Wednesday, June 23, 2021

Upper Lake Camping The Part I Forgot

When you have a huge old post like the one prior, us Geezers tend to forget a thing or two. 

Later on Sunday, my son, daughter-in-law, and I went back to the dock with the magnet fishing gear to finish what we started that morning. 

In case you've not looked into magnet fishing, this is similar to the kit I have except the rope is blue and the gloves are gray. 

There are a bunch of different weights for the magnet from 100 lbs. to 1200 lbs. Mine is 500. Less than is a little light (in my opinion) and anything more, if you get it attached to something solid, you won't be able to get it loose. 

So here we are out on the dock and my daughter-in-law wants to take a turn. BIG MISTAKE. We couldn't get it away from her. Once before I created a fly fishing monster in Juan Lopez, now I've created a magnet fishing monster in my daughter-in-law. Some times you never learn.  

So what did we find? 
Many screws
A few nails
A couple lures
Some metal pieces. 
A couple metal straps
A lot of bottle caps and Power Bait caps.
Half a fishing rod. Looked like it was cast out and broke the top half off. 

Enough to fill two red plastic cups. You know the 16 oz. size. 

Best of all, we only covered half of the dock and we will be back in August. 

Stay tuned

Monday, June 21, 2021

Upper Lake Camping

 Upper Lake is a 5 day, 4 night camping adventure. Our site comes with water and electric with a dump on the way out. 

Thursday is mostly traveling for the 4+ hours it takes us to get there and the rest of the time is setting up. Hooking up the water, getting the electric connected, getting the lawn chairs situated in the shade, etc. Then the kids show up and it's talking, some wine drinking, and early to bed. Thursday was 108 degrees. 

Friday morning is getting the kayaks down off the truck, setting up the rack that allows this old gimp to gracefully get in and out of his kayak. It's just a PVC creation, but does the job marvelously. 

Once that's done, I'm off to find fish. 

Friday was a search for fish day. I trailed a silver Kastmaster with some reflecto stuff on it. Up one side of the lake, around the end, and back toward the campground. The picture below.

Nice lake huh? Massive drought in California and this lake is full. About half way back, I finally got my first fish of the weekend. A little 11" Rainbow. A quick picture and back for another day.

As I was paddling the far part of the lake, I came across a nice young lady and her dog on a SUP. She said she saw a big fish jump further up the lake, but had no idea what it was. My guess, size was relevant to a non fisher person.   

But after releasing that little Rainbow, I had a big fish jump (more like a roll for something on the surface) right in front of the kayak. To my surprise it was a big Brown. I had no idea there were any Browns in the lake, but if that Brown was an inch, it went at least 24 inches. Big male with beautiful coloring. Kind if bronze with nice red spots on the side. To fast to get a picture, but made a note where I saw him. Wouldn't respond to any Kastmaster I threw, but I could track him for about 20 feet by the bubbles. 

Back at camp, I went to the office and found out they planted 2500 pounds of Browns and couple years ago and they have apparently flourished. 

So ends Friday with a sunset picture for your enjoyment. This lake has the best sunsets. Friday was 106 degrees. 

Saturday morning dawned bright, sunny, and nary a breath of wind. 

Saturday, my plan was to target the Browns. I started with a couple brown Power Eggs and a red/brown Mice Tail. I could have gotten some crawlers, but that was the plan for Sunday. Up one side and down the other..........nothing. Snapped a shot of the camp area from out a ways. 

Saturday afternoon topped out at 106 degrees. Much too hot to be out in a kayak. I parked the kayak in "our" spot right below the trailer until later when it wasn't so hot and I could put the wheels under it and bring it up by the trailer. 

Sunday morning before heading out to chase Browns, my son and I wanted to take a shot at the swim area with my magnet fishing gear. Didn't get anything there, so we went over to the dock and tried there. Then disaster hit. About the second throw of the magnet, I tripped over "something", I don't have a memory of what, only ending up laying on the dock. The interesting part was that on my left hand, my ring finger was going in a different direction that the rest of my fingers on that hand. I apparently dislocated it at the middle knuckle. It was a weird situation, all my fingers were going straight except that one and it was on a 45 degree angle. So I did the only logical thing and that was grab it and snap it back to where it should have been. Everything worked OK, but decided to call it a day. Sunday was about 106 degrees.  

