Spring is coming!

March 12, 2014

Faith Outdoors

Reaching 50 degrees for the first time was simply glorious. I was hoping Monday morning that we would hit the mark that day. Based on the bitter cold temps of recent weeks, this was not something to take for granted.

Such a surge in the mercury got me to thinking ahead to warmer days and green leaves. In just two months, I will be toting a shotgun into the woods in southeastern Minnesota for the start of my spring turkey season. The action begins on May 6 in Minnesota, with my Wisconsin season starting the very next day.

I absolutely hope there will not be a repeat of last year, when 15 inches of snow fell on the second day of my Wisconsin season. I waited until three days after the storm to resume hunting. Fortunately, I was able to get a bird early that morning, but it was weird sitting in snow in May. In the nearly 30 years I have turkey hunted, I never have sat in snow while hunting. I have faced cold temperatures, but never snow, even though I have hunted as early as mid-April. Who would have thought I would have snow on the ground in May?

I’m hopeful that spring will be close to normal this year. For the time being, temperatures are near average, with no cold snap or polar vortex in the forecast. I definitely would like to see this huge snowpack disappear!

Beside the warm temps, another sign of spring is the annual Northwest Sportshow, which will take place 26-30 at the Minneapolis Convention Center. I like to take in this event every year, and hope to make it again this year.

Walking the aisles and seeing all the booths and gear really get me revved up for spring and summer. A few fishing pros I know come out every year, and it’s always nice to say hello to them.

I’m pretty excited about a trip I have planned for the end of May. There is a fishing tournament on Big Stone Lake on the border of Minnesota and South Dakota that happens in June, which is sponsored by the Diocese of Sioux Falls, S.D. I have been invited to come out beforehand to taste the fishing and talk with the organizers. I’m happy to promote their event, called the Bishop’s Charity Fishing Tournament.

It won’t work for me to come to the tournament, but I will get a taste of it when I come out there in May. And, hopefully, I’ll get a taste of walleye while I’m  there.

The fishing is good not only on Big Stone, but on another border lake, Traverse, plus several other lakes nearby in South Dakota. I hope to offer a full report on the fishing when I return.

I’m hopeful that we won’t have May snowstorms two years in a row. I did look up some weather history and found out that there was a big May blizzard in 1938 in southern Minnesota. Let’s hope it’s at least another 75 years before we see something like that again!


About Dave Hrbacek

Staff photographer and writer for The Catholic Spirit. Also, avid outdoors enthusiast with a passion for hunting, fishing and photography. Married to Julie and have four children, three boys and a girl.

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