kids and their family had 12 kids etc.

So I've come to the conclusion that we're related to every Kautz/Kaus/Couts (that's a whole nuther story) ever born with the exception of the Kautzes at Ironstone Winery in Murphys. Either that or I just haven't connected them yet.

I'm still researching all the families and have a current Excel Spreadsheet and I'm at line 5545 and still haven't found Gottlieb. It's getting so we're starting to call him "The Ghost".

Dan continues to look from our family side, but isn't getting any further than I am.

So, just for an update, here are the numbers of people on each tree.

Kautz Family Tree - 1279
Kautz DNA Linked Tree - 2486

One would think, "How can I be related to so many people?" My wife keeps telling me, in the long run we're related to everyone.

Anybody who wants some help finding your relatives, let me know. I think I qualify as Medium to Expert at this searching thing.

Stay Tuned.

Fishing soon.

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Let Me Try This Again

For those of you that have read the last two posts that I deleted, I apologize. I attempted to make those a story, if you will, but in my opinion failed miserably.

Here's the facts:

We have a leader in the White House that's a racist, misogynist, a bigot, a liar, a prefabricator, and so many other things.

We have a congress that has been sitting on their asses and doing nothing about the person in the White House until yesterday. Unfortunately too little, to late.

I just hope that when our "leader" is done playing Kissyface with Kim Jong Un who is never going to give up his weapons, that Kim doesn't start lobbing them into California. That would definitely ruin my day. 

And I hope that when he's done playing Kissyface with Vladmit Putin so he can put one of his "Towers" in Moscow, that we still have an ally or two left in the world because as of now, we don't have any.

My last hope is that in January 21, 2021 that there is someone else being sworn in. That is if I'm still alive then.

That said, this is the end of politics on NCT.

Stay tuned.


Sunday, September 22, 2019

The Future Of Northern California Trout


You will all be pleased that Northern California Trout will be around for at least another two years.

BUT, there's always a but, some of the format is going to change. It will still be about fishing for the most part, but I'm adding a few different items to talk about.

In the next week I'll be changing my description. I'll be adding what the focus of the blog will be and what I'll be writing about.

In deciding whether or not to keep NCT, one of the thoughts I had was to start a political blog over on Blogspot. Naw, there are hundreds of them out there, BUT (there it is again) I have an opinion that I've been keeping to myself and the more and more I see what is going on in this country, the more and more I get agitated.

I'm going to say some things that some of you might not like. I'm not doing it to start a pissing contest because according to the First Amendment of the Constitution,

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

I have a right to speak my mind. For those that object, I apologize in advance. BUT I need to get it off my chest. I can't discuss politics with my wife because she won't. I will do my best not to name names. If you choose not to read about politics on this blog, I will, at the start of such a post, let it be known that there will be some political slamming in it so you can pass by if you wish. 

I'm also going to touch on other subjects like I've done in the past. Genealogy, local history, my "Out of Control" garden, and general things going on in the State of California.

I hope you'll continue to follow and I hope you'll find my musings interesting.

WARNING... There will be times I use terms not suitable for younger readers (R rated if you will), but I will do my best to keep my language under control. They say and show almost everything in the movies. I say go for it.

So thank those of you that have stopped by all 739074 times. I hope you will stay a follower and if I offend you, I hope I don't do it too badly.

Stay tuned.

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

The Out Of Control Garden

Bill Trussell asked if I could share some pictures of tomatoes in the cage.

Last year we planted 11 tomato plants. We supplied the whole neighborhood with tomatoes and froze a bunch. From those frozen ones, my wife made Tomato Jam this year.

This will give you some idea of what it looks like:

Tomato Jam
It's not jam you would put on toast for breakfast, but on a hamburger or scrambled eggs. WOW. Nothing can top it.

I made 4 boxes out of 2x12 Redwood boards and some wire cages to hold the plants up. Those wire things you get at Lowe's don't even come close to hold up these plants. 

