Sunday, September 25, 2011

Fishin' and Scopin'

As often, I find myself behind the season - photographically, that is. I have an awful lot of photos taken throughout the end of August and into September. I think it might be winter by the time they're all posted at my usual rate of twice a week, so please bear with me as I allow summer to linger just a little bit longer.

Frank and I spent some time up at his family cottage earlier this month. We enjoyed some warm, sunny weather along with a few cool, rainy days. The former suits me just fine because that's exactly how I love it to be when I'm at the cottage. The latter worked best for Frank, as that weather is generally conducive to better fishing. Of course, it was one of those warm, sunny days when I caught the biggest fish in my short angling history.

Let's back up a bit. On one of those overcast days, Frank came back to the cottage from one of his solo fishing adventures. He seemed particularly pleased and went on to share that he'd caught a real beauty of a walleye - about 20 inches and so perfect in colouring and vitality, that he chose to release it back into the water after unhooking it. "You want those beauties to reproduce."

A couple of days later, we were out on the lake together, and it was a lovely afternoon and wonderful just to be in a bobbing boat, watching the birds and listening to the sounds of nature. But we weren't having much luck attracting anything to the ends of our rods. We moved over to the area which proved lucky for Frank earlier in the week.

After a short while, I felt a strong, but not terribly insistent tug. Actually, it was more resistant than anything, and I thought I had become snagged on something. I reeled in, and though I certainly felt some weight, I didn't feel much fight. It couldn't have been very big. I told Frank that a few times. It kicked up more of a protest as it neared the boat, and Frank spotted it before I did. I kept on saying that it must be small but Frank's smile said otherwise.

walleye catch
He grabbed the net and we hauled in this lovely walleye. We looked it over and Frank mused about the possibility of it being the very same fish he'd caught earlier in the week. He unhooked it (something I've yet to do when it comes to walleye - they have big teeth and sharp fins!) and measured it (just over 20 inches) and wondered again if it might be the same one. I asked if he thought we ought to let it go and he said "No, we'll keep it," and he swiftly and humanely turned it into that night's dinner possibility.

Into the cooler it went, but not until after the obligatory pose with the catch. This photo is courtesy of Frank. Image cropping was my contribution.

Later, when Frank filleted the catch, he examined the contents of its stomach to discover a somewhat intact smallmouth bass. I'll spare you that photo, because it wasn't a pretty sight but that might have been why there wasn't much fight in the walleye. It was already full, and too busy digesting. Or it could have actually been the fish that Frank caught the day or two before and was still tired from the tremendous fight it gave him at that time. What do you think?

walleye filet
In any event, we gratefully enjoyed a delicious dinner of walleye, beans and potatoes. I had fully intended to take a photo of it while it cooked and later, on the plate but I simply forgot about it. But until just now, I never noticed the word "surgery" in the newspaper, along with the blood splattered on it. I'm easily amused.

edgy cedar growth2
As the day turned to evening, we sat and enjoyed our surroundings. Just beside the dock, this little cedar makes a brave effort to grow amid rocks and roots from other trees. They sure are a hearty plant.

late day sun hillside
The sun spills onto the hillside, bathing it with rich, golden hues.

iluminated stump
Let's get a closer look at that tree stump.

The sunset was a beauty, as so many of them are up at the cottage.

starry night4
And the clear sky of nightfall provided us with a good look at the Big Dipper.

I'll have more photos for you in a few days.


Anyes said...

Thank you Hilary for letting us enjoy Summer pleasures a bit longer. It is much appreciated :-)

Lisa said...

That is a beautiful fish.
Loved the photos all of them.
Im like you back logged on photos too.
Just keep posting .

Kerry said...

Surgery indeed. I bet that walleye tasted good; what a beautiful creature! If it really was the same fish, well, maybe it needed to be caught and eaten by an appreciative predator.

Indrani said...

Excellent captures of light and shadow.

Frank Baron said...

Wow! I really like that last shot in particular (though all are fine). Imagine what we can do when we get the tripod set up some starry night. :)

Pierre BOYER said...

Great day and pictures...
Regards from France Hilary,


Brian Miller said...

great catch...those look like quite the meal..and a beautiful view to go with it...

