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About SteveD

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    Sr HotSpotOutdoors.com Family
  • Birthday 06/11/1947

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  • Location:
    St Croix River
  1. I run an 80# Terrova IPilot on my 25' pontoon. It works great and that electic motor will handle your boat just fine. If you are a troller than the IPilot is the smart way to go. It does all the trolling work for you - tracks and records your trolling runs and then repeats those tracks with a click of the button; records waypoints and then will track back to those waypoints with a simple click; provides trolling speed cruise control so you don't have to manually try and maintain speed in wind and current; provides Spot lock so you can anchor immediately with a simple click. It just takes all the work out of trolling especially if you are fishing alone. I love mine. I keep my boat in a marina slip on the St Croix so I always have power available to charge my batteries. I think you need to spend a few bucks extra and put in an on-board charger and run an extension or better yet run power to your dock and then just plug in your boat charger and keep your batteries always topped off. Go all the way with it - you won't regret it in the long run. That is what I would do.
  2. The point that Aaron's drawings are trying to show is that you are not trying to keep your attic warm. You are trying to keep your attic cold. Ice dams are caused by heat escaping through a host of openings up through your house frame - chimneys, wall frames, plumbing vents, kneewall openings, recessed lighting, kitchen stove exhaust vents, etc. This escaping heat causes snow on your roof to melt from underneath and then freeze when it hits the cold edge of your roof causing ice dams. You need to seal all of these openings into the attic space to prevent warm air from escaping into the attic. My recommendation is that before you blow any insulation into your attic is to seal every single opening you can find from your heated living spaces into your attic. Tape them, foam seal them, cover them. Then put the air chutes into every single rafter space so as to allow air circulation throughout you entire attic. You want cold air from the outside to get into your attic space and keep it as cold as the outside air. Make sure all your roof soffits have ventilation openings that are clean and clear to allow air flow. Over the years mine had been painted over and had lost almost all their ability to facilitate air flow. Then blow enough insulation on top of your ceiling joists to create a nice barrier to hold your heated air in. You want that air between your ceiling and your roof to stay cold and dry. This allows the snow and ice to sit on your roof and not melt from underneath.
  3. My house was built in 1975 and back then insulaltion requirements were not as well understood as today's standards. There is more to it than just blowing in insulation if you are trying to insulate your whole house. I had an energy audit and then a scope of work done by a reputable insulation company. Here is what I ended up having done: - Install air tight Thermax boxes over 7 recessed ceiling lights. - Foam seal base of all accessible PVC waste vent pipes. - Foam seal wood framing at lower chimney & silicone pipe to tin draft stop. - Foil tape seams in the kitchen exhasut duct and foam seal base, install a metal sheet collar and seal to bottom of roof vent. Wrap pipe with fiberglass blanket. - Install approximately 46 - six foot long polystyrene air chutes, 1 per rafter space. - Hand pack the existing fiberglass under the air chutes at outer wall plate area. - Add 1 black metal roof vent by kitchen exhaust and fireplace flue pipe. - Install foil vaced insulated sheathing over lower kneewall batting and seal edges with foam. - Seal shut unused kneewall attic access with foam. Replace missing fiberglass in kneewall pocket. - Install R38 fiberglass blanket, insulation dam and foam gasket on upper access opening. - Add R30 blown in fiberglass over existing fiberglass to provide R50+. Total cost of the insulation work was $1,900. After the insulation work was done I then replaced all my soffits to improve soffit venting to add sufficient attic air circulation through the whole house. Replaced all recessed light bulbs with LED lights. I'm hoping this will help with the ice dam problems if we have another tough winter. Hope this helped you with your decision.
  4. I was curious about the boat lift question. I just hit google YouTube and asked "Moving a boat lift" and there were several interesting ideas. This one looks pretty ingenious:
  5. Some cat fishermen don’t like bullheads for cut bait but I have had good luck with it. Live bullheads are my preferred bait for flatheads and I trap and catch my own bullheads. My traps catch a lot of small bullheads (4" to 5") which are perfect to use as cut bait. I have found that one of the best tools for making cut bait is a good scissors or game shears. On my small bullheads I only make 2 cuts with a scissors. The first cut is just behind the head and the second cut is just in front of the tail. Just run your hook through the meaty part of the piece of bullhead and toss it out there. Bullheads are a very bloody bait and leave an excellent scent trail. Here are a few photos to show the cut bullhead:
  6. Here is a link to how to use cut bait. Pretty simple - it is just cut up fish. I have found that cut anything will work. I use suckers, bullheads, sheepshead, etc. This link explains it pretty well: http://www.hotspotoutdoors.com/forum/ubb..._Tu#Post1461495
  7. Darren - I just got in. Fished from 0900 to 1400 - nothing. St Croix is really high, not that much current, fair amount of grass and sticks floating. Water temp was 53 degrees. I had one pick up but it felt like a turtle. Saw a few of those sunning themselves today. No bait in any of my spots.
