Friday, September 24, 2010

Live Bait Tip

I made a trip to Gander Mountain yesterday morning, to get some minnows and some other tackle for my upcoming musky tournament next weekend. Looking around the store, I noticed the new displays of ice fishing gear that were being set up for the fall/winter season. Hard to believe that winter is on its way when the temperature outside was pushing 90 degrees. I figured on going fishing in the Fox river a little later on in the day so I was in the mood to load up the cart again. Not something that Shirley would want to hear when I'm still trying to find a job to pay for my fishing hobby.

The local bait store in town closed its doors at the end of July (another victim in this endless recession) and since then I haven't used any live bait in the Fox until this week. On Tuesday, feeling the need to start fishing for walleye again, I decided to get some minnows, head to the river and find out where all the fish have been hiding. One of the gas stations in town had minnows in oxygenated bags for $1.59 for 6 large fatheads or 10 small fatheads. Better than driving all over for minnows I thought, not knowing the smell that would emanate from the bags upon opening. The store clerk gave me a discount, for a few of the minnows had seen better days, and as I walked out the store I promised myself it would be the last time I purchase live bait from a gas station.

So here I was on a Thursday at Gander Mountain getting some minnows and tackle and realizing that the "superstore" had run Don out of his little bait shop and clear out-of-town. It doesn't make you want to spend your money at Gander Mountain but I was limited by my options at this point. There is another bait store on the north side of Elgin but it is not exactly close to me and road construction will make it seem even further away. All this chatter is leading to something I promise.

I purchased a Min-O2-Life Magnum bait bucket made by Frabill it comes with a battery operated aerator, insulated walls and a lid. Now when I make the trip to the bait shop across town or to Gander Mountain, I can get enough bait for a few days of fishing and can keep it alive until I get home. Once home I switch the battery operated aerator to one I had for my old fish tank and plug it in the wall outlet. This should keep them alive at least a few days (I will let you know) and save me a few trips to the bait store. One side note to that is as the weather gets cooler the minnows should last longer. Last winter I kept my small minnow bucket in my garage for a week and all my minnows (a few dozen) were still alive from the last weekends ice fishing trip. Frabill always has new and innovative fishing products that can help make your fishing trips better than ever.

I am confident that this will be a formidable solution to my bait store problem, at least until I can find enough money to open my own store in South Elgin. Wait! How then will I find the time to go fishing? I don't think that is very good option at all for someone with a hobby like mine. Sometimes the water always looks better to fish from the other side of the lake, if you know what I mean.

Remember that you can't catch any fish if your line isn't in the water. Please join me on Facebook at Cappy's Pond or on the web @ Comments on my blog sites are welcomed or you can e-mail me @

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