Wednesday, October 19, 2011
Times are changing and Nimrod is eying some major changes to the blog. The first step is to move the blog to a new platform. One that is easier to integrate and allows us to do more with the blog.
Have no fear, all the old posts and comments were imported to the new blog. Its the same ol Nimrod, just new location.
Please update any bookmarks to:
Also if your on the Facebook stop by and like the Nimrod Diaries page:
The future is bright and open ended!
See you in the outdoors!
Monday, October 17, 2011
In the every expanding and redundant world of electronic communication you occasionally find a means that fits what you need perfectly. The Nimrod crew doesn't need phones that are smarter than we are, nor do we need a way of posting to Facebook, Google+, Tweeter, youtube, Vimeo, or whatever else all with the click of a fake button.
Awhile back Nimrod was looking for a way to promote the diaries to other outdoor bloggers/enthusiasts as well as motivation and help with the Diaries. I tried a few websites but never felt it was a good fit. Then I found it. "The One."
It seems so long ago; seems like yesterday. The place is the Outdoor Blogger Network. Tomorrow, Oct 18th, they are celebrating their one year anniversary. Crazy. It seems like it was last night I was debating if I wanted more people actually reading the Diaries. Wait it was. Anyway, in celebration they are having a series of giveaways to members. Check out the post on the OBN for more details.
If you have an outdoor blog I highly recommend having it listed in the OBN Directory. Its free and will give your blog more visibility to the outdoor reader. I have not taken full advantage of the exposure but know the exposure on OBN can be priceless. Check them out if your looking for a great outdoor blog to read (don't worry I won't think your cheating). The OBN Directory has it all. If they don't start up the blog and add it to the OBN Directory!
OBN: Congrats on the first year! We look forward to many, many more. And thanks for putting up with those of us on the Nimrod Diaries.
Friday, September 9, 2011
Nimrod ranch is in the middle of a oak forest so a primary food source to look for is acorns (akerns for my southern friends). Deer love them and God drops them on the ground for free. All is good in the world.
Some people claim deer prefer the white oaks over other oaks; as such will target the white oaks before the reds or other species. I have asked a few deer what they thought and the deer replied flipping me a white tail and running away. I am still curious how these people got the deer to talk about their preferences.
Often folks will look up at the sky and look for the acorns in the top of the trees. Some even resort to scorching their retinas by using binoculars to check the tree tops against the burning sun. Nimrod has a better and less painful way to check the yearly acorn crop.
First of all find two oak trees. Preferably a white and a red. Check the surrounding areas for obstacles. Retrieve the chain saw. Carefully drop the tree to the ground.
Once the tree is on the ground it is easy to check the crop of acorns without stressing or injuring your eyes. While its a small sampling it gives you a good indication of the number of nuts those two trees would have dropped. The bonus is that once the wood seasons, you will have a good amount of hardwood for campfires, smoking venison or heating the Ranch.
This years test showed the trees had a decent number of nuts.
Now to the business side of things. Nimrod is playing around with a new hosting platform for the Diaries. This post and the next few will be posted to the old URL (http://nimroddiaries.blogspot.com/2011/09/nimrod-on-checking-acorn-crops.html) as well of the new URL (http://nimroddiaries.wordpress.com/2011/09/09/nimrod-on-checking-acorn-crops/). Please let me know which one you prefer. Your input is important; we surely don’t want Nimrod making this choice on his own. Depending on the response we may switch the Diaries over to the new platform.
Less than a week until Michigan’s early doe season and small game season. 22 days until Michigan’s Bow Season! See ya in the woods!
Friday, September 2, 2011
The working weekend was long. Work had my batteries drained. I was pulling from power reserves that seemingly didn’t exist. Yet like everything, good or bad, it comes to an end. In this case it was a good thing. A very good thing.
Nimrod had one day off in a seven day week and it was upon us. I knew to make the best of it. Yoop, Monkey, Munda and I did several things around the ranch. Campfires, marshmallows, games of monopoly. Just hanging out doing fun family things. The Nimrod battery was recharging smoothly.
