Outdoors in the Ozarks
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I always figure the yellow leaves on the walnut trees tell me a lot about the upcoming fall. This year that yellowing foliage on the walnuts here on Lightnin’ Ridge is really late. Could be … more
Sometime in mid September Midwest states have a special two week teal season. Blue-winged teal are unusual ducks. They come early; sometimes arriving in the Ozarks during the last week or so in … more
In early September, hundreds and hundreds of young doves in nests will die because of the September 1 opening of the dove season. I know that the majority of dove hunters don’t know that, and … more
About 20 years ago I flew out to a little lake in northwest Ontario with Canadian guide and bush pilot, Tinker Helseth. It was a place where Tinker’s father, Forrest Helseth, who had also been … more
I don’t think I ever witnessed what the squirrels are doing here on Lightnin’ Ridge this summer. They are chewing up the white oak acorns in my back yard, and it started the first week of … more
The lady told me on the phone that she and her husband wanted to have a shore lunch like they had experienced in Canada, so by golly a shore lunch she was going to have, once I figured out what it … more
I caught a big bass this past week in one of my favorite places.  He was a hefty, hard-fighting largemouth, which I admired and released.  He seemed to be very appreciative as he swum away. … more
The crawdad is an unusual creature, always looking back where he has been, and going where his isn’t looking. Quite often where he has been appears quite safe and there looms a bass or walleye … more
Most reservoir bass fishermen fish deep in the summer, trying to lure a lunker by bouncing jigs over ledges and rocks. But if you want to fish a topwater lure, there are places and ways to do it even … more
A few years back there were predictions that the bobwhite quail would become extinct. They have not and likely will not because of the diversity in habitat and food that can keep them going in small … more
I was just a kid in the late 50’s and early 60’s when quail hunting all over the Midwest was something amazing. Even in the Ozarks, hunters often found 6 or 7 coveys a day. I was there, I … more
From my home and office on this high ridge, I look down upon a river valley and a stream I have gotten to know well over the years.  My middle daughter went down to a creek tributary to that … more
If I were a young man trying to find a decent job, I would buy an old pontoon boat with a good outboard motor and strip everything off of it to just leave a flat deck. I would acquire a couple of … more
People have been contacting me asking if I had heard about the Missouri Department of Conservation declaring that people who take photographs inside public areas they manage must buy a permit to do … more
I often listened to old timers who fished the river talk about various ways to tempt big bass, or to catch a limit of goggle-eye. The river was so much different then, so clear and clean. The big … more
Rain crows came back to Lightning Ridge last week, and now the spring ensemble of birds is complete. There are a lot of species to see now, and an individual of one common species, acts way out of … more
It isn’t much of a creek in the summer, but miles above where it flows into an Ozark lake, you can find it bank full in the spring. There are lots of those kinds of creeks in the Ozarks. They … more
It was two o’clock in the afternoon before we got to the lake, and it was up a few feet, as I expected it to be. The water was a little murky, but there was still a foot or so of visibility in … more
I put my pellet rifle out on the back porch last week, so I could kill two or three birds coming to the back yard bird feeders. Bet that causes some eyebrows to rise! The birds I shoot are … more
Usually by the first of May all over the Ozarks, top-water fishing for bass becomes the best way to fish, at least for me. So I found me a nice little cove with water about the perfect color, and a … more
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