Glo said...

Congratulations on the catch! I noticed 'Surgery' too, and thought it quite apt! Wonderful how you also catch the light in your amazing photos!

ADRIAN said...

A grand life to share in a beautiful environment. Excellent images as usual.

25BAR said...

This cottage sure sounds like a magical place!

Dan said...

Skilled composer you are of photography and word crafting and composing.

Dave said...

Good fishing Hilary. Well done! I specially liked your photos of the sun on the hillside and the big dipper. Looks like a time shot? Well done! - Dave

Bob Bushell said...

The colours of these photographs are awesome Hilary.

Anonymous said...

Wonderful story through your photos... The area around the cottage looks more idyllic with every batch of photos you post!

Sueann said...

Congrats on the Walleye! He was a beaut!! Bet he was tasty too!!
What gorgeous scenery you are surrounded by!! Wow! And those photos really capture the magic of the scenery!! Thanks so much


Unknown said...

Several shots I really, really liked in this one! Loved the one at the end and the golden hillside, and the second one of the fish where the colors of the fish were lit up from the inside.

messymimi said...

Yes, let your summer linger a bit longer.

Ours tend to be hot, humid, sticky, and sometimes unbearable, but yours can keep reminding me of warmth and beauty all through the cold season if you want.

Anonymous said...

What a treat you had for dinner. I haven't eaten Walleye since I was a kid. Used to catch them on the lakes in northern Iowa and also Minnesota. Quite a delicious fish. Congrats on your wonderful catch!

Tabor said...

That last photo caught my breath and made me almost forget about the post! I purchased your friends book for hubby and he will be taking it on the trip. He is not a fresh-water fisherman...but fishing still holds him the most.

Out on the prairie said...

Love the stars, and it was a nice fish

TexWisGirl said...

i am loving these. happy to keep viewing them as long as you've got some to post! and glad frank was kind enough to release that big fish, only to let you catch him for dinner the next time! :)

your night photo of the stars is so impressive!!! wonderfully done!

CiCi said...

It is so nice to hear the joy in your voice as you post about the cottage adventures.

Elizabeth Grimes said...

I've only been fishing once or twice and never caught anything. Well done! Love the summer photos. The sunlight is amazing.

Ruth Hiebert said...

Throughout this post the pictures just kept on getting better.The last one is the icing on the cake.WOW!!!

ellen abbott said...

What would be the odds of that? If it was the same fish then obviously is was meant for your dinner.

Anvilcloud said...

You caught some great golden light in some of those photos.

Anonymous said...

I'm always behind photographically!

Love the rich golden tones in these shots!

Kristina P. said...

I haven't been fishing in a long time, but I do enjoy it!

DJan said...

That Big Dipper shot is perfect! Your pictures still give me thrills when I look at them, Hilary. And I immediately noticed the "surgery" and blood in that one shot. That fish looked amazingly tasty, and we KNOW it was fresh...

Cloudia said...

oh I love the golden light you show-
and golden fish too, each scale a tiny coin. You GOOD, gal :-)

Warm Aloha from Waikiki;

Comfort Spiral

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Hilary said...

• Anyes, I'm glad you enjoyed it. Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Lisa, thanks kindly. I will indeed keep posting. What else is there to do? ;)

• Kerry, it was delicious. I suppose we'll never know for sure but it's fun to think about it. Thanks for the visit. :)

• Indrani, thanks very much. :)

• Frank, thank you. I hope we remember to bring it up with us next time, and that the sky cooperates. If not at the cottage, then elsewhere. I'm looking forward to it. :)

• Merci, Pierre. :)

• Thanks, Brian. it was yummy on both counts. :)

• Thank you, Glo. Your kind words are very much appreciated. :)

• Adrian, thank you so much. I'm glad you think so. :)

• 25BAR, it is, for sure. Thanks for the visit. :)

• Daniel, thank you kindly, my friend. :)

• Dave, thanks very much. The night shot had a 13 second exposure. It was a very bright night with the full moon (or nearly full), as you might tell by the shadows. I'm glad you enjoyed it. :)

• Bob, thanks so much. :)