One particular game of Monopoly between Monkey and I was a classic example of keeping your mouth shut. Nimrod was laying his best tycoon to poor Monkey. After the third time of landing on St James Place and paying for the hotel, Monkey was ready to call it quits. Ya know throw in the towel. Bow to the Monopoly master.
Trying to instill some perseverance into the young lad I suggested we play a little more. After all the mini miser had a few houses on Boardwalk and Park Place. Telling him you never know what can happen he agreed to play on. My next roll landed my boot on Park Place. Nearly $1000 later and using my money to buy hotels for his dark blue spaces he rolled the dice. He landed in one of the few spaces that were not covered by houses and hotels it was my turn again.
I rolled the dice, confident after a few more rolls I would be the rightful winner, landing on Chance. Drawing the card, all the while looking forward to adding $10 to my cash pile for getting second place in a beauty contest. I flipped it over and read it. I don’t know the exact look on my face but I saw the elation in Monkeys’ eyes as I put my boot on Boardwalk, following the directions of talking a walk on the Boardwalk.
Now with $2000 less in my money pile I began to wonder what was going on. Moving from a position of certain winning to being several behind in the chip count I was left perplexed. After a few more rolls I landed on another of the Monkey owned, hotel laden, properties I payed out the remaining bills from my deleted money pile. Lessoned learned by young and old. Never give up, you never know what might happen.
After the butt whooping in a game for people a few years his elder we continued on to a supper for grilled burgers and sides. Life is good. That battery is nearly full. However part way through the weekend I knew this day off was going to take more than normal to get the batteries back to full charge. The additional drain that was put on my batteries needed a bit of an additional boost to get back to full charge. Anyone who has been in Nimrods shoes knows you can’t leave you batteries only partially charged, you have to get them back to 100%.
Knowing this I had told Yoop the evening was going to have to be spent on some moving water with a fly rod in my hand. I knew the right place for the final charge.
After a great supper and more family time I set off to finish the charge my batteries needed. I drove to a near by creek that happens to be known as the best brown trout fishery for many miles. Time was not on my side. A storm front was moving in at the same time the sun was settling in for the nights rest. I parked the Turse and prep’ed the fly rod for some fun.
Another guy was leaving. We exchanged the normal greetings followed by the standard question of “Did ya catch anything?”
I received a reply of “I caught a limit but if I told you where I would have to kill you.”
Its always good to find other fisherman of a like mind.
I returned to getting the rod ready and opened the trunk to get out some leader material. I moved this and moved that but couldn’t find the leader. Odd since it was left in the trunk after the last Nimrod Crew fishing trip. I looked again, checked under the seats but the leader was missing in action. I looked at the 4 feet of leader on the rod, at the clock and at the sky.
Nimrod is widely known for his decision making ability. Good or bad I make a decision and tonight it was to fish on with a short leader. Figuring it was getting dark, a storm was moving in so the fish would care less about a short leader and more about eating some dinner before the water over flows from rain.
I set off for the creek and meet another guy leaving. This guy was carrying a fish. A big fish. I walked over toward him to check out his catch. A gorgeous steel silver steelhead. He too was tight lipped about where he caught it but made a comment about not snagging it. Since I never even asked about what he was using some flags flew off in my head. Having no proof either way I left the water to flow under the bridge and continued on to finish recharging the internal batteries.
I started at the dam, tossing a caddis fly spin off. After a few minutes I got a raise but missed the hook set. I smiled as the internal battery reached it fully charged point. I continued to fish and worked my way down the creek. Not far down stream I found a hole with at least six visible steelhead feeding violently in an unpredictable cadence. Also a loan chromer sitting idly up stream of a dead fall not far from the others.
Not being one to pass up a chance for fame I offered each of the Oncorhynchus mykiss every fly I had in my fly boxes. Nimrod tried every angle and drift I could think of and successfully pull off with the overhead trees. The Oncorhynchus mykiss continued their unpredictable feeding pattern, all the while predictably ignoring what ever was at the end of my mini-leader. Ignore the fact that if one actually took my offering they would have headed for the log jam, broke off the mini-leader and left my fly reel in smoking pieces. Still would have been a blast.
