Make the Best of It

By James McManus

Yes!!! May has arrived and everything is going splendidly. The fact that I have put off some important stuff hasn’t come back on me yet, but there’s still time. For a while now I have meant to clean all my battery connections and check fuses, replace what was needed and get a trouble free start to the guide season. Ignoring the little voice in the back of my head I figured I had plenty of time to get things done.

A couple of weeks ago I had a trip to a striper lake with a foursome that included two guys in their early teens. (Really like to put young men on fish early as I remember early on my dad did that for me, and a lifetime of exploration and joy was started.) I put the boat in the water, tied her off and started putting everything in its place. Folks arrived a few minutes later and we idled away from the dock.

I run three Lowrance units, two 9s and a 12 for my Livescope. Push the power button on the first unit, nothing. Try number two, nothing. Go to number three, same deal, nada. Redundancy in offshore fishing is the smart way to go, so I have the 9s on one battery and the 12 on its own so I will always have one working, right? Wrong. I can’t get anything to turn on, not a blip. Try checking fuses, clean leads, put one set on another battery, still nothing. I’m already thinking I’ve just committed to giving these guys a free, probably fishless trip.

Having fished here a ton and it’s April I should know where there are some fish, and around the corner to my second spot there is a maelstrom of diving birds, splashing stripers and for the next five hours we boat over forty hybrids and stripers up to 15 lbs. The old saying about the blind squirrel has saved my butt again.

Back at the barn I discover my charging plug was bad, and probably for a couple of trips I wasn’t recharging anyone. New cord, several hours doing electrical maintenance and lesson learned. So, if that little voice keeps nagging for you to straighten out, fix up, replace or grease anything you had better listen. The squirrel also has some hungry periods when not so lucky.

God bless everyone. Take kids fishing when you can. Give me a call if you want to try for some fun fish.

Capt. James McManus owns 153 Charters. Give him a call for a great day on the water at (828) 421-8125