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What lurks beneath the waters of Lake Ontario?

Many bodies of water have their own scary stories involving mysterious sightings and unexplained creatures. Lake Ontario is no different. However, I have personal knowledge through a couple friends that will leave you shaking your head, wondering what it could have been. My grandparents had a cottage on Lake Ontario, and I can remember seeing three large fish cruising the…

Scary stuff for Halloween

This Halloween is going to be different, even for those of us who spend time outdoors. It falls on a Saturday this year, which is always fun, and it’s also the second weekend of the Northern Zone rifle season. The hunter’s full moon will be in the sky, and being the second full moon in October, it will be a…

Trail cam tricks

Of all the gear and gadgets I own, none give me as much satisfaction and pleasure as my trail cameras. By strategically placing them in appropriate locations I’ve gotten pictures of fishers, turkeys, bears, racoons, coyotes, foxes and yes, even deer. However, this success didn’t come without a learning curve. I bought my first trail camera years ago in the…

A lot to do

Archery season is just about here, and the firearms season will be here before we know it but, before all the fun begins, there’s work to be done. I’m fortunate to still be able to hunt my friend’s farm even though he passed away several years ago. Nature has a way of taking over and if it isn’t kept in…

A new perspective from Owl’s Head Mountain

Labor Day weekend found Adrienne and I camping at Lake Eaton (near Long Lake) in the Central Adirondacks. Although we had camped here many times over the years, for one reason or another I had never taken the time to hike up Owl’s Head Mountain, which has a fire tower on it, and thus a 360-degree view. Camping is relaxing,…

A privy addition

In the June 26 issue of New York Outdoor News, I wrote in my column about last summer’s consuming project of building an Adirondack lean-to in my yard. Adrienne and I have been enjoying it a great deal as of late, having weekend campfires and morning coffee in recent weeks now that things are cooling off a little. The lean-to has…

In search of paths less traveled

The August 21 issue of New York Outdoor News has news story by Jane Anderson in which she reports on the amount of traffic and congestion at popular hiking trailheads. I took the accompanying photo with that article this past spring following a morning turkey hunt on some private land nearby in the Lake George region of the Adirondacks. After…

Consider letting the big ones go

Who hasn’t dreamed of catching a big fish? I know I have but, that was a while ago, and any big fish caught I might catch nowadays is photographed and released. My altruism is rooted more in practicality than principle because if I want fish for supper, I’ve found the smaller ones make the best and safest eating.  Scientists tell us…

A peek at pro bass fishing [video]

Anyone who is willing to tie up tens of thousands of dollars in a boat simply to fish bass tournaments is obviously quite serious about bass fishing. For the average evening or weekend angler, a canoe, kayak, johnboat or even a small motorboat will do. But not for these anglers. Professional bass fishing, or perhaps better put as “tournament angling,”…

Nedding on the Niagara

(Robert Kirkham/Buffalo News)You never know what is going to work for fishing on any given day. Sometimes it does not matter how you cast, the way you retrieve or where you throw your bait. Ultimately, it is up to the fish to grab your offering. We met at the launch ramp at the foot of Sheridan Drive in Tonawanda with…

Woodchuck wars

Is it me, or are there more woodchucks around than normal this year? It seems like I’m hearing quite a few people complain about ‘chucks attacking their gardens and I’m also seeing several along the side of the road; both dead and alive. I’ve got some woodchuck problems around my own homestead too. Fortunately, I live in the country where,…

And the three top bass baits are …

Bass season is finally here and I’m glad. Bass are found just about everywhere in New York state including rivers, lakes and even farm ponds. They are game fighters and the smaller ones make a tasty addition to any frying pan.  As a youngster, Susquehanna river smallmouths were our favorite bass species and our fishing equipment was minimal. The only…

Looking forward to camping – eventually

My wife Adrienne and I are not exactly summer people. Neither of us like hot weather and the steamy heat wave we’ve been enduring in New York in recent days has us borderline grumpy. We always say that we’d retire in Alaska or Canada before ever considering a place like Florida or the south. But one thing we do enjoy…

Taking the Grandson Fishing … with his dad

Parker Costello with his father, Kyle.In the new world of the coronavirus, the great outdoors has become a diversion of sorts – especially with fishing. License sales for residents have been on the rise because more adults were off work and kids were out of school. They needed something productive and relaxing to preoccupy their time. It did not take…

Lessons learned

I first fished Black Lake in the early 1970s after moving to the Southern Tier in August of 1969. My next door neighbor Bob, who quickly became my long time fishing and hunting buddy, had a place on the lake in Edwardsville, and I was more than a little excited the first time he asked me if I’d like to…

Taking the water temperature

Water temperatures mean everything to the trout angler, or at least those who care enough about the species they covet so much that they’ll back off when conditions are not favorable for optimal fish survival. That is especially the case with brook trout fishermen and those who chase them around on Adirondack ponds. Unfortunately, it is never an exact science…

In New York, still time to get a gobbler

What has been and up-and-down turkey season continues to be just that. Following the snow and cold of the second weekend in May, as well as that of the season, things warmed up and turkey season entered yet another phase. Suddenly, it seemed like hens wanted to talk. Now I hadn’t seen a hen since opening day, but when mid-May…