In the back left box, on the left is Cupcake Squash. Next to it is Poblano peppers and on the right is Jalapeno peppers. Left in the front is Winter Squash. Right side back (that you can't see) is Roma tomatoes and Japanese Eggplant. Front right has 3 tomato plants (you keeping track? that's 4 tomato plants). Yellow, Beefsteak, and Chocolate Sprinkles (a cherry tomato).

The beginning June 19th
Then we'll move along to July 10th.

July 10th. 
By then we were into squash, tomatoes, and peppers.

Cupcake Squash same day 7/10
Interesting squash. Cut it in half, dig out the seeds, coat the inside with salt and let it drain. Wash out the salt and then fill it with hamburger or as we like to, sausage (of various flavors) and bake in the oven or on the BBQ. We have 2 Cupcake squash plants and we've harvested (I haven't kept count) maybe 35 and I have another half dozen to pick this morning. Yes, the neighborhood has been "squashed". 



Wanted you to see one days take (in the basket) there are all 4 types mentioned above. But on that date, this big yellow one showed up. The red one next to it is a normal sized Beefsteak. This one was about the size of a softball and a half. Huge by yellow tomato standards.

Yesterday Morning
While we were gone over the weekend, our neighbors across the street (who mind the cats) picked everything ripe in the garden. Yesterday morning there was another basket full. 

We've been eating tomatoes with Mozzarella cheese and Balsamic Vinaigrette for almost every meal. You can't top fresh tomatoes right from the garden. 

This morning
This morning I took the shot above. That's after I trimmed a bunch off the top of the tomato plants. The cage is 2 ft x 4 ft x 6 feet tall. All that growing into the back yard is the Winter squash. Three types, Butternut, Acorn, and Buttercup. We found the key to Winter squash is when the stem is brown the squash is ready for picking. Soon, very soon. 

The peppers, wife made pickled Jalapeno's and bread & butter Jalapeno's. A hit by all who were lucky enough to get a jar. The Poblano's ? She done something with them because they're gone, but I don't know what.   

So that's the Out Of Control Garden. Oh yeh, what's out secret? We use the same dirt as the Pot growers upcountry use. Very good stuff although you won't find any pot here. Coincidentally the dirt has a very heavy cow shit smell. 

Fishing one of these days, 

Stay tuned.    

Monday, September 16, 2019

This Post Isn't About Fishing

In years past, I've talked about our trips to Hendy Woods State Park in the beautiful little town of Philo, California. OK, maybe not so beautiful, but it is little.

This trip isn't about fishing, it's about wine tasting. The Anderson Valley is one of the premier wine producing areas of California. They tend to lean more toward red's than whites. 

I, myself, don't drink wine so I'm the DD.

Here's a little story about the DD:

Cop comes up to a bar and says "I'm going to nail one of those drunks when they go home for the night." Out the door comes one guy, staggering, falling down, and can barely make it to his truck. Cop thinks, got him. I'll nail him when he leaves. Over a period of time, person after person leaves the bar until the only vehicle left in the lot was the first guy. Finally he sits up, starts his truck and drives out of the lot.
Cop pulls him over and gives him a sobriety test. Stone cold sober. "But I watched you stumble out of the bar drunk as a skunk. What's the deal?" "I'm the DD, the guy says. Designated Decoy."

In my case DD is designated Driver.

We visited several wineries and purchased wine (I'm also the financier) that one can only get at the winery. They don't sell to stores.

By the end of the second day, I was feeling like I needed to take out a second on the house to pay for the wine. That stuff ain't cheap. This is not Ripple we're talking about here.

Just so you don't feel left out, here are some of the shots we took a couple years ago. You've seen it once, that's pretty much all you need. With these kind of trees, to see change, you'd have to come back about the year 2525. Don't forget to listen to that song on YouTube. 

The forest

More forest

That tree was there when Columbus discovered America. 

Little plaque

Hobbit house
Last trip of the year. It's supposed to start raining this morning. How's that for timing?