A short time later I headed for the Turse not run off by rain but the lightning and thunder that accompanied it. There is something about swinging a 9 and a half foot lightning rod that doesn’t appeal to even Nimrod. Call me what you will... electrified I won’t be.
Until next time remember to never give up and don’t leave your leader and tippet at home.
Friday, July 22, 2011
A well earned summer break has brought the Nimrod crew to the Great Not So White north. Turns out it was in conjunction with Mother Nature deciding to punish the inhabitants of a large portion of the USA. While picking some litter from a Yooper stream I realized mother nature was showing those who have repeatedly not taken care of her what they face if they continue to trash Gods beautiful creation.
Back up to the launch of the adventure. Yoop and I loaded up Monkey and Munda for the journey to the promise land. Rather than packing the rifles we brought our fishing poles, including Nimrods’ fly rod. Would anyone leave the fly rod at home when your going to the middle of some of the best trout streams in the State if not the world? Of course not even if you have no experience fly fishing for trout and the creeks maybe a hair over grown with trees and grass.
On the morning of the launch, I got out of work in the wee morning arrived home to pack the Yoopmobile. Normally we would load the lil’ Nimrods and point the beast north shortly after Nimrod arrived home. Not this time. There is a certain destination the Nimrod crew uses as a halfway break. Its also a long time favorite store for hunters and fisherman as they head into Michigan’s northland. Just so happens this certain slice of heaven (Jays Sporting Goods if your interested) was having its annual sidewalk sales with items in every department up to 80% off. Yea thats right; hunting and fishing stuff up to 80% off... 20 cents on a dollar. It was a closeout sale so we wanted to get there around opening or else we could miss out on a deal. Ya know the fugal Nimrod clan had to check this out.
We set sail about 7am, pointing the Yoopmobile east, then north, then east. Its not a straight cardinal direction to the northland but it works. Monkey and Munda did well on the first leg of the journey only bickering the majority of the time. Nimrod drove the first 50 miles. Far enough to get Yoop out of the concrete jungle of the GR into more laid back less crowded roads she could do less damage on. After that Nimrod crawled into the co-pilots seat and sunk into a pillow. Turned on the MP3 player to a new Wild Michigan Radio podcast. Go figure the main man Duran keeps you entertained throughout the show (both hours) and Nimrod didn’t get the much needed shut eye.
Before we knew it the ship was about to land on this slice of heaven. I had never been to this sale but Logger went a few years back and said the deals were out of this world. I was stoked. After we parked, Munda and I skipped hand in hand to the front door. “There it is Johnny!”
Before opening the doors we admired a sweet 3-D mural of deer and trees and other stuff on the side of the building. I started to get chills all over and I couldn’t open the door to the promise land. Yoop looked at me like I was nuts and said move I need to get to the little girls room and off her and Munda went.
Monkey and I worked our way the same direction. Checking out the sale items as we went. The true reason Yoop allowed me to attend this sale from the heavens was Nimrod is in the market for another compound bow. Late last summer Nimrod was playing lumberjack at Base Ops, clearing out an over grown tree line for Grey Beard and Knitter. You may remember last years hiatus entry. Since then every time I shoot Kabekona the pain shoots from my wrist like rays of light from the setting sun; except it lasts for a few weeks. I reluctantly came to the conclusion if there was going to be a 2011 Bow season I was going to have to change something.
Sadly that meant selling Kabekona and buying a compound. I hate to see the longbow go. She is gorgeous and shoots like a dream. Yet times change and we can change with them or miss the main event... Michigans Greatest season!
After some haggling, getting the shaft and then finding a competent employee at the second store location I walked out the door with a brand spanking new compound bow package and less one longbow. While I hate to see that longbow go, turns out the store manager was a traditional archery guy and will be taking good care of her. The total cost of $59 (thats right: fifty-nine dollars!!) out the door made letting her go much less painful. On the way to check out I meanders over to the fly fishing bins. I glanced at Yoop and she gave me a look. I had seen this look before but never really figured out what it meant. I decided not to push my luck made my way to the check out counter.
The rest of the trip was pretty painless. The wild ones in the back seat did well. Watched a few movies, bickered back and forth. You know typical family trip things that happen on summer vacation trips (of course Book and I never fought on trips as lil ones).
