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Use Your Camera for More than Just Fish

As fishermen and hunters, we generally reserve the cameras on our phones (or actual camera if you still use one) for taking photos of our catches or shots of the day, be it a fish or a buck. But, if don't notice what's around you and are too focused on your intended quarry, you might miss a chance at some extraordinary scenery.

Case in point. I headed down to Stockade recently with my pontoon for my first open water trip of the season with it. With temperatures being in low 40s, it was a very brisk morning and as such I made sure the pontoons were fully inflated (as the air in them would likely constrict due to the temperature of the air and water) and that I'd packed my Ice Armor coat, as well as some tall rubber boots since I'd have to get in the freezing water to launch.

Halfway to the lake, the scenery suddenly changed, going from brown to white in a hurry as it had snowed in the southern Hills the night before. I thought it was ironic how here I was going to open water fish in a boat for the first time and it was white and there was no ice. Undeterred, I continued along the slick, icy road until I reached the lake.

What a view it was when I got there! The snow had stuck into the pine trees and created a beautiful winter wonderland landscape with no wind to speak of. The only thing missing was an iced over lake, but that was not the case.

After getting the pontoon into the water and loading it up with rods, tackle bag, anchor, net, trolling motor and its battery, I headed off to an inlet to fish for pike. As I moved across the glassy surface, I looked around at the surroundings and took it all in.

Pictures cannot nearly describe the scene enough. It was like a perfect winter postcard setting, minus a Christmas tree. I took a minute to stop the trolling motor and take a few pictures of the lake before continuing to my destination.

They were the only thing I would catch while I was on Stockade as the fish apparently were in no mood to hit any spoon, spinnerbait or shiner I threw out.

We all love to catch something when we go out, but just remember to take a moment here and there to look around you at the natural beauty that we get to enjoy and might even take for granted.

It gives me a deeper appreciation of the outdoors to catch a glimpse of such scenery and think how lucky we are to be able to see and enjoy this. I hope you believe this too and enjoy them to the fullest!

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