Adirondack Gadabout (outdoors), by Joe Hackett

Early ice-out doesn’t always translate to more fish

With the early departure of winter's ice and snow, it is now time to get out and enjoy the rebirth of the earth as spring's greens rapidly reclaim the landscape.To date, we have largely escaped the spring showers, frost heaves, muddy roads and high waters of mud season. If we can also avoid the ...

Time to bask in the early-season warmth

As the weather warms and the birds and flowers return, don't forget to take some time to get outside.Research indicates the time we spend outdoors makes us feel better, inside and out. The combination of fresh, crisp air, warm sun and the clear, clean freshness of the season provides a renewal ...

Cold opener to the trout season

Despite the unique opportunity to fish the lakes and ponds on the opening day of the trout season, the hype was more than the bite.I hit three ponds in the morning, and the conditions were downright cold. Water temperatures were in the low 30s and the air temperatures were not much warmer. A ...

Oh, to be as old and steady as a tree

As I enter my sixth decade on this planet, I've become increasingly interested in the past. Although I've always been a fan of human history, I've recently become enthralled with the region's natural history, particularly as it relates to a place that is as old as dirt.My ever-growing concerns ...

Waiting for the turn of seasons

Although the mountaintops are still snow-capped and ice still secures the lakes and ponds, there are already numerous signs that indicate the spring season will soon be underway.Despite the ice jams that continue to obstruct many local rivers, there has already been been a lot of activity in ...

Time to start focusing on early ice-out

I don't think I'll be going out on a limb in predicting an early ice-out this year. In fact, I've still been waiting for the lakes to finally ice up, and so have many other hard water anglers.With the fabled Colby Classic Ice Fishing Derby on the schedule this weekend, it is important for ...

Health and happiness outdoors

As the Adirondack region sinks deeper into the depths of winter, it is important for residents to make a concerted effort to get outdoors.Although the current season has been relatively unseasonal, there are still a variety of outdoor recreational options available. In fact, there are more good ...

Shed heads discover whitetail tendencies

I've never spent much time hunting for "sheds," a term used to describe the dropped antlers of a whitetail deer. However, I've come across a variety of them over the years, and most of them had evidence of being gnawed on, likely by mice or porcupine.Unfortunately, I've never come across a ...

The good old days when winter brought snow and ice

For as long as I can recall, the winter season has always been my favorite time of the year. I suppose as a youngster it may have had something to do with the excitement of the looming Christmas season, with the prospect of gifts and the arrival of the long anticipated school break.Even though ...

Still waiting for winter to show its face

Although I still harbor dreams that a traditional winter will magically unfold across the local landscape, the reality of our current situation has become painfully obvious.As I gaze across the golf course in our side yard, the scene remains primarily green. The groundhog has already been out, ...

Hardwater a source of fun, and sometimes cash

Finally it appears that winter has fully engulfed the Adirondacks. With temperatures well below zero, the lake ice can be heard moaning and groaning late into the night.Skiers have taken to the trails, where they've been tracking up the glades and the backcountry slides. Ice climbers can be ...

Like father, like son: An outdoor life on the ice

A passing cold front finally produced a taste of the winter season all across the region, and there is now skiable snow cover in the woods and on the safe ice covering the lakes and ponds.Although I'm still cautious crossing rivers or streams, there's now 4 to 6 inches of good solid black ice ...

Outdoorswomen have come a long way in a short time

After leafing through a pile of old Forest and Stream magazines from the 1890s, I stumbled upon a commentary titled "Woman Out of Doors." The article was focused on outdoor activities and particularly on whether such pursuits were deemed suitable for women.While such topics are no longer ...

Nose-nipping, snow-crunching weather has finally arrived

The recent deep freeze should serve as a brief reminder of the fierce weather conditions that are typical of a traditional Adirondack winter.At times, it appears we've been slowly lulled into a sense of complacency as a result of the omnipresent effects of climate change. However, January and ...

Throwback look at paddling and health

The following information was taken from an original issue of "Forest & Stream," a weekly sporting journal that was published from the 1870s through the turn of the century. The publication was devoted to "Field and Aquatic Sports, Practical Natural History, Fish Culture, the ...

Closing up camp until next year

The camp's been cleaned, and all of the sleeping bags have been safely stored away. Food stuff and other such mouse attractants have been either removed or secured in tins. The camp lantern won't be fired up until a new season rolls around in about nine months.Time always seems to stand still ...

Clock is ticking on the hunting season

As the end of the annual big game hunting season grows near, another hunting season has passed without a single day of tracking snow. In such conditions, it is difficult to deny the obvious evidence of climate change.For many years, I've enjoyed the process of studying the wide variety of ...

Hunters provide season-long economic boost

Big-game hunting is quite likely the most traditional of all Adirondack sporting pursuits. Over the years, hunting has proven to be an important economic driver in the region, especially in the smaller, more remote communities that are not often considered major tourist draws.In the ...

Physical, social and nutritional benefits of hunting

Although there continues to be a recurring debate surrounding the issues of firearms and sport hunting these days, one of the most important benefits that sportsmen and women derive from the hunt is often overlooked.While most enthusiasts recognize the nutritional value that fresh, all-natural, ...

Finding the past in a familiar place

Well, it appears the deep woods are slowly beginning to open up as the fall foliage is finally falling. The heavy, leafy understory of beech whips and maples has limited hunter's vision all season.The foliage has been slow to go, due to the obvious lack of a hunter's snow which usually serves ...