Munda woke up from a nap just before we arrived at the Mackinac Bridge. I preped Yoop by giving her a dose of sedative and handing her an unbreakable stick. If you didn’t know Yoop isn’t a fan of bridges. Especially ones that span around 5 miles at a few hundred feet over the surface of water that is a few hundred feet deep. I give her a hard time but she takes it in stride. Remind me later to tell you about crossing the Mackinac Bridge in winter with a few inches of fresh snow on the bridge deck and the weather eerily similar to a blizzard. Never knew a women that could bend quarters with her hand. I think squeezing them so hard they heat up near the melting point of the metal.
Anyway while we were crossing, Monkey was asking a bunch of questions as we crossed over the Big Mac bridge. He saw the expansion joints and asked what they were. Wanting the young man to be as knowledgeable as possible I explained how the expansion joints moved back and forth. I emphasized the lesson by joining my fingers on each hand and moving them back and forth, as the expansion joints will.
Yoop squeaked something about keeping hands on the steering wheel. I glanced over to her and for the sake of saving the dashboard from permanent finger marks from her hands, I put my hands back on the wheel. Some people just don’t get the importance of an on the spot lesson. A few hours later the Yoopmobile pulled into Loggers driveway and our fun really began. More to come, hopefully sooner than later.
Wednesday, May 18, 2011
The next day Fidge arrived in the great not so white north and it was decided the young man and I would head out to Loggers deer condo. We loaded up and headed toward the woods. We stopped at a small store on the way to load up on Vernors and Snickers. When we turned off the main highway it was game on. Like Clark Kent stepping into the phone booth, Fidge and I instantly had our game faces on. There was no doubt in our minds that we were coming back to Loggers empty handed.
Once we got near the condo, I parked the truck. Fidge gave me a funny look and asked "Aren't you going to drive up to the condo?"
Perplexed by the question it took me a second to realize he wasn't joking. I replied "Are you legs broke?"
"Then no I ain't driving to the condo. Grab your stuff and let's get walking."
After a debate about whether the heater was needed on a fall like winter evening we settled in for what we knew was going to be a great night for some Nimrod venison collection.
After what seemed like 30 minutes, I checked my clock and confirmed it had been 30 minutes. Nothing yet.
About 5 minutes later I was woken from my slumber by what I first thought was a raccoon scrounging through a garbage can. I slowly opened my eyes and looked toward the sound. I was somewhat relieved, as well as annoyed, to find the noise was Fidge tearing into his Snickers and Vernors. I thought about asking if he could be any noisier but was scared to find out the answer.
"See anything yet?" I whispered.
"Just some birds."
This routine continued on for most of the evening. At one point Fidge woke me asking "Is that a deer on yourside?"
My pulse quickened and I lifted my binos to peek.
"Nope. That's a horse." I replied without thinking.
"I thought they got rid of their horses?" He questioned.
The fog cleared from my head and I remember he was right. I looked again and it was a deer, a huge deer about the size of a small horse. Not one of those miniature toy horses either. It was a small Clydesdale. I looked harder and saw some normal sized deer crossing behind the horse; suddenly the plan to not return empty handed look more reasonable. We only needed the horse and crew to cross the opening, follow a ridge line a couple hundred yards and then pop out for a simple 80 yard rifle shot. Game on!
Fidge and I sat perfectly silent waiting on what was coming next. The anticipation built as time passed. So did the noise level in the condo. Between Fidges flatulence and crinkly snickers wrapper and me waking the dead when I opened the condo window, there was no way horse and friends knew we were there.
Turns out horse and friends had different ideas. They felt it better to parade back and forth across the opening never coming down the ridgeline and therefore never offering us a shot. By dusk Fidge and I counted about 15 deer. Were they the same ones, taking turns walking the cat walk? Who knows? We didn't return empty either. We brought the trash from the condo back to Loggers. Don't want those pesky raccoon rifling through the trash.
Check back soon for the belated finale with Nimrods lever action bowhunt!
Monday, April 11, 2011
Turns out with the selling of the Heep and me being forced into driving the Turse has forced me into a corner. The lil ol boat Monkey and I used on our excursions to the numerous small lakes around the ranch doesn't fit on top of the Turse.
