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  #1  
Old 03-31-2011, 05:44 PM
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Default Bugs and Bass 2011

Welcome to Bugs and Bass 2011

There was no Bugs and Bass 2010. The USS Coalman was tired. The deck and transom needed work. She was showing signs of her age of 38 years. Last summer we had her retrofitted back to original condition.

I missed most of the summer of 2010 on the water. I never set a lobster trap. My thank yous go to Roccus, Danny and Andy for carting my butt on the flats, bays and open seas while the fiberglass set up.

The 2011 lobster and striped bass seasons are just around the corner. The layoff last summer was welcomed as I trained my yellow lab to hunt. But I can't keep the salt out of my veins which is giving me the itch to write.

I would like to thank Striper Jim for allowing me to ramble my writings here at 24/7. Comments to this thread are always welcome.

The boat is still in the barn. But the lobster traps are talking to me. I have my license and have sent for my tags. The process has started.

I need to get through spring gobbler season before I can concentrate full time on my striped bass fishing and lobster trapping hobby. While this thread might start slow the horsepower will increase with the amount of daylight each day.

Thank you for coming along.

USS Coalman retrofit 2010









And we launched late last summer just in time for the Blue Angles air show at Pease. This year Pease is hosting the Thunderbirds. I predict a Great Bay parking lot.



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  #2  
Old 03-31-2011, 06:16 PM
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Default Re: Bugs and Bass 2011

I love your photojournals Dave. Great stuff.

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  #3  
Old 04-05-2011, 07:20 AM
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Default Trap preparation

04-03-11
You can't catch lobsters without traps. I spent a few hours yesterday weeding through gear. I plan on fishing twenty pots. More if I can find free bait.

Those that have saved their fish bait after a day of fishing have been rewarded well with a boil of bugs.

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  #4  
Old 04-18-2011, 04:45 AM
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Default Re: Bugs and Bass 2011

Good luck this season Dave. I'm takeing a trip up to New England this July. Maybe the canal again. Maine has too many skeeters. lol
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  #5  
Old 04-26-2011, 09:50 AM
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Default Re: Bugs and Bass 2011

Wow that was quite a project! The Coalman looks great best wishes in 2011!
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  #6  
Old 06-06-2011, 07:35 AM
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Default Launch Day 2011

06-05-11
Today was launch day. The USS Coalman floats. Welcome to Bugs and Bass 2011.



The tide was incoming to the top while a made the final checklist. The Ugly Stick was in the cuddy. Fresh bait was on the menu.



Even with two navigational aids heading up the Squamscott River..



I'm pretty sure the boat could find the trestle in the dark.



It's been seven months since I have been through the strait at Adam's Point. The whole Great Bay fills and drains through this
narrow passage



And the striped bass.........they are home.
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  #7  
Old 06-06-2011, 09:41 PM
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Default Re: Bugs and Bass 2011

ahh, dave. seems like just yesterday ya was plucking bugs outta da wahttta.... lol. will try and get up in july. GOOD LUCK THIS SEASON..... Zim....



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  #8  
Old 06-13-2011, 07:24 AM
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Default Bugs, Bass and the Deadliest Catch

Bugs, Bass and the Deadliest Catch 06-11-11

I was in forward fast Saturday hoping to beat the weatherman's rain prediction. There were 11 lobster traps in the bed of the Ford.

They would be worthless unless they were lying on the floor of the Great Bay.

Since my lobster trapping hiatus last summer I forgot how intense the preparation is just to get to this far. It started in February when I purchased my license. After my license arrived it was time to buy my traps tags that traditionally take a month to process. An early April trip to the barn accomplished sorting out the traps I would sink first.

By the beginning of May I had the first leg complete, license and tags. Then came turkey season. That put lobster preparation into a 30 day holding pattern. By the first of June I was ready to complete leg two of my journey by getting the USS Coalman seaworthy. First came getting the boat out of storage. Then to dry dock in my driveway where a list was put together of the supplies I would need.

The weather was beautiful last weekend to complete leg three. I took an early morning trip to West Marine and New England Fishing Gear to purchase the “stuff” on my list. It must be noted that both businesses were very helpful and attentive to my needs.

I arrived back at dry dock and got busy with my engineering duties. There was a pot hauler and battery switch to install. Then the engine got some pre-trip TLC. I ended the first day of the weekend giving anything with exposed wood a Thompson’s Water Seal bath. Sunday I hooked the boat to the truck and launched the USS Coalman on to her slip.

Now that I was OTW it was time for Part 4, lobster trap preparation. Friday i was back at the barn checking and modifying the gear I had selected in April. By darkness leg four was complete.

With the tide creeping ever higher and the clearance under the trestle getting ever lower I elected to only bring seven traps out on the first trip. A few miles into my journey I met Joe. He was fishing for the striped ones. His fishing skills proved better than his luck.



Six miles from the dock I arrived in the fishing grounds. Every lobster trapper has his favorite holes. As I approached each set location I was encouraged by the lack of any other buoys. There were no traps set in my Family Grounds. It didn’t take long to sink my pots.

