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Father’s Day coincides with bass opener

June 16, 2010
By Joe Hackett, News Outdoors Columnist

The return of fair weather and a distinct lack of flying insects have raised the prospects for a delightful Father’s Day weekend.

    Boaters, bikers and bass fishermen will likely be out in force, with the weekend providing events for everyone. Locals should take advantage of the current opportunities, as tourist season officially begins in only two weeks.

Father’s Day gifts

    Although a new mountain bike or bass boat would certainly make an ideal Father’s Day gift, they’re likely out of most folk’s budgetary range. However, don’t despair as there is still hope for a special present for Dad that the whole family will appreciate.

    Developed by science teacher named Frank Bibbo, the Better Marriage Blanket is a comforter that utilizes the same scent-blocking fabric that hunters rely on to absorb odors. Now, human scent wouldn’t spook game animals or family members.

    Bibbo claims he got the idea when he passed gas and realized he couldn’t smell it because he was wearing scent-blocking hunting clothes. The spark in his drawers fired a valuable invention in his mind.

    Husbands and fathers, sons and brothers can use the scent-free comforters to cover undercover flatulence, saving homes and families from discomfort. Bibbo claims it makes a great gift for weddings, anniversaries and birthdays.

    The scent-free blanket is effective for up to four years before its odor-absorbing capacity is exhausted. It sells for $17.99 at Double-wide blankets are also available.

Father’s Day fishing trip

    Is it a convenient coincidence that the opening day of bass season also happens to be Father’s Day?

    Bass remain the most sought after fish species in the country, with largemouth bass targeted by nearly 60 percent of all anglers. US Fish and Wildlife Service surveys reveal that bass anglers outnumber trout fishermen by a 3 to 1 margin.

    This should come as no surprise since bass are also one of the most widely distributed of all freshwater fish species. Bass can be found in nearly every state in the union (and in many foreign countries) and they are also aggressive feeders — a combination that makes them an ideal sport fish.

    The current International Game Fish Association all-tackle world record largemouth bass was taken from Japan’s largest lake on July 2, 2009 by Manabu Kurita. The fish tied the all-tackle record for largemouth bass held for 77 years by George Perry of Georgia. Taken on a life bluegill, the bass had a length of 27.2 inches and a girth of 26.7 inches.

    The average American  angler spends just $176 a year on tackle and license fees. In terms of initial investment, there are few other recreational activities that offer such significant returns. Angling is also one of the most family friendly and economically viable activities. It can be pursued by anyone, nearly everywhere, all year ’round.

    It is also the activity most commonly cited by avid outdoor travelers as being their “gateway” to the outdoors. It appears that angling is responsible for hooking more than just fish. Fishing is a wonderful introductory activity. It’s a great way to get kids involved in the outdoors.

    Angling adventures provide families with an outstanding opportunity to establish bonds and create memories that can last longer than any store-bought gift. In surveys, nearly 95 percent of respondents reported that a father, an uncle or a significant male role model was responsible for introducing them to the sport.

    Forest- and water-based outdoor settings provide children and adults with a natural place to be alone and free from distraction. The activities conducted provide them with  commonality along with an easy and open means of communication.

    Researchers have discovered that walking, playing or even simply viewing nature has the capacity to improve human health and foster well-being.

    While catching fish is the purpose — and it certainly can be exciting — even if the fish aren’t biting, the time spent in the pursuit can have lifelong effects.

    In a lively setting, we become alive. When all of our senses are tuned into the tremendous variations attainable in a natural setting, we are enriched. In effect, we begin feeding off of our natural predatory instincts.

    Bestselling author and artist James Prosek captured the essence of angling best when he explained the pursuit of flyfishing as a “predatory ballet.”  It combines a special grace, balance, poise and athletic artistry together in an effort to capture a particular audience. For some, the art of angling is actually more engaging than the ultimate quarry.

    Fishing in itself is the reward, the fish are simply an enjoyable benefit. And among them all, brook trout in particular, are the grand prize.

The name game

    Every year the Recreational Boating and Sportfishing Association surveys marinas and boat owners to determine the most popular nautical names in the United States.

    Often, the names we bestow on our boats are a reflection of the state of the country. These names can also provide insights into how we spend our time.

    The following is a list of the top 10 most popular names for 2009:

1. Second Wind

2. Seas the Day

3. Lazy Daze

4. Jolly Roge

5. Bail Out

6. On the Rocks

7. Pegasus

8. Serenity

9. Namaste

10. Comfortably Numb

Article Photos

Photo by Joe Hackett
Although New York’s bass season doesn’t officially open until Saturday, June 19,  Eric Granger of Jay, shown hefting a nice smallmouth bass, has been enjoying catch and release bass fishing all year.



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