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Through the Lens

Mama Gets her Big Buck - At Church!

Fri, October 22, 2010

One of the best things about belonging to WOMA (Women’s Outdoor Media Asociation) is all of the talented members that are there who really crank out some great reading material.

I loved fellow member Anne Vinnola’s latest blog entry so much regarding her experience with the big buck at church that I had to share it with folks here.

Mama Gets Her Big Buck at Church

Hope everyone enjoys her tale as much as I did!

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3 Chicks and Few Hens

Thu, October 21, 2010

Monday I made a trip across the Mississippi to visit with my niece Heather and her daughter Nicole to do Nicole’s senior pictures. After we were finished with the photo session we decided it was a prime day for mushroom hunting in the hills and bluffs that surround their home. Even if we were to find nothing, the love of just wandering around the woods is something that all 3 of us have inherited from “Gramma Mueller”

Although in general the woods were pretty darn dry, and I wasn’t holding out much hope, my niece thought we should check her favorite “shroom tree” . That girl knows her woods - lo and behold half way up the steep bluff she was shouting - “They’re here!”

The three “Mueller Girls” had a super day in the forest, snagging senior photos that as Nicole said , “No other photographer would think about taking” and gathering up a good many hen of the woods.


Nicole in her TeamSILO attire for her senior pictures

Maybe I’m a sappy old lady, but I like to think that my Mom was watching from somewhere and was smiling as her girls cut and hauled out enough mushrooms to feed half the neighborhood.

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Where Are The Trout Hiding?

Sat, October 16, 2010

Opening morning of fall trout season at Peabody River King Fish and Wildlife Area‘s Willow lake didn’t exactly start out with a big bang. Where are the trout? was a common question as anglers threw a variety of baits and combinations at them in the early post dawn hours. It was so slow initially I began to despair that I might not be able to actually get a photograph of anyone with a fish.


Orion Rutkowski readies his pole in quest for a BIG TROUT

Bob Rutkowski of TEAMSILO said ” I saw lots yesterday evening - some nice palomino ones as well as the rainbows - but they seem to be sleeping in ” Rutkowski and his son Orion had arrived just before daybreak and were still unsuccessful an hour later. “It’s just been slow- slow - and that’s unusual for this lake. Usually it’s just bang, bang, bang.”

Rutkowski’s sentiments were echoed by the larger than average numbers of folks fishing Willow Lake. Everyone seemed to be stymied. Servio Garcia of Smithton, IL lamented that he’d thrown a variety of things with no success and was tempted to try one of the Fruit Loops that his grandson Elijah Garcia of Columbia was snacking on.  ” I’ve seen trout bite on crazy things ,” he laughed “We can’t do any worse than we already are”. In spite of the poor fishing during the first few hours Garcia admitted that just spending a beautiful autumn morning with his grandson was reason enough to be lakeside.


Garcia and his grandson Elijah pour over the available items in their tackle collection in search of a lure that would attract the elusive trout.


At last as I strolled the banks of Willow Lake looking for a successful angler I found Jerry Gass of O’Fallon, Illinois.

Jerry Gass, Ofallon - the first successful angler of the morning

“Well I have one, but it’s not a giant” Gass laughed “Maybe I should have gone to the deerstand instead this morning.”  Gass reported that he’d netted his trout on a rooster tail. A little further down the shore I encountered Edward Weber of Troy, IL who also had caught a small rainbow on a rooster tail.
Echoing the tale of morning Weber told me that usually this is a great place on opening day - “it’s almost always hit after hit, but that wasn’t the case this morning”

Edward Weber of Troy, IL testing his luck from one of the small docks


Edward Weber’s success with a rooster tail.


Although the fishing wasn’t exactly stellar - the folks that I visited with all along the banks of Willow Lake were still happy they’d made the pre dawn trek to Peabody Fish and Wildlife Area in New Athens, IL . They commented on the beautiful sunrise, the loveliness of the mist rolling off the lake, the good times spent with friends and family.  Bob Rutkowski summed it up - “Anytime outdoors with my boys is special - we’ve seen geese, cormorants, lots of wildlife, we’ve enjoyed talking with other anglers.After all,”  he smiled, ” That’s why they call it fishing not catching”

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