Partly Cloudy
43°FPartly CloudyFull Forecast

Warm weather on horizon

Published: Saturday, Feb. 8, 2014 12:22 a.m. CDT
Caption
(Submitted photo)
Ice flows on the Rock River can do serious damage to river banks. That could be followed by flooding, once warmer weather arrives in the coming weeks.

I can't hardly believe it, but I just looked at the 14-day extended forecast and ...wait for it.

It said that just after Valentine's Day, we could see some 40 and even 50, yeah 50, degree weather. Now, that is 10 days or so away, so who knows if that will hold up or not.

But if it does, it will be exactly what I was thinking would happen. We will bust out of the deep freeze and right into spring-like weather – probaby get some rain with it, and we will have an absolute mess on our hands.

Hey, a flood in the late winter or early spring is exactly what you want to happen. However, with our current snowpack, the amount of ice available to create jams coupled with more snow and even rain in the forecast, well this here has the potential to be one ugly scene here in the Rock River Valley. We will see, but it is definitely worth keeping an eye on.

Like I mentioned earlier, a good flood this time of year is exactly what the doctor ordered. Early high water is good insurance in case of a dry spring. It also helps flush sediment deposits out of the river, which we really need after a couple years of low water and very slow current.

Also, a good flood will move new cover into the river in the form of trees that line the banks of the river. These become hangouts for the river's great populations of crappie, bluegill, bass, channel cats, and the most dominant fish in the river, the Flathead catfish.

Not to mention high-moving melting water charges the water with an abundance of fresh oxygen, which after a long, cold winter is greatly needed.

OK, so onto the next bit of business. An update on the deer herd, or lack thereof. Like I said before, I am not going to post a bunch of numbers up here for you to gnaw on.

But for those of you who may lack the computer skills to run this info down, here is a link for you ... [ http://www.dnr.illinois.gov/news/Documents/2013prelimfirearmdeertotals.pdf ]http://www.dnr.illinois.gov/news/Documents/2013prelimfirearmdeertotals.pdf.

Check out this particular article and you will see some acknowledgement of the lack of a herd, but not really. Coulda been the poor weather. Mighta been several things involved, which is very likely, I admit that.

However, I still stand firm in believing over-harvest is our biggest issue. One thing for sure, you're in the wrong state if you think you're going to get a straight answer about the issue.

Now, I'd be lying through my teeth if I told you I could really think about anything else but the possibility of open water in the next couple weeks. I miss being on the mighty Rock, and I am sure there are a ton of you out there that feel the same way.

I know all my friends that are in the boat or bait business are ready for sure. For those of you who just can't take another day of this, remember that Powerton Lake in Pekin opens to boats February 15.

This lake is a cooling lake, and will be in the 50-to-70 degree range on opening day. The lake holds good populations of blue cats, channel cats, white bass, bluegills and flatheads. So if you just want to run the boat and get out for a day, give it a shot. Powerton is located off of I-474's Pekin exit.

Have a great week everyone, and Go Catfish!

Previous Page|1|2|Next Page
 

National video

Reader Poll

A statewide advisory question on the Nov. 4 ballot asks whether Illinois should increase its minimum wage for adults over 18 to $10 an hour. How would you vote?
Yes
No