• Robin, thank you. I feel that way about each visit up there. :)

• SueAnn, thanks. It was indeed delicious. Thanks for such kind words. They're very much appreciated. :)

• Susan, thanks kindly. It pleases me that you enjoyed them. :)

• MessyMimi, I'm one of those annoying people who happen to love hot and even humid weather. I'll keep on enjoying it on your behalf. ;)

• Di, I had never had walleye until I met Frank. Now I must have my fix at least a couple of times each summer. Thanks very much for stopping by. :)

• Tabor, thank you. I will tell Frank that you bought his book (if he doesn't already read it here). He'll be so pleased, as am I. I hope your hubby enjoys it. Please let us know. :)

• Thanks, Steve. Much appreciated. :)

• Tex, it was nice of him, wasn't it? ;) I'm glad you're enjoying the photos. I'll have more coming up soon. Thanks so much for the kind words. :)

• TechnoBabe, thank you so much. You're a gem. :)

• Elizabeth, thanks kindly. I never thought I would learn to like fishing, and there are still aspects of it that I don't care for (unhooking and killing them) but I've come to enjoy it and look forward to it very much. Thanks for your visit. :)

• Ruth, thank you so much. It pleases me to know that you enjoyed them :)

• Ellen, we'll never know but it's interesting to ponder. :)

• Thanks, AC. :)

• Thank you, Fiona. May we never fully catch up. :)

• Kristina, I hope you get the chance to go sometime soon. We should all be able to do what we enjoy. :)

• Thank you so much, DJan. You never fail to make me smile with your sweet comments. That's so appreciated. I'm not surprised you noticed the "surgery" immediately. You're way quicker than I was. ;)

• Thanks, Cloudia. I love the way you described the fish scales. And I'm glad you enjoyed the golden glow with me. Thanks for stopping by. :)

She Who Carries Camera said...

in love with that last photo!

Friko said...

Better late than never.

It would seem that you had a glorious day, whenever it was.

Scott Law said...

What a wonderful day! Thanks for sharing the photos and the story. I love good fish, even sushi when it's done right.

Karen said...

Hilary, I love to fish-but have never had Walleye. Is it a mild or strong fish? Funny newspaper shot. Love the dusk and evening shots.:)

Lisa said...

The pictures are beautiful; I can clearly smell the cottage air. Love the Big Dipper, maybe we'll get up there together yet.

Gail Dixon said...

Quite a catch you got there! Sounds like the perfect day. Gorgeous photos.

VM Sehy Photography said...

That sure is a beautiful fish. Also love the photo of the big dipper. Wish my night shots turned out so well.

yaya said...

Nice catch! I'm sure it tasted as good as it looked. I did have to laugh at the "surgery" comment since that's where I work and it just fit perfect with that pic! Have a good week.

Barbara said...

What a wonderful day! Congrats on the catches - the fish and the photos (especially that last one of the big dipper! Wow!)

Red said...

Great story and photos to go along with it. What you really catch is the wonderful days of summer that we enjoy. Thanks.

Barb said...

Could that lake be any more idyllic? The night photo is just awesome. Looks like you had a very good vacation and ate well!

Unspoken said...

The last one looks like a scene from a movie, magical.

Zuzana said...

Hilary, what a fun story and a set of lovely images to compliment.
You should not have cropped your face away.;))
That surgery text on the news paper is truly amusing, as it is the story of the fish. Absolutely love that last image, it reminds om of the light nights here in the north, but unfortunately we are already heading into the time of twilight.
Have a lovely week dear friend,

Liz Mays said...

Now that was a day and a meal to remember. I love that you were the one to catch that beauty.

Pauline said...

Oh that last shot of the night sky is glorious!

I don't eat fish but I'd sit on that hillside in the golden light forever if I could...

Betty Manousos said...

sounds and looks like a wonderful adventure!
so glad you had such a great time.
i'd love to be there with you.

amazing photos as usual. wonderful colours.
and that is a beautiful fish.

have a great week ahead!

betty xx

Crabby McSlacker said...

Wow, what a catch! And as usual, a great assemblage of images. Can't believe the last one of the night sky. That must have taken major expertise to figure out the lighting. Beautiful!