So I set out on a short journey and the other night the Easter Bunny delivered our new vessel. A 15 foot canoe. We have plans for her maiden voyage and she is yet unnamed.
I am open to any idears for names for her. Shes not the sleekest boat in the water, but a pretty green with three seats. If you have an idear post a comment or post something to our Facebook Page. While your there click on "Like."
Oh by the way, the Easter Bunny bringing the vessel home was more than a cliche... check out Yoops Bunny Wagon!
Friday, February 18, 2011
Yet again the Nimrod Crew made the journey to Michigan's north land. Thanksgiving, family and of course UP deer hunting. This year wasn't much different than years in the past. We recently unloaded the Shaggin Wagon onto an unsuspecting fella who unloaded a newer but beat up Turse onto us. All round everyone got the shaft, so all is good. We were presently surprised at how well the ol Turse ran and considering we nearly doubled the gas mileage over the sled or Shaggin Wagon. We will leave it at that and will not compare the cargo space or comfort.
Nimrod had to work most the evening before the trip. Yoop put the youngin's in bed like normal and the plan was to wake them just prior to pointing the Turse north. When I got home I quietly started loading the Turse with the gear a crew of 4 was going to need for a week long trip to the north land. Well... Yoop did most the packing and I think we could have made it a few more weeks if we had to.
After carrying the third bag to the Turse, Yoop and Munda came stumbling out to see what was going on. Munda wasn't nearly as cheerful as she usually is in the morning. Maybe because it was the middle of the night, not morning. Yoop helped me finish the loading as she also tended to Munda. Once we were about ready to roll I went and shook Monkeys cage.
Yoop had told me that he didn't want to go to bed last night, he wanted to leave for the north woods right then. He got pretty upset when she said they had to wait for Nimrod to get home. Smart boy.
As I rattled his cage he acted all grumpy and didn't want to wake up. I told him Yoop told me how he wanted to leave last night and now was the time to go, he still grumbled but with a grin on his face.
Once the crew was drained and loaded up we set the compass north and left the Ranch. The trip was nice. I have always preferred traveling during the night. There is less traffic on the roads and no blinding sun to deal with. Turns out we were traveling at near a full moon, and on a nearly cloudless night. the moon was about as bright as the sun. I had to have the sun visor turned on the side window to keep the moon light out of my eyes.
After a bright but uneventful trip, we arrived at Loggers ranch mid morning. Logger was just returning from a morning hunting trip. Although his truck was empty, the anticipation was high. We mingled around for awhile, unloaded the Turse. At some point I succumb to the sleep monster for a few hours. Yoop and Logger went for an evening sit and again came back with an empty truck.
I bet I have mentioned before that Nimrod isn't a fan of mornings. Not much good usually comes from them anyway, so why submit to the pain of rising before the sun and dealing with the entire day? Its much easier to stay in bed and get up later- at least you only have to deal with a portion of the day.
The next few days went the same. Yoop and Logger would head out before daylight. Evenings trips were me and either Yoop or Logger. Most days nothing was seen. What deer were seen were too far away to drag back from the neighboring property.
A few days into the trip, Yoop and Logger surprised us all by coming home with something in the truck. Turns out they decided to relive old times with Yoop pulling the trigger on what she thought was a doe and Logger connecting on a small buck.
Yoops deer was a cute lil fella. Small devil horns that barely stuck out over the hair on the top of his head. Yoop and Logger have about an eon of combined hunting experience. So how could they both miss the miniature head gear this guy wore? I asked them and they both claimed innocence, repeatedly stating they had watched her/him feed for several minutes, all the while assessing her fitness for the freezer. After determining she would fit well in the Nimrod freezer, Yoop did her thing.
Not until did they get up to her/him did they realize she was he. Button bucks are widely known to be yearly deer, however when the DNR checked in Devil horns, they aged him at 18 months. Further badgering of Yoop and Logger on their obvious over site of the massive antlers this deer wore, found an obvious answer... they think someone some how hid the horns from their view, and then uncovered them before the reached the fallen beast.
I laughed at them, spouting that only happens to me.