Now I can get down to fishing again. By the way, our "out of control" garden is producing some interesting Winter Squash. More on that another time. Tomatoes are in a wire cage 2 feet wide and six feet long. The cage is so full you have to thin it out to find the tomatoes and trim the top of the plants as they have reached the 6' high mark and growing higher. 

That's it for now. 

Stay tuned. 

Saturday, August 31, 2019

Upper Lake Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday

Tuesday turned out to be a wine tasting day. After getting up late and having a late breakfast, we (Katherine, Me, Ken, & Ranae) piled into the truck and headed toward the few wineries in the area. Lake County has many, but they are scattered all over the county.

First stop was a wine and olive olive oil tasting place. Couple of bottles of wine and a couple bottles of olive oil and we were off to the next place.

Second stop was not so good. Wine wasn't to our liking and the prices were steep.

Back on the road, the option was lunch and another winery (somewhere in the county) or lunch back at the park. We chose the park. It's a democratic society, camping is.

Hills are recovering after the fires last year

You can see the same section from another angle

The other side of the lake
While everybody sat around, I went down to the dock and soaked some more PB. Add one more trout to the list (now 3). Another sunset and the day was done.

Wednesday morning found me out in the kayak attempting to get a Thin Mint down far enough to entice a fish. I guess it just wasn't anything they wanted. So I attached myself to the dock and threw out some PB. Add fish #4 to the list. .

Later in the day the Bass (some quite huge) started circling a fish ball of, I'm guessing a shad of some type. Every once in a while they would dive through and the shad would scatter just like you see on national Geographic. The best photo I could get in the one below.

Fish Ball
If you double click and make it big you can see hundreds of small fish swimming in a circle. I have a video on my phone that I'll add to another post as soon as I can figure out how to get it to where I can show you.

Later that day while dinner (Tri-Tip, we eat well on vacation) was on the BBQ, I walked down to the lake right by the trailer. I figured if the fish were over by the dock, why wouldn't they be over here?

Wednesday fishing spot
Just a simple, throw out the rod and set on the bait bag, wait and see what happens.

Here is what happened:

Fish numbers 5 & 6.

This was our 6th year camping at Upper Lake. I guess you can say I now have a fish for each of those 6 years. The Tri-Tip was excellent along with home grown tomato's and Mozzarella with Balsamic Vinegarette dressing.

And, of course, ending the day with a sunset picture.

We'll be back next year.  Our reservations are already set starting 8/30/2020 for 5 days.

Our next trip is the North Coast Redwoods in 11 days.

With that, I'll leave you with a couple of extra photos.

Crane on the fishing dock. Dinner????

Ken & Ranae

Their motor home

The swimming dock
That's it for this trip. 

Hendy Woods State Park, next stop. 

Stay tuned. 

Friday, August 30, 2019

Upper Lake Sunday and Monday

We got to Upper Lake about 2:00 pm on Sunday. It's about a 4 hour drive from home. It took another hour or so to set up the trailer. Wasn't as bad as Redding last year (111 degrees), but still hovering just above 100.

We sat outside until the kids arrived about 4:00 pm. They got caught in a bad traffic accident by the airport on Interstate 5. Must have happened right after we went through there because we didn't have any problems.

Once they got set up and we had the required beer (805) at the beginning of every camping trip, I wandered down to the dock to see what was shaking. 

Usual Camping Spot

There were a couple guys fishing and they had caught a couple trout. TROUT !! Surface temperature of the lake was 76 degrees. TROUT ? Yup, Rainbows about 10 or 11 inches. Well I came to find out that out from the dock about 25 feet the water was so deep that it was probably 60 degrees down at the bottom. 

So I put out one rod with the usual rainbow Power Bait on a slip sinker rig and low and behold, 5 minutes later I had my first rainbow trout out of Upper Lake. I gave it to the guy next to me since I wasn't keeping any and he held it up for a historic photo.

First Rainbow from Upper Lake
Shortly there after it was dinner time and I called it quits for the day.

