Saturday, October 14, 2023

Can’t rain on their parade: Inlet’s Adirondack Kids Day fishing derby a success

Kids fish in the rain during Inlet's Adirondack Kids Day.

My rain gauge [read] three inches this morning (Monday, October 9) so since, Friday night [October 6] until this morning, it had rained…and I was out in it several times over the weekend. We had a few dry [Inlet’s Adirondack] Kids Day Fishing [Derbys] [in the past], but not many…so why start this weekend? It was wet (in fact – pouring rain) when we went out [on] October 7 with the first group of kids and some parents. You soon find out kids don’t care [about the rain,] they just want to catch a fish…so give them a pole and bait their hook, and they are fishing.

A few were dressed for the weather, [and] others were just getting wet…and catching fish. The fishing platform in Fifth Lake was a hot spot that morning. Fish were flopping on the deck all morning, [but] some got away. Sunfish of all sizes seemed to be the catch of the day. Some [kids also] caught fall fish, golden shiners, a small largemouth bass, and one rock bass. Most made it to the measuring board to get recorded for length. Some were fat and healthy, [and] others were short and skinny. [However,] they all counted in different age groups. Did I say it was wet? The worms were even swimming in the worm boxes before they went swimming in the water attached to a hook.

For many of these kids, it may be the first fish they have ever caught…but I hope not the last. This [story] gets you away from the events taking place that day as [the] country of Israel is being invaded by Hamas from the Gaza Strip.

Invaders blew holes in some of Israel’s defensive walls to get into the country on the ground, while shelling the cities with thousands for rockets from the air. Israel’s iron curtain air defense couldn’t stop all the rockets from hitting their targets, which killed several hundred people. The invaders also hit an outdoor music event not far from the border and killed several hundred people there plus taking 200 hostages (and some soldiers) back into the Gaza Strip to be held for ransom. Israel’s rule over the Palestinians living in the Gaza Strip is the cause for this invasion into Israel. It is now an all-out war between the two factions, which could bring in many more players before it is over.

On Sunday, [October 8] a 6.4 earthquake hit in western Afghanistan’s Zinda Jan district without warning. Many of the men were outside working while the women and children were in their mud brick homes. These homes collapsed within seconds, trapping and killing the occupants inside before they could get out. The death toll is over 2,000, with many more missing. A second aftershock of 4.1 on Monday put off rescue efforts and kept relief supplies from reaching the area. A Gulf Coast storm is reported to hit the southern US this week bringing much needed rainfall, but the three-to-five inches of rainfall may cause flash flooding to the area. It may help the areas along the Mississippi River (who get their drinking water from the river) from having their water supply backwashed with salt water from downstream. Upstream areas are also in a drought situation and this rain may keep the salt water from moving further upstream.

There were lots of calls [such as,] “Need another worm!” So some fish just got fed and not caught…I guess they were the smart ones that were down there in schools. I know you’ve heard of a school of fish…some learn their lessons, and don’t get caught. There were some tears when the big ones got away. Or [perhaps] they [were] catching them over there and I [wasn’t], but from what I saw, most everyone at least caught [one] fish. If they didn’t, they didn’t have a line in the water. Right as the last group of kids were pulling their lines, one little boy on the other side of the raft said, “I didn’t catch any fish.” I called him over and handed him a pole I had in the water. Sure enough, he had a fish on (which made his day and mine.)

Thanks to Paul Chambers who organizes this event each fall and gets everyone to volunteer for his event. It gets the kids away from their cell phones and out on the water to catch a fish (so their parents can take a picture…with their cell phones.)


Megaphone at Paul Smith's College VIC

Megaphone at Paul Smith’s College VIC. Photo by Gary Lee.

On Sunday, I went up to the Adirondack Center for Loon Conservation’s fall celebration at the Paul Smith’s [College] VIC. [Some highlights of the event included,] a silent auction of related Loon items, Loon calling contest, music by Blessid Dirt in the big room overlooking Heron Marsh, [and a] lecture by Dr. Mark Pokras on how and why some Loons die in the wild. [It was very interesting to listen to his] research [of] over 50 years in rehabilitation and findings on what Loons and other wildlife die of. Loon-friendly lakes awards were given out and lead-collecting contributors were acknowledged. The Hornbeck canoe raffle drawing was drawn while I was out at a station [on] the Heron Marsh Trail giving information on loons hatching (and growing up.) I didn’t hear that I won the canoe, and I didn’t get the winner information, but someone won. Of course, it rained most of the time I was out on the trail system at the VIC.