Stay tuned for the next entry, where Nimrod and Fidge hit the woods, Nimrod goes bowhunting with a 30-30 and the finale of the Nimrod deer season.
Wednesday, February 9, 2011
Over the past few days a lot of people have asked me about the Nimrod Clans UP Deer Hunting trip. Both people thought it would be a great way to get over my recent writing block. Right after our return from the Great (Not So) White north, I had started to pen the days of the adventure. Each time I went back to the story I would get a rash and a bad twitch.
Since the physical reaction to a story was not very fun, I just avoided it completely. I went back often working to complete the deer hunt entry, at least until the rash and shivers started again. A time or two I even tried to start a new entry. Which worked for about a paragraph longer, yet still ended with in a shivering pile of itchy Nimrod.
After a month of this vicious cycle, I thought hard about giving up on the Diaries. I mean it was like having target panic, but not being able to practice to get over it. I felt like a rooster with no hens. A spring Gobbler with only other Gobblers to chase. A rutting buck without trees to rub against. A spawning bluegill with no sandy flat. Why keep something that caused me such heartache anytime I approached it? Ol Nimrod is a glutton but everyone has a breaking point.
On the brink of dropping the Nimrod Diaries hotcake, I decided to give it one more night of thought. The next evening was spent, mostly, on the thinking chairs at the Nimrod Ranch. I used both chairs, in case one had more mojo than the other. Written materials were also recruited to assist in solving the problem, especially since the mail lady delivered the new Orvis, LL Bean and Cabelas Fly Fishing catalogs the day before. In addition, the latest issues of Deer and Deer hunting and Fur, Fish and Game were waiting to be opened.
As the night grew old, and my visits to the thinking chairs grew in number, the cause of my problems began to reveal itself. I dreamed of warming days, flooding creeks, fly fishing, spring turkeys, bedding pan fish. A renewed potential for success danced on my mind. I snapped out of my dream when I realized the roll from the thinking chair was missing. It wasn't empty. It was gone completely. Who would just steal the whole roll, inner cardboard and all?
To save details, I made do and got a new roll. I was still wonder who in the world would steal a whole roll of paper, knowing the chair was still being used? It was about then I noticed the Fur, Fish and Game magazine was missing also. Yoop, Monkey and Munda were all sawing logs and hadn't been up for a few hours. Where in the world is the paper roll and Fur, Fish and Game magazine with the article on winter squirrel hunting???
I gave up and went to the computer to check in at the normal places. Nothing new in the News. Not much going on at the hunting and fishing forums. Checking email, I realized I haven't checked the Nimrod Diaries email account lately. Logging in I found what I expected. A handful of spam and nothing more.
I signed into the Diaries, check some of my favorite blogs, happy to see they are still up and running. Seems the itch is only effecting me. I read back to the early days of the diaries that seem so long ago. I enjoyed the laughs at myself and relished the idea of how the Diaries have grown and matured. Thats my story and I am sticking to it.
After reading the diaries, beginning to end, along with visiting the thinking chair a few more times the source of the Itch started to become clearer. The more I thought about my writing and my most recent deer season the catalyst of my writing block was not wanting to admit how my season had gone. While Nimrod never claims to be that great of a hunter, I have been doing it long enough to be skunked. Let alone skunked two seasons in a row.
Yep.. you read that right. Nimrod has eaten tag soup for two seasons in a row. I have said it and quite honestly I feel much better.
I could easily make excuses, I mean I missed the heart of bow season, sidelined by Yoop and Doc for a bum wrist. Our trip to the Great (not so) White north was a bust. I only saw a few deer, several hundred yards away on a neighboring property. Or how my new job at work has me busier than before. Yet none of that takes away from the fact I failed to connect on a deer, failed to bring meat home for the family. Luckily Yoop didn't get skunked, but I will cover that later.
After all this... I'm back! For better or worse, I am back and hopefully here to stay.
Check back soon as I will cover the 2010 Nimrod Crew UP trip, how I ended my deer season, ice fishing, snow shoeing and maybe a few other fun winter things... that is of course if I get them done before the spring season start up!
Thanks for sticking it out, I hope this year makes it worth your while.