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Solving Problems with Nature - Naturally

Certified Wildlife Biologist
Wildlife Author - Wildlife Lecturer - Wildlife Photographer
Non-Lethal Control of Bats since 1983

NH Nature

New Hampshire Nature Notes by Eric Orff

Wednesday 06/06/2007 Super weekend of fishing and how the Suncook River is changing before my very eyes.

What a wonderful weekend of fishing I had with my life-long fishing buddy Rick at the New England Outdoor Writers Association Spring Safari at the NASWA Resort in Laconia. The forecast for a cold rainy weekend earlier in the week was a complete washout as the weather was perfect.

Saturday morning over twenty outdoor writers from all over New England were hooked up with  six different Winnipesauke  guides. We left the docks in six different boats at 4:30 am into a clearing day that would be totally sunny by noon. The more overcast early morning made for great salmon fishing. Our guide Matty Groves from Penacook with his "Hooked On Salmon" guide service quickly had our group of three into leaping salmon. A couple times we had doubles leaping out of the water behind the boat and we were scrambling to figure out which of the six rigs to grab. Matty is an experienced Winni guide who has developed a new type of spoon called the "Guides Special" that just couldn't be resisted by the salmon. Later in the morning he showed us just how effective they also  were on lake trout when we changed locations and speed to drop these spoons into some deeper water, which produced a double on lakers in quick order too. You can check Matty out on his Hooked on Salmon web site.

By early afternoon the outdoor writers were invited to try our luck at a private trout pond. No luck needed as the trout were ferocious and practically jumped into your pockets. It was a catch and release fishing only with barb-less hooks. In  a matter of an hour or two I lost track of how many trout I caught, two of which were the biggest rainbows and brookies I have ever caught. It was an afternoon of spectacular fishing. What a way to start my retirement! Rick landed a rainbow of 5 or 6 pounds at least. My big brookie was close to 4 pounds by my estimate. It was a grand day to share with the many outdoor writer friends and especially my life-long fishing partner Rick.

Now on to the Suncook River here in Epsom. This last Great Patriots Day flood has completely changed my view from my home office window. As I stare out the window there is now a huge sand bar about 300 yards upriver that is at least three feet out of the water as well as a smaller one downstream on the north, or right side, as I look at the river. Before last year's flood there was five or six feet of water in the channel there. Last years Mother's Day Flood filled in the channel so that the water was only a couple feet deep. Now the river bottom is three feet OUT of water. It wouldn't take much for the sand to completely fill in the channel and send the river through what is now my neighbor's corn field. This river is now just itching to change course with all the sand and sediment being washed down river from the breached sand pit above. How different the river looks in a photo I took in early April after the last heavy wet snow storm compared to now with the sand bar. It was the woods full of the wet snow and only 3.8 inches of rain on Patriot's Day that sent the river into a record flood stage. Now with all the sand and silt filling the river bed  here it takes half the rainfall to produce floods twice as bad as before. The Suncook River is completely different than the one I have known for the last 27 years.


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2007-05-31 A very eventful birthday, and frogs fill the night with sounds.

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2007-06-13 Tree frogs in full chorus and waist high grass to mow.

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