Before the celebration started, I walked some of the trail system, including the Boreal Life Trail, Barnum Brook Trail, and the Heron Marsh Trail. The Boreal Life Trail has a long boardwalk going across a beautiful bog area along [the] Barnum Pond Outlet. It would be better if the orchids were in bloom, but the pitcher plants were all in their bright red colors of fall and winter. On the corner of the Barnum Brook Trail (right near the barrier dam) they have built a large wooden megaphone that increases the sound of the water going over the dam listening from the small end, a highlight of the trail system. It might be kind of neat to be there to listen to a thunderstorm in the distance.

I did stop at Lake Clear before going to the VIC. Looking from the canoe access, I could see some Loons over in the right-hand bay, but the rest of the lake was an ocean. There was going to be a planned canoe trip today out among the fifty-to-sixty loons that gather there this time of year to fish. I hope they had better weather, as I saw on Facebook there was snow on Whiteface Mountain overnight.

A lot of the color is gone, but the tamaracks are just turning their bright yellow of fall, but that’s another story. See ya.

Photo at top: Kids fish in the rain during Inlet’s Adirondack Kids Day 2023. Photo by Gary Lee.

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Gary lives with his wife, Karen, at Eight Acre Wood in Inlet where he was the Forest Ranger for 35 years, working in the Moose River Wild Forest Recreation Area and West Canada Lakes Wilderness Area. Now retired, Gary works summers for the Adirondack Center for Loon Conservation, observing, catching and banding loons. The author of a column Daybreak to Twilight in local papers from 1986 to 2019, he now writes his Outdoor Adventures a weekly blog. In 2008, Gary coauthored a book with John M.C. “Mike” Peterson, "Adirondack Birding- 60 Great Places to Find Birds."

5 Responses

  1. Pat Smith says:

    This was a terrorist attack specifically targeting civilians. Decapitation, rape and torture are somehow justified in your opinion? The refusal to acknowledge that the state of Israel has the right to exist is as much to blame for this conflict as the occupation of Gaza. The fact that you think Israel deserved this is appalling.

  2. JohnL says:

    Help me out here. Under the single title ‘Can’t Rain on their Parade….’ we have an article that morphs from the feel good local story of a kids fishing derby into the war on Israel. Even worse, it was a totally partisan description of the war.
    Then the article continues ‘evolving’ into earthquakes in Afghanistan (perhaps Gary thinks that’s Israel’s fault too?) and finishes with discussion on loons. What am I missing here that might lead someone to link all these articles under a Fishing Derby heading?

  3. Balian the Cat says:

    I share Johns confusion here and, I must be getting old, the fact that we can’t find common ground on this particular nightmare confuses me. Isn’t it possible that the Israelis right to a home land, the Palestinian right to a homeland, and the need to eradicate groups like Hamas can All be reasonable things to say/think? Also, I am glad the kids were able to get out fishing, though somebody will probably tell me Pumpkin Seeds are people too…

  4. Bill Ott says:

    I think the editors must have been stranded on Mt. Marcy because of the wall Hamas erected around the High Peaks last week.

  5. Pete Millerman says:

    The fishing sounds fun! (rain, or no…)

    One correction:
    You write: “Israel’s rule over the Palestinians living in the Gaza Strip is the cause for this invasion into Israel.”

    Israel wiithdrew entirely from Gaza in 2005. No Isrtaelis. No soldiers. Nothing.

    Hamas took over governing Gaza, and spent their aid money on constructing tunnels, and acquiring missiles and munitions to attack Israel. this led to the blockade by Israel (and Egypt.)

    Imagine how much better the Gazan residents’ lives would be if Hamas had constructed schools, industry, and infrastructure.

    Instead they bear the brunt of Israel’s response to a constant barrage of rockets, and terrorist attacks.

    Israel does not “rule” over the Palestinians who live there. Hamas does.
    And if they pursued peaceful co-existence instead of trying to kill Israelis,
    the lives of all would improve tremendously.

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