I am a weather junkie. Supercells, pressure systems and record temps fascinate me. I spend hours watching The Weather Channel. I monitor radar on Accu-Weather.com just for fun. If I didn’t spend so much time in the outdoors, I’d probably need a 12-step program for my addiction to “Local on the 8’s”.
All outdoorsy folks are part-time meteorologists. We study barometric pressure and hazard theories about the effects on fish. We watch wind direction, fronts, moon phases, anything we think gives us an advantage. Knowing how the weather is feeling is just how it is for hunters and anglers.
Weather also helps to create vivid memories of our trips. Like our “famous typhoon week” chasing roosters in flooded South Dakota corn fields. Of my 10 trips to SoDak the deluge of rain makes that adventure stand alone like an awful date. It started with promise. She was hot and liked to talk about fishing. But it ended with her crying in her beer over her ex. Talk about uncomfortable.
The springtime weather in Michigan has been just as uncomfortable this year. Three weeks ago, I was fishing the Clinton River in 14 degree temps. Ice filling in the eyelets with every cast. Just two weeks later we hit a record high 82 degrees. I’ll remember the day summer showed up for an afternoon. Again I was on the Clinton River looking for rubber-lipped trout. And it just happened to be my birthday.
It was about 45 degrees with dense fog when I hopped in the truck to pick up my buddy Jake. Our destination was a new stretch of river in Macomb Township. It was obvious when we got there that the water level had already dropped significantly meaning that the bigger fish probably had moved on. Jake hooked this river chubb confirming that we were too late for the sucker run.
We didn’t give up. We found some spots worthy of a few casts as we wondered along the shore dodging mud pits. All we managed to hook where more river chubbs. In hindsight, I should have worn my boots. Or at least tied my shoes a little tighter to keep my sock from getting muddy. Good thing Jake was quick on the recon mission.
Just as I was about to head back to the truck the low-level clouds quickly ascended into the atmosphere and the lingering fog dissipated. The woods came alive. Spiders scurried along the leaf litter. All sorts of insects hatched and took flight. Wood ducks, mallards, woodpeckers and deer all perked up to see what was going on. When the sun broke through the clouds the temperature climbed about 25 degrees in an hour. I’ve never seen anything like it.
We stopped for a beer on the way home. When we got back into the truck the temp had climbed into the 80’s.
Just about a week later I drove to work in two inches of snow. Got to love Spring weather in Michigan.