Gary's third pottery blog said...


Daryl said...

WOW .. a shot of the Big Dipper .. color me impressed!

Bossy Betty said...

Thanks for these images, Hilary! Love the beauty of the fish.

Linda at To Behold The Beauty said...

Wow! I'm so impressed at the photo of the stars.

Leah J. Utas said...

I believe it was the same walleye and you two were meant to have it.

Wendy said...

Hope the fish was tasty! I could never pull the hook out either!

Your photos are beautiful and I love that one of the big dipper.
Surgery - ha! That's a good one. LOL!

Reena said...

I loved spending the time with you here ... filled with calm and good company! Hearing those crickets on that dock!

Tammie Lee said...

your lingering summer sounds and looks wonderful. I love the light you captured in the last few images, just beautiful.

Hilary said...

* Thanks, Jill. It was fun to bring the camera out after dark. :)

* Thank you, Friko. We almost always do up there. :)

* Scott, thanks. I think you would love walleye, then. It's amazingly yummy. :)

* Thanks, Karen. It's a very mild-tasting fish. Lightly pan-fried, it's delicious. Thanks for coming by. :)

* Thank you, Lisa. I'd love that. I SO( missed you up there, this year. :)

* Thanks, Gail. It was mighty enjoyable. :)

* Thank you, VM. I got lucky with that night shot. :)

* Thanks so kindly, Yaya. I'm glad you got a kick out of that pic. :)

* Thanks very much, Barbara. Your kind words mean a lot to me.

* Thank you, Red. I'm so glad you're enjoying summer via my photos. :)

* Thanks, Barb. We certainly did all of the above. Thanks for stopping by. :)

* Thanks very much, Amy. :)

* Thanks so much, Zuzana. The season sure has wound down but so far it's turning into a lovely autumn. I have no complaints. I hope you're enjoying yours as much. :)

* Thanks, Blueviolet. I'm pretty pleased about it too. :)

* Pauline that hillside is just waiting for you, anytime. Thanks for the visit. :)

* Betty, thanks so much for the kind words. You'd be welcome to join us and I'm sure you'd love it. Thanks for stopping by virtually. :)

* Crabby, thank you very much for your always-kind words. No real expertise but a bit of experimentation. And a lot of luck. :)

* Thanks for the visit, Gary. :)

* Thanks, Daryl. I'm glad you liked it. :)

* Thanks, Betty. It pleases me that you enjoyed them. :)

* Thanks, Linda but it was more luck than anything... starting with a great sky and a bit of trial and error. :)

* Thank you, Leah. I do believe you're right. :)

* Thanks, Wendy. I can pull them out of smaller fish.. the ones that don't bite and don't have such sharp fins. I'm glad you enjoyed the photos. Thanks always for stopping by. :)

* Reena, I'm so glad you could join me. It's always a pleasure to have fun people along - even if only virtually. :)

* Thanks so much, Tammie Lee. That means a lot to me. :)

sage said...

I love walleye! And I need to find myself some time to get a canoe out on a river in the next few weeks as the trees change.

larkswing said...

Your summer world is fantastic - looks better than Disney World!!

Don said...

Good catch. Keep those summer pictures coming!

Steve Gravano said...

Nice catch! Thanks for stretching summer. IF you can stretch it all the way through February it would work for me!

Mental P Mama said...

Just magical up there;) That 'surgery' caught my eye too!

Hilary said...

* Sage, that sounds like a wonderful idea. I hope you can do that. Walleye is wonderful, isn't it? :)

* Lailani, thanks. I don't know how Mickey Mouse would feel about that but I'm quite tickled. ;)

* Thanks, Don. I'll be sure to. :)

* Steve, that would sure work for me too. I could be very happy with summer for a year or so.. at least once. Thanks for stopping by. :)

* Thanks, MPM. I have no idea why I never saw it at the time but it gave me a laugh while uploading the photos. Thanks for the visit. :)

Linda said...

Beautiful, just beautiful! I love the way the late day sun paints the landscape with such brilliance.

While traveling in Minnesota, I had the chance to try Walleye. I liked it!