  8. CHEX - I'm not sure you have the patience for chasing flats. Rivers are all out of their banks and all the flood plain is flooded well back into the timber. Rivers are running high, fast and cold. It is 10 May and the weather is up and down with unstable cool weather in the forecast. It is still "EARLY SPRING" even the bait is hard to find. When the weather is perfect and river conditions are stable and ideal, your flathead success rate is still going to be only about 55%. At least mine is and I'm an experienced catfisherman. You want some help from a veteran - here is a tip: It is not always about the catching - Enjoy your time on the water. If you don't like catfishing - go catch some of those itty bitty bass.
  9. You need to step back and take a deep breath. Read the regs and apply a little common sense and the harvest of bullheads is not that daunting a task. I will attempt to summarize how to harvest and use bullheads as bait legally. First off let’s look at the harvest of bullheads from non-infested waters: Bullheads under 7 inches are classified as minnows. Licensed anglers may take minnows or leeches for their own use with dip nets, traps, or seines. The requirements for dip nets, traps, or seines are listed on page 76, 2014 Minnesota Fishing Regulations. After you catch your bullheads you may transport them provided you exchange water in your bait buckets with tap or bottled water prior to leaving any waterbody to prevent the spread of aquatic invasive species or fish disease. In your post you are assuming that it is not legal to catch smaller bullheads for bait with a hook or line and then keep them for bait because that is not a method spelled out in regulations. On page 28 of the 2014 Minnesota Fishing Regulations it states: Up to 100 bullheads, 7 – 10 inches in length, may be taken and possessed for use as live bait. Legal methods of taking include dip net, angling or minnow seines. Now if you can legally catch a 7 – 10 inch bullhead with a hook and line do you think they are going to throw you in jail for harvesting a 6” bullhead with a hook and line. Believe me, you can catch a smaller bullhead on a hook and line and throw him in the bucket with your 7 – 10 inch bullheads and you are OK. The bullhead Nazis will not round you up and throw you in jail. So in summary on harvesting bullheads from non-infested waters, if you follow the above protocol you can safely harvest and keep bullheads for bait. You may transport them as long as they are in tap or bottled water. Secondly let’s look at the harvest of bullheads from infested waters: Bullheads may be caught by hook and line from designated infested rivers for personal use as bait while on that same river. The bullheads may not be transported alive from or off the river where taken as bait. Now just let me clarify something for you – if I catch bullheads from non-infested waters I can take them onto infested waters and use them for bait. I can take them home again when I am done fishing as long as they remain in tap or bottled water. Here is the big BUT: If I catch a bullhead from infested waters I can only use that bullhead on that same infested body of water where I caught the bullhead and when I am done fishing I cannot transport that bullhead live from or off the river where taken as bait. It is not as complicated as most people make it out to be. If you are a serious cat chaser you need to develop a number of non-infested ponds, streams or rivers where you can catch bullheads for bait. I keep a hundred gallon aerated stock tank stocked with about 50 or so bullheads on hand at all times during the summer. Harvesting bait is a big part of the hunt. I enjoy bait harvest almost as much as the fishing part.
  10. I know this is a Bass fishing tip post but when you guys finally get sick of catching bait size fish and want to do some real fishing - here is a tip from your cat fishing friends. When dealing with live bait it can create a mess in the boat. If you are handling nightcrawlers or cutting large baits up for cut bait this tip may be just what you want. If you are looking for a cheap and easy cutting board for preparing bait, pick up one of those plastic Frisbees. Turn it upside down, and start cutting away. They are plenty sturdy for cutting suckers or shad on and the rim doesn't allow slime, blood or bait chunks to leave the cutting surface. You can pass the bait plate to your buddy with ease and they rinse off and store easily too.
  11. Brad - Back in the day (70's) I ran a 14' fiberglass Tri-hull with a 15hp Evinrude. Most of the time we would just fish the Elk River - Dayton area but our favorite trip was to launch in Monticello and drift to Dayton. We would take our time and fish the whole day away - it was always a blast. I had an old beat up prop that was our drifting prop. We would always put it on before the drifting trips because we would beat the hell out of a prop on that stretch of river. That stretch of water is still one of my favorite fishing trips although I haven't done it in years. Now all I do is chase cats - I'm hooked on BIG fish.
  12. I grew up in Dayton on the Mississippi. Fished it my entire life. I've never seen a single sheepshead or white bass in the Miss from Monticello to Anoka. The Mississippi from Pool 2 down and the St Croix and Minnesota are full of sheeps and silvers but never seen any upstream. I'm not sure how flatheads would do upstream from Coon Rapids. The channels sure seem to be able to strive in that piece of water. I remember when they stocked the upper Miss with channel cats - that stocking program has been a major success story in my opinion. Would be nice to catch one of these upstream though.
  13. If you are going to be fishing the Miss up by Elk River you should be fine. Water gets pretty shallow up that way around late July - August time frame and your props can take a beating. I wouldn't trick it out too much - keep it light so you can dunk it in at some of the unimproved launch sites. When the water gets low the launches sometimes can't handle the bigger, heavier rigs. With a lighter Jon boat like yours you can drag it in about anyplace. That is a good size for that water. Enjoy your new boat - won't be too much longer and you can test it out.
  14. You get an F for spelling.
  15. I agree - September has been a good month. Did you pass me up on the KOTC Flathead Leaderboard with these fish? Can I add up my flathead double as a KOTC single entry so I can get an upgrade? You guys are going to bounce me out of the GREEN.
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