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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…

Of turkeys and ticks

Turkey season has finally arrived, and for this hunter, it hasn’t come soon enough. Because of shoulder surgery in February, I was doubting whether I would even been able to go. Three years ago, I missed the entire spring season because of a bilateral knee replacement and the thought of possibly missing yet another season was more than I could…

Fishing regs are in place for a reason, but who reads them? 

It happens every spring. The state’s Department of Environmental Conservation’s (DEC) stocking trucks, filled with fish, head out to plant fish at designated locations around the state. Many people associate this activity with the April 1 opening day of trout for the inland streams and lakes, and they should. However, there is a disconnect, a lack of understanding with what…

Strange feeling about turkey hunt

As a mentor, Ladd has witnessed some interesting youth hunts.As New York’s youth turkey hunting weekend fast approaches, I have almost a sick feeling in my gut over it. For the first time in I don’t know how many years, I’ll have to sit this one out. Mentoring new hunters is something I believe strongly in, and whenever possible, I’m…

Charter captains to the rescue

It was Sunday, March 22, when charter captains and guides were hit with a “PAUSE” order from Gov. Andrew Cuomo in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, declaring that they were deemed “non-essential.” Nothing could be further from the truth. Charter captains are the ambassadors for our Great Lakes fisheries here in New York. For many non-resident anglers coming into this…

Killing time at the reloading bench

I was sitting around one morning several weeks ago and wondering what I was going to do that day. The outside temperature was near freezing while a mix of wet snow and rain kept me from going on my daily walk. Suddenly, it occurred to me. I would reload some deer rounds for next season, but first I had to…

Be prepared: Spring means ticks

It didn’t happen this year, but it sure has in the past. While out checking my tapped maple trees I’ve returned with ticks crawling on me. Sometimes they were deer ticks, which happen to carry the Lyme agent, while others they were dog ticks. Neither is pleasant. During this year’s late-February and early-March sap runs the conditions were prime for…

Changing times at New York Outdoor News

It was more than 15 years ago that I made the acquaintance of Steve (and Paula) Piatt, when the first edition of the New York Outdoor News (NYON) made its appearance on the outdoor scene. It was probably at a New York State Outdoor Writers Association conference, either Dunkirk or Plattsburgh (or both) and the friendship grew from there. It…

Think twice about thin ice

We’re now in mid-February and instead going ice fishing I’ve been getting my maple syrup-making gear together. Why? Because other than a snowstorm the weather forecast for the days ahead calls for daytime temperatures to climb into the 40s and then cool down into the 20s at night. Perfect for maple sap to run, not so good for ice fishing….