News/Columns Nov 2020

The Great Outdoors, by Larry Whiteley

The Great Outdoors


 It has always been surprising to me that many people choose not to vote. Voting is an important part of our democracy. It was even more surprising to me, or maybe a better word is shocked, when I recently read in an outdoors magazine that 30 to 50 percent of licensed hunters don’t vote regularly. More than 35 percent skipped the last elections. Even more shocking to me was a third of licensed hunters aren’t even registered to vote. I searched online to see if I could find the same voting information about fishermen. I couldn’t but if I had I am afraid it would probably be similar.

I know many people may feel that their vote doesn’t really count but they are wrong. There are plenty of reasons you should vote. Voting is a crucial, meaningful way to express yourself and support the people and issues you care about. Take the time to find out how candidates stand on outdoor issues as well as everything else.

No matter what side of the political divide you are on, your voice is an important one. Elections also matter to fishing, hunting and all our other beloved outdoor pursuits. They matter for your kids, grandkids and future generations too.

Like President Abraham Lincoln once said, “Elections belong to the people. It’s their decision. If they decide to turn their back on the fire and burn their behinds, then they will just have to sit on their blisters.”


 You fishermen who like to use live worms for bait won’t believe this. There are about 2,700 varieties of earthworms. Over one million earthworms can inhabit a single acre of land. The Australian Giant Gippsland earthworm can grow up to 12-feet. You think that’s big? The largest earthworm ever recorded was found in South Africa and measured 22-feet. Can you imagine how big the fish are they catch with those things?


A lot of crappie lakes help provide cooling water for nearby power plants. In winter, look for crappie in the warm water near the lakes discharge outlets.

You might have to move around some to find them. Sometimes power plant current tends to hug the shore or it may curve off shore. A temperature gauge can help you find the right temperature where crappie are most likely to be.


We should be thankful we live in a country where we can express our thoughts, have the right to vote for whoever or whatever we want, have the right to bear arms and worship as we please. That’s the reason the Pilgrims came to America. There is no other holiday so characteristically American as Thanksgiving.

This thanksgiving we also need to be thankful for our healthcare workers and first responders that have been on the front lines during this year of pandemic. We need to be thankful for our law enforcement people as they continue to deal with protests and civil unrest. And, as always, we need to be thankful for our military men and women that have served or are serving.

God bless you all and Happy Thanksgiving!


Give thanks for unknown blessings already on their way. ~ Native American Saying

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