Sunday also brought my granddaughter and great granddaughter up to visit for a couple hours on Father's Day. We had a nice day with the kids in the lake. In the picture below is my daughter-in-law Ranae (black hair), my granddaughter Brittany (green hair), and Mavis in the multicolor tutu.  

Miss Mavis.

Well, the hand turned out to be a little more sore than I thought. Seems I dislocated my ring finger and apparently sprained the first knuckle on my middle finger. Now I had plans to go out in the kayak and fish with my fly rod, but it's a little hard to work the line with fingers that look like the picture below and don't really work very well. 


Seemed to be a bit swollen too.  

So I settled for a little shore fishing down below the kids motorhome. Didn't get a bite, but I tried. 

The next three photo's are of the hills across the lake. If you'll remember from a couple years ago, they burned all the way from the left to the right.  

The hills have recovered nicely. 

So end the weekend as we have to vacate by 11:00 Monday morning, but I'll leave you with another wonderful sunset. 

Stay tuned. 

Friday, June 11, 2021

Drought ReDo

The other day my wife and I were talking about our water usage. During a normal Winter we use about 3000 gallons every month. When you consider baths, dishes, and laundry on a monthly basis, it's really not that much. 

Since Summer started (and it's not really Summer until 6/20) we've steadily increased watering outside. 

As you probably know, we are expecting another drought year. Happens every time we get an El Nino event in the Ecuadorian current. There is two parts to this, one is El Nino. We get a drought on the West Coast and the East Coast gets drowned. The other side is La Nina. In this case we get more water that we really want, but it also puts a huge snow pack in the mountains, that in Spring melts and fills our reservoirs. It also gives the East Coast a drought. So depending on where you're situated in the country, they are either good or bad. 

In 1976 We had a drought (the first I was aware of) and everybody saved water. Our thanks for doing this was the water company didn't sell enough water and had to raise the rates. 

Enter 2015. Another drought year. We had just moved down to town and purchased a house with a big lawn. Again, everybody but us saved water and sure enough, the water company didn't sell enough water and raised the rates. I told the neighborhood that was what was going to happen and it sure enough did. So now we have houses with rocks instead of lawn. The only hold outs were us, and two other neighbors that have postage stamp size pieces of lawn. 

Now we're in 2021. Last Winter the snowfall was so bad that at the peak of Winter we only had 1/2 of the normal snow we needed for the year and it never got better. At the last snow survey the snow was non-existent. They do the survey 3 or 4 times a year, in the very same place (they actually measure from a certain spot to where they sink the pole that measures the amount of snow and the water content) every time.          

Which brings us to us. We have slowly increased the amount of watering days as it has gotten warmer. We started with 3 days a week, then 4, now 5 just to keep the grass alive. 

This is the front yard. That's a lot of grass and a lot of water. 

We've been averaging (when you look at the water bill) about 4 units of water a month. That's the 3000 gallons mentioned above. In March it started getting warmer and our bill was 15 units. OK, an increase of about 30 bucks a month, no biggie. Last week we got the bill for April. Went from 15 to 23 units. And additional 25 bucks. Again no biggie. We're watering 5 times a week. Keep the grass green. 

Two days ago I read an article about how this drought was going to be the worst yet. Fine, raise the rates because you're not selling enough water. I can see it coming. Then I saw the article that said this drought was going to be the worst in 1200 years (yes, that's one thousand two hundred years or about the year 821) I took another look at that water bill. 

One unit of water is 748 gallons. 23 units of water is 17,200 gallons IN ONE MONTH. Take away the house usage and that still means 14,200 gallons of water just for the lawn. 

We decided, yesterday, the lawn had to go. It will be a several year process, but the first part will occur in the next couple moths. 

Stay tuned.  

Wednesday, June 2, 2021

Mullet Migration

 Just a quick link.

I actually saw this when I lived in Florida. It was an incredible sight.