As Mother Nature would have it, it started raining on the trip back to the dock. Heeding the warning of our dock master I postponed setting the rest of my gear. As he predicted the rain started coming down heavy. I took this time to go back to the barn and get a few more traps ready.

But my day wasn’t over yet. This was the night Captains Jonathan and Andy Hillstrand along with Captain Sig Hanson of The Deadliest Catch were coming to the Hampton Beach Casino. I had been looking forward to this day for some time. So for a few hours this evening I got to listen and laugh with my marine trapping mentors. There was no bleeping of the audio tonight. I felt like the cameraman who sits in the wheelhouse filming their odyssey. They were as real and down to earth as I could have ever imagined. Andy is quite the accomplished musician and we were treated to three of his songs about life on the Bering Sea. During his tribute song to Captain Phil I looked around the crowd. There were a lot of watery eyes. I have to admit mine included.

Meeting the Captains was the highlight of my night. I only wish the pictures came out as crisp and clear as our conversations. While Karen got in her hugs with Capt Andy and Capt Sig, Capt Jonathan and I discussed that a squid painted on the front fender of his Harley was much better than an octopus. Thank you Killer Paint.



I thank the Lord for his countless blessings. I know the bounties come from my faith in Him.
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  #9  
Old 06-18-2011, 03:42 PM
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Default Seasons first trap check

I went out Thursday afternoon and set eight more lobster traps. I checked the seven I had in and ended up with one short and one keepa. Even though I had high hopes for Family Grounds it didn't produce. I'll be back.

Instead of playing the radio game and looking for free advice I moved the gear to where and what I hope is more promising water. It is early in the season. Time to prospect.

Our resident osprey's were busy with nest tending duty.



This was the first afternoon I have tended traps in two years. It was almost low tide and the pungent smell of seaweed and salt water were in the air. I forgot how much I missed that.

There was no weather or high seas to contend with. The Bay was like glass and the sunset light show was intense.



It is good to be home.
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  #10  
Old 06-20-2011, 11:23 PM
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Default Re: Bugs and Bass 2011

so, you signed on as the new greenhorn this upcoming opie season eh? lol
your hot stuff dave..



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  #11  
Old 06-21-2011, 08:49 AM
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Default OTW with Captain Roccus

After a generous invitation I laid claim to the bow of the USS Roccus last night. Even if the fishing had been slow the company would have made up for it.

Thanks Joe!

Leaving the harbor at sunset.



Captain Roccus



First mate Coalman



No bass were harmed in the making of this post.
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  #12  
Old 06-24-2011, 04:24 PM
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Default Re: Bugs and Bass 2011

Roc you look enthused . Nice Fish Guys.

Looking forward to catching a fish this year sometime. Only thing I have caught was 8 pounds but pink and healthy so I decided to keep her!
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  #13  
Old 06-25-2011, 10:33 PM
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Default Dialing in

The weather has been poor. It has rained for four days. The lawn needs to be mowed. The lobster traps need to be checked.

Guess which one I chose?

With the threat of thunderstorms at ten percent it didn't take long to prep the boat.



After the poor catch on Family Grounds last week it was time to prospect.



I'm starting to dial in.

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  #14  
Old 06-27-2011, 09:38 AM
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Default Busting Bass

You would think when the bass are busting like this they would eat anything............wrong! See the videos below.

I was fishing with live eels. They weren't on the menu. There was a sea worm hatch going on. I ended up the morning in different places and landed three stripers. Only one keepa in the bunch. They all still swim.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LNzfOw121cw

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_1_nLEiitvc

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9RRlE11oTRQ
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Old 07-05-2011, 09:09 AM
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Default Fouth of July weekend

07-01/02-11
Honey holes.

With a couple reports of the river being slow on the striper bite, Captain Danny and I made plans to hunt stripers on some new grounds he had good luck with late last summer. Things were a little slow until we had a slight rain shower.

Coalman had the first fish to the boat.



We had a report of fish strikes at the yellow blinking light. Damn if we could find it. We need to go back to our source so he can point out the error in our ways. With the tide approaching the top we made a 1230 AM full throttle run to Coalman's honey hole.

Where Captain Danny took this nice striper on the trolling rod.



Any guess as to this injury?



Thank you Captain Danny.

07-03-11
Glass

This morning the definition of smooth could have been described as the waters of Great Bay. Glass would also fit the description.

On Tierloc's first cast I saw him try and set the hook. My thoughts were he was hung on the bottom. On the next cast I saw him set the hook.

First drift and Tierloc is on.



Being just shy of legal this fish got the pass.



A couple drifts later and our second bass was on the boat. This one taped out as a keepa.



But we let it go. :)

The Captain forget the ice packs for the cooler this hot summer morning. I knew if we checked the lobster line the bugs would be stressed. We pulled a few traps and found the crustaceans are on the move. Time to go prospecting.

It was a good day spent with a good friend.



07-04-11
Quick trip

We took a trip out to Great Bay today to catch the turn of the tide.

Joe boated the only fish. His striper taped 33". Eat well my friend. It was worth the ride.

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