After dinner, I took several sunset pictures and this is one of them.

Monday morning my son and I got the kayaks off the truck and down to the lake. My wife and I set out for the far end of the lake to see what was there. My son and daughter-in-law were out in their two person Inflate-a-Yak (not the Sea Eagle) and already to the other end.

The first picture was from our camp spot across the lake.

Fishing dock on the left
Then in the second picture, is a 10x telephoto to the far end of the lake, our goal. Can you see that little beach in the center (double click to make the picture big)? That is called the "narrows".

Narrows? More lake? Oh yeh. Actually we found another part of the lake just as big as the picture above. By the time we got to the end of that one and yes it was finally the end of the lake, we were ready for a rest. We had all the way back to go. We never knew that part was up there. 

So we finally got back, arms and shoulders aching, and called it a day. 

I decided to sit down on the dock and soak some Power Bait. Again, 5 minutes after casing out, another Rainbow the same size. Number two for the week. 

I'll end this post with another spectacular sunset. 

Tomorrow, the rest of the week.

Stay tuned. 

Thursday, August 29, 2019

Tuesday, August 6, 2019

Yakking On Woods Lake

You remember the post about a month ago when Yuki and I fished Woods Creek at the outlet of Woods Lake. Here is a reminder.

July 8, 2019

Note the snow

Yuki 7/8/2019
Well, yesterday we put our kayaks in and I had a couple things I needed to do at the lake. First I wanted to try out the (now not so new) fish finder. I still don't have a handle how that thing works. I'll only say that it kept flashing 19 ft even when I was sitting on the shore. More research needed.

So after getting my Lifetime Kayak (total weight 50 pounds) in the water, we put Yuki's new (he didn't tell me he bought a new kayak), in. I don't have the information on his kayak except it is a fishing kayak and the thing weighs about 300 pounds. I lost all though of information just struggling to get that sucker in the lake. OK, so maybe is only weighs about 90 pounds. Either way that kayak is HEAVY.

Good, now we're on the water paddling to the other side which he says is where the fish are. He's already been yakking in the lake before with his daughter the Biologist and awesome photographer.

There are a lot of little water falls feeding the lake with last years snow runoff. As usual, click them to make them bigger. 

One waterfall

Beaver Abode

Shots around the lake

Beaver house again

The far side of the lake

We are not alone

Kind of rocky in some places

Another part of the back side of the lake

Ooooh, another water fall
You notice how much snow can melt in a month. From July to August sure makes a difference.

I suppose I should say something about the other reason we came to Woods Lake, fishing. Since this is a fishing blog it seems the right thing to do.

I started with a Thin Mint on my lake rod with intermediate sinking line. When nothing hit, I switched to a black Woolly Bugger. In the mean time Yuki is over there in the Ocean Liner kayak (it's 12 feet long) yelling "I got another one".

One time I looked over at Yuki and he was standing up in the kayak. One would think after the Yuki incident of March 25, 2013, he would be strapped into the chair with a seat belt. He's braver than I am.

On with fishing. Since none of the flies I tried (including a Mickey Finn, good for Brookies) I switched to my spinning rod and Kastmasters. Silver Kastmasters always worked good in Red Lake, why not here. Because this is Woods Lake not Red Lake. Jeez they are only about 5 miles apart. Is there no communication between lakes up there?

Well, when flies don't work and Kastmasters don't work, one has to slump to the depths of night crawlers. I got a single hook from Yuki (obviously I wasn't planning on fishing worms) and a half of crawler and stuck that worm out there. Damn if I didn't get, not one, but two bites in about 10 minutes. Caught me so off guard I missed them both.

As a last resort I put on the other half of the night crawler on and sure enough this one I hooked and brought to hand. Small, about 7 inch Brookie, but big enough (3 inches would have been big enough) to scare away the skunk.

With one fish (slipped back into the lake before I could get my camera out) and 2:00 pm rolling around, we called it a day.

Next trip is Upper Lake camping with the family at the end of this month.

Stay tuned.