Thursday, June 9, 2011

Nature's Magic! The bonus of fishing at dawn

A male red-winged black bird: just one of the many distractions.
all photos by Jonathan Schechter 6/9/2011

My rural neighbor called a few days ago, "Want to meet at dawn on Thursday and kayak and fish?"  
 "Yup",  and I told Alan I would be ready before sunup. It was to be just a catch and release fishing exploration of Independence Oaks County Park - North, the marvelous new 188 acre extension 
of Independence Oaks, a wildish land parcel that includes Upper Bushman Lake.  (

I was ready to fish. I was not ready for all the distractions of nature.We portaged our kayaks 1,200 
feet to the water's edge and pushed off. There was a problem: Every time I prepared to send my
jitterbug lure to the edge of a lily pad, or wiggle a red plastic worm throught the weed beds somthing
would distract me:

The call of  crows. 
The flight of geese.
 Red-winged blackbirds mobbing a great horned owl.
The swirl of fish sucking down insects. 
The beauty of flowering water lilies.
A muskrat lodge.
  Swans on a nest. 
A pair of green herons on a tree branch
Tree shallows skimming over the water.
 A mysterious splash just around the bend.
The sweet scent of rain to come.
Perfect reflections in water.
 Warm restless breezes. 
Sandhill cranes singing.
Bullfrogs calling from the shallows.
Low flying squadrons of dragonflies hunting skeeters 
The music of rustling cattail stalks.

 But just the same we fished and in short order we caught and released crappie, bluegill, and some 
darn good sized bass and a feisty northern pike.  Catch and release is the way to go, but the fact of
the matter is clear: Alan did more fishing than me. The entire time I felt like a six year old in candy store,
 so much nature to see, and just not enough time. 
A perfect morning on a perfectly peaceful glacial lake in the newest park in Oakland County.

This undersized bass, and all the fish caught were released, including the big ones.
A big crappie seconds from release
A great horned owl peaks out from its lofty white pine nest
Park personnel and Oakland County Sheriffs Dept keep an eye on this remote section of the park.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Looks like a beautiful park. I will definitely have to check it out.

June 9, 2011 at 7:33 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Loved reading this! I so want to get out and check this new park out! Thanks for the article Mr. Schechter!!

June 9, 2011 at